Get the Most from Online Tutors

I’m amazed by how easy it is to connect with high-quality online tutors in nearly any subject area.

If a student is Internet-savvy and concentrates well, getting academic support on the Internet can be a great solution. Rates are sometimes much cheaper than in-person help.

For example, I’ve enjoyed one-on-one online Spanish classes at a wonderful language school in Cuernavaca, Mexico, called CETLALIC. Their system gave me a chance to practice with experienced—and patient—Spanish professors. With the currency exchange, the rate was only $15 an hour!

(Click here for my page on fees.)

Chat, Video, Audio, and File Sharing

For most people, your set-up should involve a chat function, clear video (so you can see each other), and an excellent audio (sound) connection. Depending on the subject, file sharing may also be necessary.

My colleague Prashant Yadav, CEO of the India-based, which employs lots of Internet academic coaches, tells me his company has a system in which both teacher and student can look at (and make changes to) the same document together. A web-based “classroom” set-up such as theirs is ideal, but a simple Skype connection can work, too.

This type of academic support is only a good choice for students who are computer-proficient. You don’t have to be a computer genius, but Internet use, email, typing, and similar functions should be familiar.

Finding Tutors on the Internet

Especially for students under age 18, I recommend seeking out a reputable e-tutoring service. Look for one with plenty of client testimonials and a professional website. I've partnered with an excellent online math program to offer you a free session.

Some of the best e-tutoring companies are based in India and China. If you’re a native English speaker, ask for a tutor with excellent English skills. If you and your tutor have real trouble understanding one another, you may have to ask for someone else, but be patient first. New accents can be a little challenging, but a positive cross-cultural connection online is a wonderful experience. Note to night owls: Web-based support services are usually available 24 hours a day.

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Link to my page about academic support on line.

More about online tutoring services... and online homework help.

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While Internet sessions are helpful, in-person support is the most effective way to get academic support. Link from online tutors to home tutoring service.

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