Which one of the following is correct?

  • tutor of a tutorial group
  • tutor for a tutorial group
  • tutor in a tutorial group

And is it tutorial group about a topic?


I think a label like “tutorial-group tutor” is a better phrase than any of the three in the question. Of the three choices, the second (with for) probably is best, and the first (with of) has nearly the same meaning, both indicating a tutorial-group's tutor. The third form is slightly ambiguous, and may refer to a person who is a tutor and is in the group being tutored, which is conceivable but unlikely; or might refer to a member of a group of tutors, a tutorial group, which also is conceivable but unlikely. In short, the third form (with in) is rarely of use.

One may refer to a tutorial group that covers some topic X as an X tutorial group, a tutorial on X, a tutorial covering X, a tutorial about X, etc, but the tutorial group itself is not about X.

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Any one of these could be used, depending on the exactly what you mean to say. "For" would be generally preferred.

As for "tutorial group about a topic," this is not the usual way of saying it. We have a tendency to use the topic as the defining adjective, in this way: "The math tutorial group," rather than "the tutorial group about math."

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  • I have to do it in a second comment.I have some problems with the second one. The title of the lecture belonging to the group was 'higher linear algebra' or 'algebra and numbertheory' I have no idea how to make an adjective from those. – Johannes Mar 8 '13 at 8:17
  • You don't construct an adjective. What I'm saying is that the way it is most commonly done is simply USING the subject matter or topic AS the adjective, hence: "Higher linear algebra tutorial group." If you're not used to it, it may sound funny, but that really is the typical usage. If you insist on doing it the other way around, I would probably say "the tutorial group concerning/focused on/pertaining to higher linear algebra." But this method of phrasing it is awkward! jwpat7's point is valid; the group itself is not ABOUT anything. "Algebra and number theory tutorial group" works fine. – John M. Landsberg Mar 8 '13 at 8:31

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