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Thank you, Nick, Martin, and Linda!  Your information is much appreciated!

Have a great rest of the week!

Danna

-----Original Message-----
From: Open Forum for Learning Assistance Professionals [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Nick Carbone
Sent: Wednesday, April 01, 2015 8:10 AM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: operating online tutoring through the use of college's own tutors

I like your instinct to build your own online tutoring program, using tutors you hire, whether from your student population or professionals with degrees.

NetTutor is a company that offers tutoring services; they also offer their interface for licensing to schools that want to hire their own tutors. One thing they do that I think is smart, is that their tutors, MA's, all come to work in the NetTutor offices in Tampa. Because USF and other colleges are nearby, the company has a great pool of talent to draw from -- graduate students working on advanced degrees, spouses of professor and students, graduate students who stay in the area after finishing their degree and so on.

So whom you hire will depend on the kind of folks available, and whether you want to hire locally (to keep the revenue local, which is a good thing). That said, SmartThinking hires and trains tutors at a distance (and getting someone on your team to apply and go through their training program might be a good strategy).

Another model to consider -- http://www.etutoring.org/index.cfm -- is premised on pooling tutors from across institutions, into regional collaboratives. I don't know that you have to do that to use their tools, but it opens up another option for using your own tutors.

Too, you can start slowly with the services you offer as well. You don't have to launch with 24/7 support, a full staff. You can do a soft launch, maybe offering services to start to one or two departments, then expanding as staffing and budget lines permit.

On training tutors, I recommend always the work of Beth Hewitt, who along with Christa Ehmann developed SmartThinking's tutor training and hiring program when the company was founded. As preparation for that, they did research on online tutoring and training and published that work with NCTE:


Hewitt, Beth L. and Christa Ehmann. Preparing Educators for Online Writing
          Instruction: Principles and Processes. Illinois: NCTE, 2004.

Beth also had a book with Heinemann, that went out of print, but that was picked up by the Bedford/St. Martin's Imprint of Macmillan Education: The Online Writing Conference: A Guide for Teachers and Tutors. You can order a free exam copy here: bit.ly/1OYPBy3

Her work will help you with training as you get started, and I think she also offers consulting, if you have a budget for that.




On Tue, Mar 31, 2015 at 5:54 PM, Danna Baggett <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

> Good afternoon!
>
> I have been tasked with finding out about other colleges' online
> tutoring programs.  I have found that most colleges use an outside
> source such as Smarthinking and Brainfuse instead of their own tutors.
> We are leaning more towards using our own tutors instead of other
> company's tutors.  I have several questions, and was wondering if anyone could help me out.
>
>
> *         Do any of you use your own tutors to do your college's online
> tutoring?  If so, how have you structured your program?
>
> *         Do you have a special lab for the tutors to conduct the online
> sessions?
>
> *         Do you allow them to tutor while they are at home or do they
> have to be on campus during operating hours?  If allowed to tutor at
> home, did you issue the tutor a laptop and webcam, if they did not
> have their own?  Did your college provide tech support for the tutor's
> personal computer if it stopped working properly?
>
> *         Do you have "drop in" tutoring by having virtual walk-in hours
> where the tutor waits for someone to ask a question online?
>
> *         Is it made available 24/7?  Basically, if a tutor says they can
> be available at midnight, do you allow that?
>
> *         Did you hire student tutors or "professional" (with at least a
> Bachelor's degree) tutors?
>
> I am sure I am leaving out some other important questions. So, if
> there is any other important details that you think would be
> beneficial, please include them since you have gone through this process.
>
> As always,  thank you very much!
>
>
>
> Danna Baggett
> Apache Tutoring
> Tutoring Services, Director
> 903-510-3114
> [log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]>
> Vaughn Library, 2nd floor
>
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--
nick.carbone at gmail dot com
http://ncarbone.blogspot.com

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