A trigonometry tutor is an individual who tutors another person or people in mathematics, specifically in the area of trigonometry. Trigonometry is a branch of mathematics that focuses on the study of triangles; most students learn this subject in high school. Some of the topics can be relatively hard to grasp, such as cosine functions and the use of some of the mathematical laws that govern measurement in trigonometry. Additionally, many students who take trigonometry have had little experience calculating angles; calculating the angles of triangles is one of the major parts of the subject. A trigonometry tutor gives individual students or small groups of students the help they need to overcome these challenges in trigonometry.
A trigonometry tutor may be an adult professional, a teacher, or another student in a higher grade level. It is not uncommon for schools to run volunteer tutor programs in which older students tutor younger ones in difficult subjects. Some families, however, prefer to hire a private tutor who can come to their home and give private lessons. In most cases, private tutors do not offer this service for free; they generally charge a modest sum of money to tutor for a given amount of time. Such personal attention by a trigonometry tutor can benefit struggling students greatly.
Students may need assistance in trigonometry for a wide variety of reasons. Many students simply want to do well in their mathematics classes, but are finding trigonometry to be difficult. Others need a trigonometry tutor to help them prepare for some form of placement test; many college admission tests have several questions relating to trigonometry. Occasionally, even a working, adult professional will have reason to hire a trigonometry tutor. Professionals, such as medical technicians, life and physical scientists, and even editors and writers, occasionally discover they could do their jobs more effectively with a working knowledge of trigonometry at their disposal.
There are many methods of instruction that a trigonometry tutor may employ. In general, mathematics tutors try to explain a topic, work through sample problems, then give their students a few problems of their own to work through. They then explain any mistakes their students may have made and show them how to avoid those mistakes in the future. Occasionally, a trigonometry tutor will give small homework assignments to his student with the intent of reviewing and correcting them at the next tutoring session. The amount of time and work a tutor demands, however, depends on the constraints of the student's often busy life.