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Greg Buchanan A-level English Tutor (West Central London)

Greg Buchanan Gold Member

  • Westminster (WC2H)
  • Last Logged In: 24 Jul 2015
  • Sex: Male
  • Web site: www.buchanantuition.com/
  • Can Travel To: Croydon, Epsom and Ewell, Kingston upon Thames, Merton, Reigate and Banstead, Sutton
Contact Me View My Full Profile
Personal Message
I am a highly experienced specialist English Literature and BMAT Section 3 tutor and academic currently studying for a doctorate at King's College London, having completed my Master's and Undergraduate degrees at the University of Cambridge.
Which subject(s) do you teach?
I teach English Literature and also teach students preparing for section 3 of the BMAT exam.

I offer tuition not only to support student’s school education, but am available for complete teaching courses for home-schooled students or students taking qualifications outside of school, and have authenticated coursework for both OCR and AQA exam boards. I can also liaise with teachers if you wish, as some parents have requested in the past.
Tell me about your qualifications.
2011 – Present : PhD in English Literature at King’s College London
2010 – 2011: M.Phil in American Literature at Pembroke College, University of Cambridge
2007-2010: BA (Hons) in English at Pembroke College, University of Cambridge
2000-2007: Wilson’s Grammar School
Advanced Extension Award: English (Distinction)
A2 Levels: (Classical Civilisation A, History A , English Literature A)
AS Levels: (Classical Civilisation A, History A, English Literature A, Philosophy A)
GCSE: A* Information Technology (Top Five in country)
GCSE: A*-Grades (Mathematics, English Language, English Literature, Science Double Award, Religious Education, History, Art, Latin); A-Grade (French)

I have an article on 20th century experimental fiction due to published in an academic collection by Palgrave and spoke at the 2013 International Conference on Narrative.
What kind of experience do you have?
I have extensive tuition experience with students ranging from GCSE to AS and A2 level in English Literature and English Language, and to third-year undergraduate level in English Literature. I am experienced with all major exam specifications at GCSE, iGCSE, and A-Level, as well as some undergraduate courses at a variety of institutions. I also have BMAT (writing) and Common Entrance (13+) English experience. I have been contacted for help with tasks as varied as last-minute revision help, intensive summer and half-term revision programmes, long-term weekly tuition, coursework help, and even to create original programmes of teaching for those students who wish to generally expand their knowledge of the subject in ways they would not be able to in school.

In 2012 I began teaching undergraduates at King’s College London for the module ‘Introducing Literary Theories’, leading classes, marking coursework, and marking exam papers. The course introduces first-term students, fresh out of A-Levels, to complex theories of literature from such thinkers as Ferdinand de Saussure and Karl Marx, Jacques Derrida and Paul de Man, encompassing feminism, Marxism, and a whole host of theories, including those surrounding the ‘Death of the Author’.

In 2010 I worked as Graduate Assistant to the Ted Hughes Conference and as General Co-ordinator for the International Programmes at Pembroke College, University of Cambridge.
How much do you charge?
I charge a flat rate fee of £60p/h for all tuition sessions.
Where do you teach?
I mainly teach online.
When are you available?
The majority of my tuition is carried out on weekday afternoons.
Which ages and levels do you teach?
I teach GCSE students and above all the way to adult learners, although I can sometimes make exceptions for some KS2 students.
Do you have an up-to-date DBS (Disclosure & Barring Service, formerly CRB) Certificate?
Yes
Describe your arrangements for online tutoring.
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WHY ONLINE?
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“It’s somewhat like learning to speak a foreign language — you conduct the language lessons in the language being learned, you learn French by speaking French, not by speaking English.”

The majority of my tuition sessions are carried out online via Skype using text chat in order to force my students to communicate in written English. BMAT Section 3, English Literature, the ELAT, and other exams I tutor all require written English in this manner, not spoken English which is irrelevant to many of the tasks at hand and which can hide poor essay skills.

I have tried various methods since beginning my tuition business — travelling out to students, having students at our home for tuition sessions, and webcam-based video chat — yet none of them have produced the results that text-based online tuition has. For all of the subjects I teach (with the exception of Oxbridge interview practice, for which I do utilise webcam and sound chat, and for Speaking and Listening controlled assessments), the primary mode of expression in which students are assessed is their written essay style. I have encountered many students whose ability to talk out loud about texts is at a much higher or lower level than their ability to write about texts, and unfortunately, therefore, much time is wasted in verbal face-to-face discussion honing skills that have little to do with essay writing and the end results of English Literature, Classical Civilisation, Personal Statements, or BMAT Section 3 tasks.

Therefore, I devised my online text-based tuition method that uses text-based chat as my primary mode of tuition, switching only to webcam or sound when text is unsuitable for the task at hand. Although it may initially seem counter-intuitive for some, this method produces the best results with less time wasted in the student travelling or in face-to-face discussions that fail to result in any real changes in grades.

Essays and materials are exchanged via email and Skype’s ‘Send File’ function, electronically marked by hand, and payments for sessions currently made by online or in-branch bank transfer.
Do you belong to any professional organisations?
I am a member of the Tutor's Association and a member of the International Society for the Study of Narrative.
Where and with whom did you train?
King's College London (2015) - PhD in English Literature (Ongoing) (Doctorate)
Pembroke College, University of Cambridge (2011) - M.Phil in American Literature (Masters)
Pembroke College, University of Cambridge (2007) - BA (Hons) in English (Bachelors)
Tell me about some of your current students.
I am currently tutoring a number of students for GCSE, A-Level, and undergraduate English Literature, alongside a stockbroker who wants to improve her knowledge of English Literature and a few students who require assistance with the essay task for the BMAT university admissions exam.

I have students who have requested my services themselves, such as the below:
"From Jack (5/5): (A-Level English) Greg is a first-class, wonderful tutor. I have been having weekly sessions as a private candidate for A-Level and for Literary Theory for approaching one year now and I have progressed and achieved far more than I thought possible in the time. Greg has an astounding knowledge of his subject and an extraordinary flair for teaching it. His lessons are always meticulously prepared and enjoyably challenging; one comes away from each lesson with a definite awareness that progress has been made and so with bolstered self-confidence. I have been especially impressed by Greg's ability to tailor our course of study to my individual requirements and desires. After enquiring as to my interests in Literary Theory at the outset of tuition, Greg has continually demonstrated how these theories interact with both one another and with the texts we have been covering for A-Level, exploring them alongside the A-Level texts with tailor-made exercises and suggestions for further reading, with the result that I have come away from each session feeling that I have progressed in both areas of interest in the time I had expected to cover merely one; Greg has greatly expanded my understanding of literature as a whole via a highly personalised and exceptionally stimulating course of A-Level study, and vice-versa. Worthy of special note is the online tuition method, which is remarkably effective, especially as it provides one with a transcript of the conversation which can be revisited at a later date, which is ideal when so much is covered in a short space of time. Aside from the lessons, themselves testament to a substantial out of hours commitment, Greg has been exceptionally helpful in organising the authentication of my A-Level coursework with the exam-board. As is imperative in a tutor, Greg is always friendly and unfailingly patient and supportive. It has been a pleasure to have him as a tutor, and I look forward to continuing sessions with him. An inspired tutor, I cannot recommend him highly enough."

Alongside students whose parents have requested my services:
"From Elaine (5/5): (GCSE English) Excellent! My daughter has only been attending sessions for a few weeks and we have already seen improvements not only in her work but in her confidence. Greg is very flexible in his style of teaching and listens to pupil and parent about what needs to be studied especially if doing a particular topic in school. What is also so very helpful to my daughter is that in Greg she now feels she has someone in her corner.
We have been very lucky to find Greg and we do appreciate him."

"From Lynne (5/5): (A-Level English) Greg is a true find and I feel privileged to have him as a tutor for my daughter. Lara had been struggling with essay structure and text analysis in her A2 English Language/Literature and Classical Civilisation. She was lacking motivation and confidence. Lara has only had a few sessions so far with Greg and already she has regained her passion for these subjects. She is now extremely motivated to succeed in her forthcoming examinations. Thanks to Greg's excellent teaching methods my daughter is more confident and understanding of her essay writing and text analysis, and is already improving on them.
Greg is a friendly, knowledgeable and passionate tutor. He is very dedicated, spending much of his own time preparing for sessions, as well as giving valuable help and feedback outside of these sessions whenever Lara needs it.
I would highly recommend Greg as a tutor.

Lara's place at Exeter University is now confirmed! Her English grade went up from a B to an A* and her Classics grade went up from a C to a B! A huge thank you, Greg, for all you have done in helping her to achieve this! She is over the moon."
Do you have a personal message for students?
As ranked by several online websites, I am currently rated as the best English Literature tutor in the UK; my methods are unique and unpracticed by any other tutor on the market, and combined with my long track record of producing excellent results and my high level of current up-to-date academic knowledge in the field, I would be happy to hear from you about your specific needs and requests and I will do my best to help you in any way I can.

For parents, some information below about how I can work with you throughout the tuition process:

I offer unparalleled premium tuition services with original and proven methods to help your children show exam boards, teachers, academic professors, and future employers what they can do. Being able to write effective English is not only a skill beneficial for secondary education; it is a skill for life.

Around 70% of my tuition sessions are booked by parents on behalf of their children. My tuition is for a range of abilities, including:
- Students who have fallen behind in their subject or find the subject naturally difficult, often including those who have greater aptitude for the sciences and are taking English as a compulsory option
- Students who want extra help to augment their school lessons, often achieving fine grades in class but wanting extra help to cement their subject knowledge and skills in a way that is just not possible in large classrooms
- Students who are gifted at the subject, and want the help of a university academic with years of experience in order to go beyond secondary level education and really be challenged at an important stage in their intellectual development.

There is no need to travel, wait in the car, or take any time out of your schedule at all — all our tuition is one-on-one, online and text-based, requiring minimal technological aptitude on your part, but fitting in with students’ modern text-based social media lives as a more natural form of English teaching than classrooms full of thirty or more students. And unlike the majority of English classrooms around the country, I am able to mark essays every week if submitted to me and provide in-depth feedback of the kind teachers simply do not have the time to complete any more.

Furthermore, on request, I can provide the following additional benefits to parents who book tuition for their children, at no extra charge:
- Liaising with your child’s teachers, if their teachers agree to it, in order to provide better synergy between work completed at home and in the classroom.
- Schemes of work for private candidates and home-schooled students
- Authentication for several exam boards for A-Level private candidates
- Progress reports at pre-arranged intervals
- Supplemental work that parents can help their children complete, taking better advantage of the periods between tuition sessions and allowing you to become their mentor, alongside their classroom teacher and myself as their English tutor.

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