A photo of Radha, a tutor from Indian Institute of Technology

Radha

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My interest in teaching came when I was a Teaching Assistant in graduate school. It was a rewarding experience when I could help students learn. After graduate school, although engaged full time in research, I kept teaching College Physics whenever I got an opportunity. I look forward to continue doing so as it is a true pleasure helping young minds learn.

Radha’s Qualifications

Education & Certification

Undergraduate Degree: Indian Institute of Technology - Bachelors, Engineering

Graduate Degree: Stevens Institute of Technology - PHD, Physics

Hobbies

Travelling, Reading Physics and Math books

Tutoring Subjects

College Physics

High School Physics

Physics

Quantum Physics

Science


Q & A

What might you do in a typical first session with a student?

Introduce myself and ask his/her name. I will make it clear that we both learn from our tutoring experience. My learning lies in improving my ways of explaining, and they learn what they had difficulty in. I encourage them not to shy away from asking any question, no matter how trivial or simple they think the questions may be.

How can you help a student become an independent learner?

Independent learning relies a lot on self-motivation and persistence. I will ask the student to set some goals, like to understand the concepts from the lectures and extend them from other sources like the internet or other textbooks. Once he/she feels comfortable with the concepts, the next thing to do is to work out problems, as many as possible. That is a very important test of their understanding of the concepts. They should not give in to hard problems; they must be persistent, and if they do, they will win at the end.

If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?

It is best to start from some simple examples illustrating the skill or concept. Once the ideas set in, then start to work out many more problems that range from simpler to harder ones.

How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?

I am not an expert in this area. I would recommend to talk to the counselor in the school they go to. I may also recommend to seek advise from experts in Varsity Tutor organization.

What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?

I try to understand the student’s difficulty, what is that he/she is missing to grasp. Once I discover it, I explain them (through examples) the link they were missing. Then I ask them to work out some simple problems while I am watching.

How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?

The way would be to show them the connection between the subject matter and the real-life situations.

What techniques would you use to be sure that a student understands the material?

Ask questions, assign problems. These give a firsthand idea if the student has grasped the concepts.

How do you build a student's confidence in a subject?

It is important to keep a positive attitude towards every student. Acknowledge a student’s work, even if he answers wrongly before the class. Encourage them to do better next time. It is important not to push them or outpace them.

How do you evaluate a student's needs?

The students prior learning experience, the skills, available learning resources could give an idea about the needs of the student.

How do you adapt your tutoring to the student's needs?

Start from the skill sets of the student instead of expecting him to level up. Provide the resources to build up his skills.

What types of materials do you typically use during a tutoring session?

Textbook, paper and pen/pencil.

What is your teaching philosophy?

Emphasize the understanding of the concepts. Work out simple to complicated examples to illustrate the ideas. Encourage self-motivation and independent development.

How would you help a student stay motivated?

The students should know what is expected of them. The teacher should understand the student's abilities, and should create a supportive environment rather than laying out consequences of not doing things.