“The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates. The great teacher inspires.” - William Arthur Ward

Unfortunately, not everyone has a great teacher, leaving some students less than enthusiastic about going to class. The last to arrive isn’t necessarily bottom of the class, at least not thanks to academic support. Academic support isn’t just for struggling students either and the cost doesn’t change that much according to a child’s grades.

The tutoring market in the UK is estimated at around £2bn per year. Generally, academic support tutorials cost around £20 an hour. However, these rates can vary according to a large number of factors.

So how much do private academic support tutorials cost and how can you find a tutor?

The Cost According to the Student’s Level

While the average rates are around £20 an hour, the real rate will depend on the student and the tutor. Let’s start with the student’s level.

How much do experienced tutors cost?
The cost of tutorials for primary school pupils tends to be less than that for secondary school pupils. (Source: HeteroSapiens)

Tutorials for primary school children tend to cost less than those for secondary school pupils since what the latter are studying is usually more advanced and requires more knowledge on the tutor’s part. By the time students reach GCSEs and A Levels, the rates tend to be even higher. You’ll probably have to pay more than £20 an hour for GCSE or A Level academic support. In some cases, these can cost upwards of £30 an hour.

This is normal. The higher the student’s level, the higher the tutor’s level needs to be to teach them.

Find out more about the advantages of academic support.

The Cost of Academic Support According to the Tutor’s Experience

The tutor’s qualifications and experience will also play an important part in the cost of private tutorials. For example, a tutor with 10 years of experience with high-level qualifications could charge rates closer to £50 an hour for their experience and expertise. A tutor who’s just started teaching will probably need to set their sights a little lower. This is especially true if they’re still in their studies.

Different Subjects, Different Rates

The subject being taught will also affect the cost of the tutorials. Maths tutorials won’t cost the same as English tutorials as the supply and demand in a given area won’t be the same for two subjects.

Which are the most expensive private tutorial subjects?
Correcting maths homework, for example, will take a lot of time. (Source: tjevans)

Thus, think about the subject you need help in, too:

  • Homework help
  • Maths
  • English
  • History
  • Test prep
  • ESL
  • Physics, Chemistry, Biology
  • Foreign languages such as French, Italian, German, Spanish, Chinese, Russian, etc.
  • Academic coaching
  • Study skills

Academic skills and courses tend to be cheaper than music or sport. This means you'll pay less for a chemistry tutor than you would for a music tutor but not always...

Homework help won’t cost the same as biology lessons. In the first instance, the tutor will just be correcting homework and helping with a bit of revision and explaining things the student didn’t understand in school. In the second example, the tutor will have to plan lessons and cover a particular topic.

This is because homework help tutorials can be done by somebody with no qualifications in some instances as they’re acting as a replacement for parents who can’t help their child whereas the biology, maths, or English tutor will require specific skills and qualifications in the subject being taught.

The Cost According to Location

Academic support also has a geographical component to consider.

Where are private tutorials most expensive?
Where you are and the cost of living will affect the cost of tutorials. (Source: LubosHouska)

In the capital, for example, private tutorials cost more than elsewhere because the cost of living is so high. Furthermore, public transport and getting around are much more costly in terms of money and time and most tutorials will take place after work and school when traffic’s at its worst! The South is generally more expensive than the North, too.

Similarly, online tutoring services tend to be cheaper than one-on-one tutoring since an online tutor doesn't have to travel to the tutee's house and can also schedule more tutorials per week. With fewer outgoings and more potential tutorials each week, they can charge less for their supplemental instruction.

Of course, academic tutoring can work well with an online tutor, but vocational subjects mightn't work as well without the tutor there in the room with the student. In this case, you'll want to look for local tutors near me offering home tutoring.

Find out how often you should schedule private tutorials.

How Much Do Academic Support Platforms Cost?

Some organisations charge a fee for students and tutors to get in touch with one another. If you go through an organisation, they’ll find a suitable tutor for you. Each organisation will charge a different amount according to the service they offer and the quality of tutors they have.

However, in a lot of cases, you can get the first hour of tutoring for free. Rather than being a tutorial, these are generally a meeting between the tutor and the student so they can get to know each other and work out how the tutor can help them.

In most cases, a tutor is there to provide a bespoke service to the student and they can’t do this without getting to know the student, their strengths and weaknesses, and how they like to learn. They’ll adapt each lesson to them and ensure that they get along with the student.

The fees are there to support the platform and ensure that the tutorials go smoothly and the rates are reasonable.

The Cost According to the Number of Tutorials

Some tutors will offer tutorials on a sliding scale if you plan to have many tutorials with them. Sometimes, there’ll even be a discount for booking 10 or more tutorials at a time.

The more tutorials you book, the less you can pay.

For example, imagine a tutor charges £40 per hour. If you decide to take book multiple tutorials with them, the rate per hour goes down:

  • 5 hours: £200 (£40 per hour)
  • 10 hours: £350 (£35 per hour)
  • 20 hours: £600 (£30 per hour)

Of course, you’ll need to see during the free tutorial how long you’re going to be needing their help.

How Can You Pay Less for Academic Support?

With academic support tutorials, homework help, school holiday tutorials, and private tutorials, the private tutoring market is expanding. While private tutorials were once just for the very wealthy, they’re becoming increasingly accessible to all.

How can you pay less for private tutorials?
Group tutorials are a way to share the cost of the tutor's time. (Source: rawpixel)

If your child needs academic support for a year or intensive courses during the holidays, don’t hesitate to get in touch with a private tutor.

If you want to save money, here are a few tips:

  • Book several tutorials at once to benefit from better rates.
  • Opt for private tutorials in a small group: for academic support, a group of peers in the same situation can help destigmatise the child’s situation.
  • Intensive tutorials: if you can’t regularly get private tutorials, opt for intensive tutorials before an exam or during the holidays.
  • Online tutorials: since the tutor has fewer outgoings and can schedule more tutorials in a week.

Academic support tutorials for struggling students don’t tend to cost more than they do for good students. The cost varies according to so many other factors.

No matter what subject you need help with or which skills you want to learn, you can find experienced and talented private tutors on Superprof. Regardless of the subject, there are three main types of private tutorial available: one-on-one tutorials, online tutorials, and group tutorials. Each has its pros and cons and some types work better for certain subjects than others.

One-on-one private tutorials are between you and your tutor. The lessons will be tailored to you, your goals, and your learning style. Since this entails a lot of work outside of class from the tutor, you'll probably pay a premium for them. However, with every minute in class spent teaching you, these are also the most cost-effective type of tutorials available.

Online tutorials are similar to private tutorials since they are between a single student and tutor but the tutor isn't physically in the room with you and is instead teaching you remotely via a webcam. With fewer expenses and the ability to schedule more tutorials each week, the tutor can charge less per hour and they often do.

Finally, group tutorials are when several students are taught in a single class by a private tutor. These students may already know each other or be strangers. You won't have the tutor's undivided attention like in the other types of private tutorials but the cost of the tutorial will be divided amongst all of the students in attendance, making it cheaper per student per hour.

Many of the tutors offer free tutoring for the first hour so try a few out and see which type of tutorial and which tutor is best for you.

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Joseph is a French and Spanish to English translator, language enthusiast, and blogger.