Inclusive one-to-one tutorials

One-to-one tutorials are a way of building up students’ confidence in their academic ability. The tutor becomes more aware of the difficulties particular students may face eg international students who have studied under a different education system; mature students who haven’t studied for a long time; students with disabilities who are worried about how they will manage.


  • Ensure that the student understands the purpose of one-to-one tutorials.
  • Agree some ground rules with the student so that they know what they can expect of you as their tutor and what you expect of them.


  • Ensure the environment is accessible and private.
  • Consider the timing of your tutorial. For some students some times may
  • not be possible eg a student may need to collect their children from nursery. If it is in the middle of a busy day the student then they may be too anxious to participate fully in the tutorial. Negotiate the time with the student.
  • Communication
  • Consider how you communicate with the student. Give them time to think and respond. Listen to what they are saying. It may be useful to paraphrase back to them.
  • Offer the student the opportunity to tape the session.
  • You may agree with the student to take notes or they may like to take notes.
  • Be clear at the end of the tutorial on any future action that needs to be taken by you and/or the student.
  • Be sensitive to cultural differences including different cultural expectations. Some international students may not have had experience of using a tutor for support. They may need help in communicating openly and freely.
  • Look out for students failing to cope. Pick up on cues. Is the reason they are failing to cope related to distressing individual circumstances, disability or a medical condition, unrecognised dyslexia, being in an unfamiliar setting? Refer them on to further help.
  • Be aware of the issues around disclosure of disabilities.


  • Be aware of the resources within the university available to the student eg Student Disability Service; International Student Advisory Service.
  • The student may like support in making the first contact with a support service.

Further information