In the past, I have tutored using Skype, Google Hangouts video chat, Facebook messenger video chat, and now with my new iPad I’ll offer Facetime. A lot of students are hesitant about trying online tutoring. Many students, when presented with the online option have an initial reaction of “Um, nah, I learn much better in person.” I’m pretty sure that reaction comes from the fact that they’ve never actually tried to “learn” anything online.
I’ve tutored students not only across the US, but in countries like Japan, Pakistan, Korea, and Brazil. Some students that come to us from this far away are signing up specifically for online tutoring. So far, I’ve never had such a student stop the tutoring because they decided they are not learning well remotely. To me, there’s not much difference in how sessions go: we have our books, I have my whiteboard, and logic is logic.
I also have started in-person sessions with many students who later switch to online. They might live in NYC (as I do) and then return to school out of state. They might live an hour away from a convenient tutoring location and don’t want, or can’t fit in, the extra travel time. Or they may just simply be nervous about trying it. After one session or two in-person they feel comfortable with me, and when we switch to online, it’s not a big deal.
So why not ALWAYS do online? Well, students in college or later know themselves fairly well. For some people, being home with no pressure to actually get up, take a shower, and formally show up somewhere doesn’t feel structured enough for them. They are pretty sure that sitting in front of a computer they will not be focused enough to get the maximum benefit of our sessions. Some students who are exceptional in school have locked into the Professor in front of class and taking notes mindset. There’s nothing wrong with sticking with what you know and feel most comfortable with.
So how to decide what’s right for you? Well, if you are one of those students I just described, you probably already think you know what’s best for you. If you think in class is the best way for you to learn, then it probably is. When preparing for the LSAT, anything that gives you a psychological benefit is probably worth doing. On the other hand, if you live in the middle of nowhere and there are no experienced LSAT tutors nearby, then you are probably resigned to the fact that you need to meet online. Whether it’s an individual tutor or you take some kind of online class, it’s better than nothing.
So if you’re somewhere in between, here are some considerations:
Pros of Online LSAT Tutoring:
- Maximum flexibility. Online tutoring is often easier to schedule, there being no travel requirements.
- Location control. Online allows the student to completely determine the environment they are in during the session. If you are someone who really needs a quiet place to learn, it can be very challenging. Even in places like libraries, to achieve that during in-person sessions, can be rare.
- Time issues. Online tutoring is extremely useful when a student wants to go over a limited number of questions they had trouble with from a test. You can schedule a quick hour session pretty easily.
Pros of In-Person LSAT Tutoring:
- Has the “classroom” feel.
- Do not need any special equipment to do it.
- No technical concerns such as internet connection speeds or camera/microphone issues.
- Gets you up out of bed and out of the house.
Of course, if you live somewhere that in-person LSAT tutoring is available, the choice is yours. But even if it is, you might consider trying a quick session to decide if online would work for you.
Good luck to all and don’t hesitate to contact us with any questions!
“When studying for the LSAT, total immersion in the material is necessary, but not sufficient.”