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Mt. SAC Writing Center : Tutors in the Classroom

Tutors in the Classroom Program

Program Overview

Mount San Antonio Community College has long recognized and used both tutoring and  supplemental instruction to support its students’ learning. With the tutor’s assistance, the student  is provided with clear structure and techniques for how to approach challenging material, while  stimulating the learning process. A good tutor can help a student to develop the self-awareness (meta-cognitive skills) needed to succeed in independently applying learning strategies.  Similarly, supplemental instruction (or SI) is a peer-facilitated academic support program that  attempts to improve student performance and retention by offering regularly scheduled, out-of class review sessions. In early 2009, the Writing Center tried to combine the best elements of  both with some specific writing support – and the Tutors in the Classroom concept was born!

The Tutors in the Classroom program is designed to support students' writing in 3 ways:

  1. A tutor is placed with an instructor in one section of composition and will be in the classroom for several hours a week to assist the instructor and to become familiar with the class work and assignments.
  2. Tutors will lead group writing sessions outside of class time to facilitate understanding of class assignments for students. Group writing sessions are held in one of the computer classrooms located in the Writing Center.
  3. Students can make individual tutoring appointments with their TC during specified hours at the Writing Center or online.

There are several essential elements of the tutor in the classroom: 

  • TCs target subjects rather than students 
  • TC sessions are peer-facilitated 
  • The TC serves as a model student 
  • TC sessions integrate content and learning skills 

For more information about our TC Program please contact Nicole Blean at

      • What are faculty saying about the TC program?

        "Our TC was very open to suggestions and amenable in every situation. By the same token, she felt confident enough to oftentimes offer ideas from her perspective as a student-tutor to help me understand my students' ways of knowing and thinking."

        "The program provided excellent support for pedagogy. I could count on the TC to conduct excellent tutoring sessions. The review of the lessons and the one-on-one TC-student assistance was a tremendous help to the students' comprehension of the assignments."

        "My TC has been a great asset to this class. She has innovative ideas, and students relate to her well. In fact, students feel safe with her as their tutor

      • What are students saying about the TC program?

        "My TC really helped my confidence (in writing)! She would say, 'You're a great writer!' or 'That's a really good hook!' She helped me think critically and was very patient with me during our sessions. I appreciate her availability and willingness to help not only me but others in the class as well. She was awesome, truly inspiring, and a joy to have in class! I owe my success in this class to her!"

        "The TC for our class was very informed on the subjects that we had to write about, which made it very easy for us to go to him for help. He knew exactly what people were struggling with!"

        "My TC really understood what I needed help with in writing and was very helpful during our tutoring sessions."