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Press special: online tutoring
Online tutoring: When the teacher comes home through the screen
Better grades: Just a click away
The media usage behavior of children and adolescents has changed significantly in recent years. Facebook & Co. have become an indispensable part of everyday school life. Most people take it for granted that they use a PC and smartphone. So it's no wonder that their learning behavior is also increasingly adapting to digital habits. Learning on the net is enjoying increasing popularity with the target group. The first major tutoring provider in Germany that now offers the classic form of tutoring digitally via headset and webcam is the Studienkreis.
The institute has adapted its offer to the changed learning behavior and therefore expanded its product range to include online tutoring. The tutor comes home on the screen via the Internet - if desired, late in the evening or even on the weekend. In contrast to the meanwhile widespread learning videos, tutoring online offers students the great advantage of interaction. You can ask questions and discuss a problem with the tutor until it is really understood.
Another advantage: The tutoring can be easily integrated into the often tightly timed everyday life of students and parents. It takes place in a familiar environment at your own desk and there is no need to travel to the tutoring institute, which is time-consuming for some. This type of tutoring is a real enrichment, especially for students who live in rural regions, where the closest institute may be far away. In addition, the multimedia form of learning helps young people who are less enthusiastic about learning through to re-motivate the use of modern technology.
In terms of quality, there is no difference to in-patient traditional tutoring. In the context of online tuition, however, the tutor can particularly cater to the individual needs of the student, as this always takes place as one-to-one tutoring.
Another advantage of online tutoring is the large selection of subjects that a local study group often cannot offer in this form. Because even “exotic” subjects such as Japanese or Russian are possible here. A specialized teacher from Munich could help a student from Cologne in such a subject quickly and easily via the Internet.
And if - at least in the context of the most popular subjects such as math, English and German - it does not work out online, the student can always find a personal contact in one of the study group's numerous after-school schools. There are around 1,000 of them nationwide.
The classic tutor becomes an eTutor
Specially trained e-tutors provide online tutoring at the Studienkreis. These teachers have completed an eTutor qualification at the Studienkreis and have acquired all the necessary knowledge, such as media, technical and methodological skills, in order to carry out good and efficient tutoring on the Internet.
The certification developed jointly by the study group and WebKollegNRW, which is only completed after a successful trial lesson and passing the exam, also ensures that the high quality standards of the study group are also guaranteed for online tuition.
The students receive a permanently assigned eTutor who specifically takes care of their individual needs. The eTutor can use the study group's extensive digital learning material database with around 30,000 documents and thus use teaching materials that are individually tailored to the student.
The study group's learning concept, which has been tried and tested over many years, has been specially adapted to the special features of online tutoring. The aim is for students to take more responsibility for their learning success, gain confidence in their own abilities and learn to develop and develop their potential. To this end, tutors and students agree on realistic goals and manageable stages together. The learning progress is regularly documented and compared with the individually created support plan and discussed with the parents.
The advantages of online tutoring at a glance
- Learning in familiar surroundings
- Easy integration into everyday family life thanks to flexible lesson times and no travel times
- Individual support
- Large selection of subjects
- Motivation through digital learning
Solve tasks with a headset and webcam - this is how online tutoring works
In the course of a telephone consultation with a customer advisor, it is first discussed exactly which individual needs a student has and in which subject and subject area he needs support. The study group then selects the teacher from its pool of eTutors who best suits the child's learning needs.
At the beginning of the online tutoring, the teaching software, the study group learning concept and additional instruments are presented. Students and tutors then make individual appointments for the online tutoring. For the lessons they use the free communication software Skype and are always in direct contact via webcam and headset, so that all problems can be clarified in a personal conversation. An internet-based whiteboard is also used, on which formulas and drawings can be developed, texts can be created or digital worksheets can be edited.
The dates for the tutoring lessons can be flexible in terms of time and can be used in the mornings, for example in free periods, or in the evenings, on the weekend or even on vacation from abroad. The duration of the lesson is 45 or 90 minutes, depending on your needs.
Schoolchildren and parents have the opportunity to test the online tutoring as part of a discounted (EUR 4.95) trial lesson. If you like, you can either purchase tickets with certain hourly contingents or conclude a monthly contract.
More information on pricing at:
The following equipment is required so that learning via the Internet works smoothly and easily:
- Computer with DSL Internet connection (bandwidth: 2000 kByte / s)
- Current operating system
- Current browser version
It would also be helpful:
- A scanner to, inter alia. To be able to pass worksheets on to the tutor
- A graphics tablet - the digital version of pen and paper - for science or math subjects
- Installation of the Skype software, which is available free of charge on the Internet
"Guter Rat" magazine: online tutoring by the study group is test winner
The study group took first place in the test of the consumer magazine “Guter Rat”. The online tutoring of the study group received a grade of 1.3 from a total of six providers - including Lektion8 and multiconcept-online. The editors' conclusion: a well thought-out learning concept and efficient teaching.
In February 2012, the consumer magazine “Guter Rat”, together with the education professor Reinhold S. Jäger, tested the electronic tutoring of six well-known providers in the mathematics field. A 12th grade high school student had to complete a trial lesson in stochastics - a sub-area of mathematics - on all platforms as part of the test procedure. The study group did the best with its online tutoring. Various criteria were included in the evaluation, including technology, service quality and user-friendliness. The commitment and expertise of the teacher as well as the solution to comprehension problems were also taken into account. After the trial lesson, the pupil's conclusion was: “I finally understood everything”.
What should parents look out for in online tutoring providers?
- Offer a discounted trial lesson before signing a contract
- Personal individual advice to clarify the need for tutoring in detail
- Access to free software
- Qualified, knowledgeable and friendly teaching staff
- Selection of the eTutor adapted to the need for tuition
- Change of eTutor if problems arise
- Uncomplicated change or addition of subjects
When and for whom is (online) tutoring suitable?
If the grades are permanently weak, parents should generally seek a conversation with the class teacher first.
He is best able to assess the child's academic performance and has an eye for possible causes, which can include, for example, excessive demands, insufficient demands, dyslexia or dyscalculia. If there is a serious need for tuition in the case of large gaps in knowledge and consistently poor grades, online tuition is suitable for all young people who are looking for effective learning support that can be easily integrated into everyday life.
Many young people who take advantage of online tutoring at the Studienkreis also use it for short-term and intensive preparation for upcoming class work. They take up five hours on just one weekend or divide a quota of ten hours into two different subjects in parallel. This shows the great flexibility in terms of time and content of online tutoring.
Online tutoring: Already widely used in the US and UK
While online tutoring has found its way into relatively few households in Germany, it is already very popular, especially in the USA.
More than 700,000 students1) are now studying there with an English-speaking tutor from the Internet, who is often based in India or the Philippines. Established providers such as Tutor.com or TutorVista.com from Bangalore, India are widespread and offer individual tutoring around the clock, 365 days a year. This takes place with the help of a whiteboard, students and tutors usually only communicate with each other via chat function. In contrast to online tutoring in the study group, headset and webcam are not used here. TutorVista.com advertises by its own account2) with more than 20,000 students in 27 countries and one million teaching hours per year.
1) n-tv.de, April 23, 2008:
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