Job Description of a Tutor


A tutor's mission is to help students be successful. Students may turn to tutors when they're having trouble understanding a topic or when they need help preparing for an exam. Tutors may meet with students in libraries, schools or their own homes, and work one-on-one or in small groups to help them catch up or get ahead.

Characteristics and Credentials

  • Tutors must be reliable, responsible, interpersonal, patient, communicative and constructive. Some are still students themselves who have a thorough understanding of a subject and are willing to help others excel. Many colleges offer peer tutoring programs, where student tutors must meet a minimum grade point average to qualify -- typically between 3.0 and 3.5. Organizations and tutoring service companies have varying requirements. Some hire tutors who have as a little as a year of college courses related to the subject they teach. Tutors in certain subjects, such as accounting, finance, college statistics and economics, may needs an accredited degree in the field.

Details and Explanations

  • Tutors offer instruction and assistance in specific courses of study, such as algebra, chemistry, history and foreign languages, or in preparation for major tests, including midterms, finals and the SATs. Students rely on tutors to review class materials, discuss textbook information, give practice tests and help brainstorm ideas for research papers. Tutors help students acquire and sharpen note-taking, studying and test-taking skills, usually through a series of sessions.

Practices and Evaluations

  • As they monitor a student's progress, some tutors submit regular reports on students' assignments and attendance to teachers and parents. Many tutors create worksheets, quizzes and other learning materials for their students, but they also recommend software and textbooks. Their goal is to inspire and encourage students to overcome weaknesses by bolstering their confidence and the motivation to learn.

Income and Outlook

  • Tutors can often work as few or as many hours as they desire. Some maintain teaching positions while offering tutoring sessions after school or on weekends. According to ONet OnLine, the national median income of all teachers and instructors -- including full-time tutors -- was $42,970 per year, as of 2013. It reports that between 2012 and 2022, employment opportunities are expected to increase between 8 and 14 percent, which is the same as the average of all occupations.

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