Math and Physics Tutoring in Chapel Hill, NC

  • Specializing in high-level math and physics
  • Serving high school and university students
  • Helping people love math

Struggling with math doesn’t make you bad at math

When kids have a poor foundation in their math studies, they lost their faith in their basic abilities. Some would consider themselves “bad at math,” while others may feel bored with the material. Parents are starting to feel overwhelmed in trying to meet kids where they’re at and finding the right solution to make it “click.”

Hi, I’m Cliff Chafin, Your Math and Physics Tutor

I have a Ph.D. in physics from North Carolina State University. Over the years, I have tutored students from middle school through college in physics and mathematics. My specialization is working with gifted students who feel bored with their current materials, as well as capable students who need to catch up. For many kids, one or two hours a week is all it takes for them to move into high gear on their own.

I focus on watching and listening to my students’ work and interests, tailoring problems that focus on their fundamental weaknesses and misunderstandings. This approach, combined with giving them confidence and comfort in what they do know, usually does the trick. Nothing makes me happier than a kid who doesn’t need me after just a few months. When it’s time to go, I feel happy and look forward to getting updates on their progress!

 “Cliff helped me get a grip on what I need to do to pass 8th grade math.  It’s not intimidating to me now.  He showed me that I could do it after all.”  – Joe

How can I help?

High School Math

Schools are leading to a teaching style directed to the AP exam. I supplement these courses with additional problems to ensure competency in the topics. I adapt to the needs of students who are taking Math I, II, III, Calculus I, II, III, and those planning on taking the AP exam.


Many people in college contact me about first year physics and calculus. I often help with other classes like linear algebra, formal logic, quantum mechanics or analytical mechanics. CS Majors:  Discrete Math is the killer for many of you so don’t put it off!

Phillips Exeter Math

This is one of the top private schools in the US with a self-constructed and problem-based math curriculum. I was using this with homeschoolers for years and have used most of their material up to Calc III.

AoPs/Beast Academy Math

Art of Problem Solving has generated what I consider to be the best material for mathematically motivated kids. It is exceptionally high level and it is very helpful to have a person to discuss problems and ideas with!

Frustrated Gifted Kids

I was a motivated kid in a rural public school, desperate to learn something more interesting. My commitment is to prevent this from happening to other kids. If someone wants to learn or is bored they deserve direction and encouragement. 

How We’ll Get Started

Step 1: Book your first session.

Step 2: Together, we’ll evaluate your goals

Step 3: Schedule regular sessions


Do you offer payment plans?

Yes. If you want to consider a payment plan, please contact me.

Thoughts and Musings

School, Homeschool, Unschool: This New (Old) Way Beats Them All

Education was once a matter of sitting down with a learned person and having a discussion.  This could involve drawing with sticks in the sand as with the ancient Greeks or being given challenging tasks and asked to return with progress like the, largely lost,...

A Manifesto

I started studying physics as a boy in Maine while teaching myself the mathematics as I went.  There were strengths and weaknesses to this method.  There were holes in what I knew but also a great sense of confidence in understanding things that people who...

On Entrepreneurship

I have a great love of entrepreneurship and was lucky to be part of the Entrepreneurship Initiative at NC State.  I have a few small products I have been working on.  My team was in the 2014 ACC Clean Energy Challenge with a novel home wind turbine, one that would be...

Book a Session


Check / Venmo: $95/hour

If you're looking to schedule your first session, send me a message so I can prepare everything you need when we first meet!