According to the latest annual Sutton Trust/Ipsos-Mori survey, one in four young people now receive private or home tuition. As for the reasons for tuition, one in three (33%) pupils received tuition for specific GCSE exams whilst almost half (47%) said it was to help with their school work in general.
Choice of Tuition Options Can Be Overwhelming
For parents looking to help their child in the run up to GCSE and A Level exams, these developments bring mixed blessings. Parents now have much more choice, as the number and nature of providers has grown and evolved significantly. However, the risks are also greater with more divergence in the quality and value of different tuition options.
So what are the main tuition options and key considerations for parents of GCSE/A Level students? Here are our views regarding 3 of the main options
The top 3 options – quick guide & key considerations
|Online Tutoring||1:1 Private Tuition||Group Tuition|
What is it?
|Services generally offered via internet. Large variety in nature and scope of tuition.||Child has full attention of tutor and sessions normally conducted in the tutor’s or child’s home.||Sessions normally provided by specialist companies, schools or tutoring agencies. Class size and approach varies significantly.|
|Potentially highly flexible as accessed via internet. However, subject to internet connectivity and broadband speed.||Generally scheduled to accommodate family schedules, including after school hours. Tutor will often come to student’s home.||Generally scheduled to reflect student free time, either after school or school holidays. Some providers offer residential option to increase accessibility.|
|Tuition tailoring||Varies depending on provider/service – students may be able to choose different packages.||Enables maximum tailoring, subject to skills and willingness of tutor to adapt to student’s needs and pace of study.||Varies depending on provider – only a small number offer individual tailoring or flexibility on course content.|
|Personal interaction||Latest software enables tutors to write/speak in real time. As tutor remote, more difficult to spot when student distracted or struggling.||Offers personalised teaching and focus, subject to the tutor’s ability to build good student relationship.||Depending on group size, can offer personalised teaching and focus. Also enables students to learn from each other.|
|Unlikely unless provider offer student “chat room”||None||This is key to this approach – it makes learning more fun and enables students to learn from each other.|
|Will vary depending on where/how student accesses internet and their attitude to distractions like mobile phones/social media.||Varies depending on where sessions held but tutors will normally look for quiet area and “ban” mobiles/social media.||Generally offer a lively, stimulating atmosphere. Sessions normally held in class rooms with good facilities, away from distractions.|
|Learning effectiveness||Highly dependent on student’s self motivation and organisation.||Varies but can be excellent – depends on quality and skills of tutor. Students may struggle to maintain concentration as sessions can be intense.||Varies but can be excellent. If group small, then combines the benefits of 1:1 tuition and group interaction.|
|Tutor Quality||Highly variable, subject to provider’s selection requirements and approach||Highly variable. In absence of recommendation, difficult to assess tutor capabilities prior to starting||Generally good as tutors usually full-time workers, committed to teaching. The best providers publish tutor selection criteria and have good track record/reviews.|
Value for Money
|Generally at the lower end, in terms of £/hour. Value for money highly variable depending on above factors||Varies significantly by area but tends to be most expensive option. Value for money variable depending on above factors.||Similar /less than a 1:1 tutor. Value for money generally good for provider with established track record.|
So where does Justin Craig fit in?
At Justin Craig, we offer small group tuition, with an average of six students per class. All our courses are tailored to the needs of individual students and led by experienced, inspirational tutors who are subject experts – we employ only the best tutors.
Our courses are designed specifically for Year 10-13 students studying for their GCSEs or A Levels . Students rate our courses highly, with 96% rating us as “good to amazing” last year. Feedback from past students is that our courses were pivotal to their studies, enabling them to stay on track and making them feel more confident by boosting knowledge and skills.
With 35+ years experience, our track record is proven and parent feedback is excellent. On average, two thirds of customers every year have either used us previously or have been recommended to us.
We have a comprehensive range of 3 and 4 day courses running during every school holiday, giving students the opportunity to cover different subjects at different points in the year.
As our February and Easter courses are proving more popular than ever this year, please enquire early to avoid disappointment.