Tutoring and supplemental instruction

Ben Theobald


If students are in need of academic assistance, they have the option of getting a tutor at the Academic Success Center.

A student can choose to attend group tutoring sessions or individual tutoring sessions. Group tutoring sessions generally consist of 2 to 4 students. 

In order to get a tutor, students must pay a $5 administrative fee. For small group tutoring, students pay $4 an hour. For individual tutoring, students pay $7 an hour. All tutoring charges will be charged to  students’ U-Bills unless students choose another funding source. 

Other funding sources include the Academic Program for Excellence, the Athletic Department, Hixson Scholars, Human Sciences Multicultural programs, International Students and Scholars, the McNair program, naval science, Science Bound, Student Disability Resources, Student Support Support Services Program, Vocational Rehabilitation Services and Women in Science and Engineering. 

Students can obtain a tutor by going online at the center website and filling out an online application. When filling out an application, students must select a funding source, select the course(s) they are interested in having a tutor for and indicate their hours of availability. 

If a student is interested in becoming a tutor, he or she must go through a process similar to the one listed above. Applicants must have earned a grade of B or higher or received AP credit in courses they are interested in tutoring in. They also must have at least a 2.5 cumulative GPA.

If a student meets those requirements, he or she must then fill out an online application, which can be found on the Academic Success Center Website.  After completing the applications, students are then required to call the center to schedule an interview. From there, students go through an orientation process and fill out required human resource forms.

Students can tutor for anywhere from two to 20 hours per week. Tutors earn $9 an hour, and tutoring can be considered a work-study job. 

For questions pertaining to obtaining a tutor or becoming a tutor, students can contact the center by chatting with a mentor, calling  (515) 294-6624 or emailing one of the mentors listed on the center website.

Supplemental Instruction

Supplemental Instruction is an academic support program that offers free academic study sessions for courses that are traditionally considered hard. Most of them are large 100-200 level courses that students need to take for their major. 


A list of what classes are available for SI sessions are posted on the SI website. SI sessions for fall 2011 begin Sunday, Aug. 28. Days, times and locations of SI sessions will be posted by Friday, Aug. 26. 

During the first week of classes, SI leaders make in-class short presentations about supplemental instruction. They will also ask students to complete a survey to determine when the best time would be to hold Supplemental Instruction sessions. 

Leaders will also hand out bookmarks during the third week of class, stating when and where the instructional sessions will be. Throughout the semester, leaders may make important announcements in class or online.

There are generally three sessions each week, each session lasts about 50 minutes. The center recommends students to go to SI at least once a week. 

At the sessions, students will work together to study concepts, review notes, discuss reading materials, practice test-taking strategies and prepare for tests. 

All the leaders of the instructional program are undergraduate students who have previously taken the course and have shown that they are academically capable of instructing and assisting the students in the class. Trained professional staff members in the center supervise all program leaders.