Peer Tutoring Network

Need a tutor or want to be a tutor? The McMaster Peer Tutoring Network provides connections between students and peer tutors. Access our network database and find affordable tutors who have successfully completed the course. By subsidizing part of the tutoring fee and creating a central tutor database, the program makes it easier for students to improve their grades and get help with difficult concepts. The McMaster Peer Tutoring Network is an initiative made by possible by the Student Life Enhancement Fund.

Find a Tutor

Are you a McMaster undergraduate student? We can help you find a tutor and can provide you with a coupon code to lower your tutoring fee. To receive your subsidy coupon, email skills@mcmaster.ca

How to Find a Tutor

  • Access the McMaster Peer Tutoring Network.
  • Search for a tutor using the course code you need help with (e.g., MATH 1A03).
  • Read the profiles of tutors who appear in the results. Tip: Look for tutors who are “McMaster Certified” and have received training.
  • Choose a tutor and start a chat with them. If you think they will be a good fit for you, schedule a tutoring session!
  • After your tutoring session, rate your tutor or write a short review on their HelpHub profile. Be sure to tell them when they’ve done a great job!

Tips

  • Find a meeting spot in a well-lit public area, such as a library or coffee shop.
  • Let a friend or roommate know where you are going and who you are meeting. Leave his/her/their contact information.
  • Ask tutors for references.
  • Know what you’re looking for: How often do you want to meet with your tutor? Are you open to working with a small group? When are you available? What is your goal for the tutoring session?
  • Remember that you aren’t obligated to stay with the same tutor. Sometimes two people don’t work well together. If you don’t feel you and your tutor are the right fit, it’s okay to find a new tutor!
  • Keep checking the database for tutors. New tutors are added on a regular basis, so check again if you don’t find what you need right away.

Is there a fee for tutoring?

The McMaster Peer Tutoring Network offers affordable access to tutoring. While private tutoring can be costly, our network is subsidized so that undergraduate students pay only $10 (USD) per hour. Tutors earn $15 (USD) per hour of tutoring. While tutors who use HelpHub are typically charged a 15% commission fee, the subsidy provided by the Student Life Enhancement Fund (SLEF) covers this fee.

All payment transactions are completed online through HelpHub’s payment system (PayPal or credit card). The fee subsidy has been made possible by the Student Life Enhancement Fund. Please note that all fees for tutoring are in US funds.

How do I get a coupon?

To receive your subsidy coupon, email skills@mcmaster.ca. You will receive a coupon code which you can redeem in your HelpHub account. Doing this will create a credit on your account, and you can then pay your tutor directly through HelpHub.

When should I look for a tutor?

  • When you first experience difficulty with course concepts
  • When you need to improve your grades
  • When you are struggling with a specific problem or topic
  • When you can’t find help elsewhere (e.g., your professor or TA’s office hours)
  • When you need extra motivation to study

We recommend not waiting until exam time to find a tutor. It can be difficult to catch up at the end of the term, and it might also be hard to find an available tutor. Start looking for a tutor as soon as you need one!

Can tutors do my work for me?

Absolutely not. Submitting work that is not your own, or completing someone else’s work, is a breach of McMaster’s Academic Integrity Policy. Tutors can help you understand concepts, prepare for exams, and develop deeper thinking skills, but they can’t give you answers or complete your work for you.

Who are the tutors?

Tutors in the Peer Tutoring Network are undergraduate students who have successfully completed the course for which they tutor. They must have achieved a minimum grade of a B+ (or 9) in order to become a tutor.

Are tutors trained?

All tutors in the Peer Tutoring Network have the option to receive tutor training. This training will enhance tutors’ skills to make them more effective tutors and communicators. Tutors who complete the training requirements are identified as “McMaster Certified Tutors” on their tutoring profile.

Tutors can also receive optional ongoing training on additional topics throughout the semester.

What if I don’t like my tutor?

Remember that you are not obligated to stay with a tutor. Some people just don’t work well together, or you might have a need your tutor can’t meet. If you don’t feel comfortable with your tutor or you don’t think you will work well together, feel welcome to look for a new tutor. We also encourage you to leave a review on your tutor’s HelpHub profile.

I can’t find a tutor. Does that mean there aren’t any available?

Not necessarily. Sometimes the search terms you are using might be different from the terms in a tutor’s profile; for instance, you might be searching for “psychology” while the tutor advertises “psych”. You or the tutor might have also made a typo or spelling mistake. If you can’t find a tutor, email skills@mcmaster.ca and we will help you find one.

Why am I charged for tutoring in US dollars rather than Canadian dollars?

All payment transactions are completed online through HelpHub’s payment system (PayPal or credit card).  Currently, this system operates in US dollars.  While this may appear to be a drawback, the Student Success Centre and McMaster Students Union selected HelpHub because overall it is a leading tutor-matching platform available to effectively connect tutors and learners.

Some banks charge a service fee per US transaction; please consult with your banking institution so that you are not surprised by additional fees.

As a tutor, should I claim the money I make from tutoring on my income tax return?

Yes – money made from tutoring is taxable income and should be reported.  If you require help completing your tax return, the Student Success Centre offers support during the winter semester.

Did you know that McMaster students who use our network only pay $10 (USD) per hour?

Get the coupon code to subsidize the rest of the tutoring fee by emailing skills@mcmaster.ca. Note: Only one coupon may be used for each tutoring hour. Students may redeem a maximum of five coupons per semester.

Become a Tutor

McMaster peer tutors earn $15 (USD) per hour. Tutors are required to have successfully completed the course they would like to tutor with a grade of at least B+ (9 on McMaster’s 12-point scale). You must provide a transcript showing your final grade.

Gain teaching and leadership experience

Help other McMaster students

Receive professional training on tutoring and leadership

Improve your own grades and content knowledge

Add skills and experience to your resume and grad school applications

Earn money! Tutors receive $15 (USD) for every hour of tutoring

How to Apply

If you are interested in becoming a tutor, send the following information to skills@mcmaster.ca:

Name:
McMaster email:
Course(s) you want to tutor (example: PSYCH 1X03):

You will also need to provide an unofficial transcript which shows your final grades for the courses you wish to tutor. Please cover up (e.g., using black marker) any unnecessary information, including your student number, address, birthday, and grades for courses you do not wish to tutor. We need only your name and necessary grades.

You can also email skills@mcmaster.ca for more information.

Tutor Training

We offer optional training for our peer tutors to enhance your qualifications and will identify you as a McMaster-Certified Tutor. This certification will appear on your tutoring profile and may increase the amount of business you get from students seeking tutors. Training is six hours in length and offered twice each semester.

 

By participating in tutor training, McMaster tutors will be able to:

Identify the scope of peer tutoring at McMaster University

Define peer tutoring roles and responsibilities

Analyze tutoring situations where ethical choices are made

Plan tutor sessions

Communicate effectively as a tutor

Understand how learning disabilities might impact tutoring sessions

Keep in Mind…

We screen tutors to ensure that individuals have achieved at least a 9 in any courses for which they are offering tutoring services but otherwise McMaster University is not responsible for the integrity or quality of tutors/students. This service is provided as an information connection only. Tutoring is not a substitute for attending class.

Notice for Applications

The information gathered by the Student Success Centre for the Peer Tutoring Network is collected under the authority of The McMaster University Act, 1976.  The information is used only for the purposes of administering the Student Success Centre’s Academic Skills service and, on occasion, for statistical purposes. Personal student information provided will not be used for any unrelated purpose without the consent of the student. This information is protected and is being collected pursuant to section 39(2) and section 42 of the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act of Ontario (RSO 1990).  Questions regarding the collection or use of this personal information should be directed to the Manager, Student Development, Student Success Centre, Gilmour Hall, Room 110, McMaster University.

For complete details, review the McMaster University Policy on the Collection of Personal Information.

Notice for HelpHub

HelpHub is a third-party website that requires users to share private information, such as your McMaster email address, in order to connect with tutors.  It is your responsibility to make sure that you obtain any information which may be relevant to making a decision, and that you read the privacy and security policy on such third-party websites. McMaster University has no control over third-party websites and will not be liable for any loss or damage you suffer, whether directly or indirectly, as a result of your use of third-party websites. You agree that where you access third party websites you do so entirely at your own risk. McMaster University is not responsible for any fees/payments outstanding.

For more details, we encourage you to read the HelpHub Terms of Service and the HelpHub Privacy Policy.

One-on-One

We offer one-on-one academic support services at the Student Success Centre. Book a free 30 minute consult on OSCARplus.