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Nicole O'Driscoll University English Tutor (Newcastle upon Tyne)

Nicole O'Driscoll Gold Member

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Personal Message
I have a warm, down-to-earth approach to teaching. It is important to me to form a good rapport with the student, and my aim is to encourage a passion for learning through my passion for teaching your subject.
Describe your arrangements for online tutoring.
Online tutoring is no problem -- my laptop has clear sound and we can see each other on webcam. It also means that we can look at several Word documents at the same time by sending each other attachments. If I set you assignments to work on, you can scan them to me to be marked and work on my feedback later.
Which subject(s) do you teach?
I provide study skills advice for exams and dissertations. I teach English Literature up to postgraduate level, and English language up to A Level. Health and Social Care up to degree level. Psychology up to A level. Philosophy up to A/AS level. Study skills and academic consultancy at any level. This list is not exhaustive -- in the first year of my degree I was required to study three subjects before I specialised in English, so this gives my tutoring a broad scope in terms of subject. I have taught physical drama at a maximum security prison, and have studied it extensively from undergrad to PhD level. My other subject areas date back to my studies in Ireland, where I received primary and secondary education.
Tell me about your qualifications.
I qualified first as an adult nurse, then as a mental health nurse. My qualifications in English range from 1st Class Honours for my Bachelors Degree, a Distinction for my Masters Degree, and highly commended PhD. I am also qualified to teach Ashtanga Yoga.
What kind of experience do you have?
My experience ranges first from teaching at University of Newcastle; a year's teaching at a maximum security prison, and private tutoring from my own home or at the student's home. Some of the best of my experience comes from talking about subjects and how they relate to the here and now. These conversations allow the student to show off their teaching skills by explaining concepts and debating topics that are very relevant to our lives.
How much do you charge?
My fees range from £25 for a primary school student to £35 - £45 for university level. GCSE is £25 and AS/A Level is £30. Fees tend to balance each other out so I always offer a lower fee to families who find it difficult to afford private tuition for their child. If I travel to the student's home I cover the first four miles, then I ask that the remaining travel cost be added to my fee.
Where do you teach?
I teach in my own home, at the student's home, and sometimes in Bristol Central Library or another quiet spot where we can get a nice hot beverage. Bath is the furthest I tend to travel outside of Bristol for single hour sessions, but I can travel longer distances if we combine sessions into longer periods. I do tend to be busy so please contact me sooner rather than later if you decide that you'd like to work with me. The more notice I have, the more flexible I can be. I am also available for short 'residential' type tutoring -- if you need me to come and work with you for a whole weekend or few days during the week, I would be delighted to arrange that. In these cases, my client covers my travel and accommodation expenses. Where, when and how often I tutor can depend on how my availability is at that particular period, but I always try to find a compromise that suits us both.
When are you available?
I am available from morning to evening, five days a week including one weekend day. Again, I try to be as flexible as possible in offering the times and days that suit you.

I am available for summer/christmas learning and summer/christmas refresher tutoring.
Which ages and levels do you teach?
From 5 to 90! I am delighted to work with anyone who wants or needs help to deepen their learning of a single subjects or of a whole range of scholarly 'catching up.' I can help you with writing your dissertation, or with last minute exam study, and anything in between.
Which qualifications do you prepare your students for?
GCSEs, A/AS Levels, undergraduate degree and masters degree exams and dissertations.
Do you have an up-to-date DBS (Disclosure & Barring Service, formerly CRB) Certificate?
My CRB has been renewed every two years for the past 10 years.
Do you belong to any professional organisations?
The Tutors' Association
Where and with whom did you train?
University College Dublin, BA; York University, MA; University of Newcastle, PhD; John Scott and Manju Jois, Ashtanga yoga teacher training, meditation, breath work. The Disabilities Trust, skills for teaching students with special learning needs. Northeastern Healthboard Training Hospital, Drogheda, Co. Louth, Ireland, nursing.
Tell me about some of your current students.
My regular students work with me to improve their English (because it is not their first language); they want to have the same opportunity to go to university as a native English speaker. Some of my students work with me to improve their writing and study skills because they have dyslexia, other forms of learning difficulties or mental illness. I then work with some A Level English Literature students who have been provisionally offered a place at their university of choice; we have to build a good rapport and work well together to make sure that they are accepted. If you'd like to see some references and testimonials I'd be delighted to forward them to you on request.
Do you have a personal message for students?
Well the first thing to say is that even if you enjoy school/university, it can feel as though it will never end. The opposite is the case -- those precious years of learning fly by, and before you know it you have to make career decisions. I believe in helping my students to find their passion for learning -- yes, it's important to pass the exams and graduate, and that is what my teaching focuses on. However, the additional focus of my teaching is to make learning fun and exciting, just for its own sake. By focusing on the deeper meanings of your subject, you learn more about yourself and the world. I will be delighted to see your grades rise and for you to progress to the next stage, and my aim is to help you do that by encouraging you to stretch your learning by thinking outside of the curriculum.