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The Eight Traits of a Successful Math Tutor
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One of the most challenging subjects at any level of school is math. This particular subject provides so many different sets of issues for students because of the complex equations and methods that are involved. Even from a young age, where students are learning simple arithmetic, they can and will have a unique set of difficulties that are particular to math. All the way from elementary math to any of the algebra subjects, the best plan of action for struggling students is to work with a math tutor. However, if you do not work with an efficient tutor you could end up feeling frustrated and even more lost. To avoid this from happening we have compiled a list of eight traits that you must look for when on the search for a successful math tutor.

Proficient In Math

Perhaps the most important trait that a tutor must have to help a student with math is the ability to work with the subject. If the tutor has no idea regarding what they are doing, then you are not going to be able to learn anything during the sessions. This means that it is essential to work with an instructor who is proficient in the subject that you are struggling in. If you are having issues in geometry working with an elementary math tutor is not going to do you any good. Make sure that you are working with a specialist in the subject that is giving you problems if you want to see tangible results.

Effective Teacher

Although your tutor needs to understand the subject they are teaching, they must also know how to teach. There are several individuals who can work with a certain math subject but when it comes to teaching it, they are utterly lost. This is because it takes a particular personality to be able to actually teach a subject. Not everyone can do this, which is why it is so rare to find a tutor who can actually help with advanced level subjects. However, it is not impossible and if you have a problem there is someone out there who is more than capable of providing you the necessary assistance.


In order to become a teacher, there are certain tests and qualifications that one must get through. Although this is a process that is meant to weed out people who are not going to be able to handle the job, sometimes poor applicants slip through the cracks. Also, something that happens is that a teacher was once passionate, but are now exhausted after years on the job. For whatever reason, they have lost their passion and a teacher who lacks enthusiasm is ineffective. You want to make sure that you are working with a professional who is engaged and dedicated to helping you get over your problems.


This might go hand in hand with having proficient math skills, but someone who has education has displayed a level of discipline and hard work that not everyone possesses. Getting a college degree shows that this individual knows what it takes to get through certain difficult classes at every level of education. This time that they have spent in school will also be beneficial to you as they will be able to relate to you and your struggles on a more personal level. You are going to want to work with a tutor who you can relate to and connect with at this particular level because it will make the sessions much more impactful.

Years of Tutoring Experience

As mentioned, just because someone can work with math does not mean that they have the necessary skills to teach it. When you are in dire need of a tutor and in a complicated class, the last thing you want is to work with someone who has only been teaching for a week. This is not to say that they are not capable, but they have not earned their stripes in the tutoring industry. You are basically a guinea pig for them, as their methods are not tried and true. Working with someone who has dealt with students in similar situations that you currently find yourself in is going to make sure you get the results that you seek. They have the testimonials and resume that prove they can help you get over this rut.


One of the main benefits of being able to work with a tutor is creating your own schedule. In school, you have to follow a schedule that is typically given to you. You must show up at a certain time and you cannot leave until that time is up. We are all familiar with the teachers who hold you until the bell rings even if you are not even doing anything. A good tutor is going to work around your schedule and meet you in a location of your choosing. This way you are comfortable and do not feel like you are being forced to be anywhere. You pick the location and the time at which you will meet. This way you are in the perfect conditions to learn the convoluted math subjects.


Not only do you want a tutor who is passionate about the math subject they are teaching, but you also want to work with someone who cares about you and your well being. When you work with a tutor who is only there for a quick buck you can feel the distance. It’s almost as if they are not really there as they just go through the motions. But when you work with a tutor who is actively involved in the sessions and creates lesson plans exclusively for you, you will be more receptive to what you are being taught. It is just a known fact that when you learn from a teacher who actually appears to care about you, the information is going to stick.

Expert Communicator

Finally, you want a tutor who is able to communicate with you. If they are not able to effectively tell you what you are doing wrong then you will never learn how to fix your problems. Math is all about communication and being able to show what you have learned. There are several teachers who will mark your question wrong on the exam because you did not show that you understood how you got the final answer. With that being said, it is imperative for you to work with a tutor who is able to get their point across in a clear and concise manner. The last thing you want to do is to work with a tutor who is constantly talking themselves in a circle. This can be incredibly frustrating and will leave you lost. But the moment you start working with a tutor who is able to communicate with you the impact will be felt immediately.


Not everyone can be an effective instructor, as it takes a certain set of skills to do this type of work. When you are looking for a new math tutor it is imperative that you make sure you do your homework. Check their background and find out what they are bringing to the table. Ask them if they have any clients that you can reach out to so you can hear about their services from an outside source. Doing this little bit of research can be the difference between you working with a seasoned veteran who knows exactly how to help you or a rookie who is just going to wing it. Make sure you are working with the former, you will thank yourself later.