Study Sessions - Term 2 (2016-17)

Biology 120

Coach (Peer Mentor) Time Location
Mars Monday 2:00-3:20pm Room 104 in the Arts Building
Dakoda Tuesday 8:30-9:50am Room 213 in the Arts Building
Maryam Tuesday 5:30-6:50pm Room G3 in the Murray Library
Alexa Wednesday 11:30am-12:50pm Room 211 in the Arts Building
Hayley Thursday 11:30am-12:50pm Room 124 in the Biology Building
Tara Thursday 3:00pm-4:20pm Room 104 in the Arts Building

*No sessions during February Reading Week (Feb. 20-24, 2017) *

Mock Midterm: Monday, February 6, 6pm in ARTS 241. Sign-up to Attend

Mock midterm questions | answers

Please note: If you picked up a copy of the mock midterm at the session but left before the discussion period, you may notice that questions 5 and 37 on the posted version of the test (link above) have been lightly edited for clarity.

Physics 117

Coach (Peer Mentor) Time Location
Jason Monday 5:30-6:50pm Room 102 in the Murray Library
Michael v. Tuesday 4:00-5:20pm Room 102 in the Murray Library
Michael D. Friday 1:00-2:20pm Room G3 in the Murray Library

*No sessions during February Reading Week (Feb. 20-24, 2017) *

Mock midterm: Sunday, February 12, 1:30pm, in ARTS 241.

Mock midterm 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 Term 1 courses. For Term 2 courses, the mock midterm courses are usually held in early February. 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 for Term 1 courses and in late March or early April for Term 2 courses. The mock tests and answers are usually posted on this webpage.

Mock Midterms and Term Tests - Term 2 (Winter 2017)

BIO 120 Mock Midterm Exam - will be on Monday, Feb 6 at 6:00 pm in  Room 241 Arts - Sign-up to Attend

Bio 120 Mock Midterm questions | answers

Please note: If you picked up a copy of the mock midterm at the session but left before the discussion period, you may notice that questions 5 and 37 on the posted version of the test (link above) have been lightly edited for clarity.

PHYS 117 Mock Midterm Exam - Sunday, February 12, 1:30pm in Room 241 Arts

Mock midterm questions  | answers 

Answers to be posted after the mock midterm session.


Mock Finals - Term 2, April 2017

In past years, SSS peer mentors have presented mock final exams to help students prepare for their real final exams. Please check back for more information (likely to be posted in late March).

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.

Contact

If you are interested in piloting Structured Study Sessions in your course, please contact Gina Koehn (306-966-2738, gina.koehn@usask.ca). 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.