What Is Peer Tutoring? – Definitions and Importance 

You’ve probably heard of peer tutoring, but what is it exactly? Peer tutoring has been around for ages. However, let us explore how it helps to enhance education.

Peer tutoring refers to the act of students helping students. Students assume an active role in their learning by researching topics that preoccupy them. Because of their increased involvement, students are more interested in the learning process.

Peer tutoring is a student-centered method of learning that has numerous benefits. These include but are not limited to improving student performance, developing effective teaching strategies, increasing class participation, and most of all being fun!

It is a great way to provide students with help from their classmates. Assisting struggling students in the classroom is a great way to help them feel more confident. It helps tutors build their resumes for the future. It also allows students to learn from each other and have fun doing it.

This article explores the concept of peer tutoring and the benefits that it offers to students and teachers alike.

What Is Peer Tutoring? 

Peer tutoring is a form of education in which students help each other learn. Tutors can be at the same level as their tutees or even a little higher. 

It is a student-led, one-on-one educational program in which students help each other successfully complete academic coursework. These tutors are students who work one-on-one with other students to provide extra help, encouragement, and guidance when they need it.

The student who is delivering the instruction knows what the questions are, and has probably researched some of the subject matter themselves. They can articulate in their own words better than a teacher because they have a deeper level of understanding.

The peer tutor helps the student identify their misconceptions or gaps in understanding, assists with their organization, time management, or study strategies, or acts as a sounding board for the student’s ideas.

Additionally, it is an effective strategy designed to help students develop the knowledge and confidence they need to succeed in the classroom. 

What Are the Benefits of Peer Tutoring?

Students receiving tutoring can experience academic, social, and development benefits. More specifically, it can improve the student’s attitudes towards schoolwork, self-efficacy, and knowledge.

In addition, the tutor has a lot to gain by instructing. Peer tutors gain professional growth due to their training and experience, better interpersonal skills, and leadership skills. They also achieve academic growth and personal satisfaction.

Listed below are some benefits of peer tutoring and the educational advantages offered to students.

1. Peer Tutors Become Successful Students 

Peer tutors are students who share their knowledge and learn to problem-solve with other students. They typically tutor students in the same subject area as they are strong in, but at a more advanced level. As with anything else, practice makes perfect. 

The peer tutoring program helps students improve academically and be on the path towards careers. The very act of teaching someone else will clarify what you know and give you fresh insight into how to succeed.

Additionally, peer tutors become successful students who earn higher grades and scores on standardized tests. It gives them an edge over peers who receive traditional instruction and students who receive no tutoring at all.

2. Students Work at Their Own Pace 

Earning college or high school credits while working at your own pace is possible. Peer tutoring programs allow students to interact with skilled tutors and other peers who have already completed the courses.

Students work at their own pace and tutor someone at the same time. A private tutor isn’t always feasible, causing students to be left on their own, but with peer tutoring, the tutors and students can work together without the high cost of a private tutor.

3. Students Learn Useful Study Skills 

Students learn useful study skills by becoming peer tutors. You get matched with a partner(s) who has had difficulty in the course and provide assistance by teaching your partner(s) the material in a small group setting. 

Also, peer tutoring improves your confidence in your ability in the subject you are tutoring and develops your teaching skills. As part of the first session, students and tutors discuss the study skills they need to improve. Then each person takes a turn teaching those skills to each other.

Essentially, the program helps to promote student success by improving study skills and encouraging a desire to succeed.

4. Students Learn to Teach Others 

Using the material taught in the classroom to teach peers and obtain immediate feedback is a great way to learn. However, it does not usually happen because of time or resource constraints.

Students learn to teach others through peer lessons. Students of all academic levels learn the teaching skills they need to become effective peer tutors. The peer tutoring model also encourages students to help their peers learn and feel better about themselves.

5. It Creates a Safe, Non-judgmental Environment for Learning 

Many underperforming students avoid asking questions, even during class sessions, because they fear embarrassment or ridicule from their classmates. However, peer tutors cheer on classmates and are role models encouraging them to do their best.

SEE: What Social-Emotional Learning Is

6. It Gives Students Opportunities to Apply What They Have Learned in a Practical Way

This tutoring program aims to encourage students to help others learn the material in their class. 

Tutors are college-level or high school students who are knowledgeable enough to help their peers learn material for the class. It is an excellent method for helping students apply what they have learned in a real-world setting and build strong relationships with their classmates. 

7. Increase Student Attention and Interest Level 

Because peer tutoring increases student interest and attention, it is very effective. Furthermore, peer tutoring is cost-effective. That is because parents would no longer need to spend money hiring private tutors.

Through peer tutorials, students can receive more individualized attention and instruction. As a result, students are more attentive and interested in the lesson, which increases their ability to learn.

8. Peer Tutoring Promotes Positive Peer Pressure 

Working in pairs is another way to help natural competition and friendship. Students with particular expertise in a particular subject or skill area tutor other students one-on-one or in small groups. 

For example, students can help tutor peers on a specific math operation or English grammar rule. This is an effective method of encouraging positive peer pressure.

This form of learning utilizes elements of competition, cooperation, and collaboration within a group setting. The student participants can support each other and motivate one another while learning together.

SEE: Reasons Why Interpersonal Skills are Important

9. Peer Tutoring Strengthens Communication Skills in the Classroom 

Peer tutors help students learn and improve in a variety of different ways. In addition to giving students more one-on-one attention, it helps build communication skills and confidence. That can result in an improvement in overall academic performance.

In addition to improving classroom behavior, these programs can also help develop social skills in children, teens, and adults. They also have positive impacts on learners of all ages and grade levels.

SEE: Why It Is Important to Have Good Communication Skills

10. Peer-Tutoring Helps Build Confidence in Understanding or Performing a Task 

The benefit of peer-tutoring is that it helps build confidence in understanding or performing a task, improve grades, develop leadership capabilities, and receive feedback from others.

In this process, people learn from their peers or those who have acquired a similar skill or ability. Tutors commonly provide feedback to help students develop the skills needed to accomplish a task or assess performance and not specifically to give them answers.

11. The Collaboration Encourages Active Participation between the Students 

The collaboration encourages active participation between the students by tutoring each other. You will have a chance to practice subjects like English and help others improve their English-speaking abilities too.

In general, students get a sense of fulfillment and self-worth when they develop and apply skills that help other individuals.

SEE: Social Learning: Implementation in Classrooms and Workplaces

12. It Promotes a Positive Attitude Towards Learning

Peer tutorials are a proven method of instruction to help students learn from one another. Studies show that peer tutoring is an effective learning environment that promotes higher-achieving student results, improved study habits, and more active classroom participation.

It also promotes an environment where students can develop communication and team-building skills, allowing for a positive learning experience. 

13. Peer Tutors Can Form a Connection with Students in Ways Not Possible by Teachers

The idea behind peer tutoring is that if you relate to the way a peer tutors you, you are more motivated to learn. It is common for you to get along much better with your classmates and may even open up more when you receive tutoring from a friend.

Why Is Peer Tutoring Important?

Peer Tutors learn organizational and time-management skills, gain confidence in their abilities, improve study habits and comprehension in the subject being learned by modeling good study behavior. 

Also, it increases deeper learning, student engagement and promotes collaboration, cooperation, and communication between students. Peer tutoring is important because students get used to interacting with other students and sharing what they know.

In addition to improving grades and retaining information, peer tutoring also helps students retain information. Research indicates that tutoring improves academic achievement in the short term, long term and makes overall learning more enjoyable.

Furthermore, the benefits of peer tutoring are endless. Many students look forward to it, and some students enjoy it more than their private lessons. You’ll also enjoy working with your peers, knowing that the people helping you are just as motivated as you are to succeed and graduate from school.

SEE: Why Communication Is Important in a Team

What Are the Challenges of Peer Tutoring?

Peer tutoring may lead to more confrontation than collaboration. When students work together, they must learn to resolve conflicts peacefully.

In addition, peer tutors may feel pressure from their peers or from their fellow student’s parents to get higher grades or put forth more effort during tutoring sessions. These factors make for an already challenging situation for both parties.

Other challenges associated with peer learning include:

  • Some tutees are usually not willing to learn.
  • Some students find it difficult to get tutoring help from their peers.
  • Lack of incentives can reduce the motivation of the peer tutor.
  • It becomes an intimidating experience when both students don’t get along.

FAQs

Is peer tutoring the same thing as student teaching?

No, peer tutoring is not the same thing as student teaching. Peer tutors are students who help other students with their homework and study skills. These students are usually in the same grade level or a slightly higher class.

However, a student-teacher is an undergraduate or graduate student undergoing the necessary training and under the supervision of a mentor teacher. Also known as pre-service teachers, they usually conduct the internship for a session before concluding their graduate degrees.

SEE: What a Student-Teacher Is

Do peer tutors earn money?

No, peer tutors do not earn money. It simply involves you as a student helping a colleague who is confused or behind in a particular subject. Also, it might serve as a beneficial situation where you learn a subject you’re also struggling with.

Additionally, peer tutors hold study sessions with each other to address subject areas they consider challenging. That helps them strengthen each other’s weaknesses.

Does peer tutoring improve the academic success of students?

Yes, peer tutoring is a strategy for improving academic success among students by pairing them with their peers for regular, structured study sessions.

The presence of peer tutoring seems to have a positive effect on students’ academic success in educational institutions. Collaborative learning activities help the students grasp concepts, develop their skills and deepen their knowledge.

Conclusion

The peer tutoring program aims to enhance the learning of students that are struggling or need assistance in a certain subject area. This could be offering quality feedback on written work, helping someone to grasp new concepts, or providing one-to-one support with a particular area of study.

Additionally, with its focus on student-to-student interaction and learning, peer tutoring can help students of all ages and learning styles. You can reach many students at once through peer training and it promotes student engagement. 

Finally, peer learning falls under the educational approach of joint learning, also referred to as collaborative learning. This is a joint student intellectual effort to derive answers and achieve a greater understanding. Discover how collaborative learning can benefit students.

I hope you found this article helpful. Thanks for reading.