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Matt L.

Boston, MA

$200/hr

Academic Tutoring + Test Prep (SAT, GRE, GMAT) with MIT/Harvard Grad

Replies in 30 minutes
Background check passed as of 2/20/13
5.0 Avg. Rating
 
 
676 Ratings
 
 
30mins Response Time
The best tutor imaginable!
— Amy, Wellesley Hills, MA on 5/27/12

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Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Math, Literature
Harvard University
Other

Education

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (Math, Literature)

Harvard University (Other)

About Matt

I'm an independent, highly experienced tutor in my late twenties. I was educated at MIT and Harvard, and I'm WyzAnt's highest-rated Boston-based tutor in the subjects I teach. I specialize in rigorous academic tutoring and test prep for college and graduate students, but I also work with highly motivated high school students. Check out more than 40 reviews on my testimonial page!

BIO: I have two degrees from MIT in theoretical math and literature; I also completed more than a semester of coursework at Harvard in English and philosophy. I'm the first person in my family to graduate from college, so I know what it's like to work hard. I grew up in love with ideas and intellectual challenges, especially with math and language. By high school I'd decided I wanted to be a scientist; over the years my desire for deeper understanding has taken me from the applied to the theoretical -- from molecular biology and biomedical engineering to physical chemistry, neuroscience, the mathematical foundations of theoretical physics, and the philosophical foundations of science itself. That trajectory has given me a lot of research experience: I've sent experiments to the International Space Station, engineered nanoparticles for cancer therapy, and scanned brains using functional MRI. (It's also given me a lot of teaching experience; I've run mentoring and teaching programs since high school.) But in college I also became more serious about writing and the humanities, thanks to excellent teachers who showed me how important social, cultural, and historical analysis are -- not just for learning how to think and read well, but in their own right. In fact, when I'm not teaching, I'm an editor at Boston Review, a national magazine of literature, politics, and ideas, where I edit fiction, journalism, book reviews, and long-form essays. Nowadays my academic interests span intellectual and cultural history, which is just an academic way of saying I love to learn about everything. I think it's not only possible but important to be fluent in both the sciences and the humanities. The best way to stay creative and sharp is to be curious, to challenge yourself to explain what you don't understand, to read constantly and critically across different fields. There are so many things to learn and so little time!

TEST SCORES: SAT I: 2400 800 Math, 800 Reading, 800 Writing. SAT II: 800 Math IIc, 800 Biology M. GRE: 170 Math, 170 Verbal, 6.0 Writing. GMAT: 780.

EXPERIENCE: I have thousands of hours of professional teaching, tutoring, and mentoring experience, 10 years in the Boston metro area alone. I've worked with hundreds of students at most of the Boston area's high schools and universities. I see students every day of the week; I'm always thinking about teaching.

WHAT SETS ME APART: my experience, subject matter expertise, and independence. I've never worked for a tutoring company because I've never found one I respect intellectually. I also write my own materials. I try to be the opposite of the teachers I always hated, the ones who couldn't think on their feet, or obviously weren't excited by the material, or didn't know the subject well enough to answer my questions, or were too dishonest or lazy to tell me the whole truth. I promise to be curious, honest, informed, and enthusiastic.

PHILOSOPHY: My teaching is all about real mastery and understanding. That means my focus is on clear, creative, critical thinking, never rote memorization. I teach how to reason and explain and problem solve, not how to memorize, regurgitate, and forget. I emphasize logical and conceptual foundations -- because that's what enables you to think for yourself. It may take hard work, but it's so worth it. Learning to approach ideas in this way, especially after years of confusion, boredom, and frustration, is profoundly liberating; the payoff is maybe the most transformative kind of self-reliance there is. My goal, in the end, is to empower students to learn how to learn on their own -- to be able to read and make sense of (and maybe even be curious about!) complex ideas without needing a teacher.

That said, I don't pretend that grades, scores, and results aren't important. I give insider test-taking tips and teach with example problems constantly in view, which I can make up on the spot to target the exact source of your confusion. But my teaching gets superior results precisely because it's ideas-driven and serious. The key to mastering anything is being able to think about it rigorously, creatively, systematically, and articulately. Real understanding -- the kind that will not only lead to better grades or test scores, but also stay with you and serve you forever, even in other endeavors -- consists not in a jumble of facts and tips but in the ability to organize and express and use your knowledge, to make and explain abstract connections, to name and describe logical relationships, to see a bigger picture. Those are the skills most people can't learn from a book -- because most textbooks are terribly written and because they're skills you learn only by doing (especially by talking and writing and teaching others) -- and that's exactly what we'll work on. I take my cue from John Dewey, who put the point this way: "Practical skill, modes of effective technique, can be intelligently, non-mechanically used, ONLY when intelligence has played a part in their acquisition."

STYLE: I'm very flexible. My sessions are relaxed, friendly, and conversational. Every meeting is unique; I don't prepare a script in advance. And our dialogue will never be one-sided: I ask questions constantly, and I expect to be asked questions. My emphasis, always, is on concepts and communication -- on making sure you can clearly explain what we're doing and why we're doing it. By sharpening their powers of analysis and explanation, my students not only refine their problem-solving skills and ace exams, but also develop deep and lasting understanding.
I'm an independent, highly experienced tutor in my late twenties. I was educated at MIT and Harvard, and I'm WyzAnt's highest-rated Boston-based tutor in the subjects I teach. I specialize in rigorous academic tutoring and test prep for college and graduate students, but I also work with highly motivated high school students. Check out more than… Read more

Policies
Cancellation
24 hours notice required

I don't have a car & must meet all students in downtown Boston or Cambridge. A cancellation charge will be assessed for the entire booked time for any cancellation without 24 hours' notice.

Travel Radius
Travels within 10 miles of Boston, MA 02116
Background Check: Passed

"The best tutor imaginable!"

- Amy, Wellesley Hills, MA on 5/27/12

"Superior tutor in every aspect"

- Nathaniel, Boston, MA on 1/12/15

"Great Linear Algebra Tutor!"

- RC, Canton, MA on 12/15/14

"Amazing. Any issue in stat, this is THE guy to hire!"

- Kathleen, Dallas, TX on 12/9/14

"Great First Time!"

- Jeff, Chestnut Hill, MA on 5/4/14
Matt replied on 6/29/2014

Jeff's son was a pleasure to work with: he worked very hard in a short amount of time (only one month) to prepare for the June 7 SAT, and I'm happy to report that his hard work paid off! He improved his SAT writing score 140 points from the 70th to the 95th percentile and boosted his essay score from an 8 to an 11 (out of 12). Few students see such impressive gains in so little time. He has my congratulations and best wishes!

"Boston's Best Tutor"

- Shelly, Boston, MA on 4/26/14

"Very easy to understand and thorough! "

- Tiffany, Cambridge, MA on 3/4/14

"Outstanding teacher! Four weeks with Matt raised my GRE by 20 percentile points."

- Dan, Belmont, MA on 1/24/14
Matt replied on 3/14/2014

I just heard some good news from Dan, so I have to brag about him! Dan has already had a distinguished career in public service, despite not having a college degree. But he hired me to help him boost his GRE to have a better shot at getting into the Mid-Career MPA program at the Harvard Kennedy School. I'm thrilled to announce he's been admitted!

Dan is far and away one of the most driven and intelligent clients I've worked with: he impressed me time and time again in his ability to handle the very rigorous work I assign, outshining almost all the college and post-college students I've worked with. I'm so grateful to have been a very small part of his remarkable journey, and I look forward to hearing what he goes on to accomplish after Harvard.

"Excellent tutor."

- Meredith, Dover, MA on 12/30/13

"Highest Possible Recommendation"

- Greg, Bronxville, NY on 12/30/13

"Straight up miracle worker."

- Sarah, Boston, MA on 12/9/13
Matt replied on 3/26/2014

I'm happy to report that all of Sarah's hard work paid off! Today I found out she was admitted to Harvard Business School for her MBA.

Of all the students I've worked with the last few years, Sarah stands out to me as the most disciplined and assiduous. She read and reflected on every word of the material I assigned her, engaged thoughtfully with the ideas we studied, and asked probing questions. I look forward to seeing what she goes on to accomplish after Harvard.

"Up 26 percentile points on the GRE in less than a month!"

- Michelle, Somerville, MA on 10/29/13
Matt replied on 7/22/2014

Michelle was a pleasure to work with, and she has my congratulations as she starts a PhD program at Harvard Business School this fall!

"BEST TUTOR AROUND!!"

- Rives, Cambridge, MA on 9/14/13
Matt replied on 9/17/2013

Rives sells himself short in this review: he actually tackled much more than "advanced algebra and calculus," covering as he did a majority of the important applied topics of undergraduate mathematics -- from Lagrange multipliers and constrained optimization (in multivariable calculus) to eigenvalues and their applications to diagonalization (in linear algebra) to the analysis of autocorrelated time series (in stochastic processes) -- in only a few days! It was a tall order, but it was a pleasure to help someone so dedicated do it.

"Excellent Tutor"

- Julie, Cambridge, MA on 9/7/13
Matt replied on 7/23/2014

Julie was a great student who reached her target score on the GMAT and now will be heading to her dream graduate program at Cornell! I'm excited to see what she goes on to accomplish.

"Insightful, effective and well worth the money."

- Ahmad, Chestnut Hill, MA on 8/24/13

"Perfect GMAT tutor for all stages of the preparation cycle"

- Giuseppe, Malden, MA on 7/22/13

"Wonderful tutor."

- Susan, Boston, MA on 7/2/13

"Best tutor I've ever had."

- George, Milton, MA on 5/31/13

"Best Tutor Around"

- Drew, Chestnut Hill, MA on 5/23/13

"Stop looking, and pick this tutor, NOW!"

- Andrea, Hingham, MA on 5/23/13

"Terrific Experience!"

- Julia, South Hamilton, MA on 5/17/13

"Very good SAT Tutor!"

- Elizabeth, Newton Highlands, MA on 5/1/13

"Very Cool Guy, Amazing Tutor!"

- David, Chestnut Hill, MA on 3/29/13
Matt replied on 3/27/2014

David was such a pleasure to work with, bright and driven, yes, but also curious and magnanimous. He is a model student and a constant source of enthusiasm. I'm thrilled to have gotten the chance to work with him, and I'm happy to report that I just heard he's been admitted to Princeton, Yale, Dartmouth, the University of Chicago, Williams, and Amherst.

Few students could win the attention of so many excellent schools. I couldn't be more excited for him!

"Such a big help, a great tutor. Patient, helpful and efficient"

- Holly, Brighton, MA on 3/22/13

"Wonderful!"

- Drazen, Cambridge, MA on 3/7/13

"Terrific calculus tutor."

- Rebecca, Brookline, MA on 3/3/13

"Great Tutor "

- Chrissie, Boston, MA on 2/25/13

"Incredible GRE Tutor"

- Myra, Boston, MA on 1/7/13

"Very effective."

- Pamela, Boston, MA on 1/2/13

"Excellent teacher"

- Axell, Cambridge, MA on 12/11/12

"Inspiring"

- Linda, Bedford, MA on 12/2/12

"Great tutor"

- Richard, West Newbury, MA on 9/3/12

"Great Tutor, even for the most reluctant of students"

- Debbie, Sudbury, MA on 6/26/12

"Great tutor"

- Diana, Cambridge, MA on 4/3/12

"Great tutor"

- Joseph, Hanover, MA on 3/5/12

"Great teacher"

- Linda, Lincoln, MA on 2/26/12

"great tutor across the board"

- Madeleine, Natick, MA on 12/5/11

"Fantastic Tutor, Great Learning Experience!"

- Jillian, Cambridge, MA on 11/14/11

"The Absolute Best!"

- Erin, Cambridge, MA on 10/6/11

"Great Tutor"

- Laura, Newton Center, MA on 8/18/11

"Great tutor: effecftive and focused"

- Spencer, Cambridge, MA on 7/14/11

"Great Tutor"

- Michael, Reading, MA on 6/29/11

"Cracker Jack!"

- Deborah, Belmont, MA on 3/28/11

"Incredibly Talented Tutor!!!!"

- Christopher, Newtonville, MA on 3/5/11

"Amazing Tutor!"

- Tom, Cambridge, MA on 1/27/11

"Insightful Tutor"

- Alka, Boston, MA on 10/21/10
Math:
ACT Math, Algebra 1, Algebra 2, Calculus,
Differential Equations,
Discrete Math,
Econometrics,
Geometry, Linear Algebra,
Logic,
Precalculus,
Probability, SAT Math,
Statistics,
Trigonometry
English:
ACT English, ACT Reading, English, Grammar,
Literature, Proofreading, SAT Reading,
SAT Writing,
Writing
Science:
ACT Science, Biology, Chemistry,
Philosophy,
Physical Science, Physics
Elementary Education:
Grammar
Homeschool:
Algebra 1, Algebra 2, Biology, Calculus,
Chemistry,
Economics,
English, Geometry, Physics,
Precalculus,
SAT Math,
SAT Reading,
Statistics,
Writing
Test Preparation:
ACT English, ACT Math, ACT Reading, ACT Science, GMAT,
GRE,
LSAT, PSAT, SAT Math,
SAT Reading,
SAT Writing
Corporate Training:
Business,
Economics,
Finance,
GMAT,
Grammar,
Proofreading, Statistics

Approved subjects are in bold.

Approved subjects

In most cases, tutors gain approval in a subject by passing a proficiency exam. For some subject areas, like music and art, tutors submit written requests to demonstrate their proficiency to potential students. If a tutor is interested but not yet approved in a subject, the subject will appear in non-bold font. Tutors need to be approved in a subject prior to beginning lessons.

Business

I hold a degree in mathematics from MIT and specialize in quantitative methods in business and management science, including business statistics, quantitative modeling, single and multiple regression, linear optimization and decision theory.

Calculus

I hold a degree in theoretical math from MIT, and I've taught every level of calculus -- from elementary to AP (both AB and BC), to advanced multivariable calculus at MIT, to calculus on differentiable manifolds for applications in mathematical physics -- for more than ten years.

Most tutors aren't truly qualified to teach calculus because they don't have the depth of understanding that comes from having a mathematics degree. I help my students acquire real mastery by fitting the specific topics they study into a bigger picture.

Chemistry

I earned a 5 on the AP Chemistry exam in high school, and as an undergraduate at MIT I spent two years working in a renowned biomedical engineering laboratory designing iron oxide nanoparticles for cancer imaging and therapy. My work won a $1000 MIT Biomedical Engineering Society's Award for Research Excellence, awarded to only five MIT undergraduate and master's students each year; I'm also second author on the peer-reviewed article we published.

Differential Equations

I studied math at MIT, and I've tutored ordinary and partial differential equations to math, physics, and engineering majors at Boston-area colleges for years. I can teach any topic in the undergraduate curriculum, including:

-- systems of linear first-order ODEs
-- differential operators and annihilator methods
-- series solutions (Legendre, Bessel, Hermite functions)
-- Laplace and Fourier transforms
-- delta functions, convolution, and Green's functions
-- first- and second-order PDEs (wave equation, heat equation, Laplace equation, Schrodinger's equation)
-- eigenvalue and eigenvector problems (Sturm-Liouville theory)
-- qualitative phase plane analysis
-- dynamical systems in science and engineering

Discrete Math

I have a degree in theoretical math from MIT and have taught discrete math to students at most of Boston's colleges.

Econometrics

I took econometrics at MIT and have tutored the subject to many graduate students in the area; I'm especially familiar with the course given at BU.

Economics

I earned A+'s in Econometrics and Microeconomics at MIT. My teaching focus is in mathematical economics, including multivariate statistics, regression, and convex analysis. I specialize in helping college and graduate students who lack the advanced mathematical background required for higher-level coursework in economics.

Finance

I hold a degree in theoretical mathematics from MIT and am fluent in the applications of advanced mathematics in finance -- especially in derivatives options theory -- including stochastic calculus, partial differential equations, and Black-Scholes theory.

GMAT

I earned a 780 on the GMAT (with a perfect score in quant), studied math and literature at MIT and Harvard, and have taught the GMAT for years with rave reviews. The GMAT is my favorite standardized test because it requires serious conceptual mastery and critical reasoning skills. My students focus on developing the higher-order skills they need to tackle even the most difficult GMAT questions.

Grammar

I studied literature as an undergraduate at MIT and Harvard and took many courses in formal linguistics, and I'm currently an Assistant Editor at the Boston Review -- a national magazine of politics, literature, and the arts -- so I'm well-trained in both the science and art of English grammar. My grammar and SAT writing students learn how to analyze the deep structure of sentences by taking them apart and identifying the phrases and clauses that make them up.

GRE

I earned a perfect score on the GRE (170 math, 170 verbal, 6.0 writing), studied math and literature at MIT and Harvard, and am one of Boston's most sought-after GRE tutors. My students learn the higher-order critical reasoning skills they need to tackle even the most difficult GRE problems.

Linear Algebra

I studied theoretical math at MIT and have taught linear algebra -- the study of vector spaces and linear transformations -- to students at many of Boston's colleges, including BU, BC, Northeastern, Harvard, Wellesley, Suffolk, and Simmons.

Logic

I studied theoretical math at MIT, where I took courses in formal logic---which covered everything from the metatheory of propositional and predicate logic to Godel's incompleteness theorems and computability. I'm also currently enrolled as a master's student in philosophy at Tufts.

Philosophy

I'm currently enrolled as a masters student in philosophy at Tufts, the most highly ranked philosophy MA in the nation. As an undergraduate I took several philosophy courses at both Harvard and MIT.

Physics

I took the advanced sections of mechanics and electricity and magnetism at MIT. I've tutored Physics I and II to many high school and college students around the Boston area. I have a degree in theoretical math from MIT.

While an undergraduate at MIT, I specialized in mathematical physics -- the study of the mathematical structures and techniques that underlie theoretical physics. I'm fluent in the many advanced formalisms of special and general relativity and quantum mechanics, including classical Hamiltonian and Lagrangian dynamics, quantum mechanical Hilbert spaces, Riemannian geometry in general relativity, and the geometry of gauges (connections on fiber bundles) in classical and quantum field theory.

Precalculus

Precalculus is a gateway course for more advanced mathematics -- so it's no surprise that many students, even those who have a track record of good grades in math, find themselves overwhelmed by both the depth and breadth of the material. I've tutored the subject since I was in high school and earned a perfect 800 on the SAT Math II subject test, which draws almost all of its content from a course in precalculus. More recently, in the Boston area, I've worked with students taking precalculus at Cambridge Rindge and Latin, Belmont High, Lexington High, Newton South, West Roxbury, Buckingham Browne & Nichols, and the BU Academy: I'm extremely familiar with the precalculus classes at these schools.

SAT Math

I earned a perfect 800 on the SAT math section and have been helping students improve their scores for more than ten years. When I teach the subject, I emphasize two aspects: first, The Essential Facts (making sure my students know exactly what material the College Board likes to test, and how they like to test it), and second, The Essential Strategies (making sure my students know how to think like an expert SAT instructor and attack problems the way they were designed to be attacked).

SAT Reading

I earned a perfect 800 on the SAT Reading section and have been helping students improve their scores for more than ten years. The key to improving in this section is learning how to talk and think about passages like an expert reader: the greatest challenge my students face (especially those who haven't taken AP English) is not knowing what to DO with a passage -- how to take it apart, how to skim it, how to describe the relations between its parts, how to describe what it does rather than what it says. I focus on giving my students the concrete tools they need to do a sophisticated rhetorical analysis, which not only allows them to get questions right, but also boosts their confidence -- because they can finally explain what makes the best answer better than all the others.

SAT Writing

I earned a perfect 800 on the SAT Writing section and have been helping students improve their scores for more than ten years. The good news is that it's actually VERY EASY to improve your writing score! My students start out reviewing the essential grammar basics (from elementary topics like subject-verb agreement to more advanced topics like comparative constructions and parallelism) and write their own SAT-style questions for each major type of error (to help them better understand what to look for, and how the questions were designed). Then we focus on improving the essay by doing short, targeted practice exercises that provide them with a clear framework they can use to write their answer on the actual test day, no matter what the prompt turns out to be.

Statistics

I studied math at MIT and have taught probability theory and statistics to high school, college, and graduate students for many years. I'm especially familiar with courses given at BU, Northeastern, Suffolk, Harvard, and MIT. I use Stata and R and can teach at any level, including graduate-level multivariate statistics, regression, and econometrics.

Trigonometry

I took trigonometry my freshman year in high school and have been teaching and tutoring it ever since. Most high schools these days don't offer a course solely in trigonometry; rather, trig is typically integrated into a pre-calculus, algebra 2, or geometry course.

Writing

I studied literature as an undergraduate at MIT and Harvard, and I'm currently an Assistant Editor at the Boston Review -- a national magazine of politics, literature, and the arts -- where my daily work involves managing, editing, proofreading, and fact-checking essays written by some of the nation's most famous public intellectuals. While in college, my writing won major prizes in both the sciences and the humanities.

Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Math, Literature
Harvard University
Other

Education

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (Math, Literature)

Harvard University (Other)

The best tutor imaginable! — According to my son, Matt is the best teacher he's ever had for anything, anywhere. And he is not prone to overstatement! Matt helped him get back up to speed on Algebra I after he'd missed a fair amount of school for health reasons, and the results could not have been better. My son loved the way Matt explained concepts, had my son articulate his reasoning to be sure he'd really grasped those ...

— Amy, Wellesley Hills, MA on 5/27/12

Hourly fee

Standard Hourly Fee: $200.00

Cancellation: 24 hours notice required

I don't have a car & must meet all students in downtown Boston or Cambridge. A cancellation charge will be assessed for the entire booked time for any cancellation without 24 hours' notice.

Travel policy

Matt will travel within 10 miles of Boston, MA 02116.

Background Check Status for Matt L.

Matt L. passed a background check on 2/20/13. The check was ordered by another user through First Advantage. For more information, please review the background check information page.

After sending a message to Matt, you will be able to order a new background check for $7.99. As part of your tutor selection process, we encourage you to run updated background checks. Please also review the safety tips for hiring tutors.