How To Find A Philosophy Tutor or Mentor


A student in the University of London’s distance undergraduate international program who is majoring in philosophy is seeking advice on how to get help with her studies. She writes:

I was curious if you could tell me or ask the community for me, how to best go about inquiring about a professor or philosopher who could mentor me as I pursue the UoL international program (Philosophy BA). You previously discussed the potential for admission into a good grad program after long distance undergraduate studies on your blog at one point [here]. My goal is a PhD, so that was a very useful post.

Many students of UoL seem to have obtained tutors, who they pay for per Skype session or per paper edited and reviewed. UoL International program’s lack of professors or course work is concerning in some ways. I’d like to develop one or more such relationships to help supplement my studies, so I can grow and learn as much as possible philosophically and academically. So I’m curious if anyone can help me locate a compatible and willing professor of philosophy (or many) who would be willing to work with me on my academic pursuits.

What might motivate someone to help me in this way? (Besides money, though estimates of what one might hope for in such a relationship would be useful feedback too).

Thank you!

General answers about seeking mentorship in this kind of situation and related comments on this are welcome, as I suspect this particular student is not the only one with questions along these lines. (If you’d be interested in learning more about this student with the idea of taking on this particular mentoring position, feel free to say so in the comments or email me and I can put you and the student in touch.)

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Andrea
Andrea
5 years ago

There are a number of services online. This is one among the well-rated https://www.mytutorweb.co.uk/view-tutors/any-level/Philosophy-and-EthicsReport

Rob
Rob
5 years ago

I’ve not heard much regarding this kind of thing before but as a (financially) struggling PhD student/teaching assistant I would happily mentor individual undergraduates for a small fee. Well at least as long as it doesn’t break and ethical or institutional rules (I’m slightly worried about the essay reviewing thing, would need to check what, precisely, is allowed in that regard).

Maybe someone could set up a site or app for marching philosophy undergrads with PhD students? I’m sure I’m not the only one who could do with supplement scholarships and teaching hours with mentoring!

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Rob
Rob
Reply to  Rob
5 years ago

Sorry for the typos, I wrote that on my phone.Report

Ian
Ian
Reply to  Rob
5 years ago

In that case, how can we contact you?Report

Stephen Clark
5 years ago

Try asking the membership of Philos-L, the international elist for Philosophers (chiefly in the UK & Europe, but with many wider connections). See http://listserv.liv.ac.uk/cgi-bin/wa?A0=PHILOS-L Report

Daniel Fincke
5 years ago

I have a PhD in Philosophy and 11 years university teaching experience. A couple years ago I started doing private philosophy classes and one on one philosophical mentorship full time. I meet with students, including a couple of UoL students already, using Google Hangout. I give a detailed overview of my services at this page: danielfincke.com/dr-daniel-finckes-philosophy-classes-welcome-page and would be happy to answer any inquiries via e-mail at [email protected].Report

Eric
Eric
5 years ago

I’m a UoL student who has been working with Dr. Fincke for about a year now. Although we’ve primarily had one-on-one sessions, I’ve been involved in a few group discussions as well. Some of the time we go over essays I’ve written — line-by-line, argument-by-argument, which is *incredibly* helpful — and some of the time we’ll just discuss ideas I’ve had (usually sketches of an argument), or focus on a specific text. Dr. Fincke has really helped me think more deeply about the arguments I’m making/criticizing by forcing me to examine even the most basic assumptions I’m making. He takes nothing for granted, not even the value of the questions I’m trying to answer! And the Google Hangouts format really fills a major gap in the UoL program by focusing on philosophical discussion (a very different skill, I’ve learned, from essay writing – and a very productive one for essay writing!). Dr. Fincke said, in our very first discussion (after I explained how UoL works, and dilating on its complete lack of UoL supplied face-to-face interaction with either fellow students or professors), ‘I couldn’t imagine learning philosophy without discussing philosophy’. After a year of experience, I can unhesitatingly say he’s right! (I say this not to impugn the value of any other tutors offering their services on this thread, but only to speak about my experience working with Dr. Fincke.)Report