Experiential Learning

Peer Facilitation

Classroom & Teaching Experience for IAS Students

Peer Facilitation provides students the opportunity to gain valuable teaching experience and skills in facilitating groups of learners, and a chance to develop close academic relationships with faculty. IAS students may earn credit for this experience by enrolling in BISSKL 402 Peer Facilitation.

By listening, communicating, and engaging with IAS faculty and fellow classmates, Peer Facilitators provide instructional or teaching support for IAS courses in valuable ways. In this role, Peer Facilitators:

  • Create an engaging class experience that contributes to learning outcomes of the course, academic major, and School.
  • Support new students in their transition to the School of IAS by building meaningful coaching relationships with diverse individuals.
  • Use critical thinking skills effectively to make decisions in collaboration with the course instructor.
  • Improve writing and presentation skills, and become better organized in time management.
  • Learn about the processes and practices of college teaching and the student role as learner. 
  • Gain deeper knowledge and insight of the selected academic subject area.

Peer Facilitation is a pre-professional training opportunity that is valuable to graduate schools and employers. IAS faculty also benefit from the Peer Facilitation relationship. Peer Facilitators can provide formative feedback on course assignments, course content and delivery, and how well the students in the course are learning.

Peer Facilitator Duties

Specific responsibilities assigned to Peer Facilitators will vary depending on mutual agreement with the course instructor. General duties may include:

  • course planning
  • developing and/or maintaining course site on Canvas
  • setting up classroom demonstrations
  • distributing course materials
  • leading class discussion, break-out groups, laboratory experiences, or other forms of collaborative learning activities
  • making presentations
  • tracking participation and student engagement
  • facilitating study sessions and tutorials, and providing feedback on student work
  • leading examination reviews and proctoring exams
  • hosting focus groups to obtain student feedback on class assignments or activities

Peer Facilitators may not serve as independent instructors for IAS courses, present course content that has not been authorized by the course instructor, or assign and submit course grades.

Eligibility

Eligibility for BISSKL 402 Peer Facilitation is based on the student's interest and passion for the course subject area or material. The student must demonstrate adequate preparation, as evidenced by grades and/or previous experience in the area of proposed Peer Facilitation.

Although not required, it is generally useful that students seeking a Peer Facilitator role have developed a working relationship with the faculty member through prior coursework or other means. Most students who act as Peer Facilitators in IAS courses are invited to do so by the faculty member teaching the course.

How to Enroll

Before registering for BISSKL 402, the student and course instructor should meet to develop a mutual understanding of the facilitator role with respect to duties, credits, and criteria for evaluation. After this meeting, the instructor should submit the online Peer Facilitation Enrollment Form.

BISSKL 402 Peer Facilitation is a variable credit course and may be taken for 2 to 5 credits, depending on assigned responsibilities. The number of credits for enrollment can be calculated based on the the number of hours spent each week on activities related to the peer facilitation role (e.g. student involvement in attending lectures, meeting with the course instructor, preparation, direct and indirect classroom support, etc.):

  • 2 credits will require at least 6 hours per week 
  • 3 credits will require at least 9 hours per week
  • 4 credits will require at least 12 hours per week
  • 5 credits will require at least 15 hours per week

Through their enrollment in BISSKL 402, students will reflect on their peer facilitation experiences to develop greater self-awareness and confidence in their professional growth.​ This reflection may be in the form of a final paper or other documented project.

Students may complete up to 10 credits total under the BISSKL 402 course number as Peer Facilitators. BISSKL 402 is a Credit/No Credit (C/NC) course and may not be taken for a numeric grade.