How to make a name for yourself as a biology tutor

Photo by Nhia Moua on Unsplash

Are you aware that U.S. students are far behind in science education compared to their international peers? In a world where science is the cradle of innovation and development, becoming a  biology tutor is a great idea that can earn you a good paycheck. The salary range of a biology tutor is between $32,152 - $82,078 per year in the United States, with an average salary of $49,925, according to Glassdoor, and may increase in coming years due to increasing demand. If becoming a tutor tickles your fancy, now may be a great time to get that ball rolling.

So, if the idea of tutoring biology excites you, now could be the perfect time to get the ball rolling, so keep reading!

What does a biology tutor do?

Let's get our biology knowledge up to speed before we dive into what it takes to become a biology teacher, shall we? Merriam-Webster defines biology as the study of living organisms and their vital processes. In a wider sense, it covers areas such as morphology, anatomy, behavior, origin, and spread of living organisms.

This brings us to the role of a biology tutor - someone who passes on their understanding of biology to others. To shine in this role, you must have a sincere love of science and an in-depth knowledge of the subject. On top of that, you need to be able to spark interest and curiosity in students with your explanations.

Some of the topics you will teach are the anatomy and physiology of living organisms, the structure, and function of cells, etc. To get by, you will need to get a good grasp of technical tools that can help you create an updated and engaging curriculum to keep your students enthralled from the start of the class to the end.

Skills and qualities of a biology tutor

There is a slew of graduates with a certificate in biology who work as biology tutors online and in traditional school settings. If you must stand out in the crowd, you need some extras in addition to your qualifications. Let's tour some key skills and qualities you need to be a top biology tutor.

1. Be knowledgeable

Every biology instructor should be skilled in biology and have a basic understanding of other scientific disciplines like chemistry, physics, and agriculture. You should be aware of the properties of plants and animals in particular. You can continue to learn and keep up with trends, news, research findings, and discoveries. Biology tutors are supposed to be genuinely curious about life and interested in the environment.

2. Be friendly

You should be approachable to your students and encourage them to express their ideas. You can openly address issues and let students make their own decisions rather than imposing your worldviews on them.

You should encourage them to ask questions when they do not understand, as this can help them to learn better.

3. Be a researcher

A relevant trait of a biology tutor is research prowess. Apart from gathering your data through laboratory and field research, you should be able to communicate to your students your findings. Research skills enable you to prioritize facts instead of adopting preconceived beliefs about a specific biological concept. You can challenge practices and beliefs created and propagated due to superstitions and ignorance. You can also encourage your students to respect different cultural identities and opinions to prevent discrimination, thereby creating an inclusive classroom environment.

4. Be a pedagogic

Teaching techniques, or pedagogy, are crucial in teaching biology. You will likely do lab lessons that may involve dissecting animals. While some students could get sick in this setting, you should ensure they understand the practicals. In situations like this, apply professionalism. Additionally, you will cover some contentious topics in your classes, such as evolution and the biology of human sexuality. While you will probably have mandatory subjects to cover and information to impart, you should exercise restraint in separating truth from theory to allow for an educationally suitable examination from several angles. You should be able to keep your classroom in good order and control.

5. Be passionate and a good communicator

One of the fine qualities of a biology tutor should possess the ability to communicate and explain a topic to your students. As a biology tutor, you must be passionate about your field and dedicated to your work. A lack of passion can make you easily experience burnout because you are doing something you are not interested in. You should also be confident and articulate.

6. Be professional 

You should be enthusiastic, upbeat, and optimistic as a biology tutor.

You should not be ashamed to explain physiological processes to teenagers who might not be mature enough to take the information seriously. Be aware of potential cultural or religious differences and individual preferences of students who might feel uneasy about watching animal dissections.

6. Be technology inclined

Technology can do much now and will still do much more in the future. Almost everything done in the modern world revolves around technology. You cannot succeed in online tutoring or small role if you do not have basic knowledge of technology and its usage. You need to know how to navigate your way, from using a phone or laptop to using relevant software tools in your lesson delivery.

How to become a biology tutor?

Depending on the type of biology tutor(classroom tutor, online tutor, or private tutor)  you want to major in, you must have a bachelor's degree in biology. Some employers may prefer or require a master's degree in biology. Others may just be cool with a Bsc degree. However, what will determine how long you get to work is your wealth of knowledge of biology. Also, your ability to use the right teaching technique and tools to effectively communicate that knowledge to your students will help you make your mark.

Once you have decided on the approach you want to adopt in tutoring biology, proceed to get the necessary tools to help you excel as an online biology tutor.

Online tutoring is different from conventional learning. It comes with its difficulties. Most teachers are unsure where to begin and what resources they will need for a productive online tutoring session due to the many teaching and interactive platforms. To successfully excel in this, you need to learn how to use online software and tools on the job. Some of these are:

  • Quality camera and headsets 

First and foremost, you might want to invest in a quality headset to ensure that every word is clear for your students. With a reliable headset, you will not spend half of your tutoring session repeating yourself. Students who come to you for help are usually already frustrated, so making sure you are audible enough is crucial as an online tutor. You also need a gadget with a good camera so your students can see and understand what you display in the background.

  • Digital whiteboards

One of the top academic resources for online classes is digital whiteboards. Therefore, you may use them to explain documents as an online tutor. It can help you cancel and make live corrections. It's also useful for students who want to read comprehension or essay passages with you.

  • Microsoft PowerPoint or Google slides

As a biology tutor, you will create the contents you'd use for your lessons, so that you will need software like Microsoft PowerPoint or Google slides for your lesson presentation. You can add videos, pictures, and graphics to make learning more engaging and fun.

  • Tutor-friendly business management app

Workee is an excellent platform integrated with Google suites and stripe. You can use the integrated video conferencing app on the platform to host your online lessons, share slides, and interact with your students.

You can also integrate paypal and stripe to manage your payments, which ensures secure financial transactions between you and your clients.

Another feature this platform offers is an inbuilt CRM that can help you sync your contacts, making booking and scheduling meetings easy. With this in place, you can grow and maintain client relationships. It also has a dashboard where you can track the progress and check the history of your transactions. It also helps you calculate your tax payments.

Conclusion

Not everyone has a smooth career ride or excels in it. Finding an online tutoring job as a Biology Tutor and excelling at it is possible. You should follow the guidelines explained in this post. Then you are good to go. Acquiring the necessary skills in your career and maximizing the Workee platform to ensure a seamless experience will help you become a successful Biology Tutor.

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