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Supplemental Instruction at UCO
Supplemental Instruction (SI) is designed to increase student retention and student success in courses that have historically proven difficult for UCO students. It is a learning enhancement program. SI is designed to organize and improve the ways in which students prepare for class outside of class. SI is attached to a subject to provide students with a systematic and disciplined approach for processing the subject material assigned by the professor. Through this program an SI leader is assigned to a subject. This is a student who has demonstrated proficiency in a targeted subject and undergoes SI training. SI features weekly review sessions that are open to all students in the selected course who choose to attend. Sessions are facilitated by a trained SI leader who involves students in active learning: comparing and reviewing class notes, discussing important concepts, preparing for tests and exams, and developing study strategies appropriate to the course material. The SI leader uses interactive learning strategies that encourage involvement, comprehension and synthesis of subject content. Student leaders are chosen with the approval of the faculty member, trained and supervised by SI Coordinator and paid through the TC SI budget.
Modeled after a 25-year program at the University of Missouri at Kansas City, SI is a program available in select courses in the core curriculum. SI is offered fall and spring semesters. Student attendance to all sessions is voluntary and SI sessions are scheduled at times when the majority of student's in SI supported courses can attend.
In contrast to other academic student leader positions such as a TA or a tutor, a SI Leader's primary purpose is to reinforce course content by involving students in study groups outside of the classroom. SI leaders encourage students to share class notes and further master the material presented in class by using handouts and creative learning techniques, creating practice tests and exams and reviewing study skills. In SI, students connect what-to-learn with how-to-learn. SI Leaders help students become effective independent learners.
The following criteria applies to SI courses that will be supervised and funded through the TC. Classes and student leaders should be identified the month prior to the end of the previous semester. Forms are available here for this purpose along with other information about SI at UCO you may find helpful.
Courses selected to participate in the Tutoring Central Supplemental Instruction program and selected to be assigned an SI Leader will meet the following criteria:
1) Courses must be identified as a core curriculum course and shown to be a historically difficult core course using DFW data or having other risk factors for students such as large class size.
2) Faculty SI course requests will be submitted through and approved by the department Chair and the College Dean before being forwarded to the TC Coordinator in West Hall Box 111.
3) SI Leaders and courses should be selected by faculty and their department chairs based on the guidelines for SI. If a class is selected for SI, the faculty member will work with the SI supervisor to select a student SI Leader for the course. SI Leader candidates are to have taken the course being recommended with the recommending instructor and have passed the course with an A
4) Student SI leader applications need to submitted online on the UCO jobs website. The position will be listed as Supplemental Instruction Leader under student positions.
As stated above, SI leaders are students who have taken a particular class with an instructor and done well. They are then asked to come back into that class with that instructor and lead study sessions with the current students to help them be successful as well. Because of the unique structure of SI, student leaders and classes must be identified prior to the start of a semester so students and faculty should submit requests and applications at the end of the semester prior to the semester they want to participate in the program.
The SI Leader will attend all class meetings and hold three one hour study sessions a week for students in the class. Student leaders are paid for class attendance, study sessions and prep time for a total of 10 hours per week. They are compensated at a rate of $10.00 an hour. It is a semester long commitment and student leaders are required to attend a concentrated training session prior to the beginning of the semester and then meet weekly with the SI supervisor and other leaders throughout the semester. Training and supervision is the responsibility of the Coordinator for Tutoring Central and the SI program.
Faculty members are asked to meet briefly with their assigned SI Leader before classes begin and provide them with a book and a syllabus for the course. Faculty responsibility throughout the semester includes helping promote the SI sessions, providing student progress information i.e. exam grades and course grades for grant research purposes and evaluation of the program and general support.
Students who have participated in the SI program through the selected courses have in many cases improved their final grade by a whole letter and seen improvement on test scores and assignment grades. It has also aided in retention and program development.
Please contact Darla Sherman, Coordinator for Tutoring Central and the TC SI program at extension 3495, if you have questions and are interested in being a part of the SI program.