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Getting a tutor to help you solve physics or mathematics problems

  1. Aug 4, 2010 #1
    This may seem strange because I don't know about laws of cheating in every country.
    When our teacher assigns us a homework he says it's ok to get an outside tutor to help you understand the problem provided that when we write the solution we do it in our own way and be able to explain it. Is this the main stream of courses because other professors only allow you to ask questions to them or the TA but you know this seems like whining that I rather bring me a tutor with the teaching style I like and not be confined to two people.
    What do you think?
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 4, 2010 #2
    I think, and I hope others agree, that there is a distinct difference from when a tutor gives you an answer or a tutor gives you hints or strategies to solving the problem. Or even the tutor giving you a similar problem and going through that step by step. You are probably smart enough to know when you're just copying an answer or trying to figure it out. So even if a professor explicitly says "you can only get help from me or the ta" - which seems odd enough for frankly professors only care about,at best, you understanding the material - I say go ahead and do what you need to do to learn the most efficiently. Big brother isn't watching you - its simply about learning, and just that.
  4. Aug 4, 2010 #3


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    It seems completely reasonable to be able to see a tutor for advice on how to solve problems. It also seems ridiculous to limit you to only talking to the prof or TA: In my experience it's basically expected that you'll be working with your peers on most of the problems.
  5. Aug 4, 2010 #4


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    Replace "solve" with "understand" in the title, and you're good to go.
  6. Aug 5, 2010 #5
    Oh I see thank you for your replies.
    Did it occur to anyone here an incident where he/she found that he cannot understand the materials completely from the prof or ta because their teaching styles weren't suitable for him so he had to get a tutor?
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