23

There are several possible explanations. Without much more information, it is impossible to give a clear-cut answer. Perhaps your student is able to "read" your unconcisious reactions very well, and you are telegraphing the solution. Some people just go blank in stressful situations, like an exam (you say it's not the case, but it might be anyway)....


20

It sounds like your students are not getting what they wanted from your tutelage; since they are not getting a formal credential from their work with you, their likeliest motivation is that they think additional math knowledge will aid them in their research projects or careers. As you said, the case-study student's objective is to learn the equivalent of a ...


16

I think the real issue here is that you thought you were essentially doing undergraduate tutoring, and you weren't. You were doing adult education, and that is not the same thing. When someone is in their 40's and has not worked - daily - with math since college...they no longer know any math. They have probably even lost much of their high school math, as ...


9

Intense emotions surrounding math are not uncommon. Importantly, they tend to "feed back" on themselves - the memory of a bad experience with math makes doing math more stressful later, which then creates new bad experiences. So, taking action sooner rather than later will help immensely. Here are some suggestions. There's no such thing as being ...


9

Empty praise is no good Do not give praise when it is not deserved. It is not healthy and does not lead to stronger character or anything else good. Tasks with no wrong answer Maybe, and I am guessing here, the pupil reacts badly to being shown inadequate. Maybe mathematics has always been a subject full of right/wrong -type exercises: you either get it or ...


7

I had a similar student, these 2 things helped. Take mock tests with different criteria, like a test where questions are easy but paper is too lengthy to complete in time or sometimes very few questions but too difficult to solve and you`ll be able to filter out the exact problem. Ask your student to explain concepts to you or take a theoretical test.


6

I was this student throughout school and University. Professors would comment that I was smart, that I knew the material, but I'd still do poorly on exams. I made careless mistakes: I would sometimes forget to finish questions half-way through, clearly make simple arithmetic errors and just otherwise not give the exam the attention it deserved. Studying was ...


6

When he solves some exercises beside me he does very well, so I was thinking why he failed the exam, and I couldn't find a reason. Also when I give him some homework he do some parts wrong, but when I just point them out without saying anything he knows what is wrong and how to correct it. This is the problem. Carelessness. I too have this problem a lot, I ...


5

Organic chemists are well known for "only needing to count to 4". Sure, they have some math in their studies, but it's really not used for natural products synthetic chemists. I disagree with the commenter who said to confront the fellow, demanding proof of his professorship. If you really care, look it up yourself. But it's inappropriate to ...


5

Her parents say she is sensitive and needs praise and encouragement, but you say she has gaps in her knowledge. Some suggestions: Assess what she knows and doesn't know. Give her an oral written assessment of the skills she needs. Make sure she understands that you need to know what to teach her. Make the parents your partners. Tell them you are happy to ...


3

I have much fewer qualifications and I see myself as a fine tutor, so no doubt you are even more justified in your belief. There are various websites that allow tutors to set up a profile, post details and rates, but allow the tutors to interact directly with the clients. Many these sites either charge to client or far more commonly charge the tutors, ...


3

It may be that his style of learning differs from yours. I have an MA in math, and when my son was in high school helped tutor him in math and physics. I always like the "aha moment" in proofs, where the purpose of previous obscure statements becomes plain. My son hates that - when I delivered the punch line he would get upset and say "where ...


3

Khan Academy has great problems for drill. I have often used it for careless students. Advantages are: there are no clues from you if it's wrong the computer will say so and he doesn't get credit for understanding, so he will learn to focus on accuracy he will have a chance to correct it which will reinforce his understanding and accuracy. he can do this ...


3

My question is: What is the true purpose of instant tutoring? Is it meant to be a Q and A where the tutor just gives the answer? Or should I stick to my teaching philosophy during instant tutoring sessions and focus on improving how I interact with students? Let me pile on the pessimism here. For the company, instant tutoring is about making money, not ...


3

Coming back to my question a year later, I'm happy to say that I recently had a breakthrough, by stumbling upon Bloom's 2 Sigma Problem. In his 1984 paper, Bloom discusses findings replicated across subjects and age groups showing that when an "average student" was taught by a "good tutor" via Mastery Learning, over a period of time, they ...


2

Both Amy B and Reese Johnston have given some excellent suggestions but make sure you pay attention so that the student doesn't use tears (even unconsciously) to avoid work or get spoonfed answers. Without observation or more details, I cannot tell if the parents are simply accommodating a more sensitive child or have fallen into the habit of removing ...


2

Stick to your philosophy IMO. In fact, I would double down on it. I've always viewed Homework Help as the lowest form of tutoring because from my experience, the student is usually focused on getting it done rather than learning. I still try to make these situations work because I feel guilty if I tell the student that I can't help them, and I don't want ...


2

Many studies about active learning are summarized and linked to at this link. I do agree with the commenters Dirk and David, who mention that there are pros and cons to any teaching method, and that studies are usually based around averages, so they might not be applicable to every situation.


2

•Have him create a short 10-question exam for you and/or for some younger students. (just to give him different perspective - from that of the test maker) Explain why some missed some questions and some missed others. •Give him the challenge of creating a math test by giving him the answers first and he has to create a question to get that answer. •Discuss ...


2

That same thing happened to me when I was in school. Even in University it still happened to me. Even now as a programmer I still see the same pattern happening to me. I was conscious of the problem, but had no solution. In fact, I don't think of it as a problem, but as an advantage (I'll discuss about this below). When I do maths exams, I like so much ...


2

I enjoy teaching math, I get paid for dealing with the b.s.. If it turns out that there is more b.s. to deal with that I initially expected, my price goes up. I don't explicitly tell the client that that's the reason why the price is now higher, but I set my price to the b.s. level. So either the client pays me enough to put up with it all, or decides that ...


1

You could consider using a less "pure maths" textbook in your tutoring. Instead you could use a maths-heavy textbook more related to their field of study and making them work through the proofs in detail. For example, if your student has a chemistry background you could use a book on thermodynamics and work through the proofs of thermodynamics and ...


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