Tutoring services help with college transition

Achieving success as a student requires hard work and extra hours of study. But students with numerous time commitments often struggle to get in those crucial study hours. Ripon College’s Student Support Services helps further the success of students by offering tutoring services that cater to tight schedules and difficult classes. It is a great benefit for both those who tutor and those who are taught, allowing students to teach and learn from each other. The foundational idea behind the success of the tutoring program is that early and regularly scheduled review and practice sessions increase academic performance analogous to how athletes and musicians practice and improve their skills.

Jadee Kellogg ’16 of Benton, Wisconsin, has been a part of the tutoring program for the past three years, and she enjoys her current role as a tutor. She says that tutoring has been a positive and valuable part of her time at Ripon. She says the program provides opportunities for learning and reviewing concepts from earlier courses, which allows majors and minors to reinforce information learned previously. By teaching information to another student, a tutor is able to understand concepts and ideas better than they had previously, she says.

The tutoring program also allows majors and minors in multiple programs and disciplines to collaborate and work together, she says. “Overall, this program exemplifies the values of a liberal arts education. The tutoring program here at Ripon College has benefited me in many ways.

“As a tutee, going over class material with a peer is an irreplaceable aspect of learning that helps solidify concepts explained by the professor. As a tutor, I am constantly reviewing introductory-level ideas, which strongly benefits my abilities in higher-level classes. Overall, the tutoring program allows students to gain essential experience from their peers in a comfortable and encouraging environment,” Kellogg says.

Raymond Allen ’15 of Lac du Flambeau, Wisconsin, has benefitted from the tutoring program for the past four years and currently is one of Kellogg’s tutees. He says he uses the program not only for the extra help, but also as a helpful means to set aside regular work times that are manageable and work flexibly with his schedule.

Currently on campus, there are 61 active student-tutors and 93 tutees, some of whom are receiving tutoring in multiple courses. As of the beginning of April, there were 136 active contracts with the program that cover more than 35 separate courses. More than 300 contracts are activated throughout the year. There is a good chance that a student struggling with coursework or simply looking for someone to study with will be able to find a knowledgeable tutor through the program.

The success of the program is exemplified in the academic success of those involved. Tutors must have earned at least a B in the course in which they are tutoring, have a cumulative GPA of at least 2.75 (with the average GPA of tutors on campus at 3.59) and have been recommended by their instructors to tutor for their courses. Tutors receive training. With endorsement from the faculty and the hard work of dedicated students, the tutoring program truly benefits the Ripon community.

Andrea Schulner ’16
Caledonia, Wisconsin