Signing up for tuition or additional classes seem to be more of a norm than a necessity these days.
With the influx of students and parents wanting additional help beyond lessons in school, more and more tuition centres and private tutors have sprung up to offer their services (with most proclaiming that they are able to deliver results).
So how exactly do you decide which tuition teacher is right for your child? Well, to answer that question, you will have to first answer the next.
Does your child really need tuition in the first place?
Unfortunately, this is a question only you have the answer to. It’s important to think through it thoroughly and eliminate all social/peer pressure. Make sure you think hard about what’s best for your child rather than what other parents are doing for their children.
Signing up for tuition is a long-term commitment. The payoff will only be high in the long-run. However, in the meantime, it can be financially taxing for you and mentally draining for your child. Hence, we recommend only considering having tuition if your child is struggling to grasp important concepts in school or is lagging behind.
What are the types of tuition available?
Before we get into talking about the things you should take note of when choosing the right tuition teacher, here are the different types of tuition available:
- Tuition Centres
These are similar to a classroom setting in school. It can be located at heartland malls, shopping centres or even at community centres. The class size could range from 5 to 30 students per class.
- Private Tutors
These are tutors who conduct lessons at their own home. This means that your child will have to travel to the tutor’s house for lessons. The class size could range from 2 to 10 students.
- Home Tutors
These are private tutors who will travel to your house. The benefit of home tuition is not only that it is more convenient for your child, but it would also mean that it will be 1-on-1 tuition. However, it can be more expensive.
How do you choose the right Tuition Teacher?
It’s really simple actually. Consider these 5 factors and weigh out which factors that more important to you. Ideally, you want a tuition teacher that fairs well in all 5 factors but in a real world, that might be hard to find. These 5 factors are:
Factor #1: Credibility (The Tutor’s Background)
This is definitely a must-know for you as a parent. You don’t want to engage a tutor who is not qualified to be a tutor in the first place. You HAVE to do some research on the credentials of the tutor before making any decision. Here are two important things to look out for when looking into a tutor’s background:
a) The tutor’s experience in the subject matter
There should be certification provided by the tuition centre or the private tutor to certify that they are specialised in the field that they are intending to teach.
b) The tutor’s experience in teaching
Just because a tutor has experience in the subject matter, it does not mean that he/she is able to teach. Check for the number of years of teaching experience they have under their belt.
Even if a tutor has a National Institute of Education (NIE) certification, it does not necessarily mean that he/she is able to teach well. An example is that all school teachers have the NIE certification but there are still students who are seeking external help. Check for the number of years of experience. That would be a more reliable metric.
Factor #2: Quality (The Tutor’s Testimonials)
Looking at one’s credentials alone is not enough. It’s important to look at the testimonials as well as it gives you some insight as to the quality of the tutor’s teachings. As much as it is tempting to judge a tutor by the results his students are able to achieve, it is equally important to read the qualitative feedback given by both the parents and students.
What they say gives you an idea of the kind of tutor he/she might be. You will want to look for tutors who are not only able to teach but also connect well with their students.
Ultimately, you want your child to be taught by someone who is not only a knowledgeable person but also a role model in life. You want a tutor who teaches the right values.
Factor #3: Style (The Tutor’s way of conducting lessons)
This is important as every child learns differently. It is crucial you understand what kind of learner your child is. Reading the testimonials will give you an idea of the tutor’s teaching style/ teaching methodology. Alternatively, you can contact the tutor directly to find out more.
Factor #4: Size (The class size)
Smaller class size would mean that more students will be able to have their questions answered more frequently and the tutor will be able to cater to each individual students’ needs. It would also mean that the tutor will have a more manageable class size.
Factor #5: Practicality (The location and the budget)
In terms of practicality, there are two things to consider:
a) The location
Think about this, tuition usually takes place after school or during the weekends. It is not practical for your child to travel far just because there is a better tuition centre/private tutor somewhere far away from home. Not only will it be tiring for your child but a lot of time will also be wasted on travelling.
b) Your budget
It is important to keep in mind that tuition is not cheap. However, it may be necessary for your child and if all goes well, the payoff can be worth it. This goes back to considering whether your child really needs tuition in the first place. Your child might just need a bit more discipline in studying instead.
What’s most important
And that’s it! That is our short guide on how to choose the right tuition teacher. At the end of the day, your child will play a pivotal role in determining the outcome of his/her grades.
He/she will be the one taking the exam anyway. Regardless of how awesome that tuition teacher can be, there is no way to achieve better results if the student is not willing to learn and improve.
What’s most important is that your child is committed because it is ultimately up to him/her to kick that winning goal!
Also, be sure to check out our POA Tuition FREE TRIAL Programme
to help you make a more informed decision!