How to choose a Tutor in Singapore

How to choose a Tutor in Singapore

Ms. Rachel Lee has been seeking a good Math tutor for her eight-year-old daughter, Nicole for quite some time. Nicole would be entering the third standard next year. She is an intelligent kid and takes a keen interest in her studies. Her mother, however, is looking for a tutor who can guide her in Math. For, though Rachel is good enough to teach the other subjects to Nicole, she is not proficient in Math.

You will find several parents in Singapore who are in a similar position. While some might be on the lookout for Math tutor, some others might be seeking a tutors for teaching English, Malay or Science subjects to their children. So, you see, there is a great demand for tutoring service in this part of the world.

Surveys show that a majority of the local students of Singapore use private tutors. But, is it really easy to obtain the best tutor for your child? If you are parents, I bet you know it the best! There are a few things you must keep in mind while hiring a home tutor for your kid. Want to know what they are? Continue reading!

Categories of Personal Tutors

First and foremost, you must know the four major categories of home tutors in Singapore. Naturally, their rates and quality depend on their experience. Let us look at the categories here:

Student tutorsNIE traineesFull-Time tutorsEx-teacher/ Current teacher

Student Tutors: These tutors are generally undergraduate, polytechnic or junior college students, aged around 17 and above. They comprise a significant chunk of the local tutor community. The best thing about student tutors is that they are known to charge cheaper rates, as compared to experienced ones. Some of you might feel such kind of tutors lack proper expertise, as they’re so young. However, kids can relate more easily to these tutors, as their ages are similar to the age of their tutors. They will charge you about $20 to $25 per hour.

NIE trainees: You will come across a large number of parents who prefer NIE (National Institute of Education) trainees as home tutors. It’s simply because they are pursuing teachers’ training and aim to work as school teachers in the near future. So, naturally, they would possess detailed knowledge of the MOE (Ministry of Education) syllabus and the pattern of exams. But, they are popular for another reason: their low charges. Yes, they command lower rates (only $30 to $40) than what’s charged by full time and current teachers.

Full-Time tutors: Many parents opt for full-time tutors, as they are equipped with more experience than student tutors and NIE trainees. I will tell you why they are so sought after in Singapore. Firstly, they are specialized in a particular subject. So, you can be assured that your child receives the best education at least in that subject, and score high grades in exams. Secondly, they are well-acquainted with the MOE syllabus. Last but not the least, they are more capable of clarifying the doubts of students, due to their experience. They charge around $25 to $80, per hour.

Ex-teacher/ Current teacher: Ex teachers, or current teachers enjoy the highest degree of popularity here. Especially ex-teachers. Since they have already retired, they are free to give tuitions anytime of the day – so naturally can cater to a larger number of students. For instance, they can easily provide two or three lessons in a week. Also, they are much more skilled if you compare them with the tutors of all the previous categories. For, current teachers and ex-teachers have underwent NIE training, apart from their vast teaching experience. The rate they charge are quite high, around $30 to $150 per hour.

How to engage a tutor?

So, now you know about the different categories of tutors available in Singapore. Now, you might be wondering how you can engage the most efficient tutors for your child, right? Well, you can hire a tutor by a recommendation of your friend. Or, you can also advertise for home tutors. Take the help of the Internet as you look for tutors in your locality. The listing on helps you select the best tutors which meets your requirements!

You can even choose from the many tuition agencies in the country, like, ChampionTutor,, TopTutors Home Tuition Agency LLP, and so on. You just need to fill up an application form online, and they would contact you within 24 hours, with tutor matches. But, before you engage a tutor, do schedule an interview with them, to know about their teaching styles and more.

Questions to ask Tutors in the Interview

Do you know what are the essential questions you must ask tutors before you hire their services?

Personal Qualities: Ask them about their personal hobbies or passion. For instance, what special abilities they are blessed with? Or, what was their most favorite subject in school or college? It goes a long way in deciding whether your child can connect with his tutor, at a personal level. Because, unless children can relate to their teachers, they find it quite tough to imbibe lessons from them.

Teaching format: Each one is different, you know. Similarly, the teaching style of a particular tutor might vary greatly with that of the other. So, I would suggest parents to ask them about their individual teaching styles. You must be aware of which kind of a teaching style helps your kid the most. Some tutors might prefer using the Internet, for teaching while others might be comfortable with more traditional styles like using the textbook, etc.

MOE Syllabus: Tutors who are familiar with the MOE syllabus are naturally more experienced and better tutors. So, make sure the tutor you are about to hire has a proper knowledge of the MOE syllabus. So that, he can guide your child well. Your tutor should also possess a strong knowledge of exam formats.

Rate and Schedule: Finally, you must fix the rate the tutor is going to charge you. Also, arrange the tuition schedules with the tutor, after you consult with your child.

Tips for hiring tutors

Let me share a few tips which you must keep in mind while hiring tutors:

Seven is the minimum age when a child requires a tutor. Make sure you don’t employ a tutor for a child who is younger than at least seven years of age.

Never overburden your child with excessive tutorial sessions. It would make him lose interest in studies. Parents should ask tutors to teach kids for two or three times per week, but not more than that.

After you’ve hired a tutor, ask him to keep you updated on the status of your child’s academic progress. It will let you know if the tutor you employed meets your child’s requirements.

Don’t permit home tutors to complete your child’s home assignments. School teachers give homework to children to evaluate what they have learnt. And, the more mistakes kids make, the better they learn.

Ensure that you are actively involved in your child’s education. Don’t depend solely on tutors. It’s amazing how parents can motivate their children in their academics.

So, enough said! You are now ready to choose your tutor for your child!


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