Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Private tuition provides little help

12.09.2013
Around one sixth of school children in German-speaking Switzerland receive private tutoring. Mostly they seek assistance with mathematics. In contrast to the perceptions of those tutored, tutoring rarely results in any improvement in their marks. This has been demonstrated by a representative study funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF).

How widespread is private tuition, and does it improve marks? To answer this question, a team led by educational scientist Hans-Ulrich Grunder from the University of Basel and the School for Teacher Education FHNW conducted a survey of more than 10,000 pupils in classes 5 to 9 at schools in German-speaking Switzerland. Their marks and abilities were compared at three-month intervals.

Of those surveyed, 17% received private tuition. This figure is slightly below that of other European countries. Girls were more likely to receive tutoring than boys (19% compared to 16%, with the most marked difference at the primary school level (21% compared to 17%)). The reason is that most assistance is sought for mathematics (69%). In this subject, three quarters of tutored students are girls. Boys receive more private tuition in languages.

Private study centres almost twice as expensive as individual tutors
Children of parents who are socially and economically advantaged are more likely to receive private tuition at private study centres. In contrast, children in families of a lower socio-economic standing more frequently are tutored by private individuals. Attendance at private study centres costs CHF 48 per hour on average, while private individuals charge CHF 25.

The most commonly cited reason for making use of private tuition is to improve marks. This is followed by an increased feeling of security in the subject, a general improvement in performance and meeting parents’ wishes to attend private tuition. During tutoring sessions, most of those surveyed prepare for examinations and do homework. The desire to go back through teaching materials at a speed that matches the student’s abilities is widespread.

Reduced methodological abilities
Most of the children surveyed indicate that their performance in the subjects in which they were tutored has improved. While there is an improvement in marks obtained in mathematics, German and French, this is extremely slight. There is no discernible effect of private tuition across all subjects. Private tutoring from individuals improves the student’s methodological ability, i.e. the capacity to approach a problem from a considered point of view and resolve it by following a structured methodology. This ability is reduced among those attending private study centres.

On the basis of these findings, Hans-Ulrich Grunder recommends that the status of private tuition be reconsidered. It would no longer be necessary if children and young adults were systematically educated in day schools where they do homework at the end of the school day. The fact that private tuition is employed demonstrates that schools are not completely fulfilling their role of initiating the learning process in children and guiding them through it.

Publication
H.-U. Grunder, N. Gross, A. Jäggi, M. Kunz: Nachhilfe. Eine empirische Studie zum Nachhilfeunterricht in der deutschsprachigen Schweiz. Klinkhardt-Verlag, Bad Heilbrunn 2013. 218 p.

(PDF available from: com@snf.ch)

Contact
Prof. Dr. Hans-Ulrich Grunder
Forschungs- und Studienzentrum für Pädagogik (FSP) (Centre for Educational Studies) of the University of Basel and the School for Teacher Education FHNW
Riehenstrasse 154
4058 Basel
Phone: +41 79 821 29 58
E-Mail: hansulrich.grunder@unibas.ch

Abteilung Kommunikation | idw
Further information:
http://www.snsf.ch

More articles from Science Education:

nachricht Studying outdoors is better
06.02.2018 | Technische Universität München

nachricht Classroom in Stuttgart with Li-Fi of Fraunhofer HHI opened
03.11.2017 | Fraunhofer-Institut für Nachrichtentechnik, Heinrich-Hertz-Institut, HHI

All articles from Science Education >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Developing reliable quantum computers

International research team makes important step on the path to solving certification problems

Quantum computers may one day solve algorithmic problems which even the biggest supercomputers today can’t manage. But how do you test a quantum computer to...

Im Focus: In best circles: First integrated circuit from self-assembled polymer

For the first time, a team of researchers at the Max-Planck Institute (MPI) for Polymer Research in Mainz, Germany, has succeeded in making an integrated circuit (IC) from just a monolayer of a semiconducting polymer via a bottom-up, self-assembly approach.

In the self-assembly process, the semiconducting polymer arranges itself into an ordered monolayer in a transistor. The transistors are binary switches used...

Im Focus: Demonstration of a single molecule piezoelectric effect

Breakthrough provides a new concept of the design of molecular motors, sensors and electricity generators at nanoscale

Researchers from the Institute of Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry of the CAS (IOCB Prague), Institute of Physics of the CAS (IP CAS) and Palacký University...

Im Focus: Hybrid optics bring color imaging using ultrathin metalenses into focus

For photographers and scientists, lenses are lifesavers. They reflect and refract light, making possible the imaging systems that drive discovery through the microscope and preserve history through cameras.

But today's glass-based lenses are bulky and resist miniaturization. Next-generation technologies, such as ultrathin cameras or tiny microscopes, require...

Im Focus: Stem cell divisions in the adult brain seen for the first time

Scientists from the University of Zurich have succeeded for the first time in tracking individual stem cells and their neuronal progeny over months within the intact adult brain. This study sheds light on how new neurons are produced throughout life.

The generation of new nerve cells was once thought to taper off at the end of embryonic development. However, recent research has shown that the adult brain...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

2nd International Conference on High Temperature Shape Memory Alloys (HTSMAs)

15.02.2018 | Event News

Aachen DC Grid Summit 2018

13.02.2018 | Event News

How Global Climate Policy Can Learn from the Energy Transition

12.02.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Stiffness matters

22.02.2018 | Life Sciences

Magnetic field traces gas and dust swirling around supermassive black hole

22.02.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

First evidence of surprising ocean warming around Galápagos corals

22.02.2018 | Earth Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>