“Code is like humor. When you have to explain it, it’s bad.” - Cory House

According to a study by Statista of Google search trends, Python is the most popular programming language to learn followed by Java and JavaScript. https://www.statista.com/chart/21017/most-popular-programming-languages

Would you like to learn more about programming or get a career in development? Rather than following video tutorials online, why not get help from a dedicated coding tutor?

In this article, we’re going to look at how to choose the right private tutor and the things you should be considering when searching for one.

What Is Your Learning Objective?

Before you learn to code, you’ll need to think about what you want to learn. This will help you choose the right tutor.

How do you set learning objectives?
Discuss what you want out of your lessons with potential tutors and they can suggest some useful learning objectives. (Source: fancycrave1)

As technology advances, many are turning to programming to improve their career prospects. Learning a programming language is a useful skill to have when looking for work.

Find out more about programming tutoring.

Getting Started with Coding

One of the first things any tutor will ask you is about your level in programming.

If you’re just getting started, you’ll probably learn about different types of programming, programming languages, and syntax, for example.

Bit by bit, you’ll start to specialise in certain aspects of coding and learn more about the theory behind it all.

Passing Exams in Computer Science

Perhaps you need tutoring to help you do better at school, pass an exam, or get onto a university course in computer science or IT. Even if you’re not going to study computer science, you might need to know some programming to build a website from scratch.

If the lessons at your school are lacking, don’t hesitate to get extra help from a private tutor.

Even if you are studying computing or computer science at university, you might want to take your studies even further.

Completing a Programming Project

Do you need a website? Are you looking to build it yourself? Then you might need to know a bit about CSS, HTML, XML, and mySQL.

Even if you’re using WordPress, it can be useful to know how it all works, especially if you’re looking to improve it over time.

If you’re getting a web developer to make a website for you, you may still need to manage it once they’re finished.

Learning New Skills to Change Careers

Looking for a new job? If your current job isn’t fulfilling, you might want to move into a job for the future.

Coding can help you work with:

  • Robots
  • Object-oriented programming
  • C
  • Python
  • Java
  • Websites and user interfaces
  • Android apps
  • Web development

You might learn the basics of a few programming languages before later specialising.

Deciding Upon Your Private Programming Tutor

Once you’ve decided on what and how you want to learn, you can start looking for programming tutors.

What should you look for in a private programming tutor?
You need to outline your criteria before you pick a private programming tutor. (Source: Pixies)

Your level will dictate whether you need an experienced tutor or not. If you’re just starting out, you can opt for a new tutor or a student working as a tutor part-time. They’ll almost definitely charge less than an industry expert with decades of experience at Google or YouTube, for example.

When you’re searching for tutors, make sure you carefully read their profiles as there’ll be certain programming languages and applications that you’ll need to look out for (Java, JavaScript, Python, PHP, etc.). You might also want to read reviews left by their other students and see what they thought of them.

Don’t hesitate to ask them about their teaching approaches and experience, too. A lot of the tutors on Superprof offer the first session for free. While this session is rarely a typical class, it’s a good opportunity to meet the tutor and discuss how they can help you.

Tell them about what you want to learn and your previous experience (if any) with programming. They can explain how they can help, what qualifications and experience they have, and the teaching approaches they’ll employ.

It’s also important that you get along with your tutor as they’ll play a vital role. At school, it’s much easier to enjoy a subject when you like the teacher. If you don’t get along with them, you may want to turn to another tutor.

Discover the best places to find programming tutors.

Types of Programming Tutorials

There are a few different ways to learn how to code with a private tutor:

  • Online tutorials via webcam over Zoom, Skype, etc.
  • Face-to-face tutorials at your house.
  • Face-to-face tutorials at the tutor’s house.
  • Face-to-face tutorials in a public place like a library, coworking space, café, park, etc.

With the pandemic, more and more tutors are turning to online tutorials. There are a few advantages to this:

  • No time wasted travelling to and from the lessons.
  • Similarly, you can work more flexible hours and schedule more lessons each week.
  • Cheaper lessons: no time or money wasted travelling.
  • With a decent internet connection and a webcam, anyone anywhere can enjoy private online tutorials.

When it comes to programming, it’s quite easy to learn via webcam. You don’t necessarily need a tutor to physically be there.

What types of programming tutorials are there?
You can get face-to-face tutorials, online tutorials, or group tutorials. (Source: Free-Photos)

That said, it can be more comfortable to have a tutor there than behind a screen. We’re more attentive and learn more effectively from someone physically in the room with us. However, you’ll still be able to see your tutor and you can talk to them as if they were in the room with you. With group tutorials, however, it’s much better to be there in the room.

A tutor can tailor the lessons to your needs, level, and preferred learning style. You’ll be able to learn at your own pace, too.

Discover what a typical programming tutorial is like.

How Much Do Private Programming Tutorials Cost?

Last but not least, you also need to think about your budget and how much you’re willing to spend on private programming tutorials.

How much does private programming tutoring cost?
The cost of a tutor will depend on where you live, your level, and the tutor's experience and qualifications. (Source: tookapic)

Start by outlining your budget. How much can you afford to spend on programming tutorials?

The average cost of programming tutorials on Superprof is between £20 and £30 an hour. The cost will vary according to your location, the tutor’s experience, and the level being taught. Tutorials in London tend to cost more than elsewhere in the UK. This is often down to the cost of living.

As a beginner, you can probably find suitable tutors that charge less per hour for their tutorials. On the other hand, once you reach a certain level, you’ll need a tutor with some experience. Intermediate lessons tend to cost between £35 and £50 an hour.

You also need to think about how often you’ll get private programming tutorials. This will affect the budget. If you’re taking one tutorial a week at £30 for the hour, this will cost you £120 a month. If you’re going to have lessons for a total of three months, this will add up to £360 in total.

You and the tutor can discuss how many lessons you’ll need in total before you start to give you a better idea of your budget. Some tutors may offer a discount if you book multiple sessions at once.

Find out more about the cost of programming tutorials.

If you're interested in learning about programming, or anything for that matter, consider looking for tutors on Superprof. There are three main types of tutorial available for every subject and each comes with its pros and cons.

Group tutorials are often the cheapest option and they're great for those on a tight budget. However, in addition to sharing the cost of the lesson with the other students, you'll also need to share the tutor's time and attention. This means that you won't have as much control over what you learn and how the lesson is taught.

Face-to-face tutorials, on the other hand, are just between you and your tutor. The tutor can plan each lesson with you in mind and consider how you like to learn and the topics you need to study in order to meet your learning objectives. As a result, they tend to charge more than other tutors as you'll be paying for both the time they spend teaching you and the extra time they spend outside of the lessons adapting the course to you. Of course, with every minute dedicated to your learning, one-on-one tutorials still tend to be the most cost-effective type of lesson out there.

Finally, there are online tutorials. If you can't find a suitable tutor near you or can't have a tutor come to you for any reason, you can learn almost anything remotely from tutors all over the world. All you need is a decent internet connection and a webcam. As the tutor doesn't have to travel and can schedule more lessons each week as a result, they tend to charge less per hour than face-to-face tutors.

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