With the price tag of a college education continuing to rise, college students are looking for opportunities to receive both additional help with their schoolwork and earn money at their own convenience.
A group of Stanford and Vanderbilt students have recently developed a new mobile tutoring app called Sesh that aims to better accommodate the needs of most college students with their busy schedules and odd study patterns. Sesh offers peer-to-peer, on-demand tutoring that is intended to provide struggling college students with a flexible and safe resource for learning.
Different from other professional college tutoring services that have tutors with only general subject knowledge, Sesh is designed to provide students with instruction based on their particular class. Tutors at Sesh will have already taken the class that the student is currently in. Therefore, students will have a tutor that is familiar with the important topics of the class and the style of the professor. Having this extra value of a tutor with intimate knowledge and experience in a specific course is something that makes Sesh extremely appealing for many college students.
Sesh matches students with tutors based on the classes and assignments that students provide the app. When a student request a “sesh,” a notification will be sent to all appropriate tutors and Sesh’s algorithm will match up the student with the tutor who is his or her best match. The tutor will then be able to express his or her availability and the tutor and the student will be able to message each other to find the best meeting time and place.
Sesh’s tutors charge students a competitive $20 per hour rate, which is less than most other college tutoring. This makes Sesh’s tutoring sessions a win-win proposition for all, since the tutor is able to make some extra money and the student is getting instructed by someone who has unique insights into how to succeed in their specific course at an affordable price.
One of Sesh’s major areas for concern is assuring a high quality product for both students and tutors. In order to make sure that students are having helpful experiences, Sesh makes sure that all of its tutors are screened before becoming active, with the requirement that he or she has demonstrated a high level of academic achievement. Additionally, tutors are held accountable by post-session evaluations by students that rate their tutor’s knowledge, helpfulness, and friendliness. Tutors must maintain a four-star rating in order to continue to work as a tutor for Sesh.
Another potential area of concern for Sesh is in protecting its integrity with regard to university honor codes. There are worries that the temptation to cheat and share old exams and papers will give students using Sesh an unfair advantage over other students who cannot afford such services. Sesh’s response is that it will instruct and enforce its tutors to operate within the honor code of their respective university, and that strict protocols have been established to remove tutors if they are found to have engaged in unethical practices.
Sesh has already launched at both Stanford and Vanderbilt, and according to Northwestern campus representative Grant Cohen, Sesh currently has 14 campus representatives from across the country that are working on signing up tutors in preparation for their own launches. Cohen also explained that with 40 students already signed up as tutors at Northwestern, it is likely that Sesh will launch at Northwestern in the coming months.
Sesh Tutoring can be found at: