In the last few decades, after-school tutoring has become an integral aspect for a student’s all-around academic development. Tuition centres, coaching classes, tutorials— everybody is familiar with some variant of the nomenclature attached to after-school tutoring.
However, the current after-school tuition market is fragmented, with thousands of centres cropping up in every city and town with little to no focus on the quality of education.
Before the COVID-19 pandemic hit, students and parents were limited to choosing tuition centres closer to their homes, with student-tutor compatibility taking a back seat.
But, with the pandemic and the resultant paradigm shift towards online learning, all that is changing. Today, after-school tutoring has also shifted online. With new digital learning tools, lessons can be customised to suit the pace of each student depending on their needs and abilities, thus maximising learning efficiency.
Studies show that one of the biggest reasons that students feel alienated from learning is due to poor interaction between them and the teachers. This finding is also directly linked to students being less likely to participate in learning activities as they experience a negative association with the educational environment as a whole.
Building the bridge between students and learning
With online after-school tuition, there is more emphasis on a personalised style of education. This benefits the student tremendously as they respond better to a teacher who is tailored to meet their academic requirements, in terms of both temperament and tutoring style. Finding the right tutor, who can engage and inspire, can make a big difference for the learner. Students and their tutors are able to work more closely and can help each other understand and solve potential pain points.
Today, after-school online tutors offer carefully constructed, and psychometrically sound tutoring programmes to not only reinforce concepts during the teaching-learning phase but also to enable retention and engagement by designing creative quizzes and tests. Additionally, individual students benefit from smaller class sizes as they are able to work much more closely and develop stronger relationships than would otherwise be possible in a larger class.
For instance, in BYJU’S Two-Teacher Advantage programme, students are taught by one expert teacher who uses visuals and storytelling to explain topics in-depth to ensure conceptual clarity, while the second teacher solves instant doubts, pays individual attention and makes the sessions interactive and engaging. With this, students get the best of both worlds - access to high-quality teachers and personal attention.
The future of learning is one that allows teachers to use their creative skills to provide opportunities for students to learn by incorporating new technologies into their lessons. This new blended method combines classroom and online approaches to education, offering more flexibility to teachers and a richer experience to students. Proactive steps like this in the online tutoring segment help in building the bridge between students and learning.
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The most crucial aspect of after-school tutoring is to ensure students learn new concepts and utilise their time constructively without feeling overburdened or facing academic burnout. After-school tutors can help avoid this by using innovative teaching materials and newer learning styles that promote interest amongst students while expanding their mental prowess and providing them with a challenge.
An opportunity for tutors
The shift to the online mode of communication brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic-induced lockdown has brought about a massive change not just for students but also for teachers. Over the last year and a half, teachers have adapted to their changing role as mentors and communicators. By embracing tech-enabled teaching models almost overnight, they have ensured that students’ learning does not stop amid this challenging time.
This digital adoption has also led to steady growth in the online tutoring community. Countries like India have a large talent pool of teachers who have been largely underemployed. With online tutoring gaining momentum, these tutors now have the opportunity to reach millions of students, return to the workforce and shape young minds.
The author Anita Kishore is a teacher and chief strategy officer at BYJU’S. The views expressed are personal.
(Edited by : Kanishka Sarkar)