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Galaxy:  A Whole New World of Tutoring, Med Times Copyright, All Rights Reserved, 2004-2005

By Shirley Young         

As everyone knows, Replica sunk after annihilating its reputation in its Willed-Body Program scandal. The former tutors of Replica, Gary and Alex, left Replica and founded their own tutoring company—Galaxy Tutoring Institute. Will they still be known as Replica tutors? Are they legal? And what do LARC and some of our professors have to say?

Galaxy uses the $90 per subject it charges students on students, but is willing to spend extra time and effort to help students.  Gary describes his this tutoring style in an interview with Med Times. “I spend about 6-7 hours for each one-hour session I teach, and I make things organized and easy to understand for the students."  This dedication is probably the reason why students are satisfied with his tutoring and are willing to pay ninety dollars.  Galaxy Tutoring Institute provides tutoring for the following biology subjects: Bio 98 with Gary, Bio 108 with Art and 109 with Ali, Bio 121 with Bobby.  Galaxy also tutors the following physical science  subjects: O-Chem 51B with Art and Najeeb and Physics 3B with Alex.

When asked how he felt about leaving Replica, Gary answered, “Well, first of all, we are more organized by having a full-time staff. Our administrators are professional and more responsible. Our tutors are all working full-time, and that is why we do a better job than LARC tutors.” He added that Replica was disorganized in matters of student registration and paperwork, so things were often messy, which he disliked.

Another advantage Gary pointed out was his feeling of satisfaction in his new independence and the greater time he spends tutoring. “Personally, I feel more satisfied to have my own company and business.   It is a lot more work and responsibility, including paying employees and insurance, but I think it’s worth it.  The students might not feel much different because they are getting the same tutoring services, but to me, I started on more administrative work. Now I spend about half of my time doing administration, and the other half is for tutoring.”

Besides trying to get rid of the “Replica” label, Gary said that he wanted to clarify his dealings with Replica.  “To be honest, I was the one who did all the work, and Replica was the one who got the money and the benefits.” He explained that the tutorial service was his idea.  He emphasized that the scandal should not affect him, and that it was not fair that he got punished for it. In response to questions about Galaxy’s legality, Gary stated, “We are absolutely a legal company,” showing his legalized license form.

However, the University staff and LARC strongly oppose Galaxy tutoring because of several reasons.  In order to examine this opposing view, Med Times interviewed Dr. Franz Hoffmann, the Outstanding Professor in the School of Biological Sciences for the 1999-2000 academic year.  Dr. Hoffmann shared his opinions about private tutoring, such as Galaxy Tutoring. “I have nothing against it if they pay taxes and are legal because it is a free country and free market we live in. However, I have problems with their tutoring philosophy and how they have access to the information.”

During the interview, Dr. Hoffmann explained his personal feelings as well as the University principles about the tutoring.  Upset and concerned with other people copying his tests and selling them for private benefits, Dr. Hoffmann considers such behavior wrong. Furthermore, he feels that tutors should not teach students multiple choice test-taking skills because, in the long run, it is harmful to the students.  He feels sad to see this happen.  Dr. Hoffmann explained that the way he teaches is to stimulate students’ analyzing and composition skills and to put knowledge in their brains for long-term storage, instead of short-term cramming.  Short term cramming is the goal of such test-taking skills.

So on the one hand, Galaxy is a legal tutorial company with the same dedicated Replica tutors, but with none of Replica’s disadvantages.  On the other hand, tutoring can be only have short term benefits, and Galaxy isn’t supported by the University or LARC.  So with this knowledge, you can decide whether Galaxy Tutoring is best for you.