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TEST PREP & ESSAY SPECIALIST with a PhD!
James W.

3,805 hours tutoring

Your first lesson is backed by our Good Fit Guarantee

Hourly Rate: $175

Response time: 44 minutes

James W.'s Photo

TEST PREP & ESSAY SPECIALIST with a PhD!
TEST PREP & ESSAY SPECIALIST with a PhD!
James W.

3,805 hours tutoring

Your first lesson is backed by our Good Fit Guarantee

3,805 hours tutoring

Your first lesson is backed by our Good Fit Guarantee

About James


Bio

Having completed my PhD, I have succeeded at every level of academic achievement; with almost 20 years of teaching experience, I can help your child do the same.

My focus is on helping your student ace his or her life changing tests!

It's great to watch students succeed beyond their wildest dreams, and it's also wonderful to watch students experience the transformation of character and the growth of self-esteem that can accompany great academic achievement.

I specialize in high level test...

Having completed my PhD, I have succeeded at every level of academic achievement; with almost 20 years of teaching experience, I can help your child do the same.

My focus is on helping your student ace his or her life changing tests!

It's great to watch students succeed beyond their wildest dreams, and it's also wonderful to watch students experience the transformation of character and the growth of self-esteem that can accompany great academic achievement.

I specialize in high level test prep and essay writing – including college admissions essays. Whether preparing for the SAT, ACT, ISEE, SSAT, TOEFL, or HSPT, your student will be well on his or her way to a jump in their scores and a mastery of test taking strategies.

When it comes to essays – I help high school and college students learn ninja writing skills that will put them at the top of their class. I even specialize in helping students craft creative but on-point college admissions essays that knock it out of the park.

As an educator, my strengths are my creativity, experience, and kind-yet-direct guidance. I've been teaching, coaching, and tutoring for the last 20 years, so my students are able to relax knowing they are in good hands. I have a background in education and performance, and most recently, I earned a PhD in a transdisciplinary program exploring 'human and organizational change', so I am able to work with the student as a complex and unique individual rather than just trying to force them to learn like a machine.

Finally, I can help you no matter where you are in the world. I have extensive experience with online tutoring techniques and tools, so students not only get the most cutting-edge test prep strategies and tools, they also improve their tech-literacy, which gives them a competitive edge in their future academic and professional lives.

Testimonial:

"Dear Dr. Wagner, Thank you very much for being so helpful to Mark in preparing for his March 10 SAT. Thanks in large part to you, his score went up to 1400 (as he told you), whic


Education

California Institute of Integral Studies, San Francisco, CA.
PhD

Policies

  • Hourly Rate: $175
  • Rate details: Rate is non-negotiable: no discounts. First lesson is guaranteed by Wyzant - if you don't want to continue, then no charge.
  • Lesson cancellation: 24 hours notice required
  • Background check passed on 10/5/2016

  • Your first lesson is backed by our Good Fit Guarantee

Schedule

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Subjects

Art

Theater

Theater

As a recent graduate of American Conservatory Theater's MFA program- consistently ranked as a top acting program nationally and globally-who also holds a BFA in Acting, I am extremely qualified to teach anything related to theatre and dramatic performance. I have been leading classes, workshops, one-on-one coaching sessions and master classes for nearly a decade, working with students of all ages and experience levels. I am a proud member of Actor's Equity Association and have been working consistently as a professional actor for several years. I would love to help you prep for an upcoming audition, learn and/or sharpen a dialect, better comprehend a dramatic text, or provide consistent coaching to help you elevate your craft beyond where your instincts alone can take you. I am trained in acting for the stage, camera, musical theatre performance, and also have experience in dramatic writing.

Business

Public Speaking

Public Speaking

Much of my skill set comes from the speech and vocal skills I gained in my 7 years of professional actor training at the undergraduate and graduate levels. With my understanding of story structure, rhetoric and argument, and literary devices, I can help you to develop and deliver a speech with confidence that will capture your listeners and leave a lasting impression. One of my particular areas of expertise is solo performance. I have spent several years honing a performance of a two hour monologue. As such, I understand how give a speech a dramatic and compelling shape, but also how to command a space, speak with integrity and authenticity, and step into vulnerability with a joyful heart. If you want to cultivate true presence, I'd be thrilled to assist in your journey to become a more embodied public speaker that no one will be able to take their eyes (and ears) off of.

Corporate Training

Proofreading,

Proofreading

I have written at a PhD level and am currently working on a book that has already been accepted for publication. While in my PhD program - fellow students were constantly reading and editing each other's papers - looking for errors in grammar, usage, mechanics, and APA / MLA formatting. In addition, I worked as a teaching assistant in PhD level courses, which involved reading and grading graduate level papers. Finally, I have taught writing skills in various contexts for a decade - and I've worked with students matriculating at Ivy League schools.
Public Speaking

Public Speaking

Much of my skill set comes from the speech and vocal skills I gained in my 7 years of professional actor training at the undergraduate and graduate levels. With my understanding of story structure, rhetoric and argument, and literary devices, I can help you to develop and deliver a speech with confidence that will capture your listeners and leave a lasting impression. One of my particular areas of expertise is solo performance. I have spent several years honing a performance of a two hour monologue. As such, I understand how give a speech a dramatic and compelling shape, but also how to command a space, speak with integrity and authenticity, and step into vulnerability with a joyful heart. If you want to cultivate true presence, I'd be thrilled to assist in your journey to become a more embodied public speaker that no one will be able to take their eyes (and ears) off of.

English

ACT English,

ACT English

During the last 6 years of teaching at Top Prep companies in the Los Angeles Area, I specialized in the English portion of the ACT. I have helped students to raise their scores by 5 or 10 points in just a few short months of preparation. I am familiar with a wide variety of test prep strategies and have adapted my approach to students with a broad range of individual needs. Also, I have a PhD and so I have excellent reading and writing skills and have used those expertise to teach ACT, PSAT, ISEE, CAT, and SAT Test Prep at top test prep companies for the last six years.
ACT Reading,

ACT Reading

I have worked for Top Prep companies in the Los Angeles Area for the past 6 years. I have specialized in the Reading aspects of the test. I have helped students to raise their scores by 5 or 10 points in just a few short months of preparation. I am familiar with a wide variety of test prep strategies and have adapted my approach to students with a broad range of individual needs. Also, I have a PhD and so I have excellent reading and writing skills and have used those expertise to teach ACT, PSAT, ISEE, CAT, and SAT Test Prep at top test prep companies for the last six years.
Proofreading,

Proofreading

I have written at a PhD level and am currently working on a book that has already been accepted for publication. While in my PhD program - fellow students were constantly reading and editing each other's papers - looking for errors in grammar, usage, mechanics, and APA / MLA formatting. In addition, I worked as a teaching assistant in PhD level courses, which involved reading and grading graduate level papers. Finally, I have taught writing skills in various contexts for a decade - and I've worked with students matriculating at Ivy League schools.
Public Speaking,

Public Speaking

Much of my skill set comes from the speech and vocal skills I gained in my 7 years of professional actor training at the undergraduate and graduate levels. With my understanding of story structure, rhetoric and argument, and literary devices, I can help you to develop and deliver a speech with confidence that will capture your listeners and leave a lasting impression. One of my particular areas of expertise is solo performance. I have spent several years honing a performance of a two hour monologue. As such, I understand how give a speech a dramatic and compelling shape, but also how to command a space, speak with integrity and authenticity, and step into vulnerability with a joyful heart. If you want to cultivate true presence, I'd be thrilled to assist in your journey to become a more embodied public speaker that no one will be able to take their eyes (and ears) off of.
SAT Reading,

SAT Reading

I have worked for Top SAT prep companies in the Los Angeles Area for the past 5 years. I help people with all sections of the test, but specialize in the Reading aspects - often helping students to raise their scores by 300 to 400 points in just a few short months of prep. I am familiar with a wide variety of prep strategies and have adapted to students with a broad range of scores and individual needs. Also, I have a PhD and so I have excellent reading and writing skills and have used those expertise to teach ACT, PSAT, ISEE, CAT, and SAT Test Prep at top test prep companies for the last six years.
SAT Writing,

SAT Writing

I have worked for Top SAT prep companies in the Los Angeles Area for the past 5 years. I specialized in the verbal portion of the test - writing and reading - often helping students to raise their scores by 300 to 400 points in just a few short months of prep. I am familiar with a wide variety of prep strategies and have adapted to students with a broad range of scores and individual needs. Also, I have a PhD and so I have excellent reading and writing skills and have used those expertise to teach ACT, PSAT, ISEE, CAT, and SAT Test Prep at top test prep companies for the last six years.
Writing

Writing

Having completed a PhD, I have been coaching and editing writing at EVERY level of academic writing. I help people at every stage - from conceptualization and research - to final editing and formatting. In addition, I taught writing skills to students preparing for the SAT and ACT for the past seven years, so my understanding of grammar, mechanics, usage, diction, and essay organization are excellent. I have also helped many students with all college and grad school application essays. Finally, I have been writing creatively (Poetry, Plays, Films, and Short Stories) for 15 years, so I am good at mixing academic precision with a readable and emotionally persuasive style.

Homeschool

SAT Math,

SAT Math

I have worked for Top Prep companies in the Los Angeles Area for the past 6 years. I have focused on the math aspects of the test. I have helped students to raise their scores by 5 or 10 points in just a few short months of preparation. I am familiar with a wide variety of test prep strategies and have adapted my approach to students with a broad range of individual needs.
SAT Reading,

SAT Reading

I have worked for Top SAT prep companies in the Los Angeles Area for the past 5 years. I help people with all sections of the test, but specialize in the Reading aspects - often helping students to raise their scores by 300 to 400 points in just a few short months of prep. I am familiar with a wide variety of prep strategies and have adapted to students with a broad range of scores and individual needs. Also, I have a PhD and so I have excellent reading and writing skills and have used those expertise to teach ACT, PSAT, ISEE, CAT, and SAT Test Prep at top test prep companies for the last six years.
Writing

Writing

Having completed a PhD, I have been coaching and editing writing at EVERY level of academic writing. I help people at every stage - from conceptualization and research - to final editing and formatting. In addition, I taught writing skills to students preparing for the SAT and ACT for the past seven years, so my understanding of grammar, mechanics, usage, diction, and essay organization are excellent. I have also helped many students with all college and grad school application essays. Finally, I have been writing creatively (Poetry, Plays, Films, and Short Stories) for 15 years, so I am good at mixing academic precision with a readable and emotionally persuasive style.

Math

ACT Math,

ACT Math

I have helped students to raise their Math ACT scores by 5 or 10 points in just a few weeks. Working at Top Prep companies in the Los Angeles Area for the past 6 years, I focused on the math sections of the test, so I know various test prep strategies and have developed my own approach to help students excel and get into their top choice colleges, often with academic scholarships.
SAT Math

SAT Math

I have worked for Top Prep companies in the Los Angeles Area for the past 6 years. I have focused on the math aspects of the test. I have helped students to raise their scores by 5 or 10 points in just a few short months of preparation. I am familiar with a wide variety of test prep strategies and have adapted my approach to students with a broad range of individual needs.

Most Popular

Writing

Writing

Having completed a PhD, I have been coaching and editing writing at EVERY level of academic writing. I help people at every stage - from conceptualization and research - to final editing and formatting. In addition, I taught writing skills to students preparing for the SAT and ACT for the past seven years, so my understanding of grammar, mechanics, usage, diction, and essay organization are excellent. I have also helped many students with all college and grad school application essays. Finally, I have been writing creatively (Poetry, Plays, Films, and Short Stories) for 15 years, so I am good at mixing academic precision with a readable and emotionally persuasive style.

Other

College Counseling

College Counseling

I have a PhD, so I can guide you through success at every level of your Academic Journey. Also, I have 15 years experience teaching at the Undergraduate, Graduate, and PhD level. Finally, I have been coaching students through their admissions test, admissions essays, and admissions interviews for almost a decade - both at major college prep organizations and privately.

Summer

SAT Math,

SAT Math

I have worked for Top Prep companies in the Los Angeles Area for the past 6 years. I have focused on the math aspects of the test. I have helped students to raise their scores by 5 or 10 points in just a few short months of preparation. I am familiar with a wide variety of test prep strategies and have adapted my approach to students with a broad range of individual needs.
Writing

Writing

Having completed a PhD, I have been coaching and editing writing at EVERY level of academic writing. I help people at every stage - from conceptualization and research - to final editing and formatting. In addition, I taught writing skills to students preparing for the SAT and ACT for the past seven years, so my understanding of grammar, mechanics, usage, diction, and essay organization are excellent. I have also helped many students with all college and grad school application essays. Finally, I have been writing creatively (Poetry, Plays, Films, and Short Stories) for 15 years, so I am good at mixing academic precision with a readable and emotionally persuasive style.

Test Preparation

ACT English,

ACT English

During the last 6 years of teaching at Top Prep companies in the Los Angeles Area, I specialized in the English portion of the ACT. I have helped students to raise their scores by 5 or 10 points in just a few short months of preparation. I am familiar with a wide variety of test prep strategies and have adapted my approach to students with a broad range of individual needs. Also, I have a PhD and so I have excellent reading and writing skills and have used those expertise to teach ACT, PSAT, ISEE, CAT, and SAT Test Prep at top test prep companies for the last six years.
ACT Math,

ACT Math

I have helped students to raise their Math ACT scores by 5 or 10 points in just a few weeks. Working at Top Prep companies in the Los Angeles Area for the past 6 years, I focused on the math sections of the test, so I know various test prep strategies and have developed my own approach to help students excel and get into their top choice colleges, often with academic scholarships.
ACT Reading,

ACT Reading

I have worked for Top Prep companies in the Los Angeles Area for the past 6 years. I have specialized in the Reading aspects of the test. I have helped students to raise their scores by 5 or 10 points in just a few short months of preparation. I am familiar with a wide variety of test prep strategies and have adapted my approach to students with a broad range of individual needs. Also, I have a PhD and so I have excellent reading and writing skills and have used those expertise to teach ACT, PSAT, ISEE, CAT, and SAT Test Prep at top test prep companies for the last six years.
College Counseling,

College Counseling

I have a PhD, so I can guide you through success at every level of your Academic Journey. Also, I have 15 years experience teaching at the Undergraduate, Graduate, and PhD level. Finally, I have been coaching students through their admissions test, admissions essays, and admissions interviews for almost a decade - both at major college prep organizations and privately.
ISEE,

ISEE

I am an ISEE test prep expert. At certain times of the year, up to 85% of my students are preparing for the ISEE - so I have a level of experience with this test that is very hard to find. I use world class technology to aid the process: practice tests with fantastic diagnostic tools, online vocabulary and math games, cutting edge whiteboard apps for working out math problems together, etc. I have been teaching ISEE test prep at top Los Angeles and New York City based Test Prep companies for over 10 years. My students have had strong results and always improve dramatically within 10 to 20 hours of training. Also, I have a PhD and so I have reading and writing skills at the highest levels and have used those expertise to teach ACT, PSAT, ISEE, CAT, and SAT Test Prep at top test prep companies for the last six years.
PSAT,

PSAT

I have worked for several top test prep companies for almost 4 years. I am highly qualified to help students preparing for the PSAT, especially in critical reading, writing (grammar), and essay preparation. I have helped students qualify for National Merit Scholarships and achieve at the highest level. Also, I have a PhD and so I have excellent reading and writing skills and have used those expertise to teach ACT, PSAT, ISEE, CAT, and SAT Test Prep at top test prep companies for the last six years.
SAT Math,

SAT Math

I have worked for Top Prep companies in the Los Angeles Area for the past 6 years. I have focused on the math aspects of the test. I have helped students to raise their scores by 5 or 10 points in just a few short months of preparation. I am familiar with a wide variety of test prep strategies and have adapted my approach to students with a broad range of individual needs.
SAT Reading,

SAT Reading

I have worked for Top SAT prep companies in the Los Angeles Area for the past 5 years. I help people with all sections of the test, but specialize in the Reading aspects - often helping students to raise their scores by 300 to 400 points in just a few short months of prep. I am familiar with a wide variety of prep strategies and have adapted to students with a broad range of scores and individual needs. Also, I have a PhD and so I have excellent reading and writing skills and have used those expertise to teach ACT, PSAT, ISEE, CAT, and SAT Test Prep at top test prep companies for the last six years.
SAT Writing,

SAT Writing

I have worked for Top SAT prep companies in the Los Angeles Area for the past 5 years. I specialized in the verbal portion of the test - writing and reading - often helping students to raise their scores by 300 to 400 points in just a few short months of prep. I am familiar with a wide variety of prep strategies and have adapted to students with a broad range of scores and individual needs. Also, I have a PhD and so I have excellent reading and writing skills and have used those expertise to teach ACT, PSAT, ISEE, CAT, and SAT Test Prep at top test prep companies for the last six years.
SSAT

SSAT

I am an SSAT test prep expert. At certain times of the year, a large portion of my students are preparing for the SSAT - so I have a level of experience with this test that is very hard to find. I use world class technology to aid the process: practice tests with fantastic diagnostic tools, online vocabulary and math games, cutting edge whiteboard apps for working out math problems together, etc. I have been teaching for SSAT test prep at top Los Angeles Test Prep companies for more than 10 years and my students have had strong results, always improve dramatically within 10 to 20 hours of training. I have helped many students prepare for the SSAT over the past three years. Most students raise their scores by 30% or more within a few short months of working with me. Most of my SSAT students are relieved when I clearly break down the test structure and give them simple practical strategies for optimizing their score no matter what.

Ratings and Reviews


Rating

5.0 (998 ratings)
5 star
(988)
4 star
(10)
3 star
(0)
2 star
(0)
1 star
(0)

Reviews

ACT tutoring

James teaches my daughter for the ACT, and although she hasn't taken it yet, she already feels she is improving. He helps work on what she specifically is weak at and assigns different tasks to improve the weakness. He is good at explaining different questions to her.

Cathy, 8 lessons with James

Result!

If you’re looking to get a result, look no further! James will get you a result. Our son started with James at the end of August. His SSAT practice score on day 1 was 18 percentile. We finished with James first week of December and his score went up to 90 percentile. He had lessons with James about twice a week. I’m so impressed with the improvement in the scores. Don’t get me wrong our son works hard on it too but you definitely get what you pay for with James. Worth every penny! If you look for a tutor give James a try and you won’t regret it

Pakanya, 25 lessons with James

Excellent and knowledgeable tutor!

Excellent and knowledge tutor - would highly recommend! Dr. Wagner is patient and prepped our son for the ISEE exam. Our son met with other tutors for trial sessions and personally selected Dr. Wagner due to ease of instruction.

Regina, 18 lessons with James

Knowledgeable and Patient

Outstanding tutor, knowlageable,, my son understood the reason for the corrections. He explained in detail what Universities are looking for on a college essay. Will recommend 100%.

Javier, 3 lessons with James

Has a plan, assigns meaningful homework

He is focused on my son during the session and gives clear instruction about what he expects him to do before the next meeting. That makes the most of the time my son has to prepare for the SSAT.

Kim, 21 lessons with James

Knowledgeable ACT tutor

James was patient and knowledgeable. He gave my son homework between lessons that was interesting and engaging. He really encouraged my son and increased his confidence right from the beginning, showing my son what he thought was possible. He only tutored my son for the English section because that was his lowest score, but my son was able to raise his score 7 points in just a few weeks of tutoring! If we had more time we would have used James to polish the other sections as well!

Julie, 8 lessons with James

Knowledgeable and Patient

James patiently helped my son in developing time management skills, introducing effective tools and being open to listen to him. At the same time, he tutors my daughter in reviewing for the SAT, and she has seen great success thanks to him. She has improved her SAT score from averaging 1200+ as her score on mock exams to 1500+ within the span of six months. He is very perceptive despite being an online coach and offers simple, attainable, and straightforward solutions to his students without forcing them to do so. He highly encourages them and motivates them to seek a better strategy in the face of adversity while also being open and understanding with his students if they fail. All in all, he has been a great tutor and teacher to both of my children.

Jojo, 42 lessons with James

Great

Was very thorough and straight to the point. Instructions are clear. Created a strategic plan that will hopefully raise my son's score.

Monica, 3 lessons with James

SSAT Tutoring

Great SSAT teacher! My kid improved a lot in a short time. Reading and vocabulary are the most difficult ones to improve but James did a really excellent job. We will continue to take the class.

Tracy, 40 lessons with James
Hourly Rate: $175
Response time: 44 minutes
Contact James