Book Review of Dave Lochtie, Emily McIntosh, Andrew Stork and Ben Walker (2018) Effective Personal Tutoring in Higher Education

  • Gwenda Mynott
Keywords: Personal tutoring


While higher education is going through a period of turbulent change driven by the Teaching Excellence Framework and Student Outcomes Framework (TEF), the refinement of the widening participation agenda, not to mention the Augar funding review, how we support students continues to be a perennial topic of discussion and contention. Effective Personal Tutoring offers a timely reminder of the role personal tutoring (PT) can play in supporting students but also of the complexity of PT models and practice.   It is worth reminding ourselves that the regulatory framework for HE states that students should be “supported to access, succeed in, and progress from, HE” (Office for Students, 2018: 14). The metrics applied by institutions to deliver on the TEF agenda such as attendance, progression, satisfaction and retention all need monitoring and supporting and it can be argued that PT plays a key role in doing this. This is the context of this book.

 Effective Personal Tutoring complements Becoming an Outstanding Personal Tutor, which was developed specifically for Critical Publishing’s Further Education series (Stork and Walker, 2015). It applies a similar structure and draws on parallel principles. One of the over-arching ideas is that to be an effective personal tutor requires applying the principles to be an effective academic lecturer. These principles include listening and relating to people, sound pedagogy and subject expertise. The focus here is on a holistic approach to supporting student success and takes a student-centred approach throughout. [Review continues]