Working for the Bear Claw - Missouri State University

Working for the
Bear Claw
The Basics of One-on-One
Created and presented by
Michael Frizell, Director of the Writing Center
Sarah Viehmann, Writing Center Consultant
What a Tutor/Consultant Does
Pedagogical Principles
Help dispel the myth that learning this subject is an impossible task
Help students ask good questions
Engage the student
Help students recognize the value of different approaches to
teaching and learning
Help students recognize
and solve the underlying
Help students do their
own work
Customer Service
The Basic Needs of Customers
 Understanding and
 Fairness
 Control
 Options and alternatives
 Information
What You Can Do
Form good work habits
◦ Be on time
◦ Maintain professionalism
◦ Create a positive atmosphere
Make the first impression count
Take the initiative
Remember that your
actions affect everyone
 Commit to making a
 Build cooperation
among tutors
Tutor/Consultant Responsibilities
Guide and motivate students in
academic matters only
 Ask questions
 Listen carefully
Help students understand
Help students feel understood
It’s okay if you don’t know!
Recognize that each student has
his/her own natural pace for learning
 Recognize that this is not easy for the
 Develop and hone your own skills
The Session: First Impressions
Sessions begin the moment the client walks into
the room!
We presume students are
 Apprehensive
 Confused about what to expect
Tutors/consultants show respect
for the student by
 Being on time
 Having a perceived plan
 Listening actively
 Not doing the work for the student
First Impressions, Continued
The first five minutes:
establishing rapport
◦ Greet the client
◦ Ask his/her name
◦ Tell him/her your name
◦ Additionally, you may
Ask what class the
project/homework is for
Ask for the assignment
sheet (if applicable)
Discuss the purpose of the
assignment (if applicable)
Objectives for a
Tutoring/Consultation Session
Set goals for the session together
 Foster critical thinking
 Enhance learning
 Help students learn to
ask questions
 Promote active learning
 Help students learn how
to learn
Starting Work
Identify the task
 Set goals together
◦ Prioritize goals
Work on the task
◦ Keep the client
focused on the work!
During the Session
It Isn’t All About Us!
Focus on the student
Validate whatever response
the student makes
Allow silence after questions
Give the student your full
Become involved with and
curious about the student’s
Responding to the Student
Affirm, Do Not Evaluate
◦ DO: Use specifics to
compliment, reinforce,
question and explain.
◦ DO NOT: Criticize, be
judgmental, look for
Don’t worry about
sending the student off
with imperfect work!
 Emphasize progress by
restating discoveries.
Closing the Session
Remember to:
◦ Summarize in a sentence or two what
YOU think was accomplished…
◦ The student must feel like he/she has
Ask the student if he/she has any
Ask the student his/her plan for
further work
Leave the student with a lesson
gleaned from the session…
Assign something for him/her to do
 Remind him/her of the good
practices learned in the session!

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