Math lab offers tutors, texts and calculators

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More than 4,000 students visited the lab in the fall.

By Andrea Moreno

For students taking a math course who need extra help, the math lab is a place to start.

Other Alamo Colleges students are welcome to use the lab, but students at this college will be assisted first, Steve Ochoa, math lab coordinator, said Feb. 14 in an interview.

The math lab is in Room 121 in McCreless Hall, and computers are in Room 119.

The math lab offers tutoring of all levels of math, including the math used physics and chemistry. Students in those courses do not need to be enrolled in a math course to get help at the lab.

Students are required to log into one of the computers to verify a student has visited the lab.

In fall 2017, the lab had more than 4,050 visits by students, he said.

There may be even more visits because some students forget to sign out, he said.

Students can ask for assistance from a tutor or simply go to the computer lab that is available for math, he said.

“Since a lot of courses are online now, we have 26 computers in Room 119,” Ochoa said.

Students who are enrolled in a face-to-face math course, will do their homework online.

Connectmath, Mymathlab and Aleks are some of the math sites that students will use for homework.

“They can access Mymathlab through Canvas,” Ochoa said. The other programs students will need to log in through the websites to access it.

Students will come in and at times ask specific questions on how to do a certain problem, he said.

“If you attend the lab regularly, your grade will improve in your math course,” he said.

For example, students should visit the lab for over an hour per visit and three visits per week to see increasing results in their math grade.

Students who want to study math in groups may do so in the lab, but they need to let the lab know in advance, he said.

The math lab also lends graphing calculators and textbooks.

Graphing calculators can be checked out for one semester, and students must sign a contract with their Banner ID.

“If students don’t bring them back, then we put a hold on them,” Ochoa said. He referred to a hold on their college records prohibiting them from transferring or registering for additional classes.

When returning the calculators, students must sign in the calculator and date it, and a tutor must sign that student returned the calculator.

The lab also has textbooks that are only allowed to be used in the lab.

He said the lab prefers a driver’s license to be left if textbooks or calculators are going to be used in the lab.

The lab employs three tutors in the morning, two in the afternoon and two in the evening.

Tutors will help students step by step until students understand the math concept, he said. Students do not need appointments for tutoring.

He said he hires tutors who understand math and make connections with students.

“We are here to serve to the kids,” Ochoa said.

The lab also has a Facebook page, San Antonio College Math Labs.

The math lab is open 9 a.m.-7 p.m. Monday-Thursday, 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Friday and 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday.

For more information, call at 210-486-0240.


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