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Tutor Group Problems, any advice appreciated.

Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
Okay so I am a first year uni student, and I'm finding it extremely hard to contribute to my tutor groups. I just cannot bring myself to speak at all, and it's not because I don't do the work for them, I just feel totally self conscious and stupid compared to the other students in my group. There is one in particular I get VERY nervous about, and I shouldn't, because the tutor is a great person, and probably my favourite out of all my tutors. I just feel totally sick before it, and spend most of the time trying to hide and praying that I'm not noticed, which worked until last week, when he started asking individuals their thoughts and views, and started with me. I know this sounds so silly compared to the most of the difficulties posted on here, but as I say, any advice is appreciated.
Thanks in advance guys,
capo2

Comments

  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Don't panic about feeling nervous because that only gets you into a vicious cycle of feeling nervous that you're going to feel nervous. Speaking up in front of a class is something a lot of people find nerve-wracking (unless they're outgoing), so don't feel that it's a silly problem to have.

    Since you get on well with your tutor, could you have a word with him about how nervous you get speaking in front of the class? He may well have some advice for you, or at the very least he'd know not to call on you first. My suggestion would be to ask him if he can tell you a question he'll ask in class, and then run through your answer to it with him to check it's ok. Then when the time comes to answer in class, you'll know what you're saying isn't stupid so you should feel more self-confident. Hopefully that will give you some confidence to answer questions more often.

    Another tip is to try and speak up when there's question you definitely know the answer to, so that if the tutor does start picking on people to answer things, he's less likely to pick on you because you've already contributed. The worst thing is getting called on to give an answer that you don't know, and from my experience this technique helps a lot in avoiding that situation.

    Maybe it would help to identify in your mind exactly why you're nervous of speaking out in front of the class. Is it that you're afraid you'll say something incorrect? That you'll stumble over your words? That you don't like the sound of your voice? That everyone will look at you? Once you figure out why you're feeling like this you can make steps towards solving the problem. Ie. if you don't like the idea of people looking at you, look straight ahead at your tutor and focus on him so you block other people out. You'll probably find that he nods along to the point you're making, which will be encouraging for you. Gradually as you gain confidence you can practice looking elsewhere in the room.

    One more thing - do you know any of the others in your group? If not, getting to know them might well be quite helpful, because it's always more nerve-wracking to speak up in front of a group of strangers than people you know. Even if there's only one person you know there then it should help some. Maybe you could chat over your ideas before the tutorial as well, get some input on whether they think your ideas sound stupid (which I can pretty much guarantee they won't, if you're doing the work for the tutorial) and build up some confidence in talking about academic subjects. It doesn't even have to be people from your tutorial group that you discuss things with, it could be anyone from your course or even friends from other courses. They might be even better because you're almost certain to know more about the topic than they do, so you're pretty much guaranteed to feel clever!

    Hope those ideas were helpful. Good luck, and try to believe in yourself!
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Wildchild gave some pretty awesome advice.

    Let your tutor know about the problems you are having, either catch them at the end of a session, arrange to meet them, or send a friendly email.

    If you find the idea of telling your tutor terrifying then start with email.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Imagine that one person who intimidates you the most sitting there wearing nothing but a pair of nasty grey school knee socks, that'll make them far less threatening!

    Age old tip and works a treat, try and be afraid of someone dressed like that. ;)
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Awesome advice, so grateful for that, THANK YOU!! :D I have emailed him and just got a reply, he thanked me for letting him know and I am going to see him after class on Monday...bit nervous, but am relieved too :) Will let you all know how it goes!
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Good luck. When i first started uni i walked out of a class rather than answer the question i was asked because i got so freaked out, but now im up there chatting with the best of them! Do you particpate in any sports or anything? Because i found that taking up kickboxing really helped my confidence which reflected positively on other aspects of my life too.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Nah, I have been thinking about joining a few teams though, it might help me to meet some people. I am just relieved I have had a nice reply from my tutor, and he thanked me for telling him that there was a problem. He's a sound guy, so all I have to do is calm myself and try not to stutter too much when I actually sit down with him!! Thanks again guys :D
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Write yourself a list of what you need to say to him and what you think the problems are, stick it in your pocket and take it along in case you get stuck.

    Well done though, sounds like you're making progress. Joining a couple of clubs is a great plan. :thumb:
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Write yourself a list of what you need to say to him and what you think the problems are, stick it in your pocket and take it along in case you get stuck.

    That's a good idea, sometimes when you're discussing things you can get sidetracked and forget about the point you want to make, and when you go away you realise you haven't really talked over the main issues you wanted to. With a list you can have a quick read over it before you leave the tutor's office, just to make sure you don't realise later that you left things unsaid.

    Good luck and glad we could help!
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Great minds guys...great minds!! Lol! I've done that, and it's become kind of long, but there's a lot of stuff I need to get sorted. I'm not the kind of person to actually tell someone when things bug me, but I'm at uni now, and it's time to be a bit more mature about it. This sounds so rare, but I am actually quite proud of myself for seeking help for once, yeah I know, how stupid is that?! My tutor is so cool though, and is more than happy to help, so that's making me feel a bit more at ease already. Seriously you lot, I really appreciate all the advice, honestly you all rule :D
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Hey we all live and learn.

    You may as well learn from my mistakes! Took me a while to suss what I needed to do, much easier when someone tells you. Seriously though, you'll be amazed with the respect you get from your tutor etc fot having the guts to ask for the help. :thumb:
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Yeah, I've kind of got that impression already...I know there are others in the class maybe in the same sort of situation, and they won't go near him because they don't like him. Dunno why though, he's sound!! The closer it gets the more nervous I am gettin' though, but lookin' forward to just sortin' it!!
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    So I went to see him today, and man am I glad I did!! He couldn't have been any nicer, any more understanding or any more helpful!! Thanks again guys!! And to anyone else in my situation: go talk to your tutor, seriously. Wow it's fantastic what a 15 minute chat can do, I feel great now :D
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    :yippe:
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Hahahaha, lovin' the wee bouncy man :D
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