Study Sessions

Biology 120

Coach (Peer Mentor) Time Location
Alexa Mondays, 4:30-5:50pm Room 102 in the Murray Library
Mars Tuesdays, 11:30am-12:50pm Room G3 in the Murray Library
Dakoda Wednesdays, 10:30-11:50am Room 1430 in the Health Sciences Library*
Hayley Wednesdays, 3:00-4:20pm Room 265 in the Geology Building

Thursdays, 4:00-5:20pm

Room G3 in the Murray Library

Fridays, 1:30-2:50pm

Room G3 in the Murray Library

Start dates:

  • First session: Hayley, Wednesday, Sept. 14th, 3:00-4:20
  • Second session: Tara, Thursday, Sept. 15th, 4:00-5:20
  • Third session: Maryam, Friday, Sept 16th, 1:30-2:50
  • All other sessions begin the week of Sept 19th

* The Health Sciences Library is located in the Health Sciences Building, the same building in which the lectures for Biology 120 take place. Room 1430 is located right next to the entrance to the Health Sciences Library.

Mock midterm

  • Tuesday, October 11, 5:30pm in Room 1150 of the Health Sciences Building.
  • Mock midterm test questions: questions
  • Mock midterm answers: corrected version of answers. Please note that an earlier version of this answer key indicated that the answer to question 5 ("LUCA is supported by ...") was d. The correct answer, in fact, is f. Our apologies for the error.

Physics 115

Coach (Peer Mentor) Time Location
Jason Mondays, 5:30-6:50pm Room G3 in the Murray Library
Michael v. Thursdays, 4:30-5:50pm Room 102 in the Murray Library
Michael D. Fridays, 2:30-3:50pm Room 127 in the Physics Building

Sessions willl start on Monday, September 12.

Mock midterm: Sunday, October 16, 1pm in Room 107 in the Physics Building.

Mock midterm test: questions | answers

Math 121

Coach (Peer Mentor) Time Location
Baxter Tuesdays, 2:30-3:50pm Room 165 in the Physics Building
Shelby Wednesdays, 11:30am-12:50pm Room G3 in the Murray Library
Becky Fridays, 2:30-3:50pm Room 108 in the Arts Building


Mock Term Test 1: questionsanswers

Mock Term Test 2: Tuesday, October 4, 6:30pm in ARTS 146. questions | answers

Mock Term Test 3: Tuesday, October 18, 6:30pm in ARTS 146. questions | answers

Mock Exams

About mock exams

Typically, SSS peer mentors work together with input from course instructors and the SSS staff coordinating team to create a mock ('pretend') tests, to be held before a real test in the course.  The purpose of a mock test is to give students an opportunity to work on a set of practice questions and discuss the answers, to mimic the test-writing environment (if that's the way the mock test is organized), and to give a general sense of what a real midterm test or final exam in that course may be like. Students should note that questions on the mock exams are for practicing and are not designed to be an exact preview of the real exam, since those are created by the course instructors.

For courses that have one midterm test, the mock midterm tests are usually held in early- to mid-October. For courses that have multiple term tests, the mock tests are held a few days to a week before the real test. The mock final exams are usually held in late November or early December. The mock tests and answers are usually posted on this webpage.

Mock Midterms and Term Tests - Fall 2016

Biology 120

Mock midterm: Tuesday, October 11, 5:30pm in Room 1150 of the Health Sciences Building.

Mock midterm test: questions | corrected version of answers. Please note that an earlier version of this answer key indicated that the answer to question 5 ("LUCA is supported by ...") was d. The correct answer, in fact, is f. Our apologies for the error.

Physics 115

Mock midterm: Sunday, October 16, 1pm in Room 107 of the Physics Building

Mock midterm test: questions | answers

Math 121

Mock term tests

Mock test 1 questions | answers

Mock test 2 questions | answers

Mock test 3 questions | answers

Mock Finals - December 2016

These will not be scheduled until some time in November, 2016. Please check back later for more information.

About Structured Study Sessions

Structured Study Sessions (SSSs), led by a Peer Mentor trained in the theory of Supplemental Instruction (SI), provide students with a chance to review, practice, and share their understanding of course material with their peers in a collaborative group setting.

What happens in Structured Study Sessions?

During weekly study sessions, Study Session Coaches (trained Peer Mentors) will help students identify the important concepts covered during lectures, work through exercises and sample problems, and coordinate a mock mid-term exam. Students will have an opportunity to ask questions and share problems, working collectively as a group to arrive at solutions to problems and direct the learning.

In many respects, structured study sessions are like informal study groups that naturally form and meet periodically throughout a term to work on assignments and study for exams. The main difference is that Structured Study Sessions take place on a regular weekly basis beginning at the start of the term and have guidance from a student Peer Mentor (an academically successful student with some effective learning strategies). Study sessions will not be used to teach new material or to provide subject-specific tutoring for individual students.

Who leads the Study Sessions?

Structured Study Sessions are led by students who have already successfully completed the class, have received training in the theory of Supplemental Instruction and Study Skills, and are familiar with student resources and services at the U of S. Study Session PALs attend class lectures once again with students registered in the class (..not for credit this time!) in order to become familiar with the course content and facilitate weekly study sessions.

Study Session PALs are senior students with effective study and learning skills and a passion for teaching and learning, acting as a guide in study sessions where a collaborative approach to learning is taken and are not tutors or instructors. They do not teach or provide individual subject-specific tutoring to students.

When and where will Structured Study Sessions take place?

Each term a new set of offerings will be made.  Details about the sessions, including schedule of sessions and location at posted at the top of this page.

Role of the Instructor in SSS

Before the start of term, we'll need your help in selecting good candidates to facilitate the Structured Study Sessions (SSSs) for your course, the SSS Coach. This academically-strong "model student" will have taken the course before, potentially in the previous academic year.

The SSS Coach will participate in Student Learning Services' Peer Assisted Learning (PAL) training program, and will take on the role of SSS Coach for your class.

During the term, the SSS Coach will occasionally ask you if they can make an announcement at the beginning of class. For example, if they are planning a particularly interesting study session that week (like a practice midterm), then they'll want to inform the class to encourage more than just "the regulars" to attend.

At the end of the term, we will ask you for a list of final marks for your course. The data will be used for research and program development only; individual student identities will not be revealed and student privacy will be protected. We will also ask for your assistance in sending out an invitation to the class to participate in an evaluation survey where students are asked for feedback on the study sessions.

How is the SSS Coach different from a Teaching Assistant?

The SSS Coach is responsible for attending your lectures and preparing study session material based on the material covered in class. The point of having the student re-attend lectures for this course is not for their own revision of the material, but rather to give them context in which to design the study session material as well as be able to jog students' memories, i.e. "Remember when the prof said such-and-such in class?"

The SSS Coach is *not* involved with grading or marking of student work. The SSS Coach is a Peer Mentor, and is a "friendly face" and is more approachable to students because of their separation from any evaluation.

SSSs are held at regularly scheduled times throughout the week, usually 3h/week. The SSS Coach will discourage students from attending SSSs as a substitute for class.

About a week before the start of term, the SLS will take care of details such as coordinating SSS times that work with the SSS Coach's schedule, booking rooms, and providing photocopier access. The SSS Coach will also have regular office hours at the SLS when they can prepare study session material.

How do the student SSS Coaches benefit from this program?

SSS Coaches receive high-quality training in small-group facilitation, teaching techniques, active listening, and student support. These students have received orientation from other units on campus including the International Student Office, Student Counselling Services, Disability Student Services and USSU Pride Centre, making them more aware of diversity and thereby making them stronger leaders.


If you are interested in piloting Structured Study Sessions in your course, please contact Gina Koehn (966-2738, This program is targetted at historically difficult large 100- and 200-level courses. With your interest and a good candidate or two in mind, the SLS will check with your department for approval to proceed with this program.

Student leaders will go through an application and interviewing process before being hired as SLS PAL Peer Mentors, and will attend training at the beginning of the term. Find out more about the PAL program.