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GCSE Maths Tutor?

45 replies

EverythingIsSoThrowback · 16/09/2013 19:41

This is my first post, I've been lurking for a while.

Anyway. my DD1 is in Year 11, and will be sitting her Maths next year. We're thinking about getting her a tutor, has anyone gone down this route before? How do you decide who to pick? Thanks.
And how much does it normally cost?

OP posts:
EverythingIsSoThrowback · 17/09/2013 07:00


OP posts:
MoreThanWords · 17/09/2013 07:07

I'm looking into this too. Prices are around 20 - 25 pounds per hourly session.

Look online, in your local paper, or even ask at school for potential tutors.

overthemill · 17/09/2013 07:08

we have used tutors for French and German and I am a teacher who also tutors in my subject. Does her teacher suggest she needs it? Is she lacking in confidence? Does she need to gdet from predicted E to C, or what?

Anyway, tutors typically cost a round £20 - 30 an hour. 1 or 2 hours a week is fairly standard. Word of mouth is best (ask friends/family or teacher) but otherwise adverts in post office etc or else search online ' gcse maths tutor xxx xxx (postcode) and someone may come up. You can use tutorhunt or firsttutors or but they charge for the 'finding fee' (£20 I think)

BellaVita · 17/09/2013 07:14

We did for DS1.

We used a couple of girls from the Uni who were doing their maths masters.

£10 per hour.

One of the girls emailed the school I work for looking for potential clients so that's how we got to use her.

Otherwise, I would have looked online, or telephoned DS's school.

BellaVita · 17/09/2013 07:16

DS lacked in confidence more than anything.

EverythingIsSoThrowback · 17/09/2013 07:26

overthemill, she is predicted an A/A* but she got a new teacher last year who's really knocked her confidence and now she's worried about failing.
I'll ask the school if they know any, but up to £30 an hour seems a lot..

OP posts:
mummytime · 17/09/2013 07:40

£30+ an hour is pretty much the going rate. But in 1 hour 1:1 she should get a lot done, she may not even need that many sessions.
If you can't afford it, then maybe look at online tutoring?

Moominmammacat · 17/09/2013 10:21

We used 6th formers ... £10 an hour and it did the trick. He did end up snogging one of them which seemed a bit of a cheek as we were paying for the privilege.

mummyofteens · 17/09/2013 10:24

Just our experience and people may agree or disagree but my DS1 has been tutoring a gcse student (family friend) in maths and chemistry and he also helped another family friend who is taking a level physics. DS1 is about to start his third year of a maths degree. Just wonder if you have any friends whose kids have completed GCSEs who might be able to help :)

lainiekazan · 17/09/2013 12:03

I have just hired one: what interested me was that this man already tutors pupils from ds's school and is familiar with the syllabus, exam timetable etc which is very important. You want the tutor to be focusing on the right stuff and getting the student ready on time. This expertise does not, unfortunately, come cheap (£30/hr).

ShepherdsPurse · 17/09/2013 13:06

Have you looked at the conquermaths website. It is fantastic and has the entire gcse syllabus online in bite sized pieces. You watch the tutorial and then do little tests. My DS passed a GCSE with this whilst being home edded.

Just an alternative thought to getting a tutor.

overthemill · 18/09/2013 07:57

everything £30 is a lot but loads will charge less but for GCSE/A levels it is pretty standard (I charge a sliding scale and sometimes charge a lot less). But you get such a lot done and it is totally tailored to your child. You could use older students but they may not be good at teaching/coaching so not so good at explaining/transmitting info. Worth a go though?

i would also contact school about teacher - some teachers aren't very good! and schools need to know. they want A* so try to put best teachers in at KS4 and 5

beachyhead · 18/09/2013 08:01

We did two Justin Craig courses in Year 11, one at Christmas and one at Easter, in Maths.My dd1 found them good and they covered her syllabus exactly and covered the topics that those particular students were struggling with..... She passed with a B, which we are still incredulous at!

EverythingIsSoThrowback · 18/09/2013 20:25

overthemill , he's a reasonably good teacher, just not the best for my DD1. DD2 has him too (different year, of course), and doesn't have a problem with how he teaches.. but ideally all teaching would suit everyone!

beachyhead, what are the Justin Craig courses?

OP posts:
mindgone · 19/09/2013 00:33

We have used tutors, and been very pleased with the results. If they are too expensive, maybe every 2 weeks? Asking around is how we found ours, you will be amazed at how many people use them. Standard prices round here seem to be £25 per hour, but we have a fab retired head of maths and examiner for £12 an hour! He does it because he loves it!

jlee1 · 15/11/2013 15:00

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MagratGarlik · 15/11/2013 23:01

£20-£30 per hour may sound expensive, but you need to consider that preparing for a session with 1 student will take as much time as preparing for a class of 30. Tutors still need to plan for what they what students to learn from the session and how they intend to get the student there.

Further, it is not just subject knowledge you need, but curriculum knowledge. You might be able to find an undergrad who will work for £10 per hour of contact time, but are you comfortable with the fact that this person will either be working for well below minimum wage including prep time, or will not have any prep time, but will turn up and wing it? I know when I'm working, yes, I have the subject and curriculum knowledge to wing it if need be, but I can deliver better when i've spent prep time thinking about what I want students to learn and sourcing appropriate resources to get them there.

lainiekazan · 16/11/2013 09:38

Ds, yr 11, has a maths tutor. His school teacher is not very good and ds has come on leaps and bounds since having some extra help. Tutor is £30/hr and came with excellent references (which I took up) and only tutors GCSE and A Level Maths.

Make sure the tutor does cover A Level. Those who say they tutor "up to GCSE" means that that level of expertise is their limit which is not confidence inspriring.

From personal experience I would strongly warn against students/amateurs, however good their subject knowledge. Ds had a tutor last year who did not know the exact curriculum and ds was faced in the GCSE exam with material he had not covered.

professorpoopsnagle · 16/11/2013 13:32

I tutor in maths 'up to GCSE'. I do have a maths degree which I hope shows expertise and instils confidence in my tutees and parents. I don't do A level at the moment because there's too wide a range of areas, I can probably do core but I didn't do mechanics, hate statistics and decision is a new area (though I covered some of this in my degree). I'm kept on my toes enough covering 5 different GCSE specifications from 3 exam boards. And generally there is more demand for GCSE maths than A level as it's compulsory and clients want the C.

jlee1 · 20/11/2013 00:28

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MagratGarlik · 20/11/2013 08:59

If you are worried about the cost, have you considered pairing up with a friend with similar needs? I do this for some of my students. I do charge more in total for the session than for 1 student because there will be increased costs, but it can be very cost effective way of doing things for some parents.

hellsbells99 · 20/11/2013 09:16

Print off lots of past papers and go through those first. Find out the holes in her knowledge and then decide if yiu really need a tutor or can go through it yourself.

mum141 · 22/11/2013 11:39

To be honest, i've been searching for a while and its very hard to find good quality tutors. In the past we've paid between £10-£25, and have had mixed results.

A friend of mine recently recommended Blackstone Tutors. I was wondering if anyone else had any experiences with them?

Thanks in advance!

MagratGarlik · 22/11/2013 14:17

I've had a look at their website and they charge £50/hour for GCSE/A'level and state "conducted by experienced Russell Group University students and graduates". In other words, many of their tutors are not even graduates - for that price?!? Seriously?

Whilst I'm completely against people expecting to pay fees which are effectively way below minimum wage when you take into account prep and travel time, £50 per hour seems extortionate for someone who does not even hold a degree.

helen343 · 24/11/2013 12:57

I have been using Blackstone Tutors for the last few years now, and I was similarly sceptical at the beginning and specially requested a 'graduate' tutor for Maths (who was good).

I then requested a couple more tutors for English and Biology, both of whom were current university students, and to be honest they are even better. I find although it may not be as psycholoigically re-assuring to have young tutors, the fact that they have recently been through the system and know how to beat the exam papers is a big benefit.

As for the price......I have to agree, £50 is not ideal.

I'm not sure at present, but they didn't used to charge a registration fee, so it may be worth trying 1 lesson first and then reviewing thereafter.

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