Who does GMG work with?
Galway Maths Grinds’ specialise in private tuition to second level students in maths, applied maths, physics and study skills, and to mature students returning to education after an absence from formal education. However, there is no typical student. Each is different and treated as an individual with their own specific requirements.
While the majority of clients are second level students, GMG works with students from diverse backgrounds. Because I am often asked do I work with primary level students, second or third level students, peole prepaing for professional exams, doing an MBA etc I thought it might be useful to give brief profiles of those I have worked with todate.
The bulk of my work is one-to-one but small groups are also catered for, and I am happy to take enquiries from groups of students who want to work together.
Second level students from first year up to leaving cert year are generally focused on getting to grips with the subject with the objective of obtaining good exam results in the Junior or Leaving Cert exams. Some just need help with one or two topics. Others need to overcome a fear of maths and pretty much have to cover the whole course. Others are already competend but want to improve to get the maximum marks in a particular exam. Most of these are local and attend classes in the evenings during the normal school year.
Regular students from further afield generally book seesions on Saturdays. Students from places like Westport or Roscommon would generally attend classes lasting two hours instead of the usual one to make up for the extra travelling time they would have compared to more local clients.
Mature students returning to formal education can have very varied requirements. A student who did an arts degree a few years ago and wants to brush up on their maths so that they can now do a computer programming course may have quite different requirements to a blocklayer who did not do leaving cert but now wants to do a college course.
GMG works with both aspiring and experienced teachers. I have worked with clients who needed to get maths in Leaving Cert in order to get into primary school teaching, and with higher diploma students who wanted to brush up before doing their teaching practice in a school. Another student needed help with a Post Leaving Cert (PLC) course in maths to gain entry to a teacher training college in England. The English college did not recognise the Leaving Cert despite it demanding a greater knowlegde of maths than the PLC course.
I had an experienced teacher down from Dublin who was asked to cover a subject he did not normally teach while a colleauge was on maternaty leave. His school paid for him to come to Galway for a weekend intensive course because he did not want to bump into any of his students while getting tuition.
People coming to GMG for help with professional exams usually just need a couple of sessions to cover their specific requirements. These have included people working in the financial and insurance sector. Another wanted to cover the City and Guilds equirements to do a Garda Collision investigation exam.
Mid august tends to be busy with third level students doing repeat exams. Because there are so many third level courses I normally ask them to email a copy of past papers for the exam they want to do and then I can get back to them with how much help I can give them. Many of these tend to leave it to the last minute and expect miracles.
MBA students tend to be more organised, an indication perhaps that they are learning succesfully on their choosen course.
So you can see there is no “typical” student profile.