PAL leader training at Bournemouth University: 12 years on and still evolving
Subjectspeer assisted learning
training PAL leaders
MetadataShow full item record
AbstractPeer Assisted Learning (PAL) at Bournemouth University (BU) is a peer mentoring scheme that fosters cross-year support between students on the same course. Coordination of PAL, including leader training, is run centrally within Student and Academic Services by the PAL Coordination Team. Successful applicants attend two days of compulsory training in June or September with optional follow up training sessions offered throughout the autumn term. As with other training programmes for peer learning schemes, including Supplemental Instruction (SI), upon which PAL is based (Arendale 1994; Jacobs et al. 2008), the concept of modelling is integral to the training. Trainers employ small group learning techniques and frequently re-direct questions. Leaders can then use these approaches in their own sessions. Crucially, all attendees lead a simulated PAL session. Weekly follow up training is delivered in collaboration with other support staff, providing information on various academic skills, support services and ideas for related PAL sessions. Like PAL itself, leader training has evolved gradually since it began in 2001. Changes include: training on new online community areas on the University's Virtual Learning Environment; streamlining of initial training in response to trainee feedback. However, the overarching principles of the training, established by the founders of the scheme, remain (Capstick et al. 2004). Qualitative feedback from 2011-2012 trainees after completing training, and from a later survey delivered to them towards the end of their role, has further confirmed the continued power of this training while revealing potential ways to strengthen it.
CitationParton, S. & Noad, V. (2013) 'PAL leader training at Bournemouth University: 12 years on and still evolving', Journal of Pedagogic Development, 3 (2), pp.18-27.
PublisherUniversity of Bedfordshire
JournalJournal of pedagogic development
Series/Report no.Volume 3
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