Tutors who know their subjects, and know the needs of their students.
Access To Learning’s tutors are seasoned educators - 90% have an advanced degree in their fields and they average over 9 years of teaching or tutoring experience. Drawn from college faculty, graduate/undergraduate students, high school teachers and retired educators, all tutors must complete Access To Learning’s training program and are regularly evaluated for quality and consistency. Each academic area is led by one of Access To Learning’s subject-area coordinators.
Access To Learning tutors will:
- Encourage students with constructive criticism;
- Help students identify areas for improvement;
- Involve students in discussion and problem-solving strategies;
- Treat students with respect.
Access To Learning tutors will not:
- Do assignments for the learner, give answers or write any portion of papers;
- Review and correct errors without active participation of the learners;
- Comment on grades or predict a possible grade.
Testing, evaluation and collaboration: The keys to exceptional tutoring.
At Access To Learning, we work to facilitate a culture of professional reflection and consistent quality among our team of tutors. All of our tutors must successfully complete a training program that focuses on both technological skill and instructional practices. Tutors also must collaborate with Access To Learning colleagues and participate in on-going development exercises held throughout the academic year. The Access To Learning Certification program involves a combination of self-paced training modules, interactive sessions with veteran tutors, and meta-cognitive exercises. In their practice sessions, tutors undergo an orientation to their respective teaching platforms and then work with academic coordinators and veteran tutors, who assume a variety of student roles. Simulated tutorial exercises represent diverse situations and student needs that typically are encountered throughout the semester (for example, scenarios involving ESOL and non-traditional students, as well as students with varying learning styles). Upon completion of the training program, tutors must demonstrate competence in specific content areas, competence in communication and instruction, and an understanding of the values that drive our services. The Education Implementation Department also engages tutors in ongoing evaluation and professional development exercises. Academic coordinators undertake formal bi-weekly evaluations of tutor performance followed by debriefing sessions, as well as less formal, random monitoring of tutorial activities. These reviews focus on the specific challenges and complexities of working with a diverse student population. Moreover, tutors communicate with one another regularly using our internal message board; lead tutors and academic coordinators moderate these discussions. This communication provides opportunities for tutors to engage in on-going conversations about their practice and to build a sense of community with their colleague.