Need an experienced, dedicated, expert tutor in math, English, or ANY SECTION of test prep? I'm friendly, patient, eager to help you succeed - and I GUARANTEE you won't find anyone else as helpful or knowledgeable, anywhere. (If you don't agree, I won't charge you!) In fact, out of WyzAnt's more than 60,000 tutors nationwide, I've been among the busiest 100 for the past 2 years.
Unlike most other tutors, I tutor full-time & entirely independently - which means working with me is like working with a personal trainer or an expert consultant, not just another teacher. In fact, many of my students come to me after being disappointed by other tutors or by popular tutoring firms. You can check out more than 20 reviews on my "Student Feedback" page - that's more than any other WyzAnt tutor specializing in my subjects has in Massachusetts - to see what students say about what it's like to work with me.
MY EDUCATION: I went to MIT, where I earned two B.S. degrees in theoretical math and literature and a minor in philosophy. I also completed more than a semester of coursework at Harvard in English and philosophy. I'm currently a grad student in philosophy at Tufts, which has the most highly ranked philosophy master's program in the nation. While at MIT, I won prizes for my writing in both the humanities and the sciences. I've also done labwork in molecular immunology at Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York and in cognitive neuroscience and functional MRI at the McGovern Institute for Brain Research at MIT. My academic interests are far-ranging and span most of 19th- and 20-century intellectual and cultural history, especially the history and philosophy of literature, science, and math. That's a fancy way of saying that I love to learn - and teach - about anything and everything.
MY SCORES: I earned 99th percentile scores on all the standardized tests I've taken. 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. AP scores of 5 on biology, calculus BC, chemistry, English language, English literature, physics, statistics, US History.
MY EXPERIENCE: I have more than 11 years of professional teaching, tutoring, and mentoring experience - 6 in the Boston metro area alone. I've worked with hundreds of students, both one-on-one and in classrooms, of ALL ages, backgrounds, and ability levels - from those in middle and high school to Harvard and MIT undergraduate and graduate students and adults in their forties.
MY PHILOSOPHY: My overarching goal in all the subjects I tutor is to help my students achieve true mastery - not at all what you get from a tutoring company with one-size-fits-all strategies or from teachers who aren't real experts. That means my focus is always on creative and critical thinking, not rule-following or rote memorization or ad hoc "strategies" (a word invented by the test-taking industry to fool you into thinking you're being told something useful). The greatest flaw I have seen in other teachers - over the many years I've been in school as both a student and teacher - is a failure to TEACH instead of merely to TELL. (It's no surprise, of course: real teaching takes an enormous amount of flexibility and hard work!) But I pride myself on taking the subjects I teach - and the students I teach them to - seriously: I don't consider my job complete until a student understands a subject as well as I do and could teach it to someone else just as clearly. And I try to show my students that I work just as hard to teach as they do to learn. The virtue of this approach, I have learned over many years, is that students develop their own sense of pride and accomplishment: they learn, too often for the first time in their education, what it means to master something - how to tell the difference between merely knowing a fact and understanding its significance - and they develop the self-reliance that will enable them to encounter new material with confidence rather than fear.
With all that said, though, I can't pretend that concrete problem-solving isn't important: I do give insider test-taking strategies (which you won't find in any book!) and teach with example problems constantly in view (which I make up on the spot to target the EXACT source of your confusion). But the bottom line is that the key to improving your grade in a class or your score on a test usually has less to do with reviewing basic facts or relearning rules you've forgotten - almost any book could teach you those! - than with improving your ability to think creatively and systematically and to apply what you know more generally. (One of the great forgotten philosophers of the last century, John Dewey, put the same 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.") In short, true understanding consists not in knowing a laundry list of facts or a grab-bag of "strategies" but rather in the ability to organize and express that knowledge - to make and explain abstract connections, to name and describe relationships, to see a bigger picture. THAT's the sort of skill you can't learn from a book - because it's a skill you learn only by doing (especially by talking and writing) - and that's exactly what we'll work on.
MY STYLE: My sessions are relaxed, fun, and very conversational: the emphasis, always, is on communication - on your ability to talk me through your own understanding of what we're doing (whether it's solving a problem, writing a paper, or simply trying to understand a concept). That sort of meta-awareness - thinking about HOW you think - will help you NO MATTER the subject! By sharpening their ability to explain, my students not only refine their problem-solving skills and learn to ace exams, but also develop deep and lasting understanding.
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