01. Does in-person tuition take place at home?
02. Do your tutees have minimum/maximum age limits?
03. What geographical areas do you cover?
Bespoke Tuition’s central branch is in London where we have offices in Fulham and Mayfair and can provide our full range of tutoring services. (more info)
Bespoke Tuition’s second largest presence is in Hong Kong where we import a team of UK Qualified teachers each academic year and arrange for them to work with students at their family home by the hour. (more info)
Worldwide “travelling tutors”:
For families who regularly travel, we can provide experienced tutors to accompany a family abroad and ensure academic continuity. Wherever you plan to go in the world, for whatever duration, we can provide well matched tutors who will tailor an educational programme in line with your objectives and requirements. (more info)
04. How many tutors do you have on a regular basis?
05. How will you show us prospective candidates?
Having discussed a family's requirements, Bespoke Tuition sends a 4 page profile of any suitable tutors with customised quote which will include the following:
- agency appraisal of the tutor concerned
- photograph and full education background
- case studies detailing previous tuition assignments
- written feedback from parents who have previously hired the tutor
- a list of skill-building areas in which tutor can offer support (eg critical thinking, time management, exam technique)
- a personal message written by the tutor describing their approach
Having been sent a personally matched tutor profile, families are given the opportunity to speak with the tutor prior to having a trial tutorial in person or online. Example tutor profiles can be viewed on the website in the ‘Our Tutors’ section.
06. What is the average age of your tutors?
07. How do you select your tutors?
Bespoke Tuition receives an average of 10 applications per week from experienced, high-achieving tutors wishing to join our exclusive team. We have a discerning client base with exacting standards and our recruitment process is suitably rigorous and selective. Approximately 80% of tutors called for interview have at least two years’ tutoring experience and virtually all have attended Ivy League/world class universities such as Oxbridge, Imperial College London, Edinburgh, Brown, UCL, LSE, Cornell and Sorbonne.
Tutors must pass our criteria at each of the following stages to proceed to the next: • Stage 1 - Tutor applies via CV and cover letter
• Stage 2 – In-person one to one interview including: analysis of tutor’s experience and teaching/communication style role play exercises (eg tutor is given a blind exam question and asked to talk through how they would help a student to tackle it) multiple intelligence testing (based on Howard Gardner’s 7 intelligences model) analysis of the tutor’s pre prepared lesson plan which he/she is asked to deliver, personal motivations questioning discussion of Bespoke Tuition’s core values and tutor’s teaching philosophy
• Stage 3 – Qualifications check is undertaken and testimonials requested from previous employers
• Stage 4 – Bespoke Tuition registers the Tutor and conducts a renewed DBS background check if needed
• Stage 5 – The Tutor is sent a copy of Bespoke Tuition’s ‘Tutor Guidelines’ along with our Terms
• Stage 6 – A 4 page profile is composed on the tutor which will be used to present to prospective families
• Stage 7 – Bespoke MD sits in on occasional tutorials to monitor the tutor’s performance
• Stage 8 - Testimonials are regularly gathered from parents to use as feedback on our tutors
08. Do your tutors need minimum qualifications/experience?
09. What do you look for in your tutors?
Beyond academics, qualifications and tutoring/teaching experience, we seek tutors with charisma and an engaging personality as well as a drive to exceed expectations and sincere excitement at the prospect of making a difference to a child’s educational journey. On interviewing the tutor, we look for the following skillset and traits:
- An ability to explain a concept in multiple ways
- A lively yet composed communication style
- In-depth knowledge of curriculum and assessment objectives for chosen subjects
- A well-structured and methodical lesson plan delivered engagingly and concisely
- Natural professionalism, diplomacy and discretion
- A thirst for teaching creatively and inspiring/building confidence in young people
- Proven ability of developing personalised tutoring programmes
- A natural energy, spark and enthusiasm
- Added value – what will set them apart from other tutors?
Academic excellence is inevitably high in Bespoke Tuition’s recruitment criteria but we place equal importance on superb communication skills; tutors must be able to simplify concepts and transmit information in an informative yet engaging manner. The ‘added value’ element is key. As well as tutoring for exams, school entrance and other outcome-focused goals, Bespoke Tuition looks for tutors who can offer students the tools for lifelong learning where time and objectives allow - critical thinking, time management, organisation and memory techniques amongst others.
10. What references do you require? What vetting procedures do you undertake?
- Two references are requested: one employer, one character
- Testimonials from parents who have engaged the tutor previously are also requested
- Further vetting by Bespoke Tuition includes the checking of: --degree certificate --further qualifications --Enhanced DBS (criminal records check) --passport and visa (if applicable)
11. Does the tutor provide the teaching resources?
12. Does Bespoke Tuition have a universal style of teaching?
13. What drives your tutors?
14. How do I know that your tutors are good?
With a distinguished client base who expect the very best, Bespoke Tuition simply could not continue producing such positive outcomes and success stories, if the selected tutors were not of the very highest standard. Just as Bespoke Tuition has steadily grown predominantly via word of mouth by providing an exceptional service since 2010, the quality of the tutors also continues to rise year on year.
For every successful applicant, Bespoke Tuition composes a 4 page profile on his/her background and experience which is used to show to prospective families. Having been sent a tutor profile, families are given the opportunity to interview the tutor via telephone or skype before committing to a session. Example tutor profiles can be found on the website.
Only 15% of those who apply to Bespoke Tuition, on average, are called for interview. Bespoke Tuition deliberately keeps the team small so as to retain quality and offer the very highest standard of tuition. As part of the recruitment process, testimonials are requested from parents who have previously hired the tutor by way of a past performance review. We will simply not hire a tutor who has received negative feedback from previous employers.
Beyond a demonstrated ability in subject matter and excellent communication skills, the agency looks for additional areas in which tutors can add value such as: critical thinking, executive functioning, verbal/non-verbal reasoning, essay writing, exam technique, mentorship, learning disability experience, speech and language training as well as additional qualifications of relevance (eg CELTA, TEFL, PGCE, Phonics training etc.)
Once a tutor has passed Bespoke’s recruitment processes and has earned his/her place on the team, he/she must receive consistently positive feedback from our families in order to remain a member of the highly regarded team. A selection of comments written by parents who have hired our tutors over the last few years can be viewed on the ‘Testimonials’ page of the website.
15. How do you retain your tutors?
16. What are your charges?
We offer both standard and premium rate tutors – all tutors are ranked based on their experience, qualifications and track record of success. Customised quotes are provided on tutor profiles that are emailed to families upon request. All quotes are inclusive of the tutor's pay and the agency's fees.
Hourly tuition in the UK commences at £45 per hour. An additional £15 per hour is charged for an additional student sharing a lesson. In Hong Kong, our standard hourly rate is 850 HKD per hour. Worldwide, our live-in residential packages start from £1100 per week plus full board and flights. These rates vary according to the nature and demands of the assignment as well as the experience/qualifications of the tutor.
17. What is the payment procedure?
18. What happens in the first session?
19. How can parents help to make the first tutorial a success?
Families can help our tutors to make well-informed appraisals of a student’s level and goals prior to a first tutorial or early on in the process by providing the tutor with any or all of the following information where relevant:
- Key learning objectives and end-goals
- School reports/School teacher feedback
- Learning assessments or EdPsych reports
- Dates of any pending exams or tests
- Curriculum, exam board and challenges of current year group
- Textbooks that the student uses at school
- List of any relevant target schools or universities
- Samples of student’s work
- Details of school’s intranet if it posts relevant information on school assignments etc.
- Details of any known/suspected learning difficulties & how they might impact the student’s learning
- A quiet, allocated workspace conducive to learning that is kept organised and tidy Some parents may also wish to connect the tutor with the student’s schoolteacher so as to ensure consistent teaching/tutoring methods and also to better inform the tutor of the student’s challenges but naturally this is entirely optional and not always appropriate.
20. Will I be tied to a fixed number of sessions?
21. What feedback is provided?
Clients receive a comprehensive monthly lesson report written by the tutor including: a summary of content covered; identification of any strengths/weaknesses; explanation of any successful learning/teaching techniques; details of progress made plus areas for improvement and any practical advice for the parent/caregiver. Reports are held on the client's online account which can be accessed anytime.
Once the student has completed 5 sessions with a tutor, Bespoke Tuition will send an automated request for feedback. We see this as a good period of time for clients to have assessed whether or not the Tutor is a good fit for the student and any comments are warmly welcomed. We will endeavour to rectify as soon as possible any aspect that clients are not completely satisfied with as soon as possible so it is important that you flag the good and the bad!
22. What is the cancellation policy?
23. My friend wants to hire my tutor. Should I connect them directly with the tutor?
24. Can parents choose a particular education approach?
25. Does Bespoke Tuition have an education philosophy?
Each family has their own perspective on education and we are of course obliged to follow their lead as our primary job is to propose a tutor whom we feel will fit well with a client's desired approach.
Whilst Bespoke Tuition recognises the importance of high achievement in examinations, we also believe in nurturing a love of learning and building confidence and study skills within our students. A successful assignment in our mind is to see a student walk away brimming with confidence and a personalised learning toolkit alongside better grades.
Ultimately, we aim to help students develop their own interest in and understanding of a subject so that they may maximise their enjoyment and realise, or exceed, their potential. Whilst we offer mentors who can offer daily support where required, far from creating a dependence on a tutor, our end goal is to equip students with the tools and techniques they require to discover and refine their own independent way of learning.
Bespoke Tuition was established to recognise and cater for the uniqueness of each student in their learning styles, challenges, motivations and potential. This is why we take such time and effort in getting to know our tutors and match them with suitable tutees. Our esteemed team of tutors are at the very heart of our business and we are here to support them as well as our clients every step of the way! Thank you for choosing Bespoke Tuition and we look forward to managing your tuition requirements.