Phoebe C.

Irvine, CA


Distinctive Work for Essays, English Skills, and Literary Greatness!

In-person lessons
5000+ Hours
5.0 average from 1856 ratings
I got into Berkeley and improved my writing thanks to Phoebe!
— William, Laguna Niguel, CA on 6/2/16


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Smith College


Smith College (English)

About Phoebe

Hello! Welcome to my page! I am a potently passionate and effective full-time English tutor, editor, writing coach, and college/grad school application essay expert with an English degree and a high school English teaching license. I am incredibly proud to be the top Wyzant English tutor nationwide, and I am also one of very few top tutors in the nation with a 5.0 rating.

While it's true that my profile is lengthy, I work with people who appreciate the complex value I provide, and my profile is but a reflection of my caliber and personality. Indeed, since Wyzant has limited the number of testimonials that are displayed, I have an additional 32 fabulous testimonials (for a total of 57) that are available upon request. Please take the time to peruse the entirety of my profile.

As a writing and grammar revolutionary on a mission to transform the teaching and application of English skills in our beloved SoCal, I improve my students' abilities--and lives--with expertise, personal style, humor, conscientiousness, and great joy. If you're reading my page, you might already have an idea that typical school methods for teaching reading and writing are bland and ineffective; it is my self-appointed task to remedy this with the strongest interpersonal skills, writing intuition, and grammatical prowess you can find!

I can't say enough how much I value and am excited by the potential of each person I work with. I work EXTREMELY hard for each and every one of my students and expect each student to rise to my level of effort. While I have high expectations for all my students, I adjust my approach for each student in order to best serve him or her; for many of my students, for example, I design specific programs concerning goals, strengths, and areas for improvement. I am very familiar with different learning styles and see education as an extremely holistic matter. In fact, I have and research perspectives about education that I love to share.

One of my main goals with my teaching is to break down the rampant [over]complications, haziness, and pretentiousness that usually accompany writing, reading, and grammar in our society--and in our school system. Many of my adult students in particular appreciate my no-nonsense approach to grammar and literature; they LOVE that they can feel comfortable asking me questions they would feel 'stupid' asking in other situations.

Efficiency is extremely important to me. I have the 2nd fastest Wyzant response time that I have seen across the entire nation, which is something I have worked hard to achieve and maintain. My clients enjoy being able to get in touch with me very quickly via text in regard to any questions they have or endeavors we are working on remotely together. Furthermore, I regularly see many tutors wasting large chunks of tutoring sessions and beating around the bush; with me, however, accomplishing goals during the sessions I provide is of the utmost importance, and I aim never to squander time. I make my sessions feel purposeful and fulfilling, yet comfortable, fun, and interesting. On that note, I have served as a leader and coach in several organizations throughout my life, and my strong leadership qualities inform my tutoring in quite a unique way. I provide clarity with instruction and direction, define a clear path for work, and provide oodles of motivation, among many other things!

I'm a poet and artist by nature--a lover of beauty and all the nuances in and around this amazingly maddening thing we call life. I'm extremely upbeat, positive, spunky, and passionate, with a robust sense of humor and desire to inspire other people and make them laugh. As a painter, professional violinist, aspiring guitarist, slam poet, writer, fencer, songwriter, blogger, actress, and designer, I'm interested in many things, and I have several goals in life that I work every day to achieve. My heart is absolutely overflowing with love for people and love for life. I do not take my life or work lightly and am constantly striving to push myself out of my comfort zone by learning new things and improving myself.

If your or your child's goals include growing in ability, gaining confidence, and experiencing a love for life and learning--or just producing a profoundly superlative paper--you owe it to yourself to get in touch with me! My work ethic and profound love for people make my work truly unique; I can't think of a job I could enjoy more, and my joy in my work is a key component of my tutoring and life. As such, my commitment to bringing the dreams of my tutoring and editing clients to fruition is fueled by unprecedented energy and love. Helping my students grow as people and learners is my obsession! :) Thank you for reading; have a wonderful day!
Hello! Welcome to my page! I am a potently passionate and effective full-time English tutor, editor, writing coach, and college/grad school application essay expert with an English degree and a high school English teaching license. I am incredibly proud to be the top Wyzant English tutor nationwide, and I am also one of very few top tutors in the Read more

36 hours notice required
Travel Radius
Travels within 0 miles of Irvine, CA 92604
Background Check: Passed
In-person lessons

"I got into Berkeley and improved my writing thanks to Phoebe!"

- William, Laguna Niguel, CA on 6/2/16


- Samar, Irvine, CA on 2/2/17

"Articulate and prepared tutor"

- Julie, Mission Viejo, CA on 1/26/17

"Amazing Tutor"

- Winnie, Corona, CA on 11/10/16

"Life Made Easy with Phoebe"

- Pri, Los Angeles, CA on 6/20/16

"Great writing tutor"

- Tina, Irvine, CA on 5/24/16

"Great Lesson!!!!"

- Zhouchunyu, Orange, CA on 5/21/16

"Great Tutor!"

- Calvin, Irvine, CA on 4/13/16

"Great Mentor"

- Yvonne, Santa Ana, CA on 3/10/16

"Excellent Tutor!"

- Renee, Irvine, CA on 2/25/16

"Great Tutor!!"

- Winnie, Irvine, CA on 2/1/16

"Phenomenal tutor!"

- Julie, Irvine, CA on 1/26/16

"Exceptional Tutor"

- Anita, Orange, CA on 1/25/16

"Absolutely the BEST English tutor ever!"

- Tami, Tustin, CA on 1/22/16

"Hands down, the best tutor ever."

- Miki, Irvine, CA on 1/16/16

"She is MAGICAL!"

- Sheila, Aliso Viejo, CA on 1/5/16

"Best tutor ever!"

- Lori, Laguna Hills, CA on 7/17/15

"Very Patient and Encouraging Tutor!"

- Manna, Irvine, CA on 7/14/15

"Knowledgable and productive tutor"

- Kristyn, Tustin, CA on 7/7/15

"I'm so grateful for Phoebe!"

- Meleeka, Irvine, CA on 6/28/15

"Great and Ideal!"

- Tina, Irvine, CA on 6/23/15

"She is AMAZING!!!"

- Linda, Aliso Viejo, CA on 4/18/15

"Wonderful Tutor"

- Yvette, Irvine, CA on 4/8/15

"Best tutor!!"

- Arlene, Irvine, CA on 3/29/15

"A life-changing tutoring!"

- Sidy, Mission Viejo, CA on 3/23/15

"Great tutor!"

- Jenny, Irvine, CA on 2/27/15

"By Far the Best Tutor I Have Had"

- Norman, Irvine, CA on 2/15/15

"Extraordinary Spot On Tutor-- most elite tier"

- L, Orange, CA on 12/23/14

"Very knowledgeable!"

- Deirdre, Newport Beach, CA on 12/7/14

"Even better than her profile!"

- Meredith, Newport Beach, CA on 11/19/14

"Miracle Worker"

- Elizabeth, Fullerton, CA on 11/13/14

"Best teacher I have ever seen"

- Babak, Irvine, CA on 10/10/14

"Great Tutor"

- Lilian, Newport Beach, CA on 8/27/14

"Wonderful Tutor! Highly Recommend!"

- Jennifer, Trabuco Canyon, CA on 8/23/14

"Amazing Tutor!"

- Gabrielle, Irvine, CA on 8/6/14

"Great Tutor! Great Price!"

- Dorota, San Clemente, CA on 8/3/14

"The best tutor you can ask for!!!"

- Chan Gu, Irvine, CA on 7/9/14

"Phoebe the Fabulous!"

- Noelani, Costa Mesa, CA on 6/27/14

"Tutor Perfection!"

- Amber, Tustin, CA on 6/20/14

"Keeps Me On Track"

- Karla, Costa Mesa, CA on 5/29/14

"The Very Berry Best"

- Candy, Irvine, CA on 5/21/14

"I Can't Say Enough About Phoebe"

- SABRINA, Mission Viejo, CA on 4/30/14

"College Essay Expert!"

- Nora, Trabuco Canyon, CA on 4/28/14

"Great tutor and writing coach!"

- Harold, Laguna Niguel, CA on 4/14/14

"Great tutor"

- Stacey, Irvine, CA on 3/31/14

"Talented and Insightful"

- Tom, Trabuco Canyon, CA on 3/25/14

"Great tutor with patience"

- Puma, Irvine, CA on 3/3/14

"Unusually sensitive and adaptive in view of shifting circumstances"

- Chris Tina, Laguna Beach, CA on 2/27/14

"Brilliant, compassionate and dedicated to her students!"

- Pauline, Lake Forest, CA on 2/22/14

"Awesome tutor"

- Analaura, Ladera Ranch, CA on 2/18/14

"Phoebe = Phenomenal"

- Angela, Trabuco Canyon, CA on 1/3/14

"Great tutor"

- Lisa, Irvine, CA on 12/19/13

"Phoebe Rocks!"

- Jordan, Mission Viejo, CA on 11/15/13

"Great Tutor"

- Ryan, Irvine, CA on 11/9/13

"Smart, enthusiastic and effective."

- Emilie, Foothill Ranch, CA on 11/8/13

"Great Tutor!"

- Jeffrey, Aliso Viejo, CA on 11/5/13
ACT English,
ACT Reading, English, ESL/ESOL,
Reading, SAT Reading,
SAT Writing,
TOEFL, Writing
Test Preparation:
ACT English,
ACT Reading, Career Development,
College Counseling,
SAT Reading,
SAT Writing,
Elementary Education:
Elementary (K-6th),
Reading, Study Skills
Career Development

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.

ACT English

I use a very no-nonsense approach to preparing for the ACT, utilizing tips and tricks that are not usually taught about the test. I try to keep sessions regarding standardized testing lively and make them as fun and digestible as possible, as I understand any test prep can be difficult and stressful. I try to switch the roles sometimes when prepping for the ACT in order to make the experience truly rewarding and effective. Sometimes the best way to learn is to teach. If there is ever a question about the test I am unable to answer, I will always research it for my student. Studying for any standardized test is a team effort between the teacher and student. Regarding ACT essays: I use a very effective, methodical essay system and can help most students achieve a high essay score.

Career Development

I am a professional cover letter editor. Successful cover letters are very similar to effective essays and effective college essays, and I do EXTREMELY successful cover letter coaching and editing because of this fact.

I have edited resumes for many clients and am able to transform a relatively dull resume into something with great potential to help someone get hired. I am adept at (aesthetically!) organizing information, emphasizing an individual's strengths, and altering the language of a resume to make it more assertive, varied, and precise.

I'm also fantastic at helping prepare for job interviews! Talking points, personal anecdotes, prioritizing information concisely, confidence pointers, motivation, drilling--you name it and I'll drastically improve your shot at that job!

College Counseling

College/Grad School Application Essays:
These essays are NOT like ANY kind of writing students usually do in school, and most of the time students are going about their college essays the wrong way. I am extremely skilled at not only helping a student create the kind of essay colleges are looking for, but also doing it in such a way as to draw out the student's unique voice, which is really what schools are hoping to see.

I'm very different from a typical college counselor who may know what colleges are looking for in an admissions essay. First of all, since working with students on essays--as well as editing--is my full-time profession, I have many writing-specific skills at my disposal that counselors do not. Secondly, as a writer with a rich literary background myself, I can help a student create not only an emotionally impacting, true-to-self piece of art, but also one that incorporates quite impressive, elevated metaphorical content. Thirdly, I endlessly impress myself with my own editing skills; I am very adept at blending snippets of a story into a delicious, resonant work of art. Lastly, I am extremely skilled at connecting with my students, and because of our amazing rapport, they share things they would rarely share with college counselors. These topics are often the most important topics to write essays about. I can't count the number of times my students will tell me that their college counselors did not listen to them or even try to get to know them. My students are so comfortable with me that we both discover worlds of information, making our essays rich, vibrant, and totally genuine.

I have an almost unreal level of success assisting students with college essays that accomplish a very difficult task in the application process. I am also adept at simplifying the SAT and ACT and ensuring success with college applications. Please see my testimonials for much more on this topic.

General College Counseling:

I am the former president of the Smith College Club of Orange County, so I have conducted multiple interviews for prospective students and generally have a very good understanding of how the admissions and selection process works.

College Interview Preparation:

I have conducted several interviews for prospective students as the president of the Smith Club, so I very literally know what interviewers are looking for!

Elementary (K-6th)

I just spent the past 8 months at an academy for elementary school students. During my time there, I taught CST prep, reading comprehension, writing, and math. I have had 40 or more students and have improved each of their conversational abilities, vocabulary, desire to learn, and much more.


I have worked with several private ESL students over the years and have also taught 45+ students at Reading Town, a local ESL academy. Indeed, reading activities are one of the best ways to engage students in the process of language acquisition, and I believe in genuine, interesting learning experiences.

One of my most memorable ESL teaching experiences came in the form of a 4th grade international student. She advanced hugely under my tutelage and became much more confident in her usage of language and overall presentation.


What can I possibly say about a part of me that is so deeply-rooted and profound? I adore grammar and correcting it, but I am no proverbial 'grammar Nazi.' I feel like that term gets tossed around way too much with something similar to flagrant disregard. I am a grammar purist in that I respect the most basic and oft-overlooked idea behind grammar--that communication should be effective and precise, and without correct grammar, we present half-baked and sometimes incorrect, unpolished ideas to the world we are trying so desperately to engage with.

I am fortunate enough to have grammar be such an intrinsic part of me that I immediately know how to correct any and all sentences, and I attribute this in part to endless reading during my youth.

I am currently developing a grammar system for my students that makes grammar real and approachable instead of something archaic learned through overwrought rules that not only confuse, but leave much humanity to be desired.

If you need to know anything more about my qualifications, I believe my reviews for and subject descriptions regarding my editing work speak for themselves.

One of my favorite t-shirts says "Let's eat grandma" and then "Let's eat, grandma! Punctuation saves lives." Enough said. :)


I have been the English teacher and homeschool principal (dealing with administrative matters and management of 3-4 tutors) for 2 homeschooled high school students during the past 2 years. In this time, I have learned much about the legal aspects of homeschooling and how best to homeschool. This involves becoming well-versed in the idea of unschooling and gaining a lot of perspective about the nature of education itself.


The realm of literature and all it contains is my forte and great joy. I teach people to analyze, appreciate, write--and revel in our shared humanity. Language arts, English, literature--whatever you want to call it--is all a study of the human condition itself, and nothing is more powerful than that.


Editing is one of my favorite things to do, and I am extremely proficient at furthering any student's writing. I consider myself to be the best editor I have ever encountered, and I have encountered many. I am extremely quick, efficient, and insightful, and I always have direct and beneficial feedback. Editing is a form of magic to me, and I wield many wands.

I currently edit primarily:
-college/graduate school application essays
-academic papers for college and grad school students
-essays and creative writing assignments for high school and middle school students
-resumes and cover letters
-a Random House manuscript
-a fantasy novel

SAT Reading

Over the years, in my preparation to work with SAT students, I have exposed myself to lesser-known aspects of the test. This requires continuous personal research and discussion with colleagues, all of which is done in an effort to stay ahead of the curve and give my students creative, to-the-point ways to approach the test (and, furthermore, any intimidating standardized test). This aside, I encourage my students to think critically about the test and yet to not overthink what the test requires of them. Toeing this line is difficult but rewarding. Luckily, the SAT is quite repetitive in what it tests, and after students become familiar with enough problems, they begin to see and understand these patterns, which allows them to be successful.

SAT Writing

I use a very effective, methodical, intentional essay system and can guarantee a score of a 10-12 on an SAT essay for most students that use my approach.

It takes between 6 and 15 writing-only sessions, on average, for a student to learn, practice, and be successful with my method in regard to essays.

When grammatical issues in writing need to be addressed, this is done using a combination of book and non-book exercises.

Study Skills

I routinely help all my students with their study skills, so it simply makes sense that I be certified. I stress organization and time management and consider myself adept at instilling these both in children and teenagers alike. I believe that time management and prioritization skills are among the most important things an individual can develop for him or herself, and I stress their importance to students in many ways--including, but by no means limited to, self-efficacy, independent work, structured lessons, and neverending encouragement--and expectations.


I have performed in various theatrical circuits as an actor, but my most valuable theatrical experience came in the form of a theatre collaborative, whereby each member of the group led everyone in theatrical activities and theory. It ensured I have the ability to theatrically teach and inspire.

I have also completed a Shakespearean teaching internship, so I am particularly skilled at making Shakespeare something accessible to younger students.


I am not currently accepting new violin students.

I have played violin for 15 years. I am currently the fiddle player for an established punk rock band, and I have loads of performance experience in a variety of venues; I have been in countless orchestras, chamber groups, quartets, bands, and rock/cover music groups of various genres. I have played internationally as well as in many places on the east coast. I have been a violin teacher at Yamaha Music the past year as well.

I have had at least 15 private violin and viola students over the past 2 years and in different states. I have worked with children of all ages and with adults at a variety of different levels--some are just beginning to learn and some are proficient. I most enjoy working with the beginners because I introduce them to my system of learning violin and give them the encouragement (and high energy) needed to stick it out through the frustration of beginning to learn any difficult instrument! I have very high expectations for my students, and practice is one of their cornerstones. My goal with my violin teaching is to always inspire and teach others to feel the profound joy in and of music.


I am an extremely effective writing coach, providing fantastic encouragement, structure, and support. I regularly guide my students in the process of writing their own perfect papers until they have mastered the process.

I will say this: there is truly NOTHING in the world like the feeling of gratification, happiness, and excitement I get when I, time and time again, pinpoint what needs to be done with an essay and help my student make it happen.

Nothing in the world.

Teaching writing skills and coaching my students in the writing process is truly my calling, and it brings me great fulfillment; because of this, I am sustained and highly effective in my work with all writing students, regardless of age and circumstance. I have edited and/or assisted with every kind of writing there is, whether academic or creative.

Smith College


Smith College (English)

I got into Berkeley and improved my writing thanks to Phoebe!

Phoebe is an amazing tutor and coach. She is a professional. From the first day we worked together, I felt that I could trust her to deliver on everything she promised. I gave Phoebe the difficult task of helping me re-write all my college essays with approximately 10 days to spare. She set me up on a schedule, giving me the exact steps to success. Her communication was beyond excellent and she wa

— William, Laguna Niguel, CA on 6/2/16

Hourly rate

Standard Hourly Rate: $125.00

Cancellation: 36 hours notice required

Travel policy

Phoebe will travel within 0 miles of Irvine, CA 92604.