Tutoring via Twitter?

by Emily

It seems that not a day goes by without some reference to Twitter in the media; be it a wayward politician telling all about inner-party secrets or an overpaid footballer throwing a tantrum about their recent transfer dealings, Twitter seems to be the weapon of choice if you want to make yourself heard these days. But does it have the potential to help private tutors deliver their tutoring services to their clients?

Within three short years, Twitter has grown to become one of the 50 most popular websites in the entire world - quite an achievement when you consider just how young the company is and how rapidly it has integrated itself into popular culture.

The site itself is a free to use social networking site. It is best described as a micro-blogging service; allowing users to post text messages that can be read by their followers (people who subscribe to the author's posts). These posts are known as Tweets, and are primarily the reason why Twitter is used by millions worldwide.

But there are two curious factors about Twitter: the first is that, whilst Twitter is one of the most popular sites on the Internet, it has a hard time retaining its users. Every month, the average conversation figure for users retained each month is only around 40%. Second, it seems young people just aren't interested - although this could open up an interesting opportunity for those who act as private tutors to older tutees. According to recent figures from ComScore, the majority of Twitter users are aged between 45-65. Twitter is still in its infancy, but could it eventually serve as a real-time platform for online tutors and adult learners to engage in one-to-one tuition?