Search
Kevin S.'s Photo

Kevin S.

Math PhD, 8 yrs experience Pre/Calculus: confidence through precision

Math PhD, 8 yrs experience Pre/Calculus: confidence through precision

$56/hour

  • 2,040 hours tutoring

About Kevin


Bio

I focus on tools to make problem solving straightforward: a simple reductionist approach to concepts (e.g. calculus I only has 2.5), insistence on fundamentals, and helping students to be kind to themselves. Students’ main obstacle is not conceptual, but assuming math is complicated, having learned a long list of processes instead of the short list fundamental laws. That causes sloppy “bookkeeping”, then losing track of if you’re right (the student’s job). I’ve been teaching/tutoring for...

I focus on tools to make problem solving straightforward: a simple reductionist approach to concepts (e.g. calculus I only has 2.5), insistence on fundamentals, and helping students to be kind to themselves. Students’ main obstacle is not conceptual, but assuming math is complicated, having learned a long list of processes instead of the short list fundamental laws. That causes sloppy “bookkeeping”, then losing track of if you’re right (the student’s job). I’ve been teaching/tutoring for eight years: seven calculus and precalculus, full-time tutoring for one. Students who stick to my approach consistently report improvements of one or two letter grades. A fundamentals approach also applies to all material, so it adapts well to students of different strength. Do math like the big kids.

My main goal is to make the boring parts of math quick and painless so students have more room for the cool parts. By learning flexible techniques to apply the right rules to any problem, and writing efficient, clear solutions that make mistakes less likely, we can handle problems without the stress and eliminate the urge to do millions of useless practice problems or searching for deeper meaning that isn’t there. Confidence comes through competence. Competence comes knowing the rules of the game. You don’t need a “deep” understanding of things to get started (calculus is broad not deep), all you need is the safety net of fundamentals so you can explore.

I focus on making sure you:
- Graduate from "The Steps": Use fundamentals to handle new problems. No more "we haven't done this problem type before". Only problem type is “follow the directions”. Communicate solutions, not incantations.
- Develop Agency: Knowing if your work is right is your job, not the teacher’s. Experiment, get your own feedback, answer your own curiosity. Math is your sandbox.
- Solve Word Problems Systematically: Strip context, convert to math as you read, solve like any other problem. No more “read the problem multiple times to understand it”.


Education

Whitworth University
Math
University of Tennessee
Masters
University of Tennessee
PhD

Policies


Schedule

Loading...

Sun

Mon

Tue

Wed

Thu

Fri

Sat


Subjects

Homeschool

Calculus,

Calculus

I taught calculus for four of my years at UTK. There I worked with a team of others to incorporate innovative results-based techniques to improve student understanding and reflection. That is where I developed my systematic rule-based approach that fits so well with the rigid calculations in calculus, freeing your mind up for the more creative parts of problems.
Precalculus,

Precalculus

I taught precal at UT for one year.
Algebra 2

Math

Calculus,

Calculus

I taught calculus for four of my years at UTK. There I worked with a team of others to incorporate innovative results-based techniques to improve student understanding and reflection. That is where I developed my systematic rule-based approach that fits so well with the rigid calculations in calculus, freeing your mind up for the more creative parts of problems.
Differential Equations,

Differential Equations

I spent my last year at UTK group tutoring exclusively in differential equations and working with the instructor. So I know the curriculum and common issues students have. In fact, my research falls under differential equations, and I still use some of the techniques from this class now and then. So I am able to explain the ideas behind the techniques, specially the core principle of linearity/superposition.
Discrete Math,

Discrete Math

As a math PhD, of course I have taken the discrete math course, and I've also graded for it. It's typically an intro to proofs and logic, so every math PhD is an expert in the material. The subject fits well with my rules-based approach to other courses, since that's how you should approach proofs.
Linear Algebra,

Linear Algebra

Linear algebra is important to every field of math, so every grad student must be an expert in it. I used it heavily in my research in both geometry, partial differential equations, and dynamical systems. I also taught a unique technology-based multivariate calculus class that place extra emphasis on the applications of linear algebra there. So I have a number of different geometric and algebraic perspectives that can help different students understand the material.
Precalculus,

Precalculus

I taught precal at UT for one year.
Algebra 2

Most Popular

Calculus,

Calculus

I taught calculus for four of my years at UTK. There I worked with a team of others to incorporate innovative results-based techniques to improve student understanding and reflection. That is where I developed my systematic rule-based approach that fits so well with the rigid calculations in calculus, freeing your mind up for the more creative parts of problems.
Precalculus,

Precalculus

I taught precal at UT for one year.
Algebra 2

Summer

Calculus,

Calculus

I taught calculus for four of my years at UTK. There I worked with a team of others to incorporate innovative results-based techniques to improve student understanding and reflection. That is where I developed my systematic rule-based approach that fits so well with the rigid calculations in calculus, freeing your mind up for the more creative parts of problems.
Algebra 2

Examples of Expertise


Kevin has provided examples of their subject expertise by answering 2 questions submitted by students on Wyzant’s Ask an Expert.

Ratings and Reviews


Rating

4.9 (851 ratings)
5 star
(816)
4 star
(29)
3 star
(2)
2 star
(2)
1 star
(2)

Reviews

Show reviews that mention

All reviews

Highly competent

Kevin provided crucial support in solving a differential equation. He had a thorough understanding of what the subject is about. He was kind enough to answer to all the questions that were of interest to me. I am willing to keep on the tutoring with him in differential equations.

Ibraim, 1 lesson with Kevin

Great teacher

Helped me with my previous test, and gave me pointers and how to do better in the future. Thank you!

Lea, 7 lessons with Kevin

Smart, fun, and optimistic tutor

Kevin has a very positive attitude towards math, and can relate and reassure the student. He made me feel like I was capable of doing the problems, and pointed out a few consistent items I was doing incorrectly or less than optimally. He was fun and pleasant and I'll be using him again if I run into more issues. Thanks Kevin!

Nancy, 1 lesson with Kevin

Fantastic Tutor!

Kevin has helped me so much in comprehending challenging concepts in Multivariable Calculus, Linear Algebra, and Physics. One of the things that he is best at is providing useful techniques for breaking down and understanding a problem. With physics word problems, for example, Kevin has taught me a technique that allows me to transform english sentences into mathematical statements, which clarifies what the question is asking for and makes it easier to approach. Definitely recommend!

Rosella, 112 lessons with Kevin

Very knowledgeable and sincere tutor

Review from my daughter: "Kevin tutored me for college level Discrete Math and he made complex topics very simple for me. Working through problems thoroughly, he made sure I understood the problem entirely before moving on. Very sincere person - a big thank you to Kevin for helping me throughout this difficult class".

Divya, 5 lessons with Kevin

Knowledgeable and thorough. Available when needed.

Pre-calculus lesson. Kevin is able to explain difficult material in a way that was helpful and instructive for my son. Worked well with my son, very knowledgable and was able to break down concepts to understandable pieces.

Celeste, 17 lessons with Kevin

Knowledgeable and thorough.

Pre-calculus lesson. Was able to explain the material in a way that was helpful to my son. Worked well with my son, very knowledgable and was able to break down concepts to understandable pieces.

Celeste, 17 lessons with Kevin

Great tutor

Kevin has tutored two of my boys. One for college Calculus and the other for high school Pre-Cal. Both boys felt more confident in their subjects and they both liked Kevin’s style of teaching. We will be using Kevin regularly.

Marlene, 4 lessons with Kevin

knowlegable and fun tutor

My son really likes him. He is having a fun time learning multivariable calculus with Kevin. I really appreciate Kevin makes learning fun and easy, thank you!

Ling, 7 lessons with Kevin
Contact Kevin

Response time: 1 hour

$56/hour

Kevin S.'s Photo

Kevin S.

$56/hour

  • No subscriptions or upfront payments

  • Only pay for the time you need

  • Find the right fit, or your first hour is free

Contact Kevin

Response time: 1 hour