I am an experienced, Oxford-educated tutor. I have been teaching for over 13 years and have an exceptionally strong track record at helping to improve students' results whilst also boosting their self-confidence. I am very familiar with 11+, 13+, GCSE, A Level, university and Oxbridge application, as well as university-level essays.
I was a student at St. Paul's, an Academic Scholar at St. Mary's, Calne and I read English at Oxford University. I achieved 11A* GCSEs, 4 As at A level and a 2:1 at Oxford. I am also a film director and screenwriter, so I can help with these areas if desired.
I have worked and still do, for many of the top agencies including as well as freelance work. Between 2011 – 2013 I was a Head tutor at Oxbridge Applications, so I am incredibly familiar with this process and have mentored numerous successful applications.
References (contact details available upon request):
Our son was prepared for Eton scholarship by Sophie in relation to English. He achieved an A in English and an A+ in the English based General Paper. There is no doubt that Sophie was the reason for these marks. She is a deeply gifted teacher who took our son to a new level in his capacity for English comprehension and criticism. She is outstanding; bringing enthusiasm, rigour and a love for her subject which is infectious. We have no hesitation in recommending her. Sophie quite simply changes the odds.
(Father of a 13 year old)
When I began the process of applying to Oxford, Sophie was absolutely key in helping me. It was amazing for me to have someone who has been through the experience of both applying to and studying at Oxford and who therefore understands the process and what exactly is required for the interview and ELAT exam. She made the process really enjoyable and I really feel that even if I hadn't got in, she had a huge impact on my confidence and if possible made my love for English grow.
Georgia (successful applicant to read English at Oxford)
Sophie worked with me on my preparation for my interview at Oxford. Her feedback was specific and insightful. It was also demanding and this helped significantly with my confidence and my ability to deal with the pressure involved in the actual process. Her tuition was invaluable.
Harriet, successful applicant to Oxford
I cannot recommend Sophie highly enough to anyone who is lucky enough to be tutored by her. I employed Sophie over a three month period to prepare my daughter for her entrance examination and interview to study English at Oxford. Over that period she became a great role model to my daughter, instilling her with self-belief and confidence. She was methodical and thoughtful in her approach, putting together a comprehensive reading list, discussing each in greater and greater depth with her – encouraging her to become more analytical and teaching her the practical tools for text appreciation. She inspired my daughter to love poetry, which she had previously not enjoyed and gave her incredibly useful practice interview sessions with very helpful and constructive feedback.
My daughter was successful in her Oxford application and Sophie played a major part in this. She was always so supportive – even being at the end of the phone on the actual interview day! Most importantly of all, Sophie made the lessons fun and my daughter really enjoyed the whole process. She has given her real confidence in her own abilities and inspired her to read more and more widely.
(Charlotte, mother of Georgia)
Sophie is extremely engaging, enthusiastic, knowledgeable and passionate about so many things and importantly is ambitious with this – she will quite clearly go a long way in her own life and she has a wonderful way of infusing this into an intention for others – always gently encouraging to take a step further – never in a pushy way but as if it were an obvious choice because what is to be found around the next corner is so much more captivating than where the expected place to settle for would be.
Sophie is also lots of fun and always has such sparkle – I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend working with her. I could go on – amazing patience, brilliant memory, great ability to think quickly on her feet, understanding, sensitive, brave, and clever, clever, clever. An inspiration to be around. Please do not hesitate to contact me if you would like any further information.
(Flora, other of 3 boys aged 11, 13, 16 all tutored for exams)
Sophie mentored my child through the university application process. Her consistency, experience and dedication raised the level of my child’s ability to take on challenging books and write thoughtful essays. As a mentor, she nurtured an extremely positive relationship with my child which made the process all the more rewarding. While the outcome was exactly what my child had hoped for, she will forever remember the time she spent with Sophie, learning how to think in a new way, wrestle with great works and in the process truly experience how hard-work and passion can make amazing things happen.
(Ann, mother of Sophie, who applied successfully to read English at Christ Church college, Oxford)
Sophie was so supportive. She helped me so much with essay writing and exam technique and just made me feel so much more relaxed and prepared as well as confident in myself. It really took the stress out of things, especially when Covid meant I was studying alone at home. I’ve gone back to school this term having done loads of revision, after we did a timetable together and she helped me stick to it, and also having finished my EPQ essay, which just would never have happened on my own!
(Flo, A Level student)
Sophie prepared my son for the 11+. When Sophie started tutoring him he was averaging a score in his comprehension and creative writing in the region of the low 60s. He was not even able to pass the St Paul’s pre-test. Sophie has made an incredibly positive effect on him. Over a matter of only few weeks he was loving the subjects, enjoying it and getting better by the day. Sophie made him aware of his potentials and she took him to a completely different level in his creative writing. Sophie was incredibly helpful also practicing mock interviews. Massi was offered a place at all six schools he applied to. (King’s College, Latymer, Dulwich and City of London to mention a few)
(Daniele, father of an 11 year old boy)
Sophie was a total star in her approach to a rather sulky 14 year old who had decided 'English was not for her'. My daughter greatly enjoyed working with Sophie as apparently Sophie just 'gets it'. What my daughter got for sure was a vastly improved exam score after only a few sessions, So win-win all around!
(Merijin, mother of an 11 year old girl)
During our tutorials Sophie massively helped me identify exactly what I was struggling with when writing essays. She then provided useful and clear tools in how to deal with these issues, meaning that solid pass marks in my essays could increase to top marks. I enjoyed all of our tutorials. Sophie was incredibly friendly and by the end I had so much more confidence in my writing and would look forwards to the work that she and my teachers would set.
(Poppy, A Level student)
Sophie Russell came to tutor our daughter Beatrix during the 2013 summer holidays from the 29th July till the 2nd August. Beatrix needed her confidence boosting before entering 5th form and the run up to GCSE’s. She has dyslexia which does not help with her studies. We immediately found Sophie very easy to get on with and more importantly so did Beatrix! She seemed to instinctively know how to get the best out of our daughter. Rather than lay down the law, she approached the whole week in a fashion that Beatrix found un-alarming and friendly. When she left, Beatrix felt she had done more with Sophie in 1 week than a whole term at school. I thoroughly recommend her to anyone needing tutoring and please don't hesitate to contact me if necessary.
(Isabella, mother of 16 year old girl)
Above all, I approach students with a kind approach. Exams are stressful enough; tutoring should never be an added misery! Rather, it should be a safe, encouraging, positive space where students are helped along with their studies. The wonderful thing about English is that there's a lot of room to open up the subject and help them enjoy it too. I have always found that tutoring can be a great space for a child to grow in self-confidence. As I am 33 and have been teaching for years, I am very confident and clear on the best approaches for planning essays, how to improve skills of literary analysis, the exact requirements of each type of exam, and can help students improve their grades extremely fast, but I'm also able to be a kind, mature figure who I often find the students enjoy being able to talk to about any worries they have to do with school work.
|Availability||Weekends, Weekdays (all times)|
|References Available||On File|
|St. Anne's College, Oxford||2011||Bachelors||English|
|National Film and Television School||2016||Masters||Directing Fiction|
|St. Mary's School, Calne||2007||School||A Levels (3 x A grades)|
|St. Mary's School, Calne||2006||School||AS Levels (4 A grades)|
|St. Mary's School, Calne||2005||School||GCSEs (11 x A*)|