An Insightful Guide to Choosing Tuition Classes

By William Lin

The ongoing debate about whether tuition is necessary or not will never conclude. Some embrace it as a regular part of their life, while others express concern that excessive tuition is counterproductive for the nation. Still, securing good grades is widely considered as one possible vehicle for a fulfilling career. With over 600 tuition centres in Singapore, choosing among the vast selection requires some thorough research. Nevertheless, these are 4 aspects you should consider when deciding on which tuition centre to go for.

1. Search for an inspiring tutor

It is never enough to just find a tutor who is knowledgeable and good in lesson delivery. Beyond poor grades, it is likely that a child’s morale is low and is apprehensive towards that subject. Thus, you are not looking for just someone who can tutor them, but a teacher who can inspire them and spark their interest in that subject. A truly great teacher will find ways to make lessons come alive, and one will look forward to attending his/her class every week.

2. Go for the tried and tested

If you are new to tuition, you may find it helpful to consider the past track record of a tutor. It’s good to shortlist a few tuition centres and find out more details before committing. For example, call up the centre and have an in-depth discussion with the tutors about your needs and how the lessons can help you achieve your objectives. Request to speak directly to the tutor. If the tutor can make you feel comfortable over the phone, chances are that he/she will be able to achieve a positive impact on your learning in class.

3. Look for value-added tuition classes

Focus on what you can get from the tuition centre for the amount you invest. The bare minimum is that it provides good tutors and top-quality materials. Lessons shouldn’t be a repeat of what children have already learnt in school. Instead, it should be designed in a way that can make learning easier and gives one “something extra”. For instance, some dedicated tutors are contactable for questions on their mobile phones via SMS/Whatsapp outside classroom hours. Many go the extra mile to offer one-to-one consultations at no extra cost. Some tuition centres have their lessons video recorded, so that any student who misses class can catch up by watching the videos, or new students can access previously taught lessons.

4. We are in the 21st century – technology does matter

Good tuition centres focus on efficiency. Science subjects are laden with complex theories that require a great deal of annotations, diagrams and tables for complete understanding. Imagine the amount of time that an old-school tutor will take to draw up a diagram to explain the concepts, then erase the whiteboard and repeat the process all over again. In contrast, a click of a mouse that delivers the diagram with annotations directly on an interactive screen will get the same message across in less than half the time. When the lesson delivery is more efficient, it means that you will learn more within the same time frame. In addition, the use of videos, and PowerPoint animations will enliven lessons and provide a more dynamic learning environment in which to engage students. The biggest secret, however, is that, there is probably no such thing as a “best” tuition centre. “Best” is subjective as it ultimately boils down to your needs. Good luck in choosing your best fit.

About The Author

With over 14 years of teaching experience, as well as a recipient of multiple awards and exclusive features in the media, the Director of Making Sense Learning Centre, William Lin, is perhaps one of the most sought-after Chemistry tutors in Singapore. Over the years, he has seen over 97% of his students show improvements in their grades, and many going on to obtain excellent results in their A-Level examinations.


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