There is a study that I read several years ago, maybe six or seven, that came out of the California Community College system. It was research-based and demonstrated that the average number of tutoring session visits a student needed to make what they termed
meaningful course progress was six with the first happening before mid term and the rest spaced out over the remainder of the semester. They defined meaningful course improvement as an average of one letter grade.
I picked up and ran with that information with many of the promotional pitches I did with both the students directly and with their parents during freshman orientation. I would even put spins on it with a smile explaining that the last five sessions
werenít going to do much if they all happened during finals week or the week leading up to it and that we are not miracle workers.
That example seems to give people a context for realistic expectations even if the same situation didnít apply to them or their student. I would then emphasize the importance of being proactive and coming in on a weekly basis starting at the
beginning of the semester for a class where you know youíre likely to struggle so that we can work with you on not falling behind.
Iím not sure if my response exactly answers your question or not, but hopefully itís helpful.
Debbie Malewicki, President
USA Tutors, LLC
More and more often, I receive requests to assign a tutor to a student with "severe" challenges, with the expectation that the students will as a result get straight As. We try to educate students and staff on what tutors can/can't do, through our website,
flyers, emails, but it doesn't seem to make that much of a difference.
If you have any tips or ideas on how to communicate better that peer tutors can help but are not miracle workers, I will greatly appreciate it.
Pronouns: She, Her, Hers
Associate Director, Tutoring Services
Academic Success Center
Division of Undergraduate Academic Affairs (UAA)
Sherman Hall East, 342
1000 Hilltop Circle
Baltimore, MD 21250
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