Academic Support

Jennifer Hansen

On any given weekday (and especially before midterms and finals), SALT Center tutoring comes alive. Like a beehive buzzing with activity, students dart into the first floor of the Patricia A. Bartlett building to visit the Writer’s Lab for a quick review of an essay or drop by the Math & Science Lab for help with math equations. Just one flight above, the second floor of the salt Center is the hub of content tutoring, which offers support for specific UA courses. Here, our tutors demonstrate strategies that align with students’ individual learning preferences. Various techniques are shared according to which learning modality suits the student best, whether visual, auditory, or kinesthetic.

Our expanded space provides a comfortable setting for students and tutors to connect for hour-long sessions of learning and review. “Students love the new space,” says tutor Peter Becskehazy. Peter keeps a busy schedule tutoring a variety of subjects, from political science and religious studies to art, education, and geography. He also works in the Writer’s Lab, helping students who drop in for support with papers, essays, and more. “‘Peter the Great’ is an awesome tutor because he helps me with my papers,” shared student Jared Bereskin endearingly.

Becskehazy’s 33 years in the Foreign Service and extensive work in higher education have made him a well-rounded tutor who is committed to student success. As a life-long learner himself, Peter is enthusiastic about working with students, shaping their study skills, and broadening their content knowledge in a variety of subjects:

“I tell students to keep your eye on the prize, meaning their own educational success.”

Peter is just one of many excellent tutors that work at the SALT Center. The program employs approximately 80–100 tutors per semester, from both within the University and the greater Tucson community. As a College Reading and Learning Association (CRLA) certified organization, our tutors undergo formal training for up to three levels of tutor certification, facilitated by our Learning support services team. CRLA certification establishes the professional standards that embody our tutoring philosophy of independent learning.

Tutors work with students at their own pace, facilitating a partnership toward learning. Tutoring appointments are one hour in length, and standing appointments can be arranged, allowing students to work with the same tutor throughout the semester. Geoff Thames, Senior Coordinator for Learning Support Services, offers the following advice:

“Book [appointments] early and book often! Learning is a process that takes time. Tutors will be able to tailor their approaches for students through consistent meetings.”

Our tutors enjoy reinforcing their own learning and the intrinsic reward of helping others. Students enrolled in the SALT Center appreciate the relationship that they have with our tutors and the academic support that they provide each day of the semester. We are proud of the SALT Center tutoring staff that demonstrates unparalleled commitment and dedication to our students every day.

Learning Support Services Team, clockwise from top left: Geoff Thames, Stephen Ferris, Jenna Honan, Melissa Williams, Jason Harris Not pictured: Catherine Thompson

Learning Support Services Team, clockwise from top left: Geoff Thames, Stephen Ferris, Jenna Honan, Melissa Williams, Jason Harris Not pictured: Catherine Thompson

Types of tutoring sessions available to students
  1. One-on-one tutoring appointments
  2. Group tutoring sessions for two to three students in a common course
  3. Writer’s Lab
    1. Assistance for any writing assignment across the curriculum
    2. Drop-in visits and appointments are available
  4. Math & Science Lab
    1. Assistance for most math and math-based science courses, Pima Community College math courses, and the math placement exam through college-level algebra
    2. Drop-in visits and appointments are available
  5. Reading Tutoring
    1. Drop-in visits and appointments are available

For more information about SALT Center Tutoring, visit our website