7 Most Important Benefits of Tuition

Learning can seem like a chore. Keeping motivated in certain subjects requires persistence to continue acquiring and applying the knowledge gained. Continuous learning is certainly not easy and can seem daunting. We are all wired differently and yet are pushed into sitting exams at school that don't interest us or that we naturally struggle with.

Throughout my time in education, I found my motivation under the guise of a metaphor from a video game. It may not work for you but it can help you visualise the importance of continuous learning.

A skill tree.

My main focus was never to complete every single branch but to ensure that throughout my life, I never completed one entirely.

Developing variety in your skill set and competencies will help open the door to future opportunities and form an integral part of your personal and professional development by reducing the risk of stagnation. Plus, it helps to maximise your potential from a young age.

This brings me to the title of this blog.

The 7 most important benefits of tuition.

Whilst school learning has its positives; carefully curated, structured, and engaging one-to-one tuition helps students understand their shortcomings openly and honestly without making them feel ashamed and allow them to flourish in topics they are actively seeking to perform well in.

So here we go, a definitive list of the most important benefits of getting tuition to run alongside current academic studies:

1: Boost grades

This is number one on our list and should not be a surprise. It is the primary reason that people look for tuition. To help improve grades.

Whilst grades should never define you, it is no secret that achieving high grades will give you a head start. The culmination of all the benefits listed is that tutoring has been proven to boost student grades at all levels.

If you are averaging a high C/grade 5 then participating in just a singular tuition session per week for a block of ten weeks could help you see an average grade improvement of 1.75. It's the equivalent of adding around 5 months of progress alongside your school learning, taking that high C/5 to an A/7! 

A recent survey of Sherpa users found that the average student actually improved by 2 grades after starting regular sessions with a tutor. Check out the rest of the report insights here.

At the end of the day, you may not feel like tuition is for you. Even with all of these benefits, you may struggle to come to terms with looking for tuition because of the stigma it has around it.

Perceived by many as a last-ditch attempt to recover grades in failing subjects. I promise you, that stigma has evaporated over the last 24 to 36 months. The pandemic has forced parents, students, and schools to rethink their approach to education to ensure that this generation of students is not underprepared.

2: Create a stable foundation for future topics

How often do you hear people say, “You need to do this before you can do that”? It is becoming a very common phrase.

Without a fundamental sequence of knowledge, you can't progress further. It isn’t to say you won’t understand it straight away but it will make your progress shaky and uncertain which can lead to a drop in confidence.

As an example; trying to complete factoring algebra without being able to solve equations through “cancelling” is like trying to walk across a tightrope wearing shoes 4 sizes too big.

Sure, it can be done but you wouldn’t catch me trying it. (Although, that’s mainly because I am scared of heights). 

Without the foundation of knowledge in fundamental topics, it becomes increasingly more difficult to layer complex concepts on top. Tuition can help sure up those building blocks and provide a solid foundation to continue learning upon.

The ability is there in tutoring sessions to dive deep into the root cause of a problem through targeted questions and tasks that may not be provided to the student in a classroom. Another of our blogs can help you get the most out of your online tuition.

Keeping a stable foundation in each subject can allow for greater opportunities as a student progresses through life and provide them with the chance to find new passions and interests as they develop.

Some of the best advice I've heard for ensuring you don't fall behind when starting a new year is to make the most of your time over the summer to ensure you revise and practice the foundational knowledge that you'll be building on next year. For example, make sure you know differentiation like the back of your hand before moving onto the second year of your A-Levels!

If you're struggling with a particular topic, it may be useful (and cheaper) to get a tutor over the summer. Rates will be slightly lower due to the lower demand from students, and you have a lot more time since you've not got school and homework on. Sherpa can help you to find a GCSE tutor or A-Level tutors over the summer to get ready for the next academic year.

3: Help expand knowledge

This goes hand in hand with the benefits listed above. Tuition can help fill in knowledge gaps that may prevent progression.

It is slightly different however, tuition can be used to help students learn new concepts, theories, and laws that they can then apply to their current subject knowledge which may not be covered fully in a classroom. 

Helping to expand a student's knowledge and layer more challenging concepts is crucial in helping develop their skill set and improve grades.

The extra learning time that tuition sessions provide allows for more complex breakdowns and analysis of topics that are not available in the classroom due to time and resource constraints. Furthermore, when you are left to your own devices to study for an exam it is tempting to take shortcuts.

Throughout high school, it is often tempting to memorise methods and techniques to get top marks without fully understanding the reason behind why we do it that way.

If you want to study a subject in higher education to work towards a career in that field, it helps to train the critical thinking and reasoning that you will need to solve complex problems later in your studies. Teachers are often too overworked to be able to give you the time you need to understand a method at its core. The same is not true for professional tutors and this is when they come into their own.

Tutors aren’t just mentors, they know their stuff. Each tutor at Sherpa is individually vetted and interviewed by a member of our tutor team to ensure that they are not just competent but will exceed expectations.

The additional benefit of online tuition sessions on Sherpa is that we have a wide variety of qualified UK teachers who conduct private 1-1 sessions so you can continue expanding that knowledge with a professional.

4: Flexibility

Through tutoring, students can learn study habits that they may miss through the standardized, rigid, school teaching hours of 9 to 3. Social, behavioural and independence skills that students learn from tuition sessions will be a massive benefit to them in and out of school.

They can learn to recognise and control their own learning pace and take initiative for homework or coursework that they may have. Rather than watching a class go by passively and retaining little information because they may be feeling hungry, tired or simply burnt out they are able to take control and schedule sessions that suit them. This flexibility helps increase attainment, confidence, and working habits and promotes a healthier lifestyle. 

Online tuition has come on leaps and bounds over the last 2 years (no points awarded for guessing why… sorry). Being able to conduct lessons from the comfort of your own home is not just a plus for students but also for the tutors and it has never been easier to become an online tutor.

Tuition works best when it is free of constrictions and the atmosphere is lighthearted and jovial. Having both sides feel comfortable can only lead to positive results, outside distractions have less impact and that time could be spent ensuring that the correct content is covered to improve grades.

5: A safe place to ask questions

Anxiety in the classroom is becoming more common, a whole host of students feel overwhelmed by a crippling feeling of social anxiety when they are asked questions in class by their teachers. This happens for a multitude of reasons and most common of which is the feeling of being teased by other students.

Anxiety is difficult to identify in a classroom but the Teachers Guide to Anxiety by the Child Mind Institute gives us a fascinating insight into the classroom. We also found in our recent survey of users that the vast majority (88%) of users agreed that sessions with an online tutor helped reduce exam stress because they had a qualified mentor they could turn to.

One-to-one tutoring alleviates one of the biggest forms of anxiety that can stop learning progress in its tracks. Social anxiety. Having a place free from judgement and away from a busy classroom can help students feel more comfortable, allowing them to ask questions that will help progress their understanding and knowledge on certain topics.

Tutoring is not designed to operate exactly like a school classroom, it is there for the niches, the nooks and crannies, silly questions, complex questions and anything in between. It should not be viewed as a flag that a child is not receiving the correct education but as a complementary tool used to enhance learning, just like a laptop, a whiteboard or a pen and paper. 

6: The adaptability of resources and methods

As great as the classroom is for getting students to a base level, sometimes it is just not viable or practical for a teacher to be able to tailor sessions to each individual, no matter how hard they may try. Everyone learns in different ways, therefore it's not possible to teach every student equally in a classroom of 20+ students.

There are 7 main learning styles but that is not to say that they work all the time. It depends on the information being delivered, the subject, the mood of the individual, etc… There are so many different impacts on learning styles in a classroom.

Tuition alleviates this problem. It allows for resources to be carefully curated towards a student’s needs and preferred learning style. Whether that is:

  • Visual
  • Aural
  • Verbal
  • Physical
  • Logical
  • Social
  • Solitary

A tutor will have a much closer relationship with the student and be able to correctly identify the best way to tune lessons to ensure maximum information retention. That isn’t to say teachers do the exact same thing, because they do. But their ability to implement it in a class of 30 others is limited. This adaptation of teaching methods and resources helps a student feel more valued, which in turn builds confidence and motivation to succeed.

7: Build confidence and awareness

Now I am going to make no attempt to hide this as a cliche. But it is one for a reason. Learning new things and excelling in topics provides a sense of accomplishment. This, in turn, boosts the confidence we have in our own abilities. In a recent study of our users, Sherpa found that, on average, online tuition resulted in the confidence level doubling with a term of lessons:

As tuition is so focused on student accomplishment, every single session will end with the student coming away with renewed belief. Not only will this self-belief help them in that particular topic but will help them feel more ready to take on new challenges, progressing them further and paving the way for more opportunities to accomplish. A never-ending cycle or even… a skill tree. With exams coming back in effect; the importance of healthy self-confidence in students has never been higher.

Awareness is one of the best employability traits you can have. Continually learning and growing opens the mind and changes attitudes or beliefs by building upon what you already know.

The more you learn, across a variety of topics, the more empathetic you will become as you will have the ability to see multiple sides of the same situation. This awareness will also help you adapt to unexpected changes and increase resilience.

Do you think your child would benefit from tuition?

Online tuition is considerably more affordable than in-person tuition, and as little as one session per month with a qualified teacher can make a world of difference in boosting confidence and knowledge before exams. One of our tutors, who is a parent, talks through his experience of getting a tutor for his children in a guest-written blog. Check it out here.

Sherpa offers a range of qualified and experienced tutors who are ready to help. Set up a free, no-commitment introduction with as many tutors as you'd like to find out if online tuition is suitable for your child.

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James Gurnett

15th September

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