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Survey identifies the critical importance students place on flexible learning, tutors, and regular assessments for academic success.

Here’s what drives summer learners–it’s not what you think


Survey identifies the critical importance students place on flexible learning, tutors, and regular assessments for academic success

Key points:

This press release originally appeared online.

A recent survey of tutors, learners, and parents reveals an overwhelming drive across the board for more academic support, as well as a desire for flexible, self-directed learning and regular assessments.

The survey comes from tutoring network Superprof, and uncovers crucial insights into what U.S. students want–and need–to learn over the summer.

“Our new survey will come as a real eye-opener to anyone expecting summer learners to be focused on lightweight goals,” said Wilfried Granier, Superprof’s CEO and co-founder. “Most of our respondents are turning to tutoring solutions for academic excellence, personal growth, and development.”

Key findings from the new survey include:

  1. Academic excellence surfaces as the overriding motivator for students still in school, as well as adult learners and parents. A majority of respondents said that academic performance is the overwhelming reason for undertaking summer learning. Around 20 percent of students still in school said they were eager to explore new subjects or interests and 45 percent of adult learners said the same. However, a combined total of 69 percent said their primary motive was to prepare for upcoming courses, develop better study skills or improve their grades. Parents echoed these sentiments, with 60 percent prioritizing course preparation for their children over the summer and 20 percent encouraging exploration of new subjects or interests.
  2. Surprisingly, 80% of learners want regular assessments. Time management emerged as the critical challenge to summer learning, with 65 percent of learners expressing a strong preference for flexible, self-directed learning. Despite this desire for flexibility, a vast majority (80 percent) also stated the importance of regular assessments, quizzes, and checkpoints to ensure they are on the right track.
  3. Tutors were identified as providing the most helpful support. A strong majority of learners (60 percent) identified tutors as the most helpful support for achieving their summer goals, with educational apps or software (10 percent) and online courses or tutorials (21 percent) also mentioned.
  4. Persistent gaps remain in foundational knowledge. The survey highlighted the academic subjects that students are most eager to tackle over the summer. Math and foreign languages lead the pack, though there’s a notable discrepancy between what tutors see as important and what students express interest in. Identifying the subjects where students lost the most learning over the pandemic, tutors highlighted math (34 percent) and English language arts (22 percent) as the primary subjects still needing attention this summer, while students prioritize foreign language (28 percent) and math (24 percent).

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Laura Ascione

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