Three students and their PSL Leader in a class room working on problems

FAQs for Staff/Faculty

First, we ask for recommendations from the instructor. If the student(s) they recommend is not interested or their schedule does not work, we go through old class lists and send an e-mail to those students who received a B+ or higher in that course.  All candidates are interviewed by a panel for suitability.

Having a PSL Leader in your class should not have any significant impact on your teaching time.  We only ask that you allow the leader to introduce themselves, and the program sometime during the first week of classes.  During the semester, your leader may ask if they can make the odd announcement at the end of class, and at the end of each semester we run a survey which should only take approximately 5 minutes. 

PSL Leaders go through intensive training to ensure they do not teach.  PSL is grounded in collaborative learning theories, which does not encourage lecturing.  After this initial training, further training is offered each month.  In addition, each leader is observed frequently, and provided feedback on how they are running their sessions.

PSL is a voluntary program, and not all students will want to take part, and the session times may not work for all students.  We do not want students to have any perception that their grades could be impacted if they don’t attend sessions, as this would only add unnecessary stress on them.

What if students can’t attend sessions – are there any other options?

Each leader has one discretionary hour, each week, which they can use to either meet one-on-one with a student(s) or hold an extra session. This is usually requested by the student.  As part of the process, the student must identify the difficult content that they wish to work on.

We encourage communication between you and your PSL Leader.  Having a leader in your classroom provides a great opportunity for you to find out what students are finding difficult, and also allows you to provide feedback to the leader of what you think is important for students to focus on when studying. If you are interested, you can also ask to see the session plan that your leader puts together. In addition, we ask that leaders e-mail or inform the faculty each week indicating what topic areas were reviewed.

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