Over 1000 tutoring hours

Alan G.

Silver Spring, MD

$50/hour

Expert tutor in SAT ACT reading writing, study skills editing

Background check passed as of 12/6/13
4.9 average from 303 ratings
Excellent First Lesson with Alan
— Michael, Silver Spring, MD on 2/8/16

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City University of New York, Hunter College
Language Studies
Columbia University
Master's
New York University-Stenhardt School of Education
PhD

Education

City University of New York, Hunter College (Language Studies)

Columbia University (Master's)

New York University-Stenhardt School of Education (PhD)

About Alan

I am a knowledgeable and caring teacher/tutor with 20 years of experience, and the author of four teaching guides. I was recently a team member for an online educational course development series for the SAT and ACT exams.

I provide provide individual and small group tutoring for TOEFL, SAT, ACT, SSAT, ISEE, GRE, GED, Praxis, AP English Literature, AP English Language, and AP U.S. History exams. I've worked for the major standardized test development companies, so I know how tests are created, and how test developers create questions to challenge (and sometimes confuse) students.

Besides test preparation, I work with students from fourth grade through graduate school in language arts (writing, reading, public speaking, voice articulation), the humanities, and social sciences to improve their general academic skills, research skills, or to assist with specific courses.

I also help students with their master's' theses and doctoral dissertations in the subject areas of English Language and Literature, Communications, ESL, Education, Psychology, Sociology, and Public Health.

A good tutor listens to a student's issues, understands how the student perceives a subject, and gets a grasp of the particular problems she or he may be having. By developing an insight into WHY a student is having difficulties, a tutor should develop an individualized student plan, so that she or he can eventually "self-tutor."

With a certificate in Counseling Psychology, I can help develop learning strategies for students that don't fit neatly into a typical student profile, for example, those with ADHD or dyslexia.

I've had a lot of formal education, but I've always tried to stay well-rounded. When I attended college, I was a member of the track and wrestling teams.

Each tutor's profile has an hourly tutoring rate. However, this rate does not include commuting and preparation time, so one-on-one tutoring can be a very good investment. Additionally, if we can schedule tutoring sessions within a fifteen minute drive of my home, I'd be happy to request an adjustment in the rate. And if you feel that you can benefit from online tutoring, I can make an adjustment in the rate as well.

Background Summary:

Ph.D. New York University
M.A. Columbia University
B.A. Hunter College, City University of New York
Counseling Certificate, LaSalle University (Philadelphia)
Certificado Avanzado in Spanish, Fairfax County Board of Education
M.A. Coursework in Latin American Studies, Georgetown University (Washington, DC)

"Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire." William Butler Yeats
I am a knowledgeable and caring teacher/tutor with 20 years of experience, and the author of four teaching guides. I was recently a team member for an online educational course development series for the SAT and ACT exams.

I provide
Read more

Policies
Cancellation
12 hours notice required

I usually travel to the student, so actual time for a one-hour session doesn't include travel time. If you think online tutoring would be appropriate, I can negotiate the hourly rate.

Travel Radius
Travels within 15 miles of Silver Spring, MD 20910
Background Check: Passed

"Excellent First Lesson with Alan"

- Michael, Silver Spring, MD on 2/8/16

"Patient and knowledgeable"

- Ghazia, Washington, DC on 11/18/15

"Great tutor"

- Delia, Bethesda, MD on 11/8/15

"Great help with essays!"

- Carin, San Diego, CA on 10/7/15

"Very patient and helpful"

- Deborah, Silver Spring, MD on 6/7/15

"Great Tutor"

- Christopher, Bowie, MD on 11/4/14

"Open and Honest Writing Tutor"

- Patricia, Laurel, MD on 7/5/14

"Great Tutor"

- Esther, Rockville, MD on 6/11/14

"Excellent lesson."

- Coral, Washington, DC on 1/30/14

"Great tutor"

- Janean, Kensington, MD on 10/12/13

"Great"

- Patricia, Kensington, MD on 6/12/13

"Great tutor"

- Maria Tereza, Bethesda, MD on 3/8/13

"Really sharp, very helpful"

- Sara, Chevy Chase, MD on 12/15/12

"Very Knowledgeable"

- Carl, Clarksville, MD on 9/17/12

"Excellent tutor, knowledgeable on TOEFL, keen intellect grasping students learning needs"

- Leticia, Vienna, VA on 3/14/12

"Knowlegeable!"

- Norma, Beltsville, MD on 3/4/12

"Good tutor"

- John, Bethesda, MD on 1/31/12

"Excellent"

- Klaudette, Glenside, PA on 9/29/11
Math:
ACT Math, SAT Math
Science:
Psychology,
Sociology
Test Preparation:
ACT English,
ACT Math, ACT Reading,
ASVAB, Career Development,
College Counseling,
GED,
GMAT, GRE,
ISEE,
Praxis,
PSAT, SAT Math, SAT Reading,
SAT Writing,
SSAT,
TEAS, TOEFL
Computer:
Photography
Language:
ESL/ESOL,
Spanish,
Speech,
TOEFL
Elementary Education:
Grammar,
Reading,
Study Skills,
Vocabulary

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

As a high school and college counselor, I have regularly assisted students in deciding whether they should take the ACT test, and have helped tutor them in the English and Reading sections.

ACT Reading

I know that reading comprehension can be frustrating for some students, even for those that have good reading skills and enjoy reading. Additionally, many students read and comprehend easily when completing regular assignments in class or for homework, but get rattled in test-taking situations. When I help a student prepare for a standardized test, I use a holistic approach by helping him or her prepare in a safe, supportive environment so he or she can harness reading skills and apply them to the test.

ADD/ADHD

I have studied the physiology of ADHD, and keep up with the very latest research regarding the condition (see the research of Dr. Russell Barkley--the most esteemed researcher in the field for his findings). My graduate studies in counseling psychology and my work with college students that have ADHD both have contributed to my expertise in the area.

I work with people that are seeking advice or 'coaching' individually since ADHD is not a "one size fits all" problem. While there are general behaviors, cognitive functioning, learning styles, issues with concentration and "executive functioning" that most individuals with ADHD seem to exhibit, the spectrum of challenges requires a one-on-one approach for both young people and adults that are seeking help. I have impeccable references that I can provide from some of the leading authorities in the field, and would be happy to discuss your needs regarding how you can work more efficiently, whether in school, at home, or in a career.

American History

American History not only helps one understand the basis for how our government developed, but also is essential in understanding the values that Americans hold regarding one another, education, work, the make-up of organizations, and interpersonal relationships. American History is one of the subjects for which there is an Advanced Placement or AP test. I have helped lots of students prepare for the AP history test, and use a book especially designed for developing the knowledge and skills to pass it.

In addition, knowing American History in depth is essential for the American citizenship test, and researchers have found a large percentage of people born in the U.S. would fail the test if they had to take it to become citizens. Mmmm!

Did you know that the modern American University was based on the educational ideas of Thomas Jefferson, the third President of the United States and the first President of the University of Virginia.

Art History

As a former contributing editor to Arts Magazine and having published articles on Renaissance Art and Modern Art, I have written and edited many articles on the visual arts. You can see my explanation of "Post-Modernism" on the Q & A section of the WyzAnt website.

Aspergers

I have studied the physiology of ADHD, Asperger's, and other conditions that may cognitively impact the learning styles and motivations of students, and keep up with the very latest research regarding these conditions (see the research of Dr. Russell Barkley--the most esteemed researcher in the field for his findings). My graduate studies in counseling psychology and my internship at the LaSalle University (Philadelphia) community mental health center have contributed to my expertise in the area.

I work with people that are seeking advice or 'coaching' individually since everyone diagnosed with cognitive issues is unique. While there are general behaviors, cognitive functioning, learning styles, issues with concentration and "executive functioning" that most individuals with cognitive spectrum disorders seem to exhibit, the challenges of tutoring them require a one-on-one approach for both young people and adults. I would be happy to discuss your needs regarding how you can work more efficiently, whether in school, at home, or in a career.

Career Development

As an Intake Coordinator for Montgomery College, I was responsible for developing work-study programs that matched the skills of college-age students.

College Counseling

I have been both a college counselor and a psychological counselor. I have a certificate in counseling from LaSalle University in Philadelphia, PA. This was a graduate program that included psychological testing, internship at a mental health clinic, and participating in group discussions with students.

Dyslexia

As you can see listed on my profile, I have a 30-credit Master's Level Certificate in Psychological Counseling and a 100-hour externship in the LaSalle University Community Mental Health Clinic, where I was trained to help both young people and adults that have Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder(ADHD), dyslexia, and other learning challenges. Thus far, on WyzAnt, I've been able to develop personal study strategies with a number of students with a range of these types of issues. Specific references from students are available upon request.

English

I have taught and tutored all aspects of English or, as it is generally known, "Language Arts" for nearly 20 years, and I continue to be enthusiastic about helping others, whether it is to improve writing, reading, or speaking skills. I have taught students as young as eight-years-old and as advanced as students pursuing their doctoral degrees. I can assist you with organizational and structural issues if you are composing something lengthy such as a thesis or dissertation, or help you improve your grammar if you have trouble with basic writing skills.

ESL/ESOL

I have taught ESL and ESOL at New York University's American Language Institute, where I helped students develop reading, writing, and listening comprehension skills. The student population represented dozens of countries from Europe, Asia, and Latin America. Many were students about to enter their first year at an American university, while others were older adults who were improving their English language skills for business, professional schools (Medical school and Law school), as well as graduate school.

GED

As an administrator at Montgomery College in Montgomery County, Maryland, I worked in curriculum development and testing of students that were preparing for the GED test. This experience provided me with first-hand understanding of the challenges both high school aged and older students face when taking this test. I have had considerable success in helping students that have wanted to learn individual test taking strategies.

Government & Politics

My experience in Government & Politics has been in two major domains. I have a Ph.D. in Communications and have studied international relations, propaganda theory, and political and economic theory from the Enlightenment period to the present. Additionally, I've had "hands-on" experience in my capacity of working with educational organizations, I've been involved in many projects that have been funded by the federal government, for example, projects involving the US Department of Education, Office of Juvenile Justice, Department of Housing, Department of Human Services. In addition, I've worked with a number of immigration organizations in partnership with the federal government, and have translated "white papers" on immigration issues from Spanish into English.

Grammar

Do you have trouble with the fine points of grammar, for example, what is the proper tense to use or whether "who" or "whom" is the proper pronoun? Or, you might know the basic rules of grammar, but would like to write more "elegantly" or more complexly, and don't know how to expand the depth or breadth of your sentences. Regardless of what grammatical issues or goals you may have, I can help you achieve them.

GRE

As a former Graduate Record Exam test developer, I helped devise sections of the test for its parent company, Educational Testing Service.

Do you need help with the writing, verbal, or quantitative sections? I have recently helped complete an on-line video course for students who would like to improve their knowledge about the GRE, and tips on how to study for it.

I can provide you with these tips in a one-to-one environment through tutoring that is even more effective. Additionally, since I was part of the team that developed test questions and prompts for the read GRE, I know exactly what test raters look for when they are determining your grade.

ISEE

I have recently completed work as the technical editor for the book, "The ISEE and SSAT for Dummies" (Yes, I hate the title too!) and "Idiot's Guide to College Financial Aid" (I'm not crazy about that title either).

Literature

I have written four instructor guides for English teachers to help provide ideas concerning ways to teach literature, including fiction, poetry, and drama.

Photography

I am an expert in both digital photography and film photography. I am completely familiar with the technology of digital photography, how to set focus, aperture, speed, flash settings as well as single, continuous, and delayed shutter settings. I can teach every aspect of digital photography--from selecting a camera to learning how to achieve the best settings for a shot, whether in natural or artificial light. I have my own strobe photo studio, and can assist beginner and intermediate photographers in understanding such variables as pixel size, shadow, exposure, high dynamic range (HDR) photography, and how to select lenses for particular cameras (I have a complete Nikon system - with two cameras, four lenses, delayed shutter release and remote shutter release capabilities). I can also teach the elements of lighting, including the use of source lighting, reflectors, 'go-bos,' under and over-exposure.

Praxis

I have a Ph.D. from the New York University School of Education, and have been a teacher for 15 years. As a test developer and test scoring leader for the Educational Testing Service (the organization that creates and administers the Praxis Exam), I know the best strategies for studying for the Praxis, and can help you with preparing for the entire exam or any particular part of it that you may find difficult.

Proofreading

As a professional writer and editor, I've had a lot of experience in proofreading documents from college level research papers to master's theses and doctoral dissertations. I can work in the MLA style, the APA style, or the U. of Chicago style.

Some of the subjects I've proofread and edited include psychology, sociology, public health, theology, English literature, and others. I have also worked as an editor and writer for two major publishers, Prentice-Hall and McGraw-Hill

Psychology

As a graduate student in counseling psychology, I studied theoretical and practical aspects of psychology, which I put to use as an intern while working at a community counseling center in Philadelphia. I have the mandatory requirements to conduct and score psychometric tests (personality inventories, job skills, attitudinal tests), developed a website that served as a knowledge-based resource center for the doctoral students in Counseling Psychology at LaSalle University.

Public Speaking

While enrolled in my Doctoral program at New York University, I had a Teaching Fellowship in Public Speaking. I also have had two years of training in voice articulation, and have tutored many foreign students (including physicians and scientists)so that they improved their speaking skills and help reduce accent. I also can tutor students in preparing, writing, and presenting a speech, and provide techniques in reducing the fear of public speaking.

Reading

I know that reading comprehension can be frustrating for some students, even for those that have good reading skills and enjoy reading. Additionally, many students comprehend reading assignments or read well in the "real world" but get rattled in test-taking situations. Whether you are seeking to improve your child's basic reading skills, whether you are getting ready to take the SAT or ACT test, or are applying to graduate or professional schools where there is a requirement to take the GMAT, LMAT, or GRE tests, I can help you improve your reading skills by using a holistic approach in a supportive environment.

SAT Reading

I know that reading comprehension can be frustrating for some high school students, even for those that have good reading skills and who enjoy reading. The critical reading skills one needs in college (or in preparing for college by taking the SAT or ACT) differ from those that many of us use for casual reading or reading for entertainment. Additionally, many students do well on reading assignments, but may have test anxiety on a "high stakes" standardized test like the SAT. I can help you improve your reading skills by using a holistic approach in a supportive environment where we will assess where your difficulties with reading lie so as to maximize your reading comprehension and test taking strategies.

SAT Writing

Do you need help with the SAT Writing section? I've taught and tutored many students in preparation for all aspects of the SAT. I've also helped develop test questions and prompts for the SAT, and know exactly what the readers of the test look for when they are determining what grade to give you. Whether you have trouble with grammar, sentence structure, paragraph development, or overall essay organization, I can quickly pinpoint the areas you need for improvement, and show you ways to enhance your writing skills for the SAT specifically, and for academic work in general.

Social Studies

Social Studies encompasses a number of disciplines including government, political science, sociology, communications, and anthropology. I earned a Ph.D. in social science, which included considerable reading and research in all these areas. In addition, I've taught many courses in interpersonal communication, Mass Media, media and society, and government and propaganda.

Sociology

As an educator and researcher, I worked in public health education, where I studied quantitative and qualitative research design and methodology. I have conducted sociological and psychometric research in the field, and was the head of a team that conducted the first HIV/AIDS demographic study of Atlantic City, NJ. The study was selected by the NJ Department of Health as part of their official HIV/AIDS state-wide analysis of the problem. I've not only had academic training in sociology, but have had true hands-on experience as well.

Spanish

As an undergraduate student, I studied Spanish in Mexico, and continued my Spanish studies in college. After taking educational seminars in Spain, Mexico, Panama, and Costa Rica, I earned a Certificado de Estudios Avancados (Certificate in Advanced Spanish Studies)from the Fairfax, VA Board of Education. In "real life" I work for several international organizations in the Washington, DC area, as a translator of documents, and as a simultaneous translator at meetings and forums.

Special Needs

I was awarded a C.S.W. (Certified Social Worker) Certificate from the State of New Jersey, and completed 30 graduate credits in Counseling Psychology from LaSalle University in Philadelphia--resulting in obtaining a Certificate in Counseling Psychology. I completed an internship at the LaSalle University Community Mental Health Clinic and worked at the Office of Family Services in Fairfax Virginia as an assistant counselor and as a bilingual (Spanish/English) translator for Latino clients.

Speech

I have a Ph.D. in Communications from New York University, and had a fellowship in Speech Communications. I've taught speech to undergraduates and high school students. In addition, I studied voice articulation for two years.

SSAT

Students that wish to attend private high schools are required to take one of two tests: either the ISEE or the SSAT. Although these tests are similar, there are a few important differences in their make-up and scoring. I served as one of the editors of the book 'SSAT and ISEE for Dummies' test preparation book, one of the most popular preparation books on the subject. Whether you are preparing for the lower, middle, or upper level SSAT tests, I can help the student with developing the reading comprehension, quantitative reasoning, and vocabulary building necessary to improve his or her score.

Study Skills

I have written four study guides for students that focus on critical reading and writing and time management. They are published by McGraw-Hill, Inc., and Prentice-Hall, Inc., and available on Amazon. I can help traditional and non-traditional students, and am very patient and individualized in my approach, which is to discover what kinds of specific study skill improvements a student needs, and how best to find specific strategies to improve them.

Theatre

With a Master's degree in theater, I have taught playwriting, directed one-act plays, and have written ten plays of my own that have been performed in New York City, Chicago, and Philadelphia. I can help you with developing research papers on theater topics and also help you edit your own plays to enhance their dialogue and improve their structure. If you'd like to read any of my own work, feel free to ask once you've registered with WyzAnt.

TOEFL

YOU CAN'T GET A HIGH SCORE ON THE TOEFL TEST BY STUDYING A BOOK! WHY?
BECAUSE EVERYONE IS DIFFERENT!

Have you ever tried to study a foreign language by using audio, software, or textbooks? Then, when you travel to a country where that language is spoken, find that it is very hard to understand the native speakers? That's usually the case because

The TOEFL test requires that you demonstrate competent listening, speaking, writing, and reading skills, and is designed to test these skills in a natural setting. If you've ever tried to learn a language by reading a book or doing exercises in a workbook, you probably know that these strategies don't help much. I can work with you in all these areas of language by focusing on YOUR particular problems in comprehension. Since I tutor ALL areas of language, reading, speaking, listening, and writing, I can develop a personalized program for you to get the highest score on the TOEFL test you can.

Vocabulary

Having a broad and accurate skill in vocabulary is important for success at all educational levels as it is in the world of work. Unfortunately, a lot of 'vocabulary building' is not very helpful because it teaches new vocabulary words in a mechanical, artificial way, for example, by memorizing lists of words or using 'mnemonics,' meaning learning to memorize words and meanings without using them in writing or speaking. I have had a lot of success in improving the vocabulary of native English speakers as well as ESL/ESOL students by using context-specific vocabulary exercises. In other words, I can help you enhance your vocabulary through 'natural' methods, the same way you would learn new words and their usage in everyday contexts.

World History

I know a lot about history.

Writing

Writing is perhaps one academic area where even the best students have difficulty. Often, this is because we just don't seem to do much formal writing outside of a school or academic setting. The electronic age may have contributed to this, but if you want or need to improve your writing skills, you probably don't really care WHY you find writing difficult. You want to IMPROVE it! Whether you are in middle school or graduate school, need help in organizing and structuring your ideas and sentences for a short essay or a doctoral dissertation, I can help you significantly improve your writing by first, learning what your difficulties are in the writing process, and then, help you find strategies to overcome these difficulties. Nearly every profession requires clear, concise writing. And once you develop your writing skills, you can be certain that you'll keep them throughout your academic or professional career.

City University of New York, Hunter College
Language Studies
Columbia University
Master's
New York University-Stenhardt School of Education
PhD

Education

City University of New York, Hunter College (Language Studies)

Columbia University (Master's)

New York University-Stenhardt School of Education (PhD)

Excellent First Lesson with Alan — During the first lesson, Alan was able to determine which areas our daughter needed to focus on to prepare her for the SAT exam. He effectively covered a lot of ground in a relatively short period of time. His patient, easy going personality put our daughter at ease, allowing her to get the most out of her tutoring session. Alan recommended a number of books for self study, based on our daught ...

— Michael, Silver Spring, MD on 2/8/16

Hourly rate

Standard Hourly Rate: $50.00

Cancellation: 12 hours notice required

I usually travel to the student, so actual time for a one-hour session doesn't include travel time. If you think online tutoring would be appropriate, I can negotiate the hourly rate.

Travel policy

Alan will travel within 15 miles of Silver Spring, MD 20910.