Real-time math tutoring now online through eTutor Alberta

Wed, 02/01/2017 - 14:30 -- egripping
September 29, 2015
September 14th marked the launch of eTutor Alberta’s new online math tutoring service. 
 
“By the end of September, we’ll be offering 16.5 hours of online, real-time math tutoring per week, with tutors scheduled at high-traffic times like weekday evenings and Sundays,” said Elizabeth Gripping, eTutor Alberta Program Coordinator. “Our advisory committee and other members of our constituency have given very strong approval to this project. We’re grateful to eCampusAlberta for their sponsorship and support, and we’re excited to serve students in this new way.” 
 
Of eTutor Alberta’s thirteen partner institutions, eleven now offer math tutoring, in addition to writing support. The University of Lethbridge is one of those eleven institutions excited to offer support to their students through this new project.  
 
“Our Tutoring Services program includes a significant amount of support for students in Mathematics and Statistics courses, and eTutor Alberta’s new synchronous math tutoring allows us to extend this support beyond in-person individual and group tutoring,” said Trish Jackson, Manager, Student Engagement, University of Lethbridge. “Students now have the ability to seek assistance from the comfort of their homes and can also submit eQuestions at any time of the day or night.” 
 
eTutor Alberta provides support in three math streams—Foundational Math (Academic Upgrading and Trades), Statistics, and Calculus—through two tools. In eChat, students access an online classroom where tutors help them work through problems in real time, using a virtual whiteboard, text, audio, video or screen share. Through eQuestions, students submit short, specific questions about mathematical concepts or problems, and professional tutors respond within 24-48 hours.
 
Gripping encourages other institutions to take advantage of this service. 
 
“As a consortium, eTutor Alberta works hard to meet the needs of all participating institutions. We are flexible and collaborative, so institutions can elect which services to participate in and be involved in decision-making for the consortium,” she said. Gripping also points to the consortium’s pedagogical approach as a strength: “Whether in writing or in math, we value student-centered instruction and encourage student independence. Tutors help students do the work themselves, focusing on skills and understanding rather than just answers.”
 
Jackson is also positive about the benefits of eTutor Alberta for University of Lethbridge students.
 
“We’ve heard great things from our students about their experiences with the writing platform. We have three campuses, and eTutor Alberta provides all students with access to professional writing tutors at their convenience. They typically receive guidance within one or two days, and feedback has been overwhelmingly positive,” said Jackson. “eTutor Alberta provides a convenient avenue to supplement our in-person services,  and we’ve been very happy with our participation in the consortium.”
 
To find out more about partnership in eTutor Alberta, contact Elizabeth Gripping, eTutor Alberta Program Coordinator, at info@etutoralberta.ca
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