Peer Assisted Learning (PAL) Groups : College Group Tutoring and Study Review Groups

Peer Assisted Learning (PAL) Groups : College Group Tutoring and Study Review Groups

The “PALgroups Podcast” is focused on college study review groups. PAL is the name for the study review groups used at the University of Minnesota. We drew upon best practices from national models such as Supplemental Instruction, Peer-led Team Learning, and the Emerging Scholars Program. I served on the team that created the PAL model on our campus. I serve as an Associate Professor in the Curriculum and Instruction Department within the College of Education and Human Development. Some episodes share new things I am learning about postsecondary peer cooperative learning groups from the U.S. and countries around the world. Other episodes feature student study group leaders describing session activities that worked well with the subject matter and the students. Those interviews include what the PAL facilitator is learning personally and professionally about their experience. Initially, the interviews will be with PAL facilitators at the University of Minnesota. Eventually, study group leaders at other colleges will be featured. Send an email to David Arendale, arendale@umn.edu, if you or your students would like to be interviewed for the podcast. I also maintain an annotated bibliography of publications about seven major peer learning models. It now exceeds 1,100 publication. Click this link to download the bibliography, http://z.umn.edu/peerbib Click this link for PAL training materials and other resources, http://z.umn.edu/peerlearning

Episodes

December 15, 2021 8 min

S04-E27 We feature an interview with Sara who is a biology SI leader for the peer study group program at Housatonic Community College in Connecticut. She shares some of the learning activities that were used during the face-to-face and online SI sessions. Sara finishes the interview by sharing what she has learned personally and professionally from her experiences in the program and the friendships that she formed with the SI parti...

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(Bonus) This infographic provides information about the SI program at Housatonic Community College.

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(Bonus) Housatonic Community College (HCC) is a public community college in Bridgeport, Connecticut. It is part of the Connecticut State Colleges & Universities system. HCC grants associate degrees and also has certificate programs.

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S04-E26 We feature an interview with Kristen who is the program manager for the peer study group program at Housatonic Community College in Connecticut. She shares about the rapid growth of the SI program and the challenges faced by implementing it at a two-year institution. Kristen finishes the interview by sharing what she has learned personally and professionally from her experiences in the program and with the SI leaders.

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(Bonus) Organic chemistry is a branch of chemistry that studies the structure, properties and reactions of organic compounds, which contain carbon in covalent bonding.  Study of structure determines their structural formula. Study of properties includes physical and chemical properties, and evaluation of chemical reactivity to understand their behavior. The study of organic reactions includes the chemical synthesis of natural pro...

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S04-E25 We have a conversation with Louisa who is a student study group leader at Florida International University. While she provides academic support for a number of courses, I asked her to focus on one course and why it is challenging for first-year students. Louisa provided insight to why the Organic Course was challenging. She then provides examples of learning activities used during the study sessions. Her comments were simil...

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November 27, 2021

(Bonus) Biology is the scientific study of life. It is a natural science with a broad scope but has several unifying themes that tie it together as a single, coherent field. For instance, all organisms are made up of cells that process hereditary information encoded in genes, which can be transmitted to future generations. Another major theme is evolution, which explains the unity and diversity of life. Energy processing is also ...

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S04-E24 We have a conversation with Emily who is a student study group leader at Florida International University. This is part three of a four-part series from FIU.

We begin our conversation with Emily when she describes her vocational path to becoming a school teacher as a result of her experiences as a tutor, small group study leader, and influence by family members. She then explains how she provides support for several biology...

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November 24, 2021

(Bonus) Physics is the natural science that studies matter, its fundamental constituents, its motion and behavior through space and time, and the related entities of energy and force. Physics is one of the most fundamental scientific disciplines, and its main goal is to understand how the universe behaves. 

Physics is one of the oldest academic disciplines and, through its inclusion of astronomy, perhaps the oldest. Over muc...

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S04-E23 Mario is a student study group leader at Florida International University. This is part two of a four-part series from FIU. We begin our conversation with Mario describing his experience as an international student. He describes his journey to becoming a tutor at the institution. Among the topics that Mario is responsible for, he describes why physics is challenging for many students. Careful listening to student needs is a...

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(Bonus) Florida International University (FIU) is a public research university with its main campus in University Park, Florida. It is part of the State University System of Florida and has been designated as having "Emerging Preeminence". Founded in 1965, it has quickly grown to become the largest university in the Greater Miami region. It is the largest university in South Florida, the second-largest in Florida, and ...

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S04-E22 We have a conversation with Vicenta who leads the program that hosts the campus tutoring and small study group program at Florida International University. She provided an overview of the academic support program and how it adapted to online services during the COVID pandemic. Then the conversation turns to certification programs that have guided the student support programs. We end our conversation with Vicenta sharing her...

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(Bonus) Anatomy is the branch of biology concerned with the study of the structure of organisms and their parts. Anatomy is a branch of natural science which deals with the structural organization of living things. It is an old science, having its beginnings in prehistoric times. Anatomy is inherently tied to developmental biology, embryology, comparative anatomy, evolutionary biology, and phylogeny, as these are the processes ...

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(Bonus) The ASC is the unit that hosts the Supplemental Instruction Program that Morgan worked in.

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(Bonus) Alvernia University was founded in 1958 by the Bernardine Sisters of the Third Order of St. Francis first as a college for the sisters and then as a four-year liberal arts college. Many of the college's renovated classrooms and offices had been used for elementary and secondary education before 1958. The college's first building, Francis Hall, was built in 1926 and originally housed an orphanage. Alvernia receive...

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S04-E21 This episode introduces us to Morgan who is a study group leader for the SI program at Alvernia University in Pennsylvania. Morgan shared her experience as a study group leader in a general anatomy and psychology course. Topics of our conversation included how she became a study group leader, reasons that the A and P course was challenging for many first-year students, some of the most effective study group session activiti...

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S04-E20 This episode introduces us to Brendan who is a study group leader for the SI program at Vancouver Island University in Canada. This is the final part of a series on the VIU program. Brandan shared his experience as a study group leader in two accounting courses. Topics of our conversation included how he became a study group leader, reasons that the accounting courses were challenging for many first-year students, some of t...

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S04-E19 This episode introduces us to Natasha who is a study group leader for the SI program at Vancouver Island University in Canada. This is part three of a four-part series of the VIU program. Natasha shared her experience as a study group leader in a general psychology course. Topics of our conversation included how she became a study group leader, reasons that the psychology course was challenging for many first-year students,...

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S04-E18 This episode introduces us to Madelaine who is a study group leader for the SI program at Vancouver Island University in Canada. This is part two of a four-part series of the VIU program. Like many other study group leaders, she reported how she served as a tutor in high school and enjoyed the experience of assisting the teacher. In addition to sharing her two favorite learning activities she used during study sessions, she...

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(Bonus PDF) Overview of the entire Canadian Education System.

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