Search 73,190 tutors
Over 200 tutoring hours

Barbara Y.

Math & science - I'll help you get concepts & do word problems

Saint Paul, MN (55126)

Travel radius
10 miles
Hourly fee
Email Barbara Y.

You don't pay for tutoring
unless you find a good fit!

Background Check Status for Barbara Y.

Barbara Y. passed a background check on 9/21/11. 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 Barbara, 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.

I have a bachelor's degree and PhD in Chemical Engineering as well as a teaching license for high school chemistry and physics. I have tutored students in math and science from 4th grade through adults. I've taught high school chemistry, physics, physical science, and electricity. I've also taught college courses in engineering and math. In addition to teaching, I have worked as a chemical engineer in product and process development, in the food industry and with chemical processing.

I am particularly good at helping students understand difficult concepts through a combination of plain English, drawings, and concrete, everyday examples. I can help you learn how to decipher word problems! I know that when a student struggles with something, it's important to find out what their individual problem is. That's why I love to work one on one with students--it's exciting to see the progress someone can make with individual attention.

I know how math and science can be applied in daily life and industry, so I can help students connect what they're learning with the "real" world.

The state of Minnesota uses its own system of testing--the MTLE--for teacher licensure. WyzAnt does not have a separate certification category for this. I can help with preparation for the math basic skills test and chemistry, physics, or physical science content and pedagogy, as well as strategies for reading and interpreting reading passages, figures, graphs, and questions for other areas.

Sometimes people assume someone with a PhD will just talk over their head. I've certainly met some who think that's how they show how smart they are. I think if you really understand something, you ought to be able to explain the guts of it to a 6 year old.

Email Barbara

Barbara’s subjects

ACT Math, Algebra 1, Algebra 2, Calculus, Prealgebra, Precalculus, SAT Math, Trigonometry
ACT English, ACT Reading, Grammar, Proofreading, Reading, SAT Reading, Vocabulary, Writing
ACT Science, Chemical Engineering, Chemistry, Physical Science, Physics
Microsoft Excel, Microsoft PowerPoint, Microsoft Word
Elementary Education:
Grammar, Reading, Vocabulary
GRE, Microsoft Excel, Microsoft PowerPoint, Microsoft Word
Algebra 1, Algebra 2, Calculus, Chemistry, Physics, Prealgebra, Precalculus, Reading, SAT Math, SAT Reading, Spanish, Writing
Test Preparation:
ACT English, ACT Math, ACT Reading, ACT Science, ASVAB, GED, GRE, LSAT, MTLE, Praxis, PSAT, SAT Math, SAT Reading
Corporate Training:
Grammar, Microsoft Excel, Microsoft Word, Proofreading, Spanish

Algebra 1

Algebra 1 is a foundation course for all of the higher levels of mathematics as well as many science classes. I can help you get off to a strong start.

In Algebra 1 students typically start to learn some abstract concepts that are sometimes only loosely connected to real life problems. Many students need concrete or visual examples. I'm good at that! I've never met a word problem I couldn't draw a picture for. I can also help students who struggle with the complex reading level common in word problems.

When I work with a student one on one, we can discover what individual difficulties the student has with the material. Sometimes a student hasn't solidly grasped a concept that was covered earlier, so we need to back up and fix that before we can move on. This way we build a solid foundation for future work.

Algebra 2

I have taught or tutored students in Pre-algebra through Calculus. I work with students to discover what their individual strengths and weaknesses are, and make sure we fix any "holes" in their background. I am also an engineer, and I enjoy a variety of hobbies like cooking and weaving, so we can always find concrete examples of concepts. I have had great success helping students understand and learn how to attack word problems and solve equations.


For ASVAB prep, I prefer to work only with adults 21 and older.


Calculus was invented to tackle real problems, but too often it seems like a bunch of abstract stuff and weird procedures to memorize. I first studied Calculus at Columbia Heights High School, with a great teacher, Roger Sadlowsky. When we tackled a new concept, he made sure we knew what it was good for. I help Calculus students see the meaning of procedures, and keep it connected to real life applications.

Calculus is like an upside-down pyramid - new concepts are balanced on the scaffolding of previous concepts. I work with students to make sure they have a solid foundation, and see how new material builds on what they already know.

Chemical Engineering

I have a bachelor's degree in Chemical Engineering from the University of Minnesota and a PhD in Chemical Engineering from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. I have taught Polymer Science at the UW-Madison, Introduction to Chemical Engineering at the University of St. Thomas, and the Unit Operations Laboratory at the University of Minnesota.


I know how to purchase and cook gluten-free food from scratch. I can help someone learn what to look for in the grocery store and how you can make dishes from scratch that are gluten-free but still real, tasty, and nutritious. I can help someone figure out if they can make their own favorites gluten-free. I have been cooking gluten-free for myself for a year after decades of cooking mainly from scratch for my family.

I also could help someone who wants to learn to cook from scratch for whatever reason- to save money, reduce salt, avoid allergens, etc. I know a lot about ingredients, because I've combined a love of cooking with a background in chemistry and 5 years of experience at a food company.

For example, in the last week I've made pesto, plum jam, vegetarian chili, spaghetti sauce, plum pudding, and roasted vegetables, all with produce from my own yard. All of those were gluten-free. I'll be making pancakes from scratch while camping this weekend. Next week I'll dehydrate apples from an orchard.


I can help especially with the Math and Science sections of the GED test. I've taught and tutored math from prealgebra through calculus, and chemistry, physics, and physical science. I can help you learn how to tackle problems, decipher word problems, and analyze reading passages, charts, and graphs. I can relate concepts to real world applications and concrete examples. I've taught or tutored students from middle school through adults. I try to discover what the individual student needs, and I'll make sure you have a good grounding in basic concepts to build to more complex ones. I can also help with reading comprehension and understanding questions - skills that are needed for the Social Studies and Language Arts sections as well.


The MTLE is the set of teacher licensure exams in Minnesota. I am a MN licensed teacher. I have tutored students for the MTLE Math Basic skills test. I am also on the K12 Education Policy committee in the State House of Representatives. I authored a bill (which passed into law) to determine how to improve or revise the Basic Skills set of the MTLE. I am on the task force created by that law. I have researched the scope and testing conditions for the tests. I am interested tutoring students for the MTLE Basic Skills Math test, as well as the MTLE Content Area tests for Chemistry and Physics. I have a PhD in Chemical Engineering, have completed coursework beyond what is required for those tests, and have Chemistry and Physics teaching licenses.

Physical Science

In Physical Science, students have to bring together a variety of skills. It requires thinking concretely about experiments, understanding abstract concepts that apply to them, learning technical vocabulary, and setting up and solving mathematical problems.

I taught Physical Science for a number of years, and I understand the ways that students struggle in the course. I'm good at finding concrete ways to demonstrate concepts. I work with students to help them learn how to set up and solve problems.

I'm a chemical engineer, so I know many real-world examples of how Physical Science is actually applied. I also draw examples from sports, driving, cooking, and other everyday activities. I love simple demonstrations, and often use them to illustrate concepts in action.


Physics is a great subject for tutoring because it emphasizes problem solving. I can help you figure out how to set up and solve problems.

I have taught high school physics several times. My degrees are in chemical engineering, so I have also taken (and used) undergraduate and graduate physics courses.


I am a licensed teacher in the state of Minnesota for 9-12 Chemistry and Physics, as well as holding a PhD in Chemical Engineering. I have taken and passed the basic skills and subject-specific tests that were required for licensure. (Minnesota has since switched to a different testing system for licensure.) I have taught the content required for the Chemistry, Physics, and Physical Science subject specific tests. I have taught and/or tutored the math content required for the basic skills math test. I have experience tutoring a number of elementary education majors in algebra while I was a tutor at the University of Minnesota, so I understand how to present math concepts to students majoring in non-technical fields.


Prealgebra is sometimes when students lose ground in math. It's important to make sure that you understand the concepts, not just memorize procedures, because later math classes build on them.

When I work with a student one on one, we can discover what individual difficulties the student has with the material. Sometimes a student hasn't solidly grasped a concept that was covered earlier, so we need to back up and fix that before we can move on. This way we build a solid foundation for future work.

Many students need concrete or visual examples. I'm good at that! I've never met a word problem I couldn't draw a picture for. I can also help students who struggle with the complex reading level common in word problems.


I have extensive experience proofreading student and professional work. I have graded reports at the high school and undergraduate college levels. I have also proofread works for publication and graduate work. I can help you fix errors in mechanics (spelling and punctuation) and sentence structure and work on effective organization and style.


My primary subjects are science and math. However, I can help students with beginning levels of Spanish. This might be especially convenient if you need help in multiple subjects since we could spend a little bit of time on each as needed.

Read all subject qualifications »

Email Barbara

back to top


University of Minnesota

University of Wisconsin - Madison, WI (PhD)

The University of Minnesota (Other)

Takes the time My 17 year old son has struggled with Algebra and math in general for some time. At first, he wasn't thrilled when I told him I'd hired a tutor, but now he enjoys his time with Barbara. He really appreciates that she takes the time to explain the problems and will do it several different ways if he doesn't understand. She's a no nonsense person who gets down to business and my son's words were, ...

— Connie from Forest Lake, MN on 2/12/14);

Hourly fee

Standard Hourly Fee: $45.00

Cancellation: 24 hours notice required

Cancellation: 0.5 hr charged with 4-24 hr notice; 45 min charged for 1 hr notice; 1 hr charged if1 hr or less notice or no show. Group rates: $30 per hour per student for 2-3 students

Travel policy

Barbara will travel within 10 miles of Saint Paul, MN 55126.

Email Barbara

Usually responds in about 3 hours

Send Barbara a message explaining your needs and you will receive a response by email. Have you already emailed Barbara or another tutor? If so, you have an account! Sign in now

(ex: algebra, chemistry)
Please enter the tutor's email address.
Please enter the student's email address.
Please describe how you heard about us.

Receive Responses From Additional Tutors

If selected, WyzAnt will ask interested tutors to contact you by email if they are able to help. A maximum of five different tutors will email you and none of your personal information, including your email address, will be released.