The linked article’s title is great for a start, but what I’m troubled by is the buried survey results on tutoring and what they call “remedial work.” I’m perfectly willing to admit that tutoring can rise to the level of remedial work, but why do we need to attached such an emotionally charged word as “remedial” to what amounts to learning support?
My campus’ learning center embraces what I think is a healthier attitude toward learning support in the development of its tutoring and Supplemental Instruction (SI) programs. I suspect most university campus do the same, but here tutors and SI instructors aren’t simply finding remedies to educational ailments afflicting students who come to the center. They practice approaches that bridge gaps between learning styles and teaching styles. Similarly, our writing center isn’t simply a place to go have your paper spell-checked. To our writing center, good writing is good thinking and they want to be involved to provide support to students from the beginning–whether it’s brainstorming a paper’s topic or identifying the appropriate citation style, the writing center aims to support the student in a learner-centered way.
Maybe I’m wrong, but the article seemed to stigmatize the idea of learning support…and it bugged me.