Tuesday, November 30, 2010

The Best Way to Learn Most Things: A Tutor

I believe that tutoring is the best way to learn most things, especially if you use them right.

For example, to do his job well, a client of mine needed to learn some electrical engineering. Rather than recommending he go back to school for a certificate let alone a degree, I encouraged him to find an electrical engineer in or out of his workplace who is willing to answer his emailed or phoned questions when he gets stuck.

Learning on a need-to-know/ just-in-time basis is so much more time-effective than taking a course. In the latter, you're taught a mountain of content, most of which you'll never need, and what you will need, you'll long have forgotten by the time you need it. Oh and of course, courses are much more expensive and time consuming.


James said...

The best thing is that technology means that location matters less than ever before. Talented, knowledgeable tutors are often just a Skype call away. I live in Jerusalem and have daily office hours with organic chemistry students all over North America through video chat. They get a lot more out of me than they do from their profs or TA's, who are often too busy for substantive one-on-one interactions.
I'm also a lot more motivated to go the extra mile for my students since this is good for business. I *want* students to bother me.

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Anonymous said...

When I wanted to learn web design I put a notice on the student wall in the local college.
I was called by a 18-year old Chinese computer whizzkid. Out tutoring took place in Starbucks twice a week -he helped me and I helped him with his English!


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