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Photo Credit: Edward N. Johnson.

March 31, 2011

By FMWRC Public Affairs

LIVE homework help, part of a student support program dubbed Study Strong, is available from the Army's Child, Youth & School Services both in school-age and middle school/teen facilities and at home. It can be accessed 24 hours a day, 7 days a week at Tutor.com/army.

Tutor.com/army is an interactive, one-on-one, tutoring service for all active-duty servicemembers and their dependants, as well as dependants of military reservists, National Guard and DOD civilian personnel when on active duty in a deployed status. If a parent returns from deployment and their child is no longer eligible for the free service, Families can elect to continue using the service for a nominal fee.

With Tutor.com/army, educational assistance is provided free for all ages, from kindergarten to 12th grade, and includes support for math, science, English and social studies. Resume and career-transition services are also available for adults.

"This is a free service for military-connected students," said Terri Spencer, Fort Drum, N.Y., school liaison officer. "When we found out about it, we immediately started marketing as much as possible. And when we say it is free, everyone likes that."

"Since people have begun using the service, we have received a lot of positive feedback," she added. "The tutors online are always quick and responsive. They are very positive and will help the students until they understand the answers."

To participate in the program, students first submit a one-time registration form to obtain a pass code. Students then use it to log in from any computer. When they enter their grade level and the subject they need help in, they are connected to the first available subject-expert tutor.

Students and tutors work in an online classroom using controlled chat and interactive white board tools. Students may also send computer files, such as essays, to the tutor for review and assistance.

Tutors are certified teachers, college professors, professional tutors or graduate students from across the country. They all undergo criminal background and reference checks before being hired by Tutor.com. They are prohibited from asking for any personal information from the student and from contacting the student outside the online classroom. The assistance is provided in a completely anonymous environment to protect students' safety and identity.

"I think overall the program is great," Spencer said. "My daughter has used it, and it is a fun, interactive website. It is also good for children of Soldiers who are deploying, (especially when) the one deploying is the parent who helps their children with their studies."

Conner Dooley, a freshman at Radford High School in Hawaii, said he "likes Study Strong because it's easy to use, it's helpful and it's not complicated.

"It's always available no matter what time it is," he continued. "I have only used it for math, but would not hesitate to use it for another subject if I needed to."