Our Expert Tutors and Counsellors

Our expert private tutors

Our highly-educated and friendly tutors have all achieved full marks on the tests that they teach, and know them inside out.

All of our tutors:

  • Have achieved full marks on the tests they teach;
  • Are highly educated at top US or UK universities (many have PhDs);
  • Undergo extensive training in these tests;
  • Know the application processes for schools and universities inside out;
  • Are passionate about their subjects and about teaching;
  • Have CPD-certified Safeguarding qualifications updated regularly;
  • Are fully DBS checked; and
  • Want you to do as well as possible.

Our tutors are selected not just for their experience and their knowledge of their subject areas but also for their communication and motivational skills. They’ve graduated from some of the best universities in the US and UK, and understand the American standardised tests inside out. They’re passionate about helping students to achieve their goals and know how to get them there through the right balance of challenge and support.

We only take on tutors who have a proven track record. Before starting work with us, tutors undergo extensive training in our teaching methodology. Our most experienced tutors have well over 1000 hours of standardised test experience.

Here is a selection of our tutors:

Jason Smith

Jason is the founder of UES and the curriculum lead for Mathematics and Science. He gained a First Class Master’s degree with Honours from The University of Nottingham, and went on to earn a PhD in Applied Mathematics. He then worked as a nuclear scientist for the European Commission. Jason is a keen sportsman, having competed internationally at Taekwondo. He also has a passion for travel, having visited much of the known (and little known) world, and published articles about his adventures.

Throughout this time, Jason has tutored privately to children studying for a range of exams including GCSE, IB, A-Level and university modules, but now focuses on the US entrance exams, namely the ACT, SAT, SAT II Subjects Tests in Maths and Physics, and GRE and GMAT. His approach is to give students a deep understanding of - and interest in - the fundamentals of maths. This approach has helped get students in to top colleges across the US, including Harvard, UPenn, Duke, and many more.

Jason teaches:

  • ACT Math and Science
  • SAT Math
  • SAT Subject Tests: Math L1, Math L2, Physics
  • GRE and GMAT: Quant and IR sections
  • ISEE and SSAT: all levels
Jason S UES

Simon Lewis

Simon is a director of UES Education and Head of College Counselling. He graduated with a BA (Hons) in English Literature at Goldsmiths, University of London, in 2003, and then trained as an English language teacher. Prior to working at UES, Simon also worked in business development for Working Links, a public-private partnership running Government contracts, and then set up a social enterprise offering career, financial, and housing advice in Kensington and Chelsea. He is also an accomplished cellist, and has toured extensively across the UK and Europe.

Simon has designed and delivered courses for a wide range of students from teenagers to postgraduates and professionals, and brings over ten years of teaching experience to UES. Simon has designed English courses and resources for the full spectrum of US standardised tests, and also teaches the maths and science components of the ACT, SAT, ISEE, and SSAT. His approach to teaching and to designing courses is to focus not only on what is taught, but also on how students learn, and to challenge and motivate students in a supportive, relaxed environment. His students have gone on to gain places at Harvard, Yale, Columbia, UPenn, Georgetown, Johns Hopkins, University of Chicago, Duke, UCLA, UC Berkeley, Stanford, and many more.

Simon teaches:

  • Head of College Counselling
  • ACT: all sections
  • SAT: all sections
  • SAT Subject Tests: English Literature, Math Level 1
  • GRE and GMAT: Verbal and Writing sections
  • ISEE and SSAT: all levels
Simon L UES

Loni Reynolds

A US native, Loni was awarded an undergraduate degree from the University of Virginia, where she double majored in English and Psychology (2005).  She moved to London to study a Master's in Writing in the Modern Age at Queen Mary, University of London (2006). Her PhD was awarded from University of Roehampton (2011); her main area of study was American Literature and her thesis explored religion and spirituality in the work of the Beat Generation. In addition to tutoring, she is an active academic. She has articles published in leading academic journals; she serves as associate editor of Culture and Dialogue and presents her work at UK and international conferences. Loni is passionate about reading and writing fiction, and her short stories have appeared in US and UK journals.

Loni R UES

Loni has several years' experience teaching introductory and American literature courses at the University Roehampton, as well as many years' experience teaching the English, Reading, and Writing sections of the ACT, SAT, SAT II Literature Subject Test, SSAT, and ISEE. She is also experienced at teaching graduate-level exams like the UKCAT, GRE and GMAT, as well as providing assistance with English coursework. She has worked with students in one-on-one and school settings, as well as intensive courses, and has taught students from age nine to early twenties. With her academic and editorial experience, she has expertise in teaching writing and has a great track record of improving her students’ essay scores.

Alongside tutoring, Loni also provides application support for the US and UK admissions process, including such aspects as the Common App and supplementary essays, Personal Statements, and choosing colleges and universities. In addition to supporting students privately, Loni also works on-site at Charterhouse as US Applications Advisor, overseeing students' applications to a range of highly competitive American colleges. 
Loni assists students in using the Common Application, Coalition Application, University of California, and university-specific portals; provides students with advice on their college lists, essays, extracurriculars, standardised testing plans, and overall strength of application; reviews applications before submission; works to resolve any unique issues that arise; and supports teachers and counselors in American-style reference writing. 

Loni teaches:

  • ACT: English, Reading, and Writing sections
  • SAT: English, Reading, and Writing sections
  • SAT Subject Tests: English Literature
  • GRE and GMAT: Verbal and Writing sections
  • ISEE and SSAT: English at all levels
  • US College Essay Guidance
  • US College Choice Support
  • UK Personal Statement Guidance

Laurence Varda

Born in the UK, Laurence grew up in Palo Alto, California, in the heart of Silicon Valley. He earned his B.S. in Mathematics at the University of California, San Diego, and went on to do his M.A. in Professional Acting at Bristol Old Vic Theatre School. In addition to tutoring, Laurence is an actor, and has toured nationally and internationally. He is passionate about theatre, cooking, and martial arts.

Laurence believes that working within a growth mindset is key to helping students maximize their potential, and that too many students incorrectly believe that the limiting factor in their success is their innate ability, as opposed to the effectiveness of their strategies. He is greatly motivated by his own experience in education, and understands how valuable it is for students to experience successes in their study that allow them to develop positive associations with the subjects they are covering. Having taught and studied in both the US and UK, Laurence has a deep understanding of the differences in approach, curriculum, and content between the two countries, and is experienced in bridging these gaps. He has tutored both in test prep, and as a supplement to regular classroom education. At UES, Laurence tutors all sections of the ACT, SAT, ISEE and SSAT, as well as both levels of the SAT Math Subject Tests.

Laurence teaches:

  • ACT: all sections
  • SAT: all sections
  • SAT Subject Tests: Math Level 1, Math Level 2
  • ISEE and SSAT: all sections and levels
Laurence V UES

Martine Gagnon

Martine received her BA in Spanish Literature and her MA in Translation Studies from Concordia University in Montreal. She has taught English and Translation at University College London and the Sorbonne in Paris. She is also an active commercial and literary translator; her work has been published in Europe and North America, and she has provided subtitles for film and television. Martine has tutored standardised tests professionally for over ten years. She covers exams and subjects ranging from maths to modern languages to history. She also helps with college applications, and past students have been accepted to many prestigious universities such as Harvard, Yale, Georgetown, Oxford, and Imperial amongst others.

Martine teaches:

  • ACT: all sections
  • SAT: all sections
  • SAT Subject Tests: English Literature, World History, French, and Spanish
  • GRE and GMAT: Verbal and Writing sections
  • ISEE and SSAT: all sections and levels
  • UCAT: all sections
  • US College Essay Guidance
  • US College Choice Support
  • UK University Essay and Personal Statement Guidance
Martine G UES

Dan Escott

Having recently moved to London with over 5,000 hours of test prep experience, Dan utilizes his past decade of work in the United States as an ACT & SAT tutor to meet the needs of all students. He has taken over 80 ACTs and SATs in order to fully understand the test patterns and to be able to deconstruct both tests into clear, learnable entities.

Collaborating with his students, Dan breaks down each section into question types, patterns, and strategies that can be mastered through practice. This approach empowers his students to develop comfort, proficiency, and overall fluency with the standardized test. Dan works with both the students and their parents to ensure that his students set goals and remain accountable through purpose-driven homework. Interpersonal relationships are important to Dan, so he focuses on developing a strong rapport with his students and getting to know their motivators.

Dan holds a BA from Wake Forest University and an M.Ed from Eastern University. Prior to becoming a full time test tutor in 2014, Dan was a member of the Philadelphia Teaching Fellows’ eleventh cohort, an organization that seeks to bring high quality teachers to the most economically disadvantaged schools in the Philadelphia School District. Within the PSD, Dan taught social studies to students from 7th-12th grade and ran SAT workshops. Outside of education, Dan has recently relocated with his wife and two cats from Philadelphia to Crouch End. Dan religiously follows the Philadelphia 76ers (his hometown’s basketball franchise) and remains active through basketball, running, swimming, and lifting.

Dan teaches:

  • ACT: all sections
  • SAT: all sections
  • ISEE and SSAT: all sections and levels

Laura Trosser

Laura graduated from Harvard University in 2016 with an AB cum laude in Comparative Literature with a citation in French. Her undergraduate studies focussed on drama and poetry, specialising in 20th-21st century reworkings of Greek tragedy in English and French.

Before hopping the pond to study, Laura grew up in London. She attended the Tiffin Girls' School before joining the sixth form at King's College School, Wimbledon in the first year girls were admitted. With a keen interest in maths and physics as well as modern languages and literatures, she pursued her interest in a wide range of subjects through the IB diploma.

Having applied independently to US universities from the UK, Laura is sympathetic to the challenges of moving from the UK system to the US. She now works to make the process an easier and more enjoyable one for international students through her tutoring work and as a volunteer Harvard interviewer. Laura offers tutoring on all sides of the SAT and ACT tests.

Alongside her tutoring, Laura is studying for an MFA in Professional Acting from LAMDA.

Laura teaches:

  • ACT: all sections
  • SAT: all sections
Laura UES

Bassam Beidas

Originally from Lebanon, Bassam earned a full-ride tennis scholarship to Pepperdine University in California, where he earned a BSc in Business Administration. After reaching the top 500 in the professional tennis world rankings, he founded a thriving start-up in Beirut that later brought him to London.

Having amassed over 500+ hours of US standardised tutoring, Bassam has honed his teaching abilities to work with students of all levels. He places a heavy emphasis on understanding how the test-writers think and getting his students to identify the traps that are waiting for them. He also leverages lessons learned from his time as an athlete, working with his students to improve their diet, sleep, and more in order to bring out peak performance on test day. Bassam has worked with students from many of the top schools in London such as Eton, Harrow, American School in London, and Brighton College.

In London, Bassam successfully gained entry to the London Business School for his MBA. Bassam’s journey to business school required him to master the GMAT, which further honed his skills in mathematics and English. Bassam used his own teaching methods for the SAT and ACT to help inform his own GMAT studies. Bassam channels his recent test prep into his teaching, as he understands first-hand the pressures of standardised tests such as the SAT and ACT. In the process, Bassam developed the belief that anyone can conquer a standardised test if they are willing to work hard and try different methods.

Bassam teaches:

  • ACT: all sections
  • SAT: all sections
  • SAT Subject Tests: Math L1 and L2
  • GRE and GMAT: all sections
  • ISEE and SSAT: all sections and levels
  • US College Essay Guidance
  • Testing advice and support
Bassam B UES

Laurence Collin

Laurence Collin is a full-time professional tutor specialising in US university standardised testing. With over 6 years of professional experience in the field, Laurence is one of our top senior tutors specialising maths and sciences.

Prior to studying physics and philosophy at the University of Bristol, Laurence attended Highgate School here in London. There, he earned two prestigious scholarships and excelled in his studies. Laurence's experience at Highgate School allows him to connect with students attending similar schools as he knows first-hand the demands of being enrolled in a top UK institution. Laurence has helped students with US standardised tests from excellent schools around the UK including Harrow School, Tonbridge School, UCS, and LAE Tottenham.

Laurence believes a key tenet to doing well is to identifying the student's motivation. Whether from curiosity, wonder, the thrill of learning, or the more prosaic desire to succeed and get qualifications, students need to have motivation to learn. Finding out a student's driving reason for tuition helps him tailor their sessions to best revolve around the student reaching their goals.In his spare time he likes playing tennis and listening to podcasts.

Laurence C UES

Laurence teaches:

  • ACT: Maths and Science sections
  • SAT: Maths sections
  • SAT Subject Tests: Maths (L1 and L2), Physics
  • A Level: Maths and Physics

Olivia Munk

Olivia grew up in Queens, New York and attended Harvard University in 2012. She graduated Cum Laude in 2016 with a degree in English and a minor in Mind/Brain/Behavior. At Harvard, she was an active theatre director and wrote for The Crimson's magazine, Fifteen Minutes ,  for which she served as Editor-at-Large. She blogged for Harvard's Office for the Arts, and was a Becky Greenwald Ledecky Fellow for Harvard Magazine, which allowed her to write columns, news articles, and personal dispatches. After graduating, she went on to pursue a Master of Studies in English (1900-present) at St. Catherine's College, Oxford. She was awarded a Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur Visa in order to found her theatre company, Part of the Main, which focuses on improving the representation of women creatives and women's stories in the professional theatre industry.

At UES Olivia specializes in assisting students with both the Maths and English sides of the SAT and the ACT, as well as the SAT Subject Tests. Olivia approaches tuition is a friendly manner, taking special consideration of a student's comfort. Olivia believes that when students feel supported in lessons, they are able to better engage and take an active role in their studies. Olivia excels at making the content approachable, particularly for students who may feel intimidated by the harder maths concepts such as algebra or complex American grammar concepts.

As well as tuition, Olivia also provides application support for personal statements, essays, and college choice. 

Olivia teaches:

  • ACT: all sections
  • SAT: all sections
  • SAT Subject Tests: English Literature
  • ISEE and SSAT: all sections and levels
Olivia M UES

Arun Janssens

Originally from Japan, Arun moved to the United States to attend Brown University, where he earned a BA in Biology. During is degree, Arun worked as a Teaching Assistant for an advanced cell biology seminar where he helped graduate and undergraduate students synthesize information from lecture material and understand key points from assigned research literature.

After graduating, Arun continued in the education sector and became an Assistant Science Teacher in New York City where he taught students with learning difficulties such as ADHD, dyslexia and autism. With abilities and needs varying from student to student, Arun's challenge was to identify key areas where his students required support and design personalised lesson plans to target those areas accordingly. This attention to the specific needs of students has served him well at UES, as tailors each lesson towards the needs of the individual pupil.

As someone who independently applied to US universities as an international student, Arun has a personal understanding of how daunting the admissions process can feel from the outside looking in. Arun looks to make the process feel more accessible to students who may not be well acquainted with standardised tests or the US approach to education, while motivating them to do their best. Arun has passed all sections of the SAT and ACT with full marks and teaches all aspects of the exams.Outside of tutoring, Arun works as a Community Disability Advocate where he empowers clients to advocate for their rights and supports them as they engage with their communities.

Arun teaches:

  • ACT: all sections
  • SAT: all sections
Arun J UES

Matt Lukacs

After graduating from the University of York with a degree in Theoretical Physics, Matt joined the accountancy firm KPMG to begin a career in finance. Having a change of heart, he then decided to study for his PhD in nuclear fusion at Imperial College, investigating the safety analysis of commercial fusion power stations.

Matt headed various seminars during his time at university and volunteered to help younger students tackle set problems. Since then, he has amassed hundreds of hours of tuition covering a wide range of exams from GCSE English to university physics. He now specialises in US standardised tests and has experience leading courses covering all sections of the SAT and ACT at top schools including Charterhouse, Southbank, King's Canterbury, Ardingly, and Bradfield College.

Matt is a firm believer that anyone can solve complex problems if they’re explained in the right way. His passion for the subjects he teaches can be seen in his approach to lessons, not simply repeating facts but allowing a deeper understanding and enjoyment of the subject at hand. As Matt has vast experience teaching the entirety of the SAT and ACT, he's able to help students apply their strengths in one section or another to the areas they struggle with most.

Matt teaches:

  • ACT: all sections
  • SAT: all sections
  • SAT Subject Tests: Math L1/L2 and Physics
  • ISEE and SSAT: all sections and levels
Matt L UES

Maria Mateen

Before earning her BA in Psychology and BSc in Mathematics at Stanford University, Maria had first-hand experience of a wide variety of school systems as she moved between Bangladesh, England, Brazil and finally Singapore where she completed the International Baccalaureate program. Maria is now furthering her study of psychology, working toward a Doctorate in Clinical Psychology at UCL. She has also published research in academic journals on the area of emotion and emotion regulation as well as the impact of anxiety on memory. While Maria believes that helping students understand material is crucial to their success, she also puts emphasis on building their confidence in their mathematical and test-taking abilities. This involves showing them how concepts work, helping them understand how to use these concepts in different contexts and learning the particular strategies and techniques necessary to succeed on a particular test. Maria also prioritises putting students at ease, adapting to their learning style and helping them feel in control of their own success. She has tutored for over a decade, both in a test prep setting and as a supplement to classroom education. At UES, Maria specialises in preparing students for the quantitative sections of the ACT, SAT, ISEE, SSAT and GRE.

Maria teaches:

  • ACT: Math and Science sections
  • SAT: Math sections
  • SAT Subject Tests: Math L1 and L2
  • GRE: Quant sections
  • ISEE and SSAT: Quant and Math sections at all levels
  • Debating
Maria M UES

Aida Rocci Ruiz

Aida grew up in Spain and always considered studying in the United States a distant dream more than an actual option. She began studying Business Administration and Finance at CUNEF, in Madrid. After three years, she ventured into the peculiarities of the US application system on her own and became one of the twelve transfer students accepted into Harvard University in 2011.Aida graduated from Harvard Magna Cum Laude with Highest Honors in Psychology in 2014. Her experience led her to co-found a non-profit organization to empower and coach Spanish students from non-international schools to access top American universities.

Shortly after, Aida returned to Harvard to pursue a Master in Fine Arts in Dramaturgy and Theatre Studies at the American Repertory Institute in collaboration with the Moscow Art Theatre. During her postgraduate studies at Harvard, she became a teaching fellow, assisting top field professors and leading several undergraduate classes. Now, as a professional dramaturg, she helps playwrights and directors to find their unique voice to express their ideas. She uses the same skills to she can inspire young students to tell their story in a compelling and personal way for their application essays. Currently, she is pursuing a second masters in London at the prestigious Royal Central School of Speech and Drama. On top of teaching, she continues to work as a literary advisor and editor in the drama and writes for The Theatre Times.

All of these experiences inform how Aida approaches tutoring. She focuses in developing the student’s learning tactics for long-term gains. Utilising skills from her academic and professional experiences, she curates how students learn and connect different materials with both rigour and ease. In a relaxed, friendly, and supportive atmosphere, students often find that they already had the key to learning in them and leave with long-lasting strategies to tackle new learning challenges.

Aida teaches:

  • ACT: all sections
  • SAT: all sections
  • ISEE and SSAT: all sections and levels
  • AP: Psychology
Aida R UES

Holly Barker

Holly is one of our most experienced science tutors with eight years of teaching experience. She first began tutoring students as part of a programme to help disadvantaged young achievers while studying for her degree in Biochemistry at the University of Manchester. After completing her degree, her passion for science led her to complete a PhD in Clinical Neuroscience at King's College London, where she spent four years studying the pathways underlying dementia and motor neuron disease and published a handful of scientific articles on the subject.

Holly loves writing and talking to the general public about her work and has volunteered at museum events and has written scientific articles for the University magazine. Since completing her PhD, Holly has spent the past few years working as a full-time tutor and teaches a range of subjects and levels, including GCSE, IB, A-Level, AP and the SAT subject tests. She had also spent time working in the Cap de Crus National Park, teaching groups of students about biodiversity and marine ecosystems. She believes that a supportive and encouraging environment, students can realise their potential and build the confidence in their scientific ability.

Holly teaches:

  • SAT Subject Tests: Biology and Chemistry
  • AP: Biology and Chemistry
  • A-Level: Biology and Chemistry
Holly B UES

Joanna Harker Shaw

Originally from Scotland, Joanna is one of our most experienced English tutors and teaches the full spectrum of US standardized tests including the ISEE, SSAT, SAT, and ACT, as well as UK tests including Common Entrance exams. Since graduating with a 1st Class English Degree, Joanna has gone on to obtain a MA in Russian Literature from UCL and is currently undertaking a PhD on Collaboration in Literature.

A tutor for nearly ten years, Joanna has taught the SAT and ACT in top schools around the UK including City of London Boy's School, Uppingham, Marymount and LAE Tottenham. As part of UES, Joanna has helped her students gain places at top colleges in both the USA and UK. She particularly specializes in working with students who have dyslexia or other learning difficulties.

A published poet, Joanna runs poetry workshops and also teaches English & Creative Writing at university level. Her experience with writing and literature helps inform her teaching style, as she teaches students to think critically while encouraging their talents and building their confidence. Using this wealth of experience, Joanna is able to tailor her teaching in order to be effective when working with students of all different ages and backgrounds.

Joanna teaches:

  • ACT: English, Reading, and Writing sections
  • SAT: English, Reading, and Writing sections
  • SAT Subject Tests: English Literature
  • ISEE and SSAT: English at all levels
Joanna H UES

Ryan Reavette

After graduating from the University of York with a degree in Mathematics & Physics, Ryan worked for Applied intelligence, the technology consulting arm of BAE Systems. Following this, he returned to academia to begin his PhD at Imperial College. His research focuses on modelling arterial haemodynamics with a view towards developing a non-invasive method for diagnosing heart failure.

Ryan is passionate about education and has several years of experience teaching a range of exams covering English grammar to university mathematics - recently winning an award at Imperial for his efforts in the latter. He now focuses on the US entrance exams and, in addition to hundreds of hours of private tuition, has led courses in all sections of the SAT and ACT.

Ryan does not believe in a one-size-fits-all tutoring approach as every student is different; therefore, he tailors his lessons to suit the individual needs of the learner. While he adapts his method of teaching, his overarching goals stay constant: to help a student develop both a comprehensive subject knowledge and the confidence to tackle problems independently.

Outside of tutoring Ryan’s main interest is sport, and he plays both squash and football regularly.

Ryan teaches:

  • ACT: all sections
  • SAT: all sections
  • SAT Subject Tests: Math L1/L2 and Physics
  • ISEE and SSAT: all sections and levels
Ryan D UES

Peter Woodford

A US native originally from Chicago, Peter received a B.A. from the University of Pennsylvania, where he double majored in Philosophy and Religious Studies (2004). He went on to do a Ph.D. in Religious Studies at Stanford University, focusing on philosophy of religion and the relationship between religion and science. Peter’s PhD was awarded from Stanford University in 2013, and he first came to the UK via a 3-year postdoc at Cambridge University. In addition to tutoring, Peter is an active academic. He teaches courses in philosophy and religion at universities in the UK and has articles published in leading academic journals.

Peter has several years' experience teaching at the college level both in the US and UK, and he brings an understanding of both the US and UK systems to his tutoring. Peter covers all sections of the SAT and ACT, and he has a passion for learning across a range of subjects. He enjoys helping students break down the tests and the types of questions asked, so that they feel comfortable and prepared on test-day.

Outside of tutoring, Peter mostly goes on trips with his family and chases after his very active 2 yr old daughter, making sure she doesn’t injure herself. He loves hiking, reading, and music; while he continues to follow sports in the US, he is developing a passion for football and cricket.

Peter teaches:

  • ACT: all sections
  • SAT: all sections

To find out more about the above tutors or any of our (many) others, or to ask us any other questions, please feel free to contact us .

Peter W UES

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