Andrei K.

Ridgefield, CT


Yale Math PhD: SAT prep, gifted-child math and physics

1750+ Hours
Background check passed as of 11/17/16
5.0 average from 390 ratings
Phenomenal tutor!
— Krupa, Briarcliff Manor, NY on 6/26/15


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Kiev University (USSR)
Yale University
Yale University


Kiev University (USSR) (mathematics)

Yale University (Master's)

Yale University (PhD)

About Andrei

Who I am:

NOT your run-of-the-mill tutor. Before a career on Wall Street, I was a professional, world-class mathematician. I have an MS and a PhD in mathematics from Yale University, and summa cum laude BS and MS in mathematics from the former USSR. A graduate of one of the Soviet Union's elite math-and-physics high schools, I was also a multiple Mathematics Olympiad winner.

What I can do for you:

(1) SAT/ACT and ISEE/SSAT test prep. Important as they may be, test-taking techniques only scratch the surface of what is possible. By emphasizing *mental arithmetic* and *understanding* over tricks, I will unlock your *true* potential, and take you to the heights you have never dreamed achievable.

(2) Gifted-child math. If the school math does not challenge you enough---whatever your age---I can help! In grades 1-3 I recommend Singapore Math (at, and above, the grade level), which I supplement with algebra (yes, the children ARE ready) and, in grade 3, with my adaptation of the Soviet textbook. Beast Academy series (currently in the making) is also a wonderful supplement. For higher grades, I use my adaptation of the standard Soviet textbooks, as well as textbooks created specifically for Moscow's elite high schools with emphasis on mathematics. I also throw *fun* stuff into the mix, from prior-years math competitions, such as Math Kangaroo, MathCounts, and AMC. (I suppose, aforementioned Beast Academy may qualify as fun, too.) In this program, students can be reasonably expected to ace the math section of the SAT by the end of 7th grade. (Several of my students did just that, scoring 800 on the SAT math long before they would enter high school).

(3) Gifted-child physics. To the bright middle- and high-school students not content with the cursory treatment of physics at school, I offer an in-depth conceptual journey supported by a collection of challenging physics problems which I have been adapting from various Soviet sources. The latter project is in progress, with its Newtonian Mechanics part essentially completed. (In this program, several of my young students scored 5 on AP Physics C Mechanics in 9th grade, without ever taking the actual AP class in school.)
Who I am:

NOT your run-of-the-mill tutor. Before a career on Wall Street, I was a professional, world-class mathematician. I have an MS and a PhD in mathematics from Yale University, and summa cum laude BS and MS in mathematics from the former USSR. A graduate of one of the Soviet Union's elite math-and-physics high schools, I was also
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24 hours notice required
Travel Radius
Travels within 20 miles of Ridgefield, CT 06877
Background Check: Passed

"Phenomenal tutor!"

- Krupa, Briarcliff Manor, NY on 6/26/15

"Exactly the help I needed"

- Paul, Westport, CT on 3/1/17

"Andrei explained concepts by using examples that I understood easily"

- Anna, New York, NY on 10/23/16

"Very knowledgeable and Precise"

- Neel, Pound Ridge, NY on 6/1/16

"brilliant mind but too intense for our daughter"

- Anne, North Salem, NY on 1/10/16

"Best math tutor!"

- Eva, Greenwich, CT on 11/9/15

"A very Special Tutor"

- Janee - Jarrod, South Salem, NY on 9/24/15

"Outstanding tutor"

- Diviya, New Canaan, CT on 10/3/14

"Unique Objective and Process of Learning"

- Peter, Danbury, CT on 5/23/14

"A True Gem!"

- Soren (student), Stamford, CT on 4/1/14

"Great tutor!!"

- Nelya, Middlebury, CT on 1/5/14

"Great tutor"

- Daniela, Ridgefield, CT on 2/14/13

"Excellent at instructing and extremely patient."

- Paul, Stamford, CT on 10/7/12
ACT Math,
Algebra 1,
Algebra 2,
Differential Equations,
Discrete Math,
Elementary Math, Geometry,
Linear Algebra,
Logic, Prealgebra, Precalculus,
Probability, SAT Math,
ACT English, ACT Reading, SAT Reading, SAT Writing
Test Preparation:
ACT English, ACT Math,
ACT Reading, GRE,
SAT Math,
SAT Reading, SAT Writing, SSAT
Computer Science
Elementary Education:
Elementary Math, Elementary Science
Finance, GRE

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 Math

My system of preparation for the math portion of the ACT (and, more generally, for the standardized tests in mathematics) is somewhat unique and unconventional. In fact, it goes against the grain of *most* of what you have been taught in school... and likely even in a test-prep class, if you have taken one. Sound a bit unnerving? Perhaps. But consider this: those same math teachers who tell you what to do, had most certainly not scored well themselves when they were your age. What's more, chances are good that they cannot score that well now, either. That's because their ways are... well, unduly complicated.

What is a better approach? First of all, I will teach you how to solve 95% of all questions *mentally*, without writing a thing. Why bother, you may ask. Several reasons.

One, it will teach you---anew---what you once knew but have since forgotten: the mathematical imagination. Its importance is hard to overemphasize. If you can imagine what is going to happen when you do this or that, say to a math expression at hand, you are going to solve the problem that much faster!

Two, doing math mentally teaches you to *look*---typically for a shorter way to solve the problem---and eventually to *see* such a short solution. A typical ACT problem can be solved in under 10 seconds---once you've slowly read it---mentally.

There are other [inter-related] benefits in mental math: improved short-term memory, reduction in the number of 'silly mistakes,' increased accuracy and speed, etc.

Next, since you are not writing, you cannot 'show your work.' But to take it further, I will not let you 'show your work' even in articulating your solution orally, either to me or to yourself. Why not? Because 'showing your work' prevents you from short-circuiting the steps that at some point in the past should have become trivial. For example, years ago, when you were learning how to read, you had to first learn how to recognize the shapes of individual letters, and the sounds that each of them made. But since then, these---formally formidable---tasks have long become superfluous. Thus, when reading today, it would be preposterous if you were required to 'show your work' by calling out the sound that each and every letter makes. You would never accept such an 'educational' approach to reading. Why should one accept it in mathematics?

As in reading, or sports, or any other human endeavor, the process of learning consists of combining formally separate steps into a single new step. 'Showing your work' prevents you exactly from doing this, and so from becoming better in mathematics. Hence, it must be rejected.

Next, I will ask that you 'throw out the clock,' i.e. have no concept of time when you are preparing. "But I have a very limited amount of time on the test!" you may object. That's true. Perhaps somewhat counter-intuitively though, the more time you spend 'dwelling' on a problem during preparation, to painstakingly slowly build a quality mental model, the faster your thoughts in the future will be able to access it.

There are other tidbits to my approach, dovetailing to what is described above. For example, for the vast majority of questions, even of the form "which of the following...", I will ask you not to be looking at the answer choices. The reason for that is simple: by covering the answer choices, you are forced to think about the problem deeper, sometimes even putting yourself in the shoes of a problem *maker*: a higher level of mastery. Of course, this contradicts what you may have heard elsewhere about the process of elimination. Alas, I'd much rather teach you how to *dominate* problems, than to be defending yourself against their onslaught.

I should add that the proof is in the pudding. I had taught a number of my young students to achieve the perfect score on the math portion of the SAT long before they would reach high school. I had also tutored a number of high-school students to score either perfectly or near-perfectly on the math portions of the ACT and SAT. If you buy into my method, I can teach you how to do it, too.

Algebra 1

Before completing my Ph.D. in Discrete Mathematics at Yale University, my specialization and master's thesis at Kiev University (U.S.S.R.) were in Algebra.

Algebra 2

Before completing my Ph.D. in Discrete Mathematics at Yale University, my specialization and master's thesis at Kiev University (U.S.S.R.) were in Algebra.


Back in my previous, academic life, I taught Multivariable Calculus at Yale University, and Calculus 1 and Calculus 2 at University of Waterloo. Over the past few years, I tutored many high school and college students in calculus at all levels. Several of my younger high school students had achieved the score of 5 on the AP Calculus BC exam in 9th or 10th grade.

Computer Science

My PhD Adviser at Yale University had a joint appointment at the Mathematics and the Computer Science departments. Consequently, I spent a significant amount of time studying algorithms, computational complexity, and other areas of interest to Computer Science. I am also fluent in several programming languages, such as Perl, PhP, and Java. Finally, one of my first students at WyzAnt was working towards his Master's Degree in Computer Science, needing help with his Algorithms class.

Differential Equations

While working towards my Bachelor and Master degrees in Mathematics, I took---and aced---an in-depth three-semester course in Differential Equations (including both Ordinary and Partial DEs). Later on in my academic career, I taught some of it at the college level in my calculus class.

Discrete Math

My PhD theses---as well as postgraduate research---were in the area of Discrete Mathematics.


Did you know that our Founding Fathers were almost universally educated in geometry? In their private letters to friends, they would make references to Euclid's the Elements the same way we would talk today about Google, or iPhone, or Twitter. (Except being able to talk about these modern realities is not a sign of a solid education :)

Until a few hundred years ago algebra gave modern mathematics ability to record information concisely---in formulas---geometry had done so---pictorially---for over two millennia.

A sidebar: When I taught at University of Waterloo, I organized a minicourse in Projective and Conformal Geometries.


My system of preparation for the GRE places the main emphasis on mental math. While the benefits are many---including improved speed and the reduction in errors---the main point is to teach the students how to *look* for (and, therefore, to *see*) short, most efficient solutions.


Over the past few years, I have been successfully preparing for ISEE (and SSAT) those of my students who are applying to highly selective private schools (at any grade level). Many of my students have scored in the top 5% on the ISEE Math.

Linear Algebra

Per my PhD program requirements, I taught a course in Linear Algebra at Yale University. Over the past few years, I helped a number of college-level students with their Linear Algebra classes.


Starting in the Summer of 2013 twice a week, and continuing during the school year weekly, I have been running a physics class for exceptionally gifted students. Progressing slowly, we go more in-depth than a typical AP Physics course would. Our target is to study elementary physics in proper breadth and depth, over three-year period. The problems we consider mostly come from old Moscow physics competitions and other classical Soviet sources, which I have been adopting for this purpose.


Over the past few years, I have been tutoring precalculus to students who would like to improve their grades through better understanding of the material, as well as to younger, exceptionally gifted students not content with cursory treatment of mathematics at school. To the latter, I offer a course adopted from old Russian textbooks for schools specializing in mathematics, supplementing it with topic-specific collections of AHSME/AMC 10/AMC 12/AIME problems.

SAT Math

My system of preparation for the SAT/ACT math is "unique" (not really; it just imitates the way professional mathematicians approach math problems). First of all, slow down! "But I need to do it fast on the test," you may protest. True, but you need to learn how to *solve* problems first, *before* you can do it fast. The first time I looked at an SAT test, I did it (perfectly) in just over half the time--but I had never trained for speed. It may sound counter-intuitive, but speed comes naturally to those who (1) are good at solving problems and (2) have a complete command of the subject matter.

The good news is that the subject matter to master for the SAT math is very VERY limited. It can be explained to a thoughtful 7th grader. I had done that with my 12-year old son, who went on to score 790 on the SAT Math in May of 2012 (in 7th grade) and 800 in October 2012 (in 8th grade). I can do this with you, too.

How can I teach you to *master* the SAT math? By asking you to 'throw out the clock' and take your time; to write your complete solutions in a quad-graphed journal; to cover up the multiple-choice answers, unless the problem cannot be solved without seeing them. This approach to problem solving will immediately flash out the areas in need of additional attention. This is the most efficient way--perhaps the only way--to truly master the subject matter, and to end up *dominating* the test.

It is only when you have mastered the SAT problem solving *without* the clock--and you will, sooner than you may think--can we begin worrying about speed. But guess what: at that point, it will scarce be necessary.


As a Statistical-Arbitrage trader on Wall Street, I am a de facto practicing statistician. Over the past few years, I've tutored several high-school students who proceeded to score 5s on the AP exam, some without taking the actual class. I've also helped a number of college students taking Statistics as part of their pre-med or MBA program.

Kiev University (USSR)
Yale University
Yale University


Kiev University (USSR) (mathematics)

Yale University (Master's)

Yale University (PhD)

Phenomenal tutor!

Andrei tutored my daughter for SAT Math, and for the SAT Math 2 subject test. His online classes were amazing and she grasped the subject matter quickly. Andrei also gave her great tips on working faster and more efficiently. This helped tremendously on the exams. Andrei tutored her for three months for the SAT Math, she took the exam once and scored a 780 on the math. He then tutored her for a m

— Krupa, Briarcliff Manor, NY on 6/26/15

Hourly rate

Standard Hourly Rate: $115.00

Cancellation: 24 hours notice required

Travel policy

Andrei will travel within 20 miles of Ridgefield, CT 06877.