Peer-Assisted Learning Facilitator Training Overview
Peer-Assisted Learning (PAL) facilitators are well-prepared before they enter the classroom. Prior to each semester facilitators undergo training built on the extensive experience of the International Supplemental Instruction Program and the research of Dr. David Arendale. The two-day fall semester training and one-day spring semester training sessions emphasize cooperative learning theory, cultural competency, modeling productive learning behaviors, and understanding group dynamics.
Throughout the semester, teams of facilitators meet weekly to share strategies and activities that promote student interaction and the integration of study skills during the PAL session. Facilitators observe each other in the classroom to provide supportive coaching. In addition, the PAL director observes each facilitator at least once a semester to improve and evaluate their facilitation skills.
The PAL program is certified by the College Reading and Learning Association, as are individual facilitators for Level I (described above) and for Level II, which requires additional hours of training, service, and completion of the course OUE 3050 - Introduction to Peer Education, which focuses on such topics as classroom assessment techniques, social interdependence theory, metacognitive knowledge, and self-regulated learning. The PAL experience provides undergraduate facilitators with valuable para-professional skills such as leadership, time management, assertiveness, problem-solving, and team work.