Knowledge and the pursuit of it has always been incredibly important to me. Teaching/tutoring fits in well with these passions, there's nothing I enjoy more than instilling the same passion for learning I have in other people.
I am currently working on a Bachelors of Science in Biology at Arizona State University, so Biology is certainly my strong suit. I am also currently working for the Social Insect Research Group (SIRG) at ASU doing Genetics work on a local harvester ant species. I love research and I love teaching individuals, especially when the information I am providing is not well known. In the past I have worked in medicine as an EMT/Ski Patroller and a Medical Assistant.
I truly love academia and plan to pursue a PhD and a professorship later on but it doesn't totally encapsulate my life. I also love to ride my bike (both mountain and road). Nearly anything that will get me outside, I'm certain to enjoy (rock climbing, hiking, backpacking). Photography is another activity I enjoy, and it goes very well with my "outdoorsy" activities by giving me a way to artistically capture the beauty around me on my hikes.
Tutoring is really a great system for reinforcing learning. One-on-one interactions are difficult with how large schools are in major metropolitan areas and individual teaching can be so beneficial for individuals who desire something more than the traditional "lecture and parrot back" form of teaching.
Education & Certification
Undergraduate Degree: Arizona State University - Bachelors, Biological Sciences
ACT Reading: 32
I enjoy reading books from a multitude of genres as well as hiking/biking/backpacking and most other things that get me outdoors.
ACCUPLACER ESL - Reading Skills Prep
ACCUPLACER ESL - Sentence Meaning Prep
ACCUPLACER Language Use Prep
Anatomy & Physiology
Elementary School Science
High School Biology
High School Chemistry
Middle School Science
Q & A
What is your teaching philosophy?
My teaching philosophy is flexibility and adaptability. Any teacher that can see the individual necessities of each student will be that much more successful in helping the student to learn and comprehend the material.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
Over-lecturing is usually not the answer. Engagement from the student is crucial. Activities that allow the student to demonstrate their learning by applying it to situations not covered previously both shows the tutor/teacher the student's capabilities, as well as teaches the student critical thinking skills that can be used in many situations.
How would you help a student stay motivated?
The student being comfortable with the tutor is essential to having the learning time be fun. Having fun by changing things up, while still remaining focused, will allow the tutor/student to remain motivated and, hopefully, garner a true enjoyment and passion for the subject.
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
Taking the concept that is in focus and breaking it down to more manageable pieces can greatly help in discovering where the problems lie. After the break down, maybe taking a different path away from the main concept could introduce the student to new ways of thinking, thus helping understand the underlying concepts better. Once the student understands the underlying/more manageable parts, we would return to the the main skill/concept to see if understanding has increased, and repeat the exploration if necessary.
How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?
Reading comprehension is something that can be helped by digging deeper into essential parts of the passages being pondered. There seem to be central lines of thought throughout most writing that can be analyzed and used to understand the whole of the work. Identification of these central focal points would be essential, as well as learning how to relate those central points to the rest of the literary work.
How do you build a student's confidence in a subject?
Bringing in abstract concepts and ideas that relate to the subject at hand can increase a student's interest and understanding of a subject. Then, allowing the student to arrive at their own conclusions about the abstract concepts empowers them to make further and further connections and confidently approach most material related to the topic of study.
How do you evaluate a student's needs?
A good, in depth conversation with the student about the material they have already seen and worked with is essential to evaluation. By digging into the student's learning style and interests, a tutor can really get to know the strengths and weaknesses and build a learning plan off of that.
How do you adapt your tutoring to the student's needs?
Utilizing all the technology at my command, I like to remain flexible in what teaching approaches I use with each student. From having a simple conversation every session about the subject matter to building unique, hands on games that help solidify learning, I really try to be able to do whatever it takes to adapt to each individual student.
What types of materials do you typically use during a tutoring session?
My materials used can vary widely between students depending on preferred learning methods. Some students can learn much better by hands on, visual, and tactile instruments/experiments. Some may just need a rewording/reworking of a concept to help cement it in their thought process. Some just need to rewrite the concept in their own personal notes to understand things fully. I am open to using all of these processes and materials if necessary.
What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?
An in-depth breakdown of difficult topics or weaknesses with a breakdown of strengths in the subject is essential for introductory work. Just as important, though, is to build a solid repertoire with the student. Not much work will be done if some common ground isn't reached initially. Learning works so much better when both parties enjoy the learning environment.