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Biology tutoring

(7 Posts)
ItsAllTLAsToMe Wed 01-May-13 23:02:14

I'd like to tutor A level biology, does anyone know about doing something like this?

I went to school in Scotland, so I've done Higher Biology, then a couple of degrees (but not A level biology). What are my options? Do I need to get my A level biology, or just learn the current syllabus?

Is there actually any demand for tutoring?

somebloke123 Thu 02-May-13 15:17:04

There are no mandatory qualifications at all for being a private tutor so there would be no requirement to sit A level biology. (Presumably Highers are a similar level to A levels?)

I would think just learn the current syllabus and get what info you can from the internet of the marking schemes etc. It might also help if you familiarised yourself with the requirements of different exam boards (e.g. Edexcel, Q&A etc) and maybe also the IB if any schools do that in your area.

What the demand is might depend on your local area.

ItsAllTLAsToMe Thu 02-May-13 18:22:45

Thanks, somebloke, that's helpful. A Higher + Certificate of Sixth Year Studies (CSYS) = an A level (ish), but I've only done Higher Biology (although then a couple of degrees in a biology speciality). So, I really would need to learn some things for the first time!

somebloke123 Fri 03-May-13 15:30:14

I may be in a similar boat.

My original academic background was in physics and maths though it's many years since I used them. My 2 children have recently done both of these at AS/A level and I have been helping them with it. There's some stuff that had obviously been burnt permanently into my brain cells - other bits that I had to revise - or learn from new.

I may start to do a bit of private tutoring when I retire.

I would guess that there should be a demand for biology tuition. Presumably people need it to get into medical school, for example, which is very competitive of course.

ItsAllTLAsToMe Fri 03-May-13 19:43:11

That's interesting, somebloke, I did wonder how much of it would still be in my brain.

Having posted all of this, I've realised that I don't really know what tutoring entails - lessons that cover particular areas? help with particular areas? help with tackling exam papers?

Other things I've thought of include getting CRB-checked, doing a first aid course, and doing some volunteering with children of about the same age as I'd like to tutor.

professorpoopsnagle Sat 04-May-13 20:17:58

I tutor, although I am an ex-teacher which I think helps but doesn't always make you a good tutor. I also have an A level and degree in the subject I teach, although some of that was very rusty when I started, it has come back quite quickly. It is important that you are up to speed on exam boards and requirements though as they have changed, and continue to do so.

My sessions are based on what students want/need but in general consist of me teaching/explaining, practise for the students whilst answering their questions and guiding them, as well as exam technique and past paper practice.

Make a list of the schools nearest to you that have sixth forms and see if you can find out what examining board they use for A level- it is usually on the website. Then you can research the relevant board to see what you will be able to do with your current knowledge and what you might need to learn/refresh.

I have a CRB check but this is not necessary and can be difficult to gain as an individual- I volunteer in a school and have it that way.

somebloke123 Thu 09-May-13 10:45:15

Maybe to some extent physics is a special case in that for much of the time there's not much factual material you need to memorise. It's more a matter of understanding a small number of principles (Newton's laws, principles of electrical circuits, basic quantum physics) and knowing them back to front and inside out. I did spend about a decade as a physics teacher many moons ago together with several years research.

But there are various special modules e.g. containing recent advances in medical physics, particle physics etc which I would have to mug up.

My own thought, if I do start tutoring, is to start slowly e.g. a couple of physics pupils to allow for the fact that I may need to get up to speed in certain areas. I would imagine that if you make a good start you might get a lot of work through personal recommendation - and vice versa of course.

One question I have not found an answer to is whether it's best to set up as a sole trader or start up one's own company.

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