Peer Tutoring: A New Way Forward After The COVID-19 Slide



Flex Tutors is committed to providing powerful solutions for students who have struggled in the wake of the pandemic, and we’re leveraging highly skilled and motivated high school students across the nation as peer tutors to help accomplish this goal. We’ve worked with school districts and principles across the country to foster peer to peer tutoring connections and are proud to share more about the discoveries we’ve made.


What is Peer Tutoring?

Peer tutoring is an academic relationship between two students in which one mentors and assists the other. We believe in the transformative power of Peer Tutoring as a post-pandemic recovery tool, and while we like to consider ourselves a trusted source of tutoring information, we aren’t alone in this belief. According to Inside Higher Ed, peer tutoring has been proven effective across multiple studies and is a method for academic recovery that should not go unnoticed by schools and families. There are numerous reasons for the effectiveness of peer tutoring, and this post will explore a few.


Peer Tutors Serve as Role Models

Unlike a professor or older tutor, peer tutors are more realistic role models for young students. Seeing peers succeeding is inspiring and motivating for students. Unlike in a traditional mentorship in which a significantly older student or an adult professional assists a student, peer mentorship fosters authentic connection between the student and the mentor. The student is more likely to view their tutor as a friend, even as an unofficial counselor, and the close relationship this creates has been shown to positively impact students’ academic performance.


Peer Tutoring is Highly Motivating

When paired with peers who they see as role models, peer tutoring can be a highly motivating experience for students. When one student admires and identifies with a more highly performing student, they are highly likely to strive for greater academic success. However, the motivation that peer tutoring cultivates extends beyond the social realm. Students are motivated by their peers for several distinct reasons that cannot be replicated by staff/student relationships:

  • Students are less intimidated by peers

  • Students are more likely to engage in discussions when being tutored by a peer

  • Peer tutoring reduces test anxiety, which increases motivation to perform well on tests

  • Students are more likely to engage with material on their own time


Peer Tutoring Removes the Stigma

While seeing a private tutor, students may feel insecure or ashamed. Unfortunately, many young students have internalized the notion that asking for help makes them less intelligent or means that they have failed. When being tutored by another student, the experience feels approachable, normal and safe. Having a peer assist them throughout the tutoring process can help remind them that seeking help is healthy and productive.


Peer tutoring is set apart from other forms of tutoring through the trust it fosters between students in the wake of some of the most challenging years of their lives. If your school is home to highly motivated students with a desire to help others, Flex Tutors would love to train them in peer tutoring so that more students can experience the powerful changes this method brings about. If you are a principal or superintendent interested in implementing peer tutoring at your school, we encourage you to reach out to Josh directly at josh@flextutors.org.

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