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Is it worth getting a tutor for VCE English?

As a subject, VCE English is much more subjective than, say, Physics or Chemistry. With this in mind, is it worth paying money for a tutor who may not be able to help with the specific texts you are studying?

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5 Answers

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A tutor for English can be very helpful, particularly if you are less than an A rated student. A good tutor would read (have read) all the specific texts you are studying, know the theme your school is studying for VCE (for example, identity and belonging) and the relationship of the texts to this theme.  The tutor can aid you in understanding how to structure your thoughts and plan your essays for both SACs and VCE exam. The Language Analysis section of the VCE exam can also be challenging and your tutor can aid you in the format of your ideas so that your time in the exam is the most productive, otherwise you can spend too long planning or launch into a rambling repetitive monologue of language techniques.

A subjective subject can be more difficult than subjects like maths in that you are either right or wrong in Maths.  Unfortunately, whilst English may be more subjective the VCE examiners are still looking for certain "ideas", comments, quotes and SUPPORTING evidence for these and you score marks for each supported idea so you have to KNOW what the VCE assessors want to read.  Consequently, it is not as subjective as you may imagine.

Many students could perform better in English if they were better at essay writing (and planning an essay).  

One of the best study helps is to obtain some copies of essays for the texts (for your theme only) and language analysis (good and not so good answers) which have been marked and analysed.  Your school teacher should have some or should give them out in class. Alternatively go to the Resource Shop in Collins St Melbourne and buy a couple of English study help guides which have essays at the back.  Although some of the essays in them are impossible to write in the time frame but will give you some ideas.

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Farah has covered many of the same views I hold, but I will add some more;

I know of a friend who was getting anywhere between E to a C for English, predominantly due to her lack of motivation and 'push'. By the middle of term 2 I suggested she get a tutor for English, and it worked! She achieved a C+ on the next SAC, and ended the year with a B+ average (including one A) for Unit 4, this compares to her D average for Unit 3.

She told me her tutor helped by flooding her with homework, tasks and questions every week at a time her class did not offer as much. That is, her teacher didn't really care if she didn't complete the work and would tell the class "it's up to you if you want to do the work I give".

Her tutor however was a very strict one, and she admitted she wouldn't dare not complete the work given, in addition her parents were paying money for a tutor 1-2 times a week, thus they would not want to see money go down the drain. This obligation pushed her to perform, complete the work and pay attention.

It is very useful to have a teacher mark your essay and offer feedback/scribbles as well as a tutor marking your essay and providing the same service. This way, you can compare areas of weaknesses, because remember your teachers sole opinion is not the final word of how good/bad your essay is, especially if your teacher is an easy marker.

English is a subject which you can easily improve in within the year, because it just requires writing more and more essays and having them marked. Many people fail by only completing the "write essays" part, they fail to get them marked-which is where you will find the success.

It is also important to ensure you only get a tutor who offers services in the specified context and text, unless you are working on a subjective area like Language Analysis or Pint of View.

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There are definite advantages in hiring a tutor to help with your studies in your senior year whether it be for the VCE, HSC or other state education certificate.  A good tutor can keep you motivated, assist in prioritisation of work, provide excellent resources and most of all improve your grade.  Naturally, the down side is the cost.  But, personally, I believe if you want to have a competitive edge and obtain a better score than tuition is definitley worth considering.

The question remains, thus, where to find a good tutor.  Word of mouth is often a good way to connect with a good tutor but this way of meeting is not commonplace.  Tutoring agencies can get you in touch with good tutors (that have been screened for quality) or you can search for a private tutor.

I am an employee of SeekaTutor which is a free online portal which provides a path to finding a good private tutor or tutoring company.  I would encourage you to examine the site by linking to http://www.seekatutor.com.au.

The site provides map searching features which can allow you to find a tutor located near your residence.  SeekaTutor also has numerous resources for students and tutors to assist them in their endeavours.

Also, tutors can list for free and if they wish upgrade for additional features such as priority listing and youtube advert inclusion.

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asa.hoshi

Can I know who's the tutor that your friend had?

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Waiting until VCE is really leaving it too late to fix basic problems in essay-writing technique.  Better to get one in year 10 and get really adept at writing essays so that you don't need one in VCE.  Or, in year 11 rather than in year 12, so there's more opportunity to fix what you are doing.

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