Hi, I am Ben, a Cambridge History Graduate and the most reviewed Tutor on First Tutors. You may recognise my face from a Sky TV documentary, "Who'd be a Billionaire".
The documentary aired on Sky Living on 14th April 2015. Anyone who wants an extended look at how I do things should tune in! (Unfortunately, Im not a billionaire, but I do tutor their offspring!) I have also completed extensive media work on the subject of tutoring via television, newspaper and radio. As much as I enjoy it, media work is a hobby allowing me to showcase how passionate I am about my craft and my willingness to go that extra mile for your child's success.
I am a full time professional tutor, which brings with it a level of skill and dedication that part time tutors often cannot match. I graduated from Clare College Cambridge with a 2.1 in History in 2012 (making me 28). Being younger than your average tutor, I pride myself on being able to empathise with my students. I often find it helps them to know I have been through what they are going through in the recent past. Moreover, a few Cambridge horror stories usually convinces most that the exam revision timetable I make for them is actually quite generous!
It also means I have a very good understanding of the exam system, how examiners mark and what they look for. I have picked up the kind of wisdom that you wont find in any revision guide, but will make all the difference to final grades.
My work teaching exam and essay technique alone is often worth at least one grade to any student and is usable in any arts subject. I have spent enough time over the years in boring lessons, so I aim to make mine as interesting and relate-able as possible. My real life examples have been known to cause uncontrollable laughter, but at the same time there is always a point to them. Students always seem to remember that point as well as the funny story!
I am a staunch advocate that tutoring is a completely different skill set from teaching in a class. This is what I believe has brought me my success in the last three years.
In addition to the subjects listed on my profile; I can also offer training for Oxbridge entrance exams and interviews. As a successful applicant myself with one of the highest interview scores in decades, I can fill the gaps that a college Oxbridge department cannot.
I also offer personal statement advice and tailoring to help my students´ applications stand out from the piles admissions tutors have to wade through. I have yet to have a student miss out on their first choice, despite the intense competition these days. (As much as I hate to admit it getting a university place was much easier when I was 18!)
4 years tutoring experience. Over 6000 hours.
In the 2018 GCSE exam season my best student went from a U to an Level 9 ( A**) grade in 4 subjects I taught her, another student was one of only 750 nationally to get level 9s across the board. I had a 100% of students achieve the grade they wanted or better.
For A levels all my students went to their first choice universities. I have several students go from U to a B and several go from a B to an A*
My average improvement across the board was two grades. Of course I can't take all the credit as my students all worked exceptionally hard!
I took a break from Oxbridge entrance last year year but 5 of my students got AS grades that mean they can apply this year, and so have dragged me back to teaching it! As one student put it, Ben you have to teach me it, its your fault Im applying! What could I say ?
I understand many students are reluctant to be tutored so I try and make my lessons as engaging as possible. I use relate-able examples from my own knowledge to explain key points, on the principle that interesting information is easier to remember and more likely to inculcate. I have never failed to get even the most reluctant student onside and some of the transformations I have engineered over the last 3 years have surprised even me!
I also understand that each student is an individual and tailor my lessons accordingly. I have a skill for understanding individuals quickly and working out how to alter my methods to get the best results from them. Confidence can do wonders and I seek to instil it in my students at every opportunity. I aim to work alongside schools and parents to ascertain a student's weaknesses and build confidence and fortitude in the face of new challenges.
My work takes in to consideration the learning occurring at school so I can easily identify what needs work. I have often found fostering a collective and supportive ethos a key facet of my success. That and the focused attention 1:1 brings.
I pride myself on being available 24/7 and offering a service way beyond the level of regular tutors. This includes parents of students as well. I am always on hand to offer advice, reassurance or even direct intervention with schools or teachers personally if that is whats needed. I am a great believer that tutoring has three participants; myself, the student and the parent / guardian.
I also teach study skills as part of my lessons. This includes a tailored essay structure program, and a personalised revision program for exam season. This gives students a plan to work towards that I can monitor and reassurance to parents that their child is doing enough of the right revision.
On average my students see a two grade improvement in the subject Im tutoring, but can often see improvements in other subjects as a result.
I always try to respond to phone calls and emails inside 24hrs as I know the damage a festering problem can cause.
Other tutors may match my qualifications, but none will match my professionalism and willingness to go the extra mile to get the right result. A tutors commitment does not begin and end with each lesson. I am with you for the journey and duration.
Although my profile states that I will travel up to 25 miles. My travel policy is a little more complex than that due to the sheer volume of demand I experience. I talk to each client individually about this, but generally speaking:
I also have a cancellation policy that any lesson missed or cancelled inside 24hrs is charged. Obviously, there are occasional circumstances where it is unavoidable and I apply my policy with common sense.
|Availability||Weekends, Weekdays (all times)|
|References Available||On File|
|Clare College Cambridge||2012||Bachelors||2.1 BA HONS CANTAB History|
|Peter Symonds College||2011||College||History A-level|
|Peter Symonds College||2011||College||Geography A-level|
|Peter Symonds College||2011||College||Government and Politics A-level|
|Unpublished feedback (Usually negative)||0|