Need Help in Math?

California Lutheran University’s Math Lab has officially opened its doors for the spring semester. Located in the Pearson Library, room 127, the Math Lab is a free resource available to students taking math classes.

The Math Lab provides drop-in tutoring for students who are enrolled in any math class up to and including Calculus II. The tutors in the Math Lab are available to help students with homework assignments, help prepare them for quizzes and tests and answer other general questions.

“We’re always there to help [students], but we’re not there to do their homework,” said Ryan Fisher, Math Lab coordinator and tutor. “We’re there to help them get a better understanding so that they can do better in their classes, do better on their tests.”

Fisher is a senior at California Lutheran University and he’s been tutoring since his second semester sophomore year. Fisher said that being a tutor is what prompted him to switch from a computer science major to a mathematics major.

“I really enjoy [tutoring],” Fisher said. “I wasn’t exactly sure what I wanted to do, but after tutoring for about a year, I realized I wanted to teach math at the highest level.”

Aside from Fisher, there are five other students working as tutors in the Math Lab. There are always two tutors available during Math Lab hours for students who drop in. 

“A lot of people just come to work, but if they have a questions then you’re there to help them, which is nice. But otherwise, if everyone has a different question, then you just like, walk around,” said MacKenzie Comeau, a mathematics major and one of the tutors in the Math Lab. “It can get hard with bigger groups just because of the noise level, but normally there [are] groups of students who have the same class.”

Comeau is a junior at California Lutheran University and she started working as a tutor in the Math Lab last semester, but has been tutoring math since her freshman year in high school.

Fisher said the tutors in the Math Lab have weekly meetings with the faculty and make sure that they’re adequately informed about the content of the different math classes and able to provide each student with the help that they need.

“If we have a question, we can go to the professors directly,” Fisher said. “We have the backing of the entire math department.”

One student who dropped in for tutoring on Sunday was Ahmed Alqasir, a junior and computer information systems major, who needed help with a homework assignment in his Discrete Mathematics class.

“You know, in math you’re facing problems that you cannot solve. So yeah, I’m here to solve the problems that I couldn’t by myself,” Alqasir said.

Fisher thinks that students find the tutoring service at the Math Lab helpful, and said that several students he previously has tutored have later thanked him for his help.

“A lot of students that I’ve met through tutoring have gone on to thank me the next semester and been like, ‘You’re the reason I passed this class. You guys were a big help to me in getting through the class and getting a good understanding of it,” Fisher said.

The Math Lab is open on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays from 3:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m., and from 7:00 p.m. to 9:45 p.m. On Wednesdays and Sundays, the Math Lab is open from 7:00 p.m. to 9:45 p.m.

Julia Westman