STARTS

Nov 14th 2016

Becoming a Student Assistant: Teaching and Mentoring (FutureLearn)

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Learn how to be professionally involved in teaching, support and governing of higher education institutions. The University of Groningen currently employs over 700 student assistants and has opened up all of its governing bodies to student participation.

Students at the University of Groningen:

- take up teaching duties, like facilitating small group teaching sessions;

- take up support role functions, like running the helpdesk for the online learning environment;

- are involved in research and university councils;

- mentor first year students;

- assist with the production of online courses;

- and even run facilities such as the sports centre.

But how do you prepare for a job as a student assistant? What are the possibilities for you, as a student, and for the institution to be involved in the organisation of a university? How do you behave professionally involved in the organisation of a higher education institution? How do you represent the interests of peers in a meeting of a governing body? This free online course will cover these and many more questions.

In Week 1, we will start with why it is beneficial - for the students as well as for the institution - to involve students in the organisation of higher education institutions. After that, we will explore the notion of professional behaviour and how to act professionally by presenting a practical framework developed by the student assistants of our university.

Student assistants are often involved in teaching and learning activities. Therefore, Week 2 will cover the basic design principles of good education and Week 3 will focus on how to prepare yourself for standing in front of a class. Topics that will be covered are, among others, the building blocks of a course, classroom management, motivating students, and interactive teaching and learning activities.

In Week 4, communication will be central. Giving feedback, mentoring first year students and participating in the governing bodies of the university are the main topics that will be covered.

Week 5 will contain seven case studies to be solved in order to assess the knowledge gained from the first four weeks. The case studies are based on real situations and departments within the University of Groningen. Examples of the case studies are: behaving professionally when invigilating at digital exams as a student assistant; and dealing with a disruptive classroom.


At the end of this course, you will be able to:

- Behave professionally in a higher education working environment,

- Give a well-founded opinion of what is a good university teacher and mentor,

- Identify the basic principles for designing a course,

- Specify the aspects of how to teach a small group session in an interactive way while paying attention to classroom management and atmosphere,

- Recognise constructive written feedback on assignments,

- Provide adequate support to staff and students in a higher education environment,

- Recognise challenges of students participating in governing bodies.