17 Qualities of a Great Tutor

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A private teacher, referred to as 'Tutor' is a private instructor who teaches a specific subject or skill to an individual student or small group of students, helping the student to improve knowledge or skills more rapidly than in a classroom setting. Tutoring is an age-old practice for giving additional, special or basic instructions that accelerate excellent performance in test scores, improved grades and self-study skills development. A great tutor must have the following qualities:

  1. Keeps to Time: a great tutor must arrive on time for lessons and leave immediately after lessons. Do not stay and spend unnecessary time with student after class, your host may get uncomfortable with you while you lose respect.
  2. Be Neat: neatness attracts your host to you, it speaks well of your self-esteem, commands respect and disregard if you are poorly addressed. You will be addressed the way you dress, your host is watching your conduct, dress properly.
  3. Be patient: patience is a required virtue for a great tutor. Be patient with the learner when he/she isn’t getting along with what’s being taught, teach as per the student’s pace and style. Change your teaching method, break it down and repeat the sequence for student to understand before you proceed. Teaching and learning isn’t achieved until the student understands.
  4. Never abandon your student: a great tutor doesn’t get frustrated and abandon students when they fail to pick up simple things taught them. Though the student may be a slow learner, you need to repeat the process until knowledge is passed.
  5. Be Innovative: the world is gravitating towards technology, so should the tutor. Learn new ICT and teaching skills and apply them to your teaching style to making learning fun.
  6. Be creative: use different methods in teaching, make your lesson sessions interesting by implementing critical thinking skills of new ideas to making student understand by using real world examples and practical instances.
  7. Practice personal development: it is paramount for you to keep growing in study skills as learning never stops. Improve yourself by studying new approaches in the subject area. Explore other methods, be ahead of your student in all subject matters.
  8. Be eloquent: you must be fluent and communicate effectively. Avoid the using a particular word over time, in all you do, avoid vernacular even if the student is from your home town. Your grammatical concord and vocabulary must be advanced and simple at the same time. Sentence errors will put student away, construct your sentence before you speak.
  9. Be discipline: Avoid eating and drinking in student’s home. As much as possible, maintain a healthy relationship boundary with your host to avoid abuse, don’t eat, drink and make yourself vulnerable, be venerable instead.
  10. Don’t seek favor: avoid discussing your personal problems with the goal of asking for help from your host. This is unethical and posses embarrassment to you and harassment to your host. If you are smart and excellent in your conduct and lesson duties, your host will favor you even when you don’t ask. Making demands on people will spoil your relationship and place you in disrepute.
  11. Discuss Academics only: avoid discussing business and none-academic matters with your host, this will cause you integrity and distrust. You are there for lessons, keep to it and focus on student academic growth only. Your host may begin to see you as a fraud when you begin to introduce business ideas and other none-academic discussion after you have being paid for lessons. DoLessons frowns at this attitude. You are there to teach and nothing else.
  12. Be wise: use and display wisdom in all you do. Don’t cheapen yourself by carefree speeches and unguarded behavior. People have different perception about you, be sensitive to request from and discussion with your host.
  13. Maintain Healthy Relationship: be bold, confident and outspoken with humility. Avoid calling your host on phone except him/her so desires, otherwise, you will appear to be boring and nosy. Instead of calls, send SMS.  Be quick to hear and slow to speak, let your role be advisory, be a role model to the student.
  14. Resolve conflict immediately: relationships are bound to clash, discuss all your concerns with humility with your host. Even when you are hurt by student’s misbehavior, don’t be rash and rude when provoked. Apologize when you are wrong, don’t be defensive, express you displeasure with respect, politely.
  15. Don’t intervene in family issues: do not proffer solution to endemic and irreconcilable family disagreement like marriage issues and other conflicts, you are there for academics only, just teach and go.
  16. Don’t use foul languages: don’t be abusive to student, do not use derogatory language on them, be cautious of your speech.
  17. Avoid Sexual Advances: unhealthy relationship with student, your host or parent will only ruin and subject you to dire embarrassment. DoLessons frown at this attitude and will take legal action against any defaulting tutor. Conduct lessons with utmost discipline.