Tutoring Services at the Learning Commons
The Learning Commons welcomes you!
The Learning Commons employs peer tutors to provide academic support in UC courses. Learning Commons peer tutors are fellow students who possess not only strong content knowledge but also an enthusiasm for helping their fellow classmates. Tutors are selected and trained through the Learning Commons.
All matriculated students may access tutoring services for free during their time at UC. Resources available include individual, by appointment tutoring and small-group, drop-in tutoring. Students have access to both course-specific content tutoring, as well as one-on-one writing support. Also, with the Smarthinking 24/7 online tutoring service, students can work with a live tutor in a variety of subject areas or submit a writing assignment for review by a writing specialist.
Peer tutors are selected based on academic achievement, supportive faculty recommendations, and an application and interview process. Peer tutors are also trained on how to be effective in their role, how to conduct successful tutoring sessions, and how to engage tutees in active learning and study skills development.
Current tutor availability is found in the links below, where you can search for drop-in sessions and schedule individual appointments. You may also contact the Learning Commons at (315) 792-3369. If tutoring is not currently available in a particular subject, you are encouraged to submit a request using this form HERE.
The tutoring experience is collaborative, and both the tutor and the student play a role.
Students Who Make the Most of Their Tutoring Sessions:
- Plan tutoring appointments well in advance of upcoming assignments or exams
- Go over the material to the best of their ability before the session
- Come prepared with a plan of specific questions and problems to discuss with the tutor
- Bring relevant course materials (writing prompts, rubrics, texts, assignment sheets, class handouts)
- Actively participate in the session
- Clarification of material
- Practice with course concepts
- Assistance with skills and strategies for how to learn course content
- Test preparation and test-taking tips
- Help with the writing process
However, Tutors Do NOT Offer:
- A quick fix the night before a test or quiz
- A substitute for attending class
- A substitute for meeting with the course instructor
- An editing or proofreading service
A Tutor’s Goals Are To:
- Promote student success by offering academic support in a variety of subjects
- Assist students in becoming independent, confident learners
- Provide a supportive and stimulating active learning environment
Why should I use tutoring?
- To identify and clarify key concepts
- To organize and remember information
- To integrate text and lecture notes
- To prepare for a test or quiz
- To learn and improve study strategies
What should I bring to the tutoring session?
- Class notes
- Text notes
- Past quizzes and tests
- Assignment sheets
- Writing prompts
What about confidentiality?
When you check in for your first-ever tutoring session, you will be asked to sign a Tutee Agreement Form that gives tutors permission to share information about your tutoring with the Director of Learning Commons if necessary. This is for your benefit. The Learning Commons keeps record of all tutoring activities, and all Learning Commons tutors sign a Confidentiality Agreement as a condition of their employment.
What can I expect from a tutor?
Tutors are expected to facilitate student learning by:
- Discussing specific course content
- Promoting and modeling the use of appropriate study strategies
- Emphasizing active learning techniques
- Practicing good listening and communication skills
- Maintaining scheduled hours
- Respecting students’ rights to confidentiality
It is important to note that tutors are not “homework machines” or miracle workers. If you procrastinated throughout the semester, cramming with a tutor the night before a major exam will not produce good results. If you plan to visit a writing tutor, keep in mind that last minute revisions are not effective.
What will a tutor expect from me?
Tutees are expected to be active participants in their tutoring sessions. Bring relevant materials to the tutoring session. Come prepared by:
- Attending class
- Taking notes
- Reading assignments
- Trying homework problems
- Preparing questions
- Attending tutoring sessions on a regular basis
When can I meet with a tutor?
Tutoring begins during the second full week of classes. The Drop-In Tutoring schedule is available to view in the link below. Since most tutors are also full-time students, tutoring hours are subject to change, particularly during exam weeks and holidays. The Drop-In Schedule will always display our most up-to-date information about Drop-In availability.
What if I want to make an appointment?
By Appointment Tutoring is also available to all Utica College students. For more on By Appointment Tutoring, please see the relevant drop-down menu below.
How much tutoring can I receive?
Tutoring is available on a Drop-In basis or By Appointment. To ensure the broadest access to all students, there is a limit of two hours of By Appointment Tutoring per student, per subject, per week. The schedule can be either a 1-hour session once a week, a 1-hour session twice a week, or a 2-hour session once a week. There is no limit to Drop-In Tutoring.
Are there other options available for tutoring?
Yes! The Smarthinking online service is also available to you. Smarthinking gives students anytime, anywhere access to academic help from experts with an average of 12 years of experience in their field. Each Utica College student can access their Smarthinking account with their UC username and password at this link: https://smarthinking.utica.edu/. Tutors are available in the following subjects:
- Mathematics & Statistics
- Sciences (Biology, Chemistry, A&P, Organic Chemistry, Physics)
- Computers & Technology (InDesign & Photoshop, C++, C#, Java, Python, etc.)
Questions about tutoring?
Please contact Lena Moser, Director of Learning Commons, at 315-792-3369 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Drop-In Tutoring Schedule is only viewable by those with a Utica College email address. For a full-size view of the schedule, visit the link below.
The Drop-In Tutoring by Subject sheet is only viewable by those with a Utica College email address. For a full-size view of the Drop-In Tutoring by Subject, click the link below.
Before requesting a By Appointment Tutor, it is strongly encouraged that you meet with your professor to discuss your progress in the class. Your professor will be able to offer suggestions for improvement so that you can get the most out of your tutoring sessions!
Check your course syllabus for your professor's office hours and plan to attend office hours on a weekly basis, especially if you are struggling in the class.
How much does this service cost?
One-on-one by appointment tutoring is free of charge to all Utica College undergraduate students.
What are the requirements of By Appointment Tutoring?
If you choose to use By Appointment Tutoring, attending weekly tutoring sessions is required. Your regular tutoring sessions will take place at a set time every single week for the entire duration of the semester. Thus, once you commit to By Appointment Tutoring, you cannot change your mind and stop coming to the tutoring sessions if you feel like you don’t need them anymore, and you will automatically lose your assigned tutor after two missed or canceled sessions. This is a serious undertaking that requires responsibility and commitment. Therefore, if you are unsure about By Appointment Tutoring, we recommend that you first come for Drop-In Tutoring at the Learning Commons before being assigned to an individual peer tutor for the rest of the semester. That way, you can best determine what's right for your learning style and schedule.
How do I request a By Appointment Tutor?
You can make a request by filling out this form HERE. Every attempt will then be made to match you up with the tutor you have requested.
How long do I have to wait before I can get a tutor?
Requests are filled depending on the availability of tutors, and every attempt is made to assign tutors as quickly as possible. Students requesting tutors should allow a minimum of two weeks before inquiring about the status of their request.
What if a tutor is unavailable for a particular subject?
The Learning Commons attempts to hire tutors for a variety of classes. In the event that we do not have a tutor for a requested class, we will try our best to recruit one for you. Often when a By Appointment Tutor is unavailable, you will be directed to Drop-In Tutoring instead. You will likely have a 1-on-1 or a 1-on-2 session with a tutor, so in many ways, the tutoring experience will be very similar to By Appointment Tutoring.
Smarthinking is an easy-to-use online tutoring service available to all UC students. Smarthinking provides expert assistance in a variety of subjects, some of which are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Over 90% of Smarthinking tutors hold a Master’s degree or Ph.D., so you will work with an expert in every session. Smarthinking tutors average 12 years of experience working directly with students, so they are expert teachers as well as subject experts. Although Smarthinking tutors will never do your work for you, they will help you learn and gain the confidence and skills necessary to handle future assignments on your own.
What can I expect from Smarthinking online tutoring?
With Smarthinking online tutoring, you can:
- Receive online tutoring in more than 150 subject areas
- Connect with a tutor and interact live; get one-on-one help in minutes
- Submit your writing for any class to the Online Writing Lab
- Make an appointment, so you can plan questions and prepare for an assignment
- Submit a question and come back later for your online tutor’s answer
How can a Smarthinking tutor help me with my writing?
To succeed in college and beyond, you need to write well. Nobody’s born a great writer. But everyone can learn and improve. Smarthinking writing tutors can help you:
- Get started, plan, and do the pre-writing necessary for you to succeed
- Put yourself in the reader’s shoes
- Follow your instructor’s guidelines
- Deliver stronger arguments that flow logically
- Choose better evidence
- Properly analyze, organize, and cite research
- Get grammar and other details right
Smarthinking tutors will review your essay or other writing assignment in any subject, and they will give a detailed critique that identifies your strengths and shows exactly how to improve. You’ll get a focused revision plan, targeted comments where you need them, and writing help on any issue you ask them about. The goal of Smarthinking writing tutors is to help you learn writing skills you can use today, next semester, and forever.
Sounds great! How do I get started?
Login is easy. Just click here and enter your UC username and password.
UC’s peer tutors are a select group of students who demonstrate subject proficiency as well as the interpersonal skills necessary for good working relationships. If you are interested in becoming a peer tutor, we suggest you do the following:
- Read the Tutor Contract which outlines the job responsibilities of every Learning Commons tutor. Be sure you agree with the Code of Conduct and the policies outlined therein before you submit your application.
- Submit your Campus Employment Application.
- Request a Recommendation from a faculty member who knows you (and your work) best.
- Schedule an interview with the Director of Learning Commons by emailing Lena Moser at email@example.com.
What are the requirements of a peer tutor?
- 'B+' or above in the course you wish to tutor, and a 3.0 (or higher) cumulative GPA
- Completion of two semesters of college
- Enthusiasm for your academic subject and an interest in helping your peers learn
What are the benefits of peer tutoring?
Through training workshops and tutoring practice, you stand to gain excellent professional and personal benefits.
- Strengthen your skills in interpersonal communication, active listening, and collaboration
- Provide supportive opportunities for students to interact with the course material in new and creative ways
- Develop awareness of your own and others' learning styles
- Strengthen your academic, social, critical thinking, and time management skills
- Remain fresh in your content area
- Build leadership experience that is attractive to employers
- Work towards your career and academic goals
- Network and discover new friendships!
How much will I be able to tutor?
Peer tutoring is a paid position, and tutors typically offer at least 3–8 hours of tutoring per week, depending on student need and available funding. Tutoring as part of work study for undergraduate applicants is preferred but not required.
What does tutor training involve?
- You are required to complete two hours of training before beginning work as a tutor. Training topics include:
- Tutor role do’s and don’ts
- How to be an effective facilitator of student learning
- Conducting a successful tutoring session
- Dealing with difficult situations
- Listening and communication skills
Some training is conducted through self-guided modules, observation, and self-assessment. All tutors receive individual feedback sessions from the Learning Commons Director.
I would like to see logins and resources for:
For a general list of frequently used logins, you can also visit our logins page.