Kirsten Butner

Academic Tutor

As an avid learner myself, I dreamed of sharing my scientific passions with others since childhood. In pursuit of my goal to become an educator, I embarked on an undergraduate degree in zoology at UCSB. My experience as a mentor to undergraduates in a research lab and as an ophthalmic technician at a clinical practice caused me to realize that my interests intersected between research, teaching, and microbiology. I attended the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and graduated with a Master of Health Science in molecular microbiology and immunology. Additionally, I obtained a Certificate of Global Health to learn about the application of programs to the global health community.

Throughout my education, I had many opportunities to engage in valuable teaching experiences with a variety of students at different levels. While attending UCSB, I got involved with The Gaucho Experiment project, where I taught science to underserved middle school students near Santa Barbara and mentored a science fair project of their choice. My ability to be flexible with students’ learning styles and cater lessons to their specific needs was essential. I also spent several years researching in a lab and mentoring undergraduates in the proper research protocol and RStudio coding. Coding can be a very frustrating subject, and patience is crucial when it comes to teaching computer programming and in general. While at Johns Hopkins, I was introduced to the intersection between politics, science, and education, and I applied for the Science Diplomacy Coordinator position at the Johns Hopkins Science Policy Group, where I educated students from Belgium about agricultural policies in the US and collaborated with them to write sustainable agricultural research papers.

Students new to biology and chemistry bring imagination and creativity, both necessary qualities to develop in the field of science. I find it rewarding to foster creativity in my students and believe that it is essential to the scientific community as a whole. Given how tests synthesize information, I help my students not only master each topic but also develop strong test taking skills and draw connections between units. Each student has a unique learning style, and 1-on-1 tutoring affords me the ability to cater each session to the student’s direct needs. I also foster an environment with open-dialogue between my students and myself to create an efficient learning environment. In doing so, I am able to identify and address any concerns the student has.

In my free time, I love propagating succulents to create small succulent gardens, training for Spartan races, and consistently researching current outbreaks through ProMED.

Subjects Tutored:

Academic Biology
Academic Chemistry
Academic Statistics
AP Biology
AP Chemistry
AP Statistics




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 My tutor's energetic style made it easy to show up and really learn for the full 90 minutes.   Read what others are saying

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