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Bridging Academic Gaps Through High-Impact Online Tutoring

Bridging Academic Gaps Through High-Impact Online Tutoring

The current state of the teaching profession presents a challenge to districts—far more students need individualized learning experiences and evidence-based interventions than classroom resource may be able to provide. The solution could be a tutoring program that features one-on-one time and personal relationships for maximum effectiveness.

What is high-impact tutoring?

High-impact tutoring, or high-dosage tutoring, is an evidence-based approach that supports students on an individual basis or within small groups. These small groups are usually between two and five students, and they meet three or more times a week. When implemented effectively, high-dosage tutoring has shown strong evidence to produce large learning gains for a wide range of students, including those who have fallen behind academically. In fact, studies show high-dosage tutoring is one of the few school-based interventions with demonstrated large positive effects on both math and reading achievement.

Another study by the University of Chicago Education Lab, “Not Too Late: Improving Academic Outcomes Among Adolescents,” demonstrates that individualized, intensive tutoring can double or triple the amount of math high school students learn each year, increase student grades, and reduce math and non-math course failures.

So, with all of this research backing claims that high-dosage tutoring is an excellent strategy to get students back at grade level, why aren’t more schools taking advantage of this approach? The short answer—accessibility and staffing. High-dosage tutoring is the most intensive tutoring model. Only about 1 in 10 students receive high-dosage tutoring, according to the latest data from the National Center for Education Statistics’ School Pulse Survey.

How can schools effectively implement high-impact tutoring in their classrooms?

Build a strong educator-student relationship.

High-impact tutoring helps students in a highly individualized and targeted manner. For example, having a consistent tutor fosters a strong connection that establishes respect and trust. This allows students to gain more effective instruction and learn more content. Plus, not removing students from critical classroom grade-level instruction helps ensure that they are not falling farther behind.

Increase access to support for students through virtual tutoring.

High-impact tutoring can also provide some flexibility that teachers might not have in their day. While various studies have found high-impact tutoring to be incredibly valuable when working with students in an infused-in-the-school-day model, there are other supports that tutors can provide. With the move to virtual learning, student preferences have changed and learning can occur  at all times of the day and night. With some tutoring solutions, schedule and location can be flexible, so students can ask questions or review content outside of the hours of the typical school day, through a myriad of modalities. 

Alleviate strain from educators.

Tutors can review written assignments from students and, by checking grammar and performing a content sweep, they help students turn in papers that are both higher quality and easier to grade. This simple activity allows teachers to provide more meaningful feedback to students. Additionally, tutors can be a lifeline for students  when they hit a roadblock. This frees teachers for other activities, including providing individualized attention, feedback, and inspired instruction.

How can Edmentum help?

For administrators and school leaders thinking of introducing high-impact tutoring into their school community, but need instructional resources to support tutors, Edmentum can help. Online solutions like Exact Path and Apex Tutorials  provide standards-aligned assessment, instruction, and reporting to provide teachers (and tutors) with high-quality instructional content that helps students focus on what they need most.

Through our partnership with Littera Education, Edmentum is also able to provide high-impact tutoring focusing on K-12 intensive skills recovery in math, ELA, science, & social studies. We can pair highly qualified Littera virtual tutors alongside assessments and curriculum in Exact Path, Courseware, Apex Courses, and Tutorials to close gaps in learning and propel individual growth.

Building a successful high-impact tutoring program is a powerful strategy to support academic recovery. If you’d like to learn more about how Edmentum can support your tutoring needs, and hear stories from experts of successful tutoring programs, listen to this virtual discussion on high-dosage and high-impact tutoring as an acceleration strategy and the ways schools and districts can bring it to their students.

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Brittany Voges

Brittany Voges currently serves as a Content and Social Media Specialist at Edmentum, and has been with the company since 2016. Before her time at Edmentum, Brittany studied Elementary Education, and eventually went on to teach 4th grade in Title 1 schools. Because of her background in education, Brittany is passionate about providing educators across the United States and the world with the tools and best practices to empower their students each day in the classroom.