How to choose the right VCE tutor

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There are many people that advertise as VCE tutors – some are excellent at what they do, others have different motives. Choosing a VCE tutor is not always an easy task. In this article will be analysing the qualities that an excellent VCE tutor should have – we will also be giving you suggestions of how to find a VCE tutor that is most effective for your individual needs.

(1) VCE tutors should be able to teach you the material – not only answer questions!

It is important that your VCE tutor can actually teach you the VCE material – not only answer your questions. A true VCE tutor will have excellent, in depth knowledge on their VCE subject – so that if you miss an important concept at school your tutor can clarify this. I have seen VCE tutors that expect the student to have questions to answer – and when there are no clear questions they do not know what to do. In VCE there is really no time to waste and a good VCE tutor knows this, they will be motivated and willing to teach you ahead of your classmates if you understand all the current concepts of your subject.

(2) Your VCE tutor should be EXCITED about teaching!

VCE is bad enough as it is… it doesn’t have to be made worse by bored VCE tutors that have a monotone voice and only care about when the lesson is over… If you are paying a VCE tutor you want the person to really genuinely love what they do, this passion is actually contagious – and can motivate and inspire you to perform well in your VCE subject!

In the past I have had my fair share of boring VCE tutors and to be honest the amount I learned from those sessions was very limited. It is amazing that these VCE tutors still managed to charge $75-$80 per hour! Your VCE tutor should be someone that you can approach and be open and honest with them about your goals and expectations … this makes the tutoring much more effective.

Find VCE tutors that are very enthusiastic about what they do, and they actually enjoy it – it will make your experience much more positive. I eventually stopped attending the VCE tutoring session priced at $80 per hour in Balaclava and found a 2nd year university student that came to my house in Dandenong. He was optimistic, full of life, funny and an overall great tutor who really enjoyed teaching Methods … and he only charged $30/hour! Sometimes the best VCE tutors are in fact university students!

(3) Your VCE tutor should be reliable and efficient!

VCE is not a time to muck around with unreliable tutors that, for example cancel, every second tutoring session. Unfortunately many VCE tutors are not committed to their students and cancel sessions or attend the tutoring appointment late or come unprepared! I am amazed about tutoring stories when I teach my VCE students. Most of them seem to have problems with their past VCE tutors before they attend Academy Plus. For example one VCE tutor was continuously answering telephone calls and reading the newspaper, in their tutoring sessions! He was also teaching inaccurate material – not according to VCAA and charging a ridiculous price of $70 per hour for his “VCE tutoring sessions”. This is an important point to consider – just because you are paying a VCE tutor more it does not guarantee that they will be better than a tutor that charges $35 per hour.

It is very tempting to believe that a higher price means better quality … this is not the case. When a price is higher – you are giving a greater value to the VCE tutoring session. This means that your awareness in the session increases and so you tend to pay more attention to every word that the VCE tutor says.

Another concept is that your VCE tutor must be efficient. When I tutor my students they generally do about 6-10 pages of high quality work and they always finish the tutoring session satisfied that they learned something important.  All of this within 1 hour! This is the general trend amoung our Academy Plus tutors – they all want to make sure that you get your money’s worth from the session. However I do recall attending some VCE private tutoring sessions, where I really did not learn anything because the tutor was telling me stories about his family and trying to socialise with me. Obviously this was not worth the $60 per hour rate – and I quit after only 3 sessions! Of course building a connection and rapport with the student is fine – but not when 75% of the lesson is devoted to it.

(4) You should trail a few VCE tutors and start your search early!

At Academy Plus we have a large database of VCE tutors around Melbourne. Through a vigorous selection process and interview, we select some of the most capable VCE tutors. Of course, just because the VCE tutor is willing to help you and is known to be a true professional – it does not mean that you will resonate with them. Therefore it is highly recommended that in late November to December you choose a few VCE tutors that you wish to trail. This way you can still have access to some of the “best” VCE tutors – before they get completely booked out by late January to mid February, and you can select the VCE tutor that you find is best for your needs.

You should definitely look for a VCE tutor that you get along with – they must be knowledgeable in their VCE subject and after a few sessions you will be able to tell how reliable and committed your tutor is. Ideally your VCE tutor should provide you some unique study materials, and other products that add value to the lesson.

(5) Make sure your tutor is an expert;

Your tutor should be able to answer every question you have about the topic. Remember that  sometimes there are cases when a tutor makes a mistake or forgets how to perform a question – after all they are simply human! If you find that your VCE tutor forgets something or answers a question incorrectly, it is ok, as long as it doesn’t happen on a consistent level and that they find the answer and email you how to solve the problem.

This is just an introduction to finding the best VCE tutor for your needs – definitely have a look through our VCE tutor database and feel free to contact Academy Plus about organizing a VCE tutoring session for the November – December period.

Another article we recommend is on VCEtutor.com.au – it is 10 things you need to know before selecting your VCE tutor