Difference Between Tutoring and Educational Intervention

Tutoring usually focuses on the teaching of subject matter which is beneficial to reinforce concepts, clarify misconceptions through re-teaching and practice, or supplement classroom instruction. It typically takes a few weeks with one or two weekly classes to “catch-up” on subject matter. The goal of tutoring is to break content up into manageable pieces and frame it in a way that promotes understanding and improves the grades of the students being served. Tutors usually have a bachelor’s degree in a field related to the subject(s) they teach and are generally skilled at time management, task completion, and study skills in addition to specific subject matter. Formal or advanced training in intervention practices and formal assessment is not required for these professionals to practice, although they are the most common professionals with whom educational interventionists and therapists work.
Educational intervention, on the other hand, is goal-directed and outcome-driven. It is done with the purpose of filling gaps in the learning process which are usually the result of processing deficiencies that must be addressed through a multisensory, systematic, and cumulative approach. Educational intervention, or learning therapy, starts with formal and informal assessments that are used to identify strengths and weaknesses in all developmental domains. Then, it is customized with measurable goals that target those identified skills the student needs to master in addition to subject matter proficiency. Intervention programs are usually intensive in nature and bring significant developmental and academic growth in the student who received the service. Professionals who practice at this level must have a bachelor’s degree or higher in their field of specialization and professional certifications that need to be kept current through ongoing professional development.