In our new, SARS-CoV-2 world everyone is switching to remote work whenever possible. Luckily for those seeking tutoring, remote work not only is possible, it’s been my predominant way of doing things for a while now. Remote tutoring has worked well for students preparing for all the tests I teach.

When I was first asked to tutor over the web, back in 2011 when a friend of a friend needed LSAT help while living in Paris, I was skeptical as to how well it would work, but I’ve found it to be remarkably effective. There will always be something special about face-to-face, in-person meetings, but I’ve had to admit that teaching can be accomplished just as well by sitting down and logging on. It’s easy to schedule, and of course it’s safer than in-person meetings; for some people it’s the only safe — or legal — way to meet.

There are, of course, some technical requirements to make remote sessions go smoothly. If you need technical help just ask me. Roughly speaking you’ll need:

  • A quiet workplace with a good internet connection (you might try testing yours at speedtest.net);
  • A webcam and microphone (which just about every modern laptop and tablet have; a phone will do, too, though the smaller screen isn’t best); and
  • The ability to use whichever conference service we decide on (see below for details on that).

I’ve done sessions on FaceTime, Skype, Zoom, and others. All of them work at least reasonably well. If you have FaceTime that’s easy, if not perfect. Skype was the standard option for a while and it works, though their servers do lag sometimes. You’ll need a Skype account with which to log in; my username there is atakdoug, though you can also find me by my e-mail or phone number. Log in, add me as a friend, and we’ll be good to go. (Note that I recommend downloading the client program — the dedicated application — and using that rather than connecting through a browser, as the interface is easier to deal with, but browsers work too.)

My preferred connection method these days is Zoom, which I find tends to give higher quality video and audio. Zoom seems to be the platform that’s taking off most as people are increasingly locked down, so you may already be familiar with it, but I’ll give the basics here.

You don’t need a (free) Zoom account but it helps, and as with Skype, you don’t need the client application but that helps too. If you don’t have either I will send you a link to each conference, and you can just click that link, but better would be to go to Zoom.us, create an account, download the app, and then use that.

If you need any help with any of this, just ask me.