Nicola D.

Nicola D.

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Ancient and Modern History (Bachelors) - Balliol College, Oxford University

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26 completed lessons

About me

Hello! I’m Nicola, a final year undergraduate studying History (Ancient & Modern) at Balliol College, Oxford. I have always loved a broad range of topics (from Classical Greece to 20th Century European History) and enjoy sharing my enthusiasm through teaching. I have previously tutored both History and Ancient History to GCSE and A-level standard, to students of varied abilities and differing exam boards. I have also taught English in China and obtained a TEFL certificate!

Students are free to choose what they’d like to cover in our sessions, which I really want to be as fun and interesting as possible. At school, I often found that there was never really enough time to cover everything in sufficient detail or formulate the in-depth opinions that will help you to get the top grades. That’s where I’m here to help – I am encouraging and, whilst I do love to chat history, am a good listener. I am also eager to assist students who are thinking of applying to Oxford or Cambridge. This could be help with personal statements, the HAT test and/or interview prep. I scored highly in the HAT, and I believe that this was partly because I adopted certain thinking and planning strategies that made the test feel a lot less overwhelming. If you have any questions - please do ask!

Hello! I’m Nicola, a final year undergraduate studying History (Ancient & Modern) at Balliol College, Oxford. I have always loved a broad range of topics (from Classical Greece to 20th Century European History) and enjoy sharing my enthusiasm through teaching. I have previously tutored both History and Ancient History to GCSE and A-level standard, to students of varied abilities and differing exam boards. I have also taught English in China and obtained a TEFL certificate!

Students are free to choose what they’d like to cover in our sessions, which I really want to be as fun and interesting as possible. At school, I often found that there was never really enough time to cover everything in sufficient detail or formulate the in-depth opinions that will help you to get the top grades. That’s where I’m here to help – I am encouraging and, whilst I do love to chat history, am a good listener. I am also eager to assist students who are thinking of applying to Oxford or Cambridge. This could be help with personal statements, the HAT test and/or interview prep. I scored highly in the HAT, and I believe that this was partly because I adopted certain thinking and planning strategies that made the test feel a lot less overwhelming. If you have any questions - please do ask!

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About my sessions

For humanities subjects, I am always conscious of getting the balance between knowledge and exam technique just right. Often it’s not what you know, but how you apply your knowledge that really affects what grade you’re going to get. My lessons and revision techniques take this into consideration and ensure that you’re spending your efforts and time wisely (which is crucial when exam season comes around and the amount of information that you’re expected to know can seem rather overwhelming).

To clarify: I have completed Ancient History and History to A-level standard, and have tutored A-level students in both of these subjects. Whilst I strictly do not have any qualifications in Classical Civilization, I am confident to teach certain topics to GCSE level. Please, if you have any questions, send me a ‘WebMail’ or book a ‘Meet the Tutor Session’. Let me know your exam board and how I can best help you.

For humanities subjects, I am always conscious of getting the balance between knowledge and exam technique just right. Often it’s not what you know, but how you apply your knowledge that really affects what grade you’re going to get. My lessons and revision techniques take this into consideration and ensure that you’re spending your efforts and time wisely (which is crucial when exam season comes around and the amount of information that you’re expected to know can seem rather overwhelming).

To clarify: I have completed Ancient History and History to A-level standard, and have tutored A-level students in both of these subjects. Whilst I strictly do not have any qualifications in Classical Civilization, I am confident to teach certain topics to GCSE level. Please, if you have any questions, send me a ‘WebMail’ or book a ‘Meet the Tutor Session’. Let me know your exam board and how I can best help you.

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Personally interviewed by MyTutor

We only take tutor applications from candidates who are studying at the UK’s leading universities. Candidates who fulfil our grade criteria then pass to the interview stage, where a member of the MyTutor team will personally assess them for subject knowledge, communication skills and general tutoring approach. About 1 in 7 becomes a tutor on our site.

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Enhanced DBS Check

15 May, 2017

Ratings & Reviews

5
9 reviews
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9
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MJ

Maggie Parent from Northolt

1 May, 2018

Nicola is an excellent teacher. She is very kind, gives the student good tips for extra knowledge and makes sure material covered is clear.

TF

Tally Student

29 Oct, 2017

SF

Sarah Parent from London

29 Oct, 2017

IA

Izza Parent from Ilford

26 Oct, 2017

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Qualifications

SubjectQualificationGrade
HistoryA-level (A2)A*
Ancient HistoryA-level (A2)A
MathsA-level (A2)A
LatinA-level (A2)A
HATUni admission test78

General Availability

MonTueWedThuFriSatSun
Pre 12pm
12 - 5pm
After 5pm

Pre 12pm

12 - 5pm

After 5pm
Mon
Tue
Wed
Thu
Fri
Sat
Sun

Subjects offered

SubjectQualificationPrice
HistoryA Level£26 /hr
EnglishGCSE£22 /hr
HistoryGCSE£22 /hr
MathsGCSE£22 /hr
English13 Plus£22 /hr
Maths13 Plus£22 /hr
English11 Plus£22 /hr
Maths11 Plus£22 /hr
HATUniversity£26 /hr
HistoryUniversity£26 /hr

Questions Nicola has answered

How to answer HAT question three: What does the source reveal about the society that the source was written in?

Question 3 is the longest and trickiest of the HAT questions. It’s also worth a significant portion of the marks (40/100) and therefore seems somewhat daunting. But there’s no need to worry - you can really help yourself by going into the exam with a strategy. Having a plan on how to approach the question not only forces you to think creatively, but it gives you more time to write clearly. This what the examiners are looking for. (I shall be using question 3 from the 2015 Specimen HAT paper) Having read the source, I would encourage students to identify & jot down what they think the source’s key themes are. Identifying some good old ‘social, political and economic’ factors is always a firm first step. In this account, the economic focus is clear from the outset – poverty, economic stagnation, a disconnected rural economy, etc. But there are equally many social factors mentioned throughout the source – dissatisfaction towards unemployment, violence, etc. It is helpful to keep an open mind at this stage – whilst no marks are explicitly granted for ‘textual coverage’ in the HAT, looking at the source with specific categories in mind forces you to read the text more critically. The process makes it easier to find less obvious and more creative things to write about – something examiners are looking for. With key themes identified I then encourage all students to start making educated ‘inferences’. This stage is KEY to doing well at the HAT in general, and it essentially involves you making educated guesses as to what the source seems to be implying about wider issues/society. It is best illustrated through an example: This source mentions a lot about violence – “They used to have cops on horseback those days. There would be some fighting. Finally, it got to killing.” The standard inference to make would be something along the lines of: ‘The source clearly illustrates levels of dissatisfaction in society, to the point there is regular violence’. Such inferences need to be extended, and this is something that I encourage all students to do by constructing another layer of analysis. For example: ‘This violence is addressed in a matter-of-fact tone by the speaker. This seems to suggest that such violence is commonplace in society, to the point that his words about people being killed are rather numb. Such feelings only add to the source’s dejected tone and frustration towards the atmosphere of sluggish change. A portion of American society is depicted as being restless and trying to combat economic lethargy through violence – they may be in economic distress, but do not want to accept the present inequality as the status quo and aren’t unwilling to break the law to show that.” As I have shown above, the most credible historical ‘guesswork’ can often be made by linking different parts of the source together to gain a wider picture of society in general. It can also be done by analysing the tone of the source, and seeing how it is applied to different content throughout. Whilst there is no default way to be ‘historically imaginative’ (which is what the examiners are looking for) I think there are various pathways/techniques that can be honed through practice questions and are useful to have on hand when attempting to answer HAT questions. After making such inferences, I would then encourage students to look more closely as to how the perspective of the source has influenced the narrative. Asking questions such as 'Why are there no women or children mentioned in this source, and what effect does that have on our attempts to reconstruct American society?' and 'How personal is this account – what evidence do we have that points to our narrator being a reflection of a wider group, rather than an uncommon individual take on things?' To students, I always stress that they must have conviction in their thinking, which is something that can be gained through practice and encouragement. The HAT can be good fun and is really a chance for students to show what they can do.Question 3 is the longest and trickiest of the HAT questions. It’s also worth a significant portion of the marks (40/100) and therefore seems somewhat daunting. But there’s no need to worry - you can really help yourself by going into the exam with a strategy. Having a plan on how to approach the question not only forces you to think creatively, but it gives you more time to write clearly. This what the examiners are looking for. (I shall be using question 3 from the 2015 Specimen HAT paper) Having read the source, I would encourage students to identify & jot down what they think the source’s key themes are. Identifying some good old ‘social, political and economic’ factors is always a firm first step. In this account, the economic focus is clear from the outset – poverty, economic stagnation, a disconnected rural economy, etc. But there are equally many social factors mentioned throughout the source – dissatisfaction towards unemployment, violence, etc. It is helpful to keep an open mind at this stage – whilst no marks are explicitly granted for ‘textual coverage’ in the HAT, looking at the source with specific categories in mind forces you to read the text more critically. The process makes it easier to find less obvious and more creative things to write about – something examiners are looking for. With key themes identified I then encourage all students to start making educated ‘inferences’. This stage is KEY to doing well at the HAT in general, and it essentially involves you making educated guesses as to what the source seems to be implying about wider issues/society. It is best illustrated through an example: This source mentions a lot about violence – “They used to have cops on horseback those days. There would be some fighting. Finally, it got to killing.” The standard inference to make would be something along the lines of: ‘The source clearly illustrates levels of dissatisfaction in society, to the point there is regular violence’. Such inferences need to be extended, and this is something that I encourage all students to do by constructing another layer of analysis. For example: ‘This violence is addressed in a matter-of-fact tone by the speaker. This seems to suggest that such violence is commonplace in society, to the point that his words about people being killed are rather numb. Such feelings only add to the source’s dejected tone and frustration towards the atmosphere of sluggish change. A portion of American society is depicted as being restless and trying to combat economic lethargy through violence – they may be in economic distress, but do not want to accept the present inequality as the status quo and aren’t unwilling to break the law to show that.” As I have shown above, the most credible historical ‘guesswork’ can often be made by linking different parts of the source together to gain a wider picture of society in general. It can also be done by analysing the tone of the source, and seeing how it is applied to different content throughout. Whilst there is no default way to be ‘historically imaginative’ (which is what the examiners are looking for) I think there are various pathways/techniques that can be honed through practice questions and are useful to have on hand when attempting to answer HAT questions. After making such inferences, I would then encourage students to look more closely as to how the perspective of the source has influenced the narrative. Asking questions such as 'Why are there no women or children mentioned in this source, and what effect does that have on our attempts to reconstruct American society?' and 'How personal is this account – what evidence do we have that points to our narrator being a reflection of a wider group, rather than an uncommon individual take on things?' To students, I always stress that they must have conviction in their thinking, which is something that can be gained through practice and encouragement. The HAT can be good fun and is really a chance for students to show what they can do.

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2 years ago

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