Rebecca Khristov

Academic Tutor

I discovered my love of learning—and teaching—while earning my bachelor’s degree in physics at Utah Valley University. I volunteered to help get youth, especially young women, interested in STEM by participating in presentations to high school students, helping in elementary school science demos, and teaching volunteer classes for Girl Scouts. As I progressed in my degree, I grew to feel confident enough in my own knowledge to share it with others in a more formal capacity, and I turned to working as an assistant instructor and a tutor.

My interest in physics and mathematics dates back to when when I was eight years old and saw Saturn through a telescope for the first time. Instantly, I wanted to learn everything I could about space. I read every book I could get my hands on, and it wasn’t until middle school that I realized that astronomy was applied physics, and that physics requires math. My heart sank, because mathematics didn’t come easily to me. However, I decided that astronomy was worth it, and I set about changing my relationship with math.

It was in college that I truly began to see the beauty of mathematics as the language of physics. One of my favorite things when working with students in these subjects is helping them experience the sort of wonder I felt when I saw how the topics I was learning could all be applied to things I care about. For me it was astronomy; for others, it’s biology or chemistry or even art.

I began tutoring physics and astronomy at Utah Valley University as a tutor in the learning center, an instructional assistant, and a freelance tutor. I then taught several sections of physics lab and continued tutoring students in physics and mathematics at the learning center at Utah State University. During this time, I also tutored math, astronomy, and physics through an online tutoring platform. All of these experiences allowed me to come into my own as a teacher, and I learned to find ways to relate to each of my students and to navigate their individual needs.

My tutoring approach is to meet the student where they are—whether that be excited, nervous, frustrated, or overwhelmed—and work to get them to where they want to be as independent learners confident in their own abilities. I have seen many students hesitate to take the next correct step in solving a problem because they didn’t trust that they were right, and I love watching the realization on students’ faces as they discover that they did in fact understand the concept. My tutoring philosophy is this: you know more than you think you do, and we will discover that together.

When I’m not tutoring, I enjoy science fiction and epic fantasy novels, martial arts, and amateur astronomy.

Subjects Tutored:

Academic Physics
AP Physics 1


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 The most helpful part of tutoring was going through the problems and learning strategies and knowing how and when to apply them.  Read what others are saying

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