Texan Tutoring gives all students chance at success

By: Morgan Minnick & Kenzie Bequette, students in COMM 1316 News Writing

Would you take a free opportunity to all but guarantee a boost in your academic performance?

First instinct, your answer is probably yes. Of course, you would.

Yet Texan Tutoring is a free opportunity that’s set up to help South Plains College students.
And many students don’t use it.

Why?

“Students may view going to tutoring in a negative light,” says SPC Academic Support
Coordinator Rebecca Grunder, “and see it as something mandatory such as tutorials in high
school.”

Freya Bass, an SPC student tutor, says she believes the reason many students are not using tutoring is because they simply don’t know the college offers it. She also thinks students might be ashamed to admit they need or want some tutoring.

Bass says she has gone to tutoring herself, and now she is one.

“If somebody feels shame for wanting tutoring, just know that everybody needs help sometimes and it’s not something you should feel ashamed of,” Bass says.

Grunder says she’s trying to make tutoring accessible for everybody. She wants students to know that tutoring is for everyone, not just students who are struggling. She points out tutors help some students who just want to increase their G.P.A.

Inside the Tutoring Center at the SPC Levelland campus library.
Anna Gonzales

“Research has proven that if you come to tutoring more often you’re gonna’ do better in class…so the more you come, the better you’ll do,” Grunder says.

According to Knack, a college tutoring service, students are 86% more likely to graduate if they take advantage of tutoring.

Student tutor Freya Bass says: “Students who come to tutoring get a much more personal learning experience that they likely don’t get in the classroom. Having somebody who explains and teaches a topic differently from their professor can help them find an understanding that makes more sense to them.”

What subjects can tutors help with at SPC?

“We have a pretty large staff that tutor everything from writing to a ton of math tutors,” Grunder says. “We also have different science tutors. We have embedded tutors that actually go to classes and tutor while they’re going to class.”

Bass says she enjoys tutoring. “Seeing a student have an ‘aha’ moment while we’re working together is a great feeling for me,” she says.

If you are looking to have an “aha” moment with a tutor, all it takes is a couple of clicks to book an appointment.

“I strongly encourage students to book an appointment,” Grunder says, “because it guarantees you a one-on-one time slot.” Walk-ins are welcome, she says, but the right tutor may not be available.

Appointments can be made through the SPC website. There is a Tutoring link under the Student Services tab that directly sends a student to a page where appointments can be made.

There is also a link there for an app called Penji.

The Penji app is a resource for tutors and their students to book appointments and communicate. “Through this app,” Grunder says, “you can communicate with tutors. It’s kind of like DM’ing (direct messaging) someone on Instagram.”

Grunder says there are tutoring facilities on Levelland and Plainview campuses as well as the Downtown Lubbock Center and the Lubbock Career and Technology Center. These services are available from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Thursday. Hours may be cut short on Fridays due to campuses closing early.

Tutoring facilities are simple to find, Grunder says. Each spot has a huge, orange Texan Tutoring flag outside it to direct students where to go in all locations.

Tutoring sign on 1st floor of the SPC Levelland campus library.
Katie Brackens

These flagged spots are found in the Levelland Science Building (S120), Math Lab (M116), Writing Center (CM 112), and the Library’s 1 st floor Tutoring Center. If Lubbock best accommodates someone, the Lubbock Downtown Center tutoring rooms A-E (directly left after walking in the main entrance) are available as well as the Lubbock Career and Technology Center (Student Learning Center). Also open for assistance is the Plainview Learning Center.

Grunder also adds that even if a student attends classes on the SPC Levelland campus, but lives in Lubbock, that student can get tutoring services at any SPC location. Students just need to be aware that different locations have different subjects available at different times.

If the SPC tutoring centers do not fit a student’s schedule, Grunder says there is a third-party tutoring service available, called Tutor.com, that is a completely separate entity from SPC. It’s also a free resource. It’s located within Blackboard, and it provides students tutoring assistance free of cost for three hours a week, Monday through Sunday, 24 hours a day.

“I am doing many things to promote Texan Tutoring,” Grunder says, “and get the word out to as many students as possible. And we hope more and more students utilize our services on a more regular basis.”

Tutor Frey Bass says students shouldn’t feel ashamed about needing a bit of help with their studies. “We’re all human,” she says. “We all need help from time to time, and people should be able to rely on each other for help whenever they need it.”

No shame, no embarrassment, and no judgment. After all, doing what’s best for your success in life is never something to feel down about.

Tutoring sign on 1st floor of the SPC Levelland campus library.
Zach Grobe

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