Bangalore: TutorVista a new consumer Internet company was launched in November 2005, in education services space to bring twenty first century technology to education space by combining content, scientific pedagogy and global teachers.
TutorVista makes personalized education affordable, convenient and affordable - this goes a long way in helping solve the education crisis. Ã¢â‚¬Å“The big advantageÃ¢â‚¬, says Ganesh, CEO and Founder of Tutor Vista, Ã¢â‚¬Å“is that teachers from any corner of India that has Internet connection can use their skills to teach students based overseas, a trend that's sure to soar in tandem with the student-teacher ratio in the West.Ã¢â‚¬
To meet the spurting demand, TutorVista is on a Ã¢â‚¬Å“manic hiring spreeÃ¢â‚¬ tapping Indiaâ€˜s remotest corners to recruit and train another 2,000 teachers, doubling the companyâ€˜s tutor count. The company is trying to make it all happen in the next eight weeks, in time for the spring academic session in American schools.
Remote tutoring of American students in math, English and science is a trend nearly as old as outsourcing itself. But the latest twist to that story is that tutors can now work out of the comfort of their own homes without the pressures of commuting to work. TutorVista has potentially opened up a world of employment opportunities to qualified Indians who are homebound by choice or by circumstance by creating online teaching opportunities. With teachers pay packets being low, there is a dearth of teachers in many disciplines; problem is acute in many states.
It has become a career lifeline to those stuck in Indiaâ€˜s small towns where job options are limited. Already, TutorVistaâ€˜s tutors based in Faridkot (Punjab), Barmer (Rajasthan), Kohima (Nagaland), Kasargod (Kerala) and Anakapalli (Andhra Pradesh) are coaching American students from kindergarten to college. Ã¢â‚¬Å“Technology is making communication from small town-India to anywhere-United States seamless,Ã¢â‚¬ says Krishnan Ganesh, CEO and founder of TutorVista.
Mr.Ganesh goes on to add, Ã¢â‚¬TutorVista is Indiaâ€˜s largest remote employer. The company currently employs 1,500 tutors, and only half are in Indiaâ€˜s eight largest cities. Other tutors are scattered across 120 locations Ã¢â‚¬” towns and even villages Ã¢â‚¬” across India. Many of them are not teachers by profession. Subject knowledge, a degree, a computer and a broadband internet connection are the only pre-requisites.
Among the tutors are people who do not want or cannot get a full-time job. There are women taking a career break, stay-at-home moms, retired people and even fresh engineering graduates. There are physically disabled tutors, women with very small children and those confined to the house by illness.
Personalized coaching helps all categories - struggling students and those who excel. By having a lesson plan tailor-made for each student, TutorVista caters to all categories unlike classroom or group coaching that is designed for the common needs of the student groups.
TutorVista takes a few weeks to provide online training to the freshly-recruited tutors, helping them get comfortable with the whiteboard and digital pen, the subjects and the transition to international teaching methods. Voice and accent training is rarely necessary as the teaching is mainly through web chat and writing on the whiteboard.
Tests like SAT, ACT, other tests need various tips and techniques that are best taught individually. Maximizing the test score is as much about working smartly as it is about subject knowledge. SAT prep forms the largest chunk of revenues for Kaplan and Princeton review. No where is the need for individualized coaching as evident as it is in test prep. TutorVista makes it possible to offer 1-on-1 education at a fraction of cost charged by others by leveraging best resources.
Web 2.0 is a hot topic: As a Internet company leveraging the web 2.0 resurgence, TutorVista is a good example of how Internet, broadband, VOIP, and collaborative tools can be used to provide e-tuition to students worldwide. This would have been impossible to do effectively two years back. Only with the current technology can a tutor sitting on the other side of the world be able to help a student in US.
TutorVista is the first B2C company focused on the US market from India. Till now, all successful business models were B2B companies from India focusing on US companies. The company has raised over $ 18 mn in venture funding and caters to over 20,000 students in US and UK and employs over 1000 people across India. TutorVista recently entered the Indian education market through the acquisition of Edurite and formation of joint venture Manipal K-12 Education.
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