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Tutors on Tutoring

In Their Own Words



Tutoring should be dialogical: a thoughtful conversation can illuminate new ideas.

As a tutor, I seek to externalize the internalized dialogue of writing.

Students determine the success of the session: if a tutee is engaged, the meeting will be a good one.

If you visit the Learning Commons, you’ll speak, write, think, and come out with something new.

My best meetings have been debates. I make my tutees defend their ideas so that they can leave our session with a sense of ownership over their own thoughts.

Tutoring for the first time has been an incredibly enriching experience for me. I not only learned about [students'] experiences as writers, but I was able to reflect on my own identity as a writer and as a student as well.

Tutoring gave me the opportunity to connect to an entire group of Bard students whom I might otherwise have never met.

Working in an environment like the Learning Commons, where everyone is exceptionally dedicated and consistently strives for improvement, is extremely inspiring.

I read my tutees' essays as I would read scholarly texts, with skepticism and respect.

If a student comes to me with a thesis they aren’t passionate about, it shows in the first 5 minutes of our session. Write about a topic you want to talk about!

Successful tutoring is just another name for one of the best kinds of interaction between two people. It's a conversation between two people about something that matters. It is a gesture of aid, an offering of respect, an exchange of help and expertise from both parties that elevates them both.

I never leave a tutoring session without a new investment in something that matters to a student I have tutored. My hope is that they never leave without having found some thought or idea in their essay that excites them, something that they can hook themselves into and expand from.

Tutoring is not a transference of myself onto another person. It is an exchange between the two of us that hopefully produces ideas and strategies that the other student can own because they have created it. That's what is so satisfying for the students about the sessions, I think--that they are treated like an equal, like an expert, and like someone whose presence is important to the academic discourse in which they reside, and who is thus accountable for what they create.

Tutoring isn't about telling people what they're doing wrong, but about helping them find the tools to do all that they can.