Studying is hard work. If you can get past the distractions, procrastination, and tedium, you still have to deal with cramming difficult material into your head. Most of the time it’s a matter of reviewing familiar material, but sometimes you just do not get it. And when it’s 9 PM on Sunday, who you gonna call?
Studypool: A Pool of Studious Folks
Studypool is an iOS app offers “microtutoring”: the app connects you with experts that will help answer your specific questions. Whether for a simple homework help or a more in-depth explanation, Studypool tries to make instant connection with a pool of expert tutors easy. Their group of freelance experts include graduate and undergraduate college students at Brown, Stanford, and NYU in dozens of subjects.
Of course, this service isn’t free, but that’s the whole idea. You can get tons of free information online, but who knows if it’s accurate, let alone helpful. Plus, sometimes you don’t even know what you’re trying to find. Studypool aims to cut down on time spent at the library or on the Internet by connecting you directly with tutors that know the answer you’re looking for.
Submit a Question
The core of the Studypool app is based on submitting questions to Studypool’s tutors. These tutors then review these questions and answer them for a fee.
You can submit a question through the app or on the Studypool.com website. To submit a question through the app, you’ll first create a Studypool account and confirm your phone number. Then, open the app and click on the blue “plus” button in the bottom of the screen.
You’ll type a title for your question, and then describe the request in detail. You can upload images to provide additional context, if necessary.
After that, you’ll select a category for your question. This helps send it to the most qualified tutor.
Once that’s set, you’ll choose between Standard and Premium tutors. Premium tutors are the most experienced members of the platform, but they do typically cost more. Standard tutors make up the bulk of the Studypool tutoring pool.
You can also set some options, include a budget or a turn-around time.
Setting a budget is optional, but it’s a good idea. Setting a price ceiling will keep you from receiving bids that exceed your expectation. Most questions come in at under $15, although most brief questions can be answered for a lower fee that that. You can get even more detailed answers for higher fees, and more complex or advanced topics may require higher bounties to get a response.
Turnaround time is another factor in fee size. Questions that need quick answers might require a higher fee, while questions that don’t need an immediate response might be cheaper. The default due date is three days from submission. You can adjust that to as far down as one hour or as far out as 30 days.
There’s also some premium options you can add to your order, including private and rush status. Private questions are hidden from other users, Google, and the rest of the Internet. If you select the “urgent question” option, Studypool alerts on-call tutors to answer the question as soon as possible. Both features will add $2.85 each to your total bill.
Typically, tutors will bid on your question within a few hours. You can accept any one of these bids, though Studypool will suggest the most qualified and experienced tutor.
Once you’ve accepted a bid, that’s when you’ll input your credit card information. Then, the tutor will respond within your specified time frame to answer your question.
You don’t need to stick to just asking questions, however. If you need more detailed help, Studypool is there for you too. You can also use Studypool to connect with expert tutors in a given subject area. This is great if you need more help in a specific subject area than you thought, or if you realize that you’re lacking some foundational understanding.
Studypool enables students to connect with tutors through their website to schedule face-to-face tutoring sessions that take place over Skype.
Buying and Selling Notes
In addition to the tutoring and question marketplace, Studypool makes it possible for students to buy and sell notes for a particular course or subject. If you attend a popular or large school, there’s a good chance you might be able to find notes for your particular course.
Of course, with any crowd sourced content, you need to be careful about quality control. The notes available for sale receive star ratings from previous users to make it easier to find the best versions, and you can see a small preview of the notes before you make your purchase, as well as a word count.
Studypool can be a great help when you need a really smart person to answer a really specific question. And when you need broader help, you can use the website to arrange for one-on-one tutoring in your area of weakness.