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Requesting a Tutor

students solving a math problem

Before you request a tutor

  1. Attend your professor's office hours.
  2. Attend the math/stat clinics, one-on-one clinics, or pirate sessions.  

Steps to request a tutor

If you have already utilized office hours and Math/stat Clinics but find that you need more individual attention than they provide, then you can request an individual peer tutor.   Here are the steps for requesting a tutor:

  1. Talk to your professor. Your professor must approve that a tutor is a necessary option for you. Also, you and your professor should discuss exactly what needs to be worked on during tutoring sessions.
  2. Talk to the Academic Support Coordinator, Laura Dandridge, who will match you with a peer tutor if one is available for your course.  The tutor will be a currently enrolled Swarthmore student who has recently taken the course you are in (or a similar course) and done well.  In some cases, the tutor may also be an active math/stat clinician or pirate.  
  3. Once a tutor is assigned, you will receive an email introducing you to your tutor.  It is your responsibility to contact the tutor and set up a meeting time and location.  Usually 1 hour of tutoring per week will suffice and you can meet anywhere that is convenient for both you and the tutor.

Once you are paired with a tutor

  • Communicate promptly with your tutor to schedule a meeting time and location.  Tutoring sessions may be held in person or virtually on zoom.  If you need to cancel or change a tutoring session, let your tutor know.  It is also helpful to let your tutor know ahead of time what specific topics you would like to work on in a given tutoring session.  
  • Prepare for your tutoring sessions by reviewing your class notes and previous assignments.  Have a list of specific questions you would like to ask your tutor.  If you are seeking help with a current assignment, attempt to do as much of the assignment on your own as possible before sharing it with your tutor.  Expect the emphasis of your tutoring session to be on your mathematical reasoning, not the correctness of your answers. 
  • Tutoring arrangements are coordinated by the Student Affairs Division.  Their expectation is that tutoring will be a short term affair, and that the total number of hours will be at most 10 hours per semester for each student. To authorize more than 10 hours, Student Affairs needs a note from the department supporting the request.  Be sure to let the Academic Support Coordinator know if you are getting close to the 10 hour limit.
  • Continue to attend professor's office hours and math/stat clinics or pirate sessions.  Tutoring is intended to supplement, not to replace, these other forms of academic support.  
  • If your tutoring sessions are not meeting your needs, please communicate with either your Professor, the Academic Support Coordinator, or Student Affairs.  You may request to have a different tutor assigned if the arrangement is not working.