I am a physics and mechanical engineering student interested in energy production. I didn't discover my passion for the sciences until my sophomore year in college, so I understand what it is like to lack purpose when studying these subjects. But I also know that particular classes and teachers can totally change your perspective on a subject. I hope I can do that for the students I tutor.
The most satisfying part about tutoring is seeing the light bulb go off for students. That "ah ha" moment is addicting if you can find it often enough. There is inherent pleasure in new understanding. These light bulb moments can happen anytime for students and at any age.
I began studying physics at Earlham College in Indiana. I chose this school because it is relatively small. I never had classes larger than 10 students. Along the way I decided not to pursue graduate school in physics, but rather to come to Columbia to study Mechanical Engineering. I did this for a number of reasons, mainly because I want to go directly into industry and an ME bachelors suited this purpose well. That said, I will have two degrees, a BA in Physics from Earlham College and a BS in Mechanical Engineering from Columbia University.
I tutor subjects outside of Physics and Math. I spent a year living in Germany studying German, so I tutor that as well.
My favorite subjects to tutor are Physics and Calculus. The reasons for this are quite simple. Calculus is the bedrock of Physics and Physics is our most accurate understanding of physical reality. Math is the language of physics, physics and quantum mechanics formulate chemistry. Chemistry is used to understand biology and so on. The beginning of the chain sits with mathematics and physics.
My teaching philosophy and tutoring style are straightforward. I am convinced that everyone understands introductory physics, they just don't recognize it mathematically. I make sure to relate every mathematical statement to a physical interpretation so that the student can begin to gain mathematical literacy and maturity.
My interests outside of academia mainly consist of some sport, such as skiing, skydiving and motocross. However since I've moved to New York I have sacrificed these hobbies. Fun hobbies aside, I am committing my life to energy production and renewable energy. I believe it is absolutely necessary that our country move in this direction.
Education & Certification
Undergraduate Degree: Columbia University in the City of New York - Current Undergrad, Physics and Mechanical Engineering
I enjoy reading, playing the piano, solving life problems, and optimizing personal finance.
AP Computer Science Principles
Civil and Environmental Engineering
CLEP College Algebra
CLEP College Mathematics
CLEP Financial Accounting
COMPASS Mathematics Prep
COMPASS Reading Prep
Elementary School Math
Elementary School Reading
Elementary School Science
High School Physics
IB Computer Science
IB Further Mathematics
IB Mathematical Studies
Mac Basic Computer Skills
Mandarin Chinese 3
Mandarin Chinese 4
Middle School Science
OAT Survey of Natural Sciences
PC Basic Computer Skills
SAT Subject Tests Prep
Statics and Dynamics
Technology and Computer Science
Q & A
What is your teaching philosophy?
Everyone is interested in math and physics. Anyone can learn these subjects. There just needs to be more time spent gaining mathematical literacy in this country.
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
Introduce myself and make the student as comfortable as possible.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
I encourage them to solve as many problems as possible!
How would you help a student stay motivated?
I would tell them my story. I didn't become seriously in love or interested in math and physics until I took multivariable calculus.
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
I use physics to relate the concept to something they already intuitively understand.
How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?
I expose them to new and interesting scenarios to solidify and give meaning to what they've read.
What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?
Start with an introduction, get to know each other, and learn the goals of the student.
How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?
The most efficient way to learn any subject is to relate it to something the student already knows. I try to make these connections, whatever the subject I'm teaching.
What techniques would you use to be sure that a student understands the material?
I expose the student to problems that gradually increase in complexity. These problems help the student expand their understanding while not intimidating the student.
How do you build a student's confidence in a subject?
Practice, practice, practice!!
How do you evaluate a student's needs?
I ask them what his/her goal for the course is. Why do they want to learn the subject?
How do you adapt your tutoring to the student's needs?
I often seek feedback from students. I want them to feel comfortable telling me what works best for them.
What types of materials do you typically use during a tutoring session?
I usually have enough examples in mind that I can use my own mind for materials.