Live, Online Tutoring

Students connect to live educators from any computer that has Internet access, no special software installation or equipment is required. We provide live, online tutoring up to 24 hours a day, 7 days a week enabling students to get the help they need when they need it. Our tutors do not solve the problems for students, but rather teach the underlying concepts. 

On-Demand Tutoring: 
Using an advanced queuing system providing little or no wait time, students are connected on-demand with an expert educator. Students work one-on-one, in real-time with a tutor, communicating using a virtual whiteboard technology.  Scientific and mathematical notation, symbols, geometric figures, graphing and freehand drawing can be rendered quickly and easily. Visit Hours of Service for our on-demand tutoring schedule.

Schedule an Appointment: 
Students who prefer to plan ahead can schedule a 30 minute appointment with a tutor of their choice.  At the scheduled time, the student and tutor connect live using the virtual whiteboard technology.
All sessions are archived and available for students to review at any time for studying or test preparation.  For institutional implementations, individual and aggregate student usage information is reported and transcripts of every tutoring interaction are available to the campus program administrator.

Writing Center

The Smarthinking Writing Center is designed to assist secondary, post-secondary, and graduate students become stronger writers.  Students receive a detailed, personalized critique of any written assignment, such as an essay, paragraph, report, or creative work.  When applicable, students can select specialists such as ESL, Technical Writing, or Creative Writing experts. Students can submit writing 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

The Critique Process:
Each critique includes the writing tutor’s comments inserted within the student assignment and a Response Form detailing additional feedback. Smarthinking writing tutors address students’ writing issues, targeting higher-order issues (such as content and thesis development) as well as lower-order concerns (such as grammar and mechanics). They do not edit or correct student work. By expanding students’ understanding of good writing techniques, our tutors help students become better writers.

Writing review services include the following options:

  • Standard Essay Review

Smarthinking's standard essay critique prioritizes higher-order concerns, including main idea/thesis, content development, organization, and introduction/conclusion. This critique includes a tutor's embedded comments and a response form with commentary on essay strengths, areas in need of improvement, and a summary of next steps. 

  • Long Essay Review

The long essay review provides the same individualized feedback as the standard essay review, but applied to written pieces of greater length. 

  • Paragraph Review

The paragraph review provides the same individualized feedback as the standard essay review, but applied to a writing piece of 300 words or less.

  • Grammar & Documentation Review 

The Lower-Order Concerns-only essay critique addresses exclusively lower-order issues of grammar and mechanics, sentence structure, word choice, and documentation. This review offers the same personalized, essay-specific feedback as Smarthinking's standard Essay critique in that tutors assist students with recurring errors, model corrections, and offer concrete writing and revision advice without editing or proofing the students' work.  Whereas Smarthinking's standard essay review prioritizes higher-order concerns (main idea/thesis, content development, organization, and introduction/conclusion), the grammar and documentation critique addresses exclusively lower-order issues of grammar & mechanics, sentence structure, word choice, and documentation. 

  • Resume & Cover Letter Review 

Smarthinking critiques résumés and cover letters, which gives job applicants and students detailed feedback that can be essential as they seek employment. Key areas of focus include purpose/focus, content development, organization, grammar & mechanics, sentence structure, and word choice.

About Smarthinking Tutors:
Smarthinking writing tutors have advanced degrees in composition and rhetoric, literature, creative writing, and other relevant fields within the humanities. They are trained to respond to writing submissions in a range of academic subjects (e.g. lab reports, business plans, literary analyses, writing across the curriculum) and at a range of academic levels (from developmental writers to graduate students). Specifically, Smarthinking-Certified Tutors review students' writing in the following general academic areas at the secondary through graduate levels, unless otherwise indicated: Composition; Literature; English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL); Creative Writing; AP English (high school); English Language Arts (high school); Writing-Intensive Courses Across the Curriculum (to include writing projects for classes in the humanities, sciences, and business, and to include thesis and dissertation projects in the humanities and business), as well as student assessment.

Students can also receive a detailed critique of their practice SAT essay. The critique identifies an essay's strengths, notes its weaknesses, and provides a sample score.

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For overview of how to access Smarthinking from your cubby go to Distance Education