A photo of Alina, a tutor from University of Virginia-Main Campus

Alina

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My goal as a tutor is first and foremost to help students learn. I love helping students and seeing them improve over time. I find teaching to be a truly rewarding experience, so much so that I used to do it for free. In the past, I volunteered at a community college academic support center as a math and science tutor and would have been hired on a professional basis, had it not been for some age-related hiring restrictions. (They could only hire people 18+, and I was 17 at the time.) Through the college tutoring center I received professional training on the best methods to help students learn and attended weekly workshops to improve my teaching skills.

I have also freelance tutored with pupils of all ages, from elementary school kids all the way up to college students. I adapt my teaching methods to the student, identifying what their strengths and weaknesses are, explaining difficult concepts, giving practice problems, and helping with study habits. I specialize in SAT (all sections), math, and science. I also have experience with AP Tests. However, at elementary and middle school levels I can help with almost any subject.

Alina’s Qualifications

Education & Certification

Undergraduate Degree: University of Virginia-Main Campus - Current Undergrad, Biochemistry

Test Scores

SAT Composite: 2320

SAT Math: 750

SAT Verbal: 800

SAT Writing: 770

AP Chemistry: 4

AP Calculus AB: 5

AP English Language: 5

AP US History: 4

AP U.S. Government & Politics: 5

Hobbies

taekwondo, piano, photography, neuroscience research

Tutoring Subjects

10th Grade Math

11th Grade Math

12th Grade Math

1st Grade Math

2nd Grade Math

2nd Grade Reading

3rd Grade Math

4th Grade Math

5th Grade Math

6th Grade Math

7th Grade Math

8th Grade Math

9th Grade Math

ACT English

ACT Math

ACT Science

ACT Writing

Advanced Placement Prep

Algebra

Algebra 2

Algebra 3/4

AP Calculus AB

AP Calculus BC

AP Chemistry

Arithmetic

Biochemistry

Biology

Calculus

Calculus 2

Chemistry

College Biology

College Chemistry

Differential Equations

Elementary School Math

Elementary School Reading

Geometry

High School Biology

High School Chemistry

Homework Support

Honors Chemistry

Math

Middle School Math

Organic Chemistry

Other

Pre-Algebra

Pre-Calculus

SAT Prep

SAT Math

SAT Mathematics

SAT Reading

SAT Verbal

SAT Writing and Language

Science

Study Skills

Study Skills and Organization

Summer

Test Prep

Trigonometry


Q & A

What is your teaching philosophy?

My primary goal as a tutor is to help students learn and achieve. I focus on building a solid foundation of conceptual understanding as well as providing targeted practice with meaningful feedback in order to help students with their problem areas. In my lessons, I also provide real-life examples and explanations to help students better relate to what they are learning. I believe there is no one-size-fits-all approach to teaching, and so I adjust my teaching style to each student's unique learning style and pace in order to maximize their potential.

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

Typically, the first lesson is spent identifying how the student best learns and what areas they need the most help with. I like to talk to students about their usual study habits, the course materials they are using, what topics they had trouble with on previous tests/quizzes, etc. If needed, I will also my own diagnostic test. After all of this has been discussed, we come up with a general plan of action and then get right to work with the tutoring lesson!

How can you help a student become an independent learner?

One of the primary goals of a good tutor is to not only teach students what to learn, but how to learn. In addition to covering content, I also teach my students effective study habits and learning strategies. This can include giving tips for getting through dense textbook reading, giving additional practice problems for the student to do independently, or showing them how to make effective study materials for an upcoming test. I also point students to additional online resources to help them continue their learning outside of the tutoring session.

How would you help a student stay motivated?

I always try to keep a positive, patient, and encouraging attitude during my tutoring sessions. I track my students' improvement, and always make a point of telling my students at the end of each lesson what progress they've made in addition to what they need to work on.

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

If a student has difficulty with a skill or a concept, there are several strategies I might try. Sometimes, a student just needs more practice. However, if there is a fundamental problem with the student's understanding of a concept, I will attempt to explain the topic in a different way, give a demonstration, or pull in outside resources to help the student grasp the material.