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"Cikgu" (pronounced chay-goo) means "teacher" in Bahasa Melayu, the language of Malaysia. For the past four and a half years, I have lived in Malaysia as a cikgu, first with Fulbright, the Department of State's flagship international exchange program, and later with an educational therapy company that specializes in one-on-one instruction and holistic learning.

During my time with these two organizations, I developed a personal vision of education that truly centers the student. As an instructor with years of experience working with diverse international populations, I believe that our differences, whether they be cultural, cognitive, behavioral, linguistic, or simply in terms of our interests, deserve to be honored throughout all of our educational journeys. Our backgrounds, as much as our prospective futures, shape who we are and what we need. I believe in teaching practices that not only evolve depending on student needs, but also truly, deeply respect the whole student, including who they are, where they come from, and what they need to move forward.

I also have a background in counseling, and I am currently enrolled in a psychology program in Irvine, where I now live, that supports my drive to learn more about the human mind and condition. I bring the principles of counseling into every student interaction: non-judgment, respect, thinking with rather than for, and empathy shape my work with students and clients of all ages.

And, above all else, I enter every interaction with the following belief: Every person has potential. Every person has the ability to achieve life happiness. All that's needed is the right support--it's my job to provide it.

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Sara’s Qualifications

Education & Certification

Undergraduate Degree: Scripps College - Bachelor in Arts, General Literature

Graduate Degree: University of California-Irvine - Certificate, Psychology

Test Scores

ACT Composite: 34


Travel, jazz music, psychology, vocal performance, hiking, and reading!

Tutoring Subjects

ACT English

ACT Science

ACT Writing


Adult Literacy

American Literature

College Application Essays

College English

College Level American Literature

Elementary School

Elementary School Reading

Elementary School Writing


English Grammar and Syntax


Essay Editing

High School English

High School Level American Literature

High School Writing

IB Extended Essay

Middle School Reading

Middle School Reading Comprehension

Middle School Writing



Public Speaking

SAT Reading

SAT Writing and Language

Spelling Bee


SSAT- Upper Level

Study Skills

Study Skills and Organization

Test Prep


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