Students can train to be a tutor via online videos at SJCC


Forrest Canton, Times Staff

TutorLingo workshops teaches students how to be effective tutors by providing online courses.

Innovative Educators’ TutorLingo workshops can help San Jose City College students become tutors.

TutorLingo and online tutoring both take place online, but they are different from each other.

“TutorLingo is a yearly subscription where we build your institution a whole TutorLingo website,” Sean Hoag, Innovative Educators customer service manager wrote in an email. “Both are very easy to use. The webinar would be a link that you can follow to view the recording of the webinar, and with TutorLingo you would simply create an account on your TutorLingo site and log in to view the materials.”

In order to create an account, users must provide their name, email address and create a password. Users also have to agree to the terms and conditions of the website.

After your account has been created, there will be a few courses that you can choose from in order to gain experience being a tutor:

  • A toolbox for the novice tutor
  • Developing critical thinking skills
  • How to tutor writing
  • Learning theory
  • The nature of helping relationships
  • The role of the tutor
  • Tutee study skills: note-taking, reading and testing strategies
  • Tutoring students from diverse backgrounds
  • Understanding self-regulatory behaviors

In the “A Toolbox for the Novice Tutor” course, students will learn that there are a few helpful personal traits potential tutors should possess: patience, sense of humor, empathy, subject competency, persistence, resiliency, good listening skills, look the part, enthusiasm and attention to detail. These traits are what a good teacher and tutor should have.

Additionally, there are professional traits each user should acquire: understand learning preferences, the ability to explain subjects in different ways, familiarity with different learning styles/theory, as well as realistic and reasonable expectations.

There are four parts of a tutoring session: before, beginning, during and after.

Before a session starts, the student and tutor have to sit together.

At the beginning, the tutor needs to help the student to succeed during the session by obtaining the right materials and setting an agenda.
During the session, they need to observe the information that they are learning and work on practicing it.
At the end of the discussion, the agenda needs to be reviewed and also the tutor needs to plan ahead on what the student will do.

The course also offers active learning strategies, which means different ways the tutor will be using in order to learn what the student has done.

There are a few ways that active learning strategies work: paying attention, confirming the information, regaining information, the tutor showing the student that he/she heard and what he/she wants to do with that information and asking questions in order to improve understanding.

Being a great tutor requires tutors to take their time to relax, make students feel comfortable and treat them the way they want to be treated.

Using the online workshops can be time consuming as it takes time to watch each video.  Also, it is not possible to go directly to certain pages of the course by clicking on them depending on the page that is currently being shown.

The disadvantage of TutorLingo is that there is no tutor that can directly assist students who wish to become a tutor.

At the end of the course, there will be a survey that students can take. It contains questions about the videos that they watched throughout the course.

“The survey is what you must complete in order to get credit for completing the workshop. Your answers are sent in a monthly report to administrators at your school,” Alex Pecoraro, Innovator Educators client success advocate wrote in an email. “It helps them know if you think the workshops are useful.”

After the survey, you will receive your certificate.

“You can download the certificate, and it lies on your TutorLingo dashboard,” Erica Kennon, Innovative Solutions associate director of partner relations wrote in an email. “It shows that you have watched the video and completed the evaluation and survey.”

TutorLingo is a good service for students who want to practice their communication skills.

In order to get started with this service, visit