Peer Educator Examples
Professor Soukup, Communication 12. At first the two PEs attended class and led in-class discussion groups on readings and work. When the Peer Educators saw that this was not initially working well, mainly because students were coming to the discussion groups inadequately prepared, the PEs took the initiative to develop clearer expectations and plans for the discussion groups. Then the groups started working better.
The PEs also helped students with the technology demands of the course, to a large extent by circulating in the lab while students were at work on computer-aided projects.
The PEs held office hours. It seems like these were underutilized.
Professor Wood, Elen/Coen 21. The Peer Educators will work very closely with the student in laboratories, so they will better understand what they're learning and (quite importantly) learn the kind of troubleshooting skills they all need to successfully build and debug hardware in subsequent courses. The PEs will also hold weekly review sessions for the students.
Professor Aimone, English 1. The peer educator helped plan class logistics and provided ongoing advice and suggestions about pedagogy and content of the class. (She was a senior business student who had taken advanced business writing from me and the class was English 1.) She researched video materials for presentation in class. She attended all class sessions and met with me after every session, to give me extra feedback on what was happening in the class, as a second set of "eyes and ears." She brought to my attention students who were not fully keeping up but not taking initiative to get help to do so. She acted as a peer tutor for students in and out of class, at her discretion, and far above the call of duty - I hadn't expected her to need to keep them, but she kept as many office hours as I did. I allowed her to present directly to the whole class a brief discussion on the relevance of writing skills for the workplace and job search, based on her own, ongoing experience. (She was interviewing with Deloitte and Touche and several other firms during the term.)
Phyllis Brown, English 2. Peer Educators will lead five colloquia with the purpose of helping students write a formal literary analysis, working from assigned readings and an informal journal entry on a related topic. Students will choose to attend one of the five colloquia. Peer Educators will also hold office hours the nights before journal entries are due and before the midterm. Peer Educators will also assist with small discussions in class and with details relating to the FRC performances.
Professor Rynes, English 42. The peer educator had studied in England during the fall quarter and was able to collect photos, maps, and other materials to illustrate the background of the literature the class studied. She gave a few oral presentations but spent most of her time helping groups of three students prepare for their oral presentations on various aspects of the background for the literary texts studied in the course.
Mathematics and Computer Science
Professor Schaefer, Math 11, 12, 13. Two days a week, homework is due at the beginning of class. On those days, the last 15 minutes of class are spent responding to questions from students about homework problems they could not do. On a given day, a single PE will show how to solve the requested problem at the board. Beforehand, I explain to the PE's how to present methods of solution in addition to the solution itself.
There are four interactive quizzes lasting 12 minutes each and consisting of a single problem. When students think they have a solution, or when they are stuck, they come up to the front. If the work is correct, it is accepted; if not, the error is pointed out. If the student is stuck, a hint is given. The PE's and I each stand at the front of the room to provide this interaction. The goal is that every student has a perfect paper by the end of the quiz (they don't count much).
The PE's hold four office hours each week. These are held in the residence hall when the class is an RLC course. The PE's hold office hours the evenings before homework is due. Each PE holds one evening review session before a mid-term, lasting about 90 minutes.
Professor Lukes, Political Science 1. Peer Educators assisted the students with their on-line research (in-part with a statistical package with which SCU has license rights) in a computer lab. The students would circulate and help pairs of students as they worked together on a computer. One PE was more available the first quarter. This arrangement switched the next quarter with the other being more available.
The PE's seemed to have been of significant help allowing the on-line, technical part of the course to work well for the students very rapidly.
Professor Cook, Religious Studies 8. The PE attended class and helped organize and process a series of off-campus experiences which allowed groups of students to participate in different worship contexts and meet with members of those religious communities. The student also led one class meeting (the Peer Educator Program discourages this) and held some office hours, which were underutilized.