Perspective on Tutoring
Tutoring is not a substitute for attending class; however, tutoring can strengthen a student’s understanding of the course material. The purpose of tutoring is to help students become independent learners by improving learning strategies. Students are encouraged to use University sponsored academic support services in addition to the ones provided by the Academic Resource Center.
Academic Department Support Services
Tutoring Services exist in a variety of capacities at Georgetown University. The departments of Mathematics and Economics offer drop-in tutoring services during the fall and spring semesters. Tutors are undergraduate/graduate students who are selected to serve as tutors because of their proficiency in the subject area. Students who are taking calculus, statistics, macroeconomics, or microeconomics are strongly encouraged to use these services on an ongoing basis to strengthen their comprehension of course material.
The Writing Center serves both undergraduate and graduate students, offering hours during the fall, spring and summer sessions. Whether it is an essay for an English or history course, students can consult with a trained tutor to get guidance and feedback on drafts of their papers. According to the Writing Center’s mission, a writing consultant “will assist you at any stage of your writing process, from initial brainstorming to final revisions. Tutors will help you improve your own critical thinking, revision, and editing skills. We won’t proofread your paper for you.” In short, the Writing Center provides students the tools and strategies to become confident in their writing skills.
Academic Support Services Offered by Professors
Some professors who teach introductory courses provide academic assistance outside the classroom. The tutors are typically undergraduate students who have already taken the professor’s class and have excelled in learning the course material. Professors want their students to take full advantage of these tutoring services, so enrolled students should be using such services as directed by their professor. Moreover, professors provide office hours to meet with their students. They are the first source of guidance and assistance; students should be proactive in consulting with their professors. If a student believes that additional support is needed to learn the material, then it is the student’s responsibility to discuss their concerns with the professor. Specifically, if the student wants a private tutor (a service for which the student would be financially responsible), then this matter should be raised with the professor who might be able to provide guidance.
Students always have the option of hiring a private tutor. The Academic Resource Center does not promote the services offered by any independent private tutors. If a student finds that the University academic support services do not meet their needs, then they should explore private tutors. Again, students are encouraged to consult with their professors if they decide to hire a private tutor to ensure that such assistance does not violate academic integrity of the course.