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What is a Precalculus Tutor?

A precalculus tutor is someone who aids students taking precalculus or trigonometry by offering them additional help and instruction outside of classroom instruction. This type of tutor could be a math teacher who gives tutoring sessions on the side to either groups or individuals. Alternately, many students strong in math who have taken precalculus or advanced algebra and trigonometry make excellent tutors, and might work privately or for a school helping their peers understand this subject and prepare for work in calculus.

The term precalculus is a little misleading, since the subject really doesn’t have much of a relationship to calculus. Some of the topics get applied in calculus work, but not all schools require this class. In contrast, schools might require advanced algebra beyond algebra II studies and trigonometry. A person who has taken both of these courses and performed well in them, and who enjoys working with others in a tutoring setting could become a precalculus tutor. It might be helpful to have actually taken calculus so the tutor can make connections for the student about what is currently being studied and how it could apply later.

In many instances, a teacher at the high school or college level could work as a precalculus tutor. Especially in high school or prep school where the subject is most often taught, teachers may be responsible for organizing any tutoring sessions. Some teachers offer this service for free and tutor large groups on a weekly basis. Others charge a fee and give support to individuals. Many teachers also have office hours where students can receive some tutoring for free on an as-needed basis.

The precalculus tutor who is not a teacher works in many settings and has different training levels. Some tutors are retired teachers, others are math experts, and many are students with strong math skills. People might work at private learning centers, high schools, colleges, or privately if they're good at advertising and marketing themselves. Pay ranges significantly, and some students receive small stipends for their work, while others charge $20 US dollars (USD) or much more per hour.

In the actual commission of this work, tutors may perform a variety of functions. They could explain topics, review homework, or help students study and prepare for tests. Every student is different, and the precalculus tutor must identify strengths and weakness of each student so he can figure out how to best support and reinforce classroom learning.

Usually, a precalculus tutor does not exclusively tutor one subject. People who have expertise up to this level may help students in algebra, geometry, algebra II, trigonometry and possibly other math courses like statistics. For the person who makes a living out of tutoring, ability to assist students taking a wide range of classes makes good economic sense. It widens the field of services people can offer students and creates greater job variety. Some people could work as a precalculus tutor only, but often people diversify in order to attract more students.

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