Although English is a major part of the school curriculum, many pupils find it difficult, and at a young age, this can majorly affect their levels of self-esteem when it comes to their academic performance. Especially nowadays when English has started to monopolize its way into the Malaysian communication system—more Malaysian citizens are comfortable in using English rather than the mother tongue, Bahasa Melayu.
This is just part of the reason why English tuition is in such high demand as it is an essential language to learn; not just for everyday conversation, but also for those who are seeking to sharpen their language skills for other crucial uses such as businesses.
From preschool to Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia (SPM), English lessons account for a large part of private tuition delivered across Malaysia and beyond. And there’s no doubt as to why this is the case.
For every native English speaker, getting to grips with the grammar rules, tricky spelling and even handwriting are all significant hurdles that must be overcome to achieve true mastery of the language.
Have you noticed your child struggling with his/her English homework?
For some, understanding the complex aspects of the English language as well as practicing reading and writing is just too much to do with a school teacher alone, especially in a class environment that is packed with students of the same age (which means a lot of distraction).
This is why many parents reach out to English tutors or tutoring companies to give their child the boost in confidence they need to achieve academic success. For SPM candidates, it is a stepping stone for them to enrol into the university of their choice as most universities in Malaysia make students achieve a specific grade as a requirement to enrol.
There are many fantastic reasons to enrol in extra-curricular English lessons, such as the fact that private tuition offers an opportunity for students to be taught according to their needs as an individual.
This means that the tutor will take their student’s strengths and weaknesses into account in his/her approach to teaching, so that the course content is optimised for the learner and his/her personal learning style. However, this does not mean that all tutors are the same in their approach to teaching.
It is important that the learner is at the heart of the tuition they are receiving, but as vital as it is, finding the ideal tutor isn’t always easy. It is crucial to find someone who can help with specific areas of difficulty such as spelling or reading comprehension at an appropriate level for the learner.
When it comes to seeking a tutor, some parents and students are in the dark. But not to worry! There are plenty of avenues you can explore to make sure the tutor you choose is the right one for you.
Of course, supplemental instruction does come at a cost – luckily, with our tips on choosing your ideal tutor, you’ll be spoilt for choices when it comes to choosing affordable academic support.
Why Should You Take Private English Lessons?
There are a multitude of benefits to taking one-to-one private English lessons, and it isn’t so difficult to get a taste of them.
It’s a common misunderstanding that private tuition is reserved for those who are either struggling academically or whose parents want to push their children to excel in their studies.
One-to-one English lessons are for anyone who wants to improve their skills, regardless of whether they are experiencing problems at school. Private tuition presents an opportunity for learners to get to know themselves better and focus on their individuality as a learner.
Private lessons for any subject set the student up for adult learning as they are given a head start in familiarising themselves with their personal learning strategies and self-discipline skills.
There is also no age limit on being a tutee! For anyone who would like help with their studies, help is available for all levels and learning styles.
The reasons to sign up to private English lessons, in particular, are many and varied, so let’s take a look at a few key points which are good enough to make anyone embark on their quest for a one to one English tutor!
The lack of personalization of teaching in the Malaysian education system is the root cause of many academic problems.
If children don’t receive information in a way that works for their learning style, they unfortunately miss out and their grades, as well as their overall happiness at school, suffer as a result.
The personalized approach to learning in private lessons targets problem areas whilst helping students work towards personal goals, be their grades or even just gaining confidence in a certain field.
The Importance of English in Everyday Life
For adults, it is all too easy to forget how difficult it is to learn to read and write in English due to the grammatical mechanisms, but these are basic skills that we make use of every single day, and any problems children encounter may come back to haunt them later on.
Things that seem simple, such as reading aloud and writing in cursive can be too much for some students, so private tuition can give them the extra support they need to take the stress away so they can focus on more complex things such as literature and poetry.
Private tutors can not only provide valuable help to students looking to improve their skills, but they can also feed their curiosity by sharing their passion for English.
In one-to-one lessons, students have an opportunity to encounter course content that they would not necessarily learn about in school, such as poetry or theatre. Furthermore, students can also receive undivided attention from their tutors as it is easier for the tutor to focus on the student as compared to in a classroom environment where a teacher will have to manage a class of 30+ students.
By being exposed to the arts relating to the English language and its works, students are more likely to want to explore the subject further as they become motivated to get into the driving seat of their education.
With private English lessons, depending on the students’ choice — whether to learn via online or taking in-person classes, they can enjoy studying in comfort. Even if students choose to learn through physical classes, they can still enjoy a comfortable and conducive learning, especially when tutored at the teacher’s place as it is without a doubt that a teacher who has their students’ best interest at heart will ensure the best environment for their students to learn.
Moreover, a good tutor will make sure that their students are comfortable with them as a person so as to build trust between them for a more enjoyable class.
Flexible and Convenient
Unlike schools where the schedule is fixed, students can discuss with the tutor on the best date and time to have classes. While commonly, even private tuitions have a set date and time upon hiring, the settings can still be negotiated to the students’ and/or teachers’ convenience.
For instance, the student may choose to have class on Friday instead of on Wednesday should there be any trouble on the aforementioned day, as long as there is prior communication with the tutor. Students can also discuss with the tutor for extra learning hours if they want to.
How to Choose The Right English Tutor?
With growing demand for English tuition in particular, more and more tutors are offering their services as competition heats up.
This is fantastic news for prospective students, who are spoilt for choices when it comes to finding a tutor that suits their needs!
However, at Superprof we understand that less is sometimes more when making such an important decision. This is why our platform provides filters in its search feature to help you narrow your choice down as best you can, before contacting any tutors.
There are many criteria that come into consideration when looking for a tutor, such as the level they can teach, geographical location, whether you would be happy with online lessons, the availability of both tutor and tutee, and of course the desired learning outcomes for the student.
Tutors come from far and wide and from all walks of life.
Where some have decades of experience as English university lecturers, others can be post-SPM candidates with the English subject as their strongest suit, making them readily able to teach the subject. Every one of the tutors advertising their services has something different to offer.
For instance, an experienced certified teacher who has years of teaching experience will be able to effectively target the students’ problem areas and ensure that they cover all bases of their course to give them the broadest understanding of it.
On the other hand, an English literature undergraduate may be more useful due to their ability to identify with the tutee as a student of the Malaysian schooling system. The tutor’s up-to-date knowledge of how the education system operates and what examiners are looking for in essays could act as peer mentoring and may be the secret ingredient to a pupil’s success in his/her exams.
Again, your decision should be down to the needs of the learner.
For pupils with Specific Learning Difficulties or disabilities (SpLDs) such as dyslexia, which can have a major impact on their ability to understand what they are being taught at the same pace as their peers, it is useful to look for a tutor who has experience on this.
There is no cure for SpLDs, but students who live with them are usually very capable of understanding what they are being taught in a manner that suits their learning styles.
The teaching style makes all the difference.
Many tutors have experience working with students who have SpLDs, so will not be afraid to assess the student and start on a tailored learning plan which takes their difficulties into account.
Falling behind in class is a common reason for seeking an one-to-one tutor, but with the right help and regular practice, pupils can gain confidence in themselves and become motivated to do well in spite of their difficulties.
How to Find An English Tutor?
In the days before the World Wide Web, the traditional method of seeking an educational tutor was to consult the local press, look on notice boards, or simply ask around.
These methods of advertising are still not uncommon; however, the rise of social media and advertising platforms means individual tutors, in particular, can get their name out to a wider audience than ever before, without having to join a tutoring agency where parents will have to pay a higher sum for tuition.
With the utilisation of social media, it means that more tutors are available to choose from. Tutors can also expand their radius to look for students who are in need of English skill sharpening, while also developing their own teaching styles to suit their students.
Tutoring companies can also be useful (albeit a bit pricey!) - especially for those looking for a tutor to help them achieve specific grades in exams, as they can provide standardised and course-specific worksheets and textbooks to use alongside the student’s formal education. Most tutoring companies will use a syllabus which aligns with what is being taught in the school’s curriculum.
The easiest way to start your search for a tutor is to first look online.
There is a wide range of platforms such as Superprof, where tutors from all over the world advertise their services and are available for an online chat before you hire them as your tutor.
A key benefit of finding a tutor online is the added security. For instance, at Superprof, students need not worry about hiring sketchy tutors as the teachers registered under our globally accredited educational platform are academically verified and have been thoroughly screened to protect the students from potential risks.
By using online platforms rather than contacting tutors directly, you are adding a layer of safety, since many websites verify their tutors’ qualifications so that their users know they can trust them and gain valuable time.
For those who prefer the traditional methods or if you’re looking for someone in your local area, there are also plenty of options.
The advertising sections of local newspapers often display people offering tutoring services, with details on pricing and how to get in touch.
Local shops and community notice boards are also good places to look for any leaflets or posters. Some tutors may even have business cards printed and distributed to certain stores.
Contacting the tutor directly may be a more reliable way of conducting your mini interview since all it takes is a phone call!
Other than that, nowadays people can also utilise other meeting platforms such as Google Meet or Zoom. This is also a great alternative for tutor and tutee to have a mock class before the actual class.
Whichever method you use to find your ideal tutor, it is important to make sure that they are qualified to an appropriate level or have an adequate level of experience in their field, as well as teaching experience.
Carrying out these checks will ensure value for money and most importantly peace of mind.
What Is The Cost of English Tuition and Why Is It So?
The average price per hour for school English tuition in Malaysia is RM15.
This price is ever so slightly below the national average for one hour of tuition at RM35, however, this does not mean that every hour-long English lesson in Malaysia costs around the aforementioned price – there are many factors which influence the pricing of one-to-one tuition.
Pricing can vary depending on where you live. Students in Kuala Lumpur may pay RM35 on average, whereas those in Kuantan can expect to pay an average of just RM20.
Average prices in larger cities tend to be higher than those in rural areas, and this can be put down to demand. Cities offer a bigger choice when it comes to tutors, however, this also means higher demand, meaning tutors can charge more for their services. On the other hand, rural areas don’t offer as much competition between tutors and demand is lower, meaning that hourly rates are ultimately set with the tutee in mind.
Densely populated areas also offer a wider range of skills from their tutors, simply because there are more of them and there is, therefore, a higher level of diversity in their knowledge. This means more tutors will be able to offer instruction at a higher level, driving the average price up.
The experience the tutor has also plays a part in the pricing they have decided. For instance, student tutors such as post-SPM candidates or undergraduates may charge less than tutors with an education certificate and ample experience.
Did you know that tutors who choose to teach through online learning also charge less than tutors who choose to teach in a classroom environment?
As online learning is much more easily accessible with only a functioning webcam and a microphone to speak during lessons, teachers will not have to charge more than they need to as they do not need to pay for rent of a tuition center or prepare photocopied materials alongside other teaching apparatuses such a whiteboard, classroom furniture and so forth. With online classes, tutors can utilise tools such as PDF files and screen sharing for ease in teaching.
Some tutors will go the extra mile to make sure their students are comfortable in class. Sometimes, tutors will also provide caretaking services, and this usually happens with younger students usually in preschool or lower primary school (Standards 1-3).
Tutors will either visit the students’ homes or have the tutees come over to the teacher's home until the evening. In urban areas, this is a common practice as parents are busy with work from the morning until the evening. Hence, they prefer to hire a tutor/caretaker that is able to give them peace of mind while they go about their jobs.
With Superprof, you can search for tutors who are within the same vicinity as you easily and at a rate that is affordable to you!
Now that your interest may have piqued upon learning the benefits of going for private lessons, you can search for tutors on our platform easily!
We provide both online and in-home tutors with a means of putting their services on the market and gaining an online presence to find customers whilst making it as easy as possible for students to find their ideal tutor.
There are three simple steps to finding English tutors around you:
- Go to the Superprof Malaysia homepage
- Fill in the relevant information (e.g. English lessons in-person in Kuala Lumpur)
- Click ‘Find a Tutor’
Here, you’ll see a list of tutors that fit your search criteria in terms of geographical location, affordable rates, teaching methodology and teaching preferences; online or face-to-face.
You can narrow down your search even further by adjusting the filters on the left-hand side of the page.
Oh, did we also mention that you can enjoy your first lesson with any tutor for free? Hence, if you find that the tutor you initially hired may not be the best choice for you, you can always opt to hire another tutor that may be more suitable for you at no additional cost!
So, looking for an English tutor who is local to you is less restrictive than you may initially think - there are plenty of avenues to be explored! All you have to do is just dig a little deeper to find the right tutor for you and have the best private tuition experience to sharpen your comprehensive English skills!
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