1 employee

3 years in business

Hi! My name is Alexandra, and I have been working as a math and science tutor through WyzAnt Inc, in the DC area, for nine years. Do check out my credentials and references on my WyzAnt profile, which I have linked below.

I have just graduated from the Catholic University of America, with a PhD in Semitic linguistics. Prior to that, I received my MA at the same institution, and obtained a bachelor’s degree in physics from Cornell University, graduating in 2008. I have been tutoring in some form for fourteen years, first at the homework support centers at Cornell and Catholic Universities, and then independently.

During my undergraduate years, I enrolled in a lot of high-level mathematics, physics, and chemistry classses, and I finished my degree with distinction in all subjects. While working on my graduate degrees I have had the opportunity to study a wide range of languages, in addition to gaining critical skills in research, close academic reading, and analysis.

I have had a diverse breadth of experience in academia, in both the physical and life sciences and in the humanities. I therefore believe I am uniquely equipped not only to answer students' questions on a wide variety of topics, but more importantly to teach them how to arrive at the answers themselves. I can help students develop study methods that will ensure success in all manner of academic fields.

I find the work exceptionally rewarding, and enjoy the challenge of explaining highly abstract concepts in ways that can be easily visualized and understood. I think it is also important for students to develop effective organizational skills and study habits as early as possible; the implementation of these skills, I believe, can make studying enjoyable and productive for students as they progress through their high school and then college careers.

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Washington, DC 20002

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What is your typical process for working with a new student?

My style is quite flexible, and I try to adapt it to meet the student’s needs. If a student has a specific problem they need to solve, I try to encourage them to begin to solve it on their own; if they are entirely stuck, or do not understand the underlying material, I will then explain the relevant concepts and work through a practice problem or two with them. After this, I encourage my students to attempt to solve similar problems on their own, with my guidance kept to a bare minimum. I have also had students in the past who were struggling with their professor's style of teaching and wished to have someone provide them with alternative explanations, which I am also happy to do.

What education and/or training do you have that relates to your work?

I am a graduate student at the Catholic University of America, pursuing a PhD in Semitic linguistics. Prior to that, I received my MA at the same institution, and obtained a bachelor’s degree in physics from Cornell University, with a minor in chemistry and biology. I have been tutoring since my sophomore year of college, when I began to work as a homework aide at the tutoring and support center in the Physics Department at Cornell.

Since then, I have accumulated nearly thirteen years of experience tutoring and teaching, both one-on-one and in a classroom setting. In addition to tutoring students one-on-one, I have designed and taught graduate-level courses and led tutorials in Hebrew and Aramaic language at the Catholic University of America.

In a one-on-one format, I have extensive experience tutoring all levels of math from pre-algebra through multivariable calculus, in addition to high school biology, high school chemistry, high school physics, introductory college physics, and intermediate college physics courses (mechanics, electricity and magnetism, thermodynamics, wave theory, optics, and modern physics). I can also tutor differential equations and linear algebra upon request.

Do you have a standard pricing system for your lessons? If so, please share the details here.

For introductory subjects (middle/high school math and science, except AP courses): starting rate of $30/hour for the first 15 hours of tutoring; then an additional $5/hour for each subsequent set of 15 hours, until a maximum rate of $50/hour is reached. If lesson plans are required for each session, the starting rate is $35/hour.

For intermediate subjects (AP courses; introductory college courses in physics, chemistry, and mathematics): starting rate is $40/hour for the first 15 hours, which increases as above ($5/hour for every set of 15 hour, until $60/hour)

For advanced college classes (organic chemistry, thermodynamics, intermediate mechanics and electromagnetism, biochemistry, etc.): starting rate is $50/hour for the first 15 hours, which increase as above ($5/hour for every set of 15 hours, until $70/hour)

How did you get started teaching?

I started as a homework support tutor in the physics department at my undergraduate institution.

What types of students have you worked with?

The bulk of my students are high school students taking math and science classes (including honors and AP courses). I have recently finished working long-term with two students. I started working with one when she was in the eighth grade, and continued meeting with her until she graduated from high school. The other student I started working with during her sophomore year of college, and continued as she finished her undergraduate degree in physics and started a Master’s program in mechanical engineering.

What advice would you give a student looking to hire a teacher in your area of expertise?

Don’t be afraid to try out a few different tutors, especially if you’re looking for help in a subject like math, for which a lot of tutors tend to be available. Often a successful tutoring relationship will develop out of a good personality fit; this is especially true if you are looking for a long-term tutor.

What questions should students think through before talking to teachers about their needs?

The main question when looking for a tutor should be, what am I trying to accomplish with tutoring? Try to be as specific as possible about your needs; this is going to be very helpful for the tutor as they work to determine how best to help you. Consider:

- Do you need help understanding specific concepts only?

- Are you generally a student who is comfortable with his/her study skills, but perhaps needs additional support for a single class?

- Do you struggle knowing how to study for the class for which you are contemplating tutoring?

- Do you need a teacher who can plan out more detailed and involved study sessions with you, perhaps to complement your class lectures?

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