The role of the personal tutor is complex, it oscillates between guidance on academic issues to offering life advice on settling into university, dealing with change, celebrating success and developing positive relationships with individual students and their peers. It is also a role where staff have to expect the unexpected, an interaction with a student can reveal any number of different factors that are impacting one their studies. Supporting students to be more successful requires getting to know them beyond just their name, age and personal characteristics, it requires a deeper knowledge of what motivates them, how they handle challenge, react to change and feedback. There is significant sector data that points towards specific groups that are least likely to gain a first class degree, or least likely to attend university and with the growth of commuter students the student body is interesting, exciting and diverse. The challenge of student retention becomes difficult if tutors are less equipped with the skills, knowledge and data to be as effective as they can be. Universities collect a lot of data about students as they arrive but often this data is buried deep and is inaccessible to most. Good learning analytics systems enable tutors to see patterns of engagement and outcomes which help in conversations about students. But these patterns take time to develop, we know that the first 7 weeks of university are the most important determinant in deciding whether a student will stay. Completing a short online questionnaire either as part of the online enrolment process or during the welcome week will provide some useful information to individuals students and their tutors or mentors to help them understand how to be successful.
Proposing a FUN PIC N’ MIX Approach to Staff Teaching Enhancement Programmes (STEP) for Personal Tutors - Thursday 19 September 2019, 14:00
One of the challenges of personal tutoring is that tutors may feel unready and lacking in specialist skills when asked to maximise the value of the small amount of contact time they have with their tutees. This webinar discusses a STEP curriculum for personal tutoring and whether this should be narrow and deep, or broad, balanced and shallow, tailored to their academic literacy, like a FUN PIC N’ MIX where tutors can experiment with a few specialist interventions of their choosing. It introduces several easily understood models that can benefit students and focuses particularly on three tricks of the trade: the one-minute rule , symmetries, and appropriate sign posting.
Developing the Self-Belief and Aspirations of Students in HE - Thursday 25 July 2019, 14:00
Aims of the webinar:
- Values and Philosophy
- Factors which appear to enhance the development of student self belief and high aspirations
- Questions and Discussion
Using Analytics - Thursday 20 June 2019, 14:00
The aims of the webinar are to:
- Introduce the key concepts behind learning analytics
- Outline the current research trends in learning analytics
- Explain why you would want to align learning analytics and student wellbeing
- Provide an overview of the UKAT mentored research project: What synergies or conflicts exist between current Higher Education Institution Learning Analytics and student wellbeing polices?
Institutional infrastructure - Thursday 16 May 2019, 14:00
This webinar explores the vision required to imagine and build an organic and sustainable advising and tutoring infrastructure and culture within modern-day HE institutions. Advising and tutoring systems have been neglected within HE institutions for some time, yet they remain a fundamental part of providing holistic support, advice and guidance for our learners and are a key part of promoting student success as well as improving outcomes. The chief challenge appears to be systemic/infrastructural – making tutoring work in institutions with diverse missions, values and differing priorities and with different perspectives and perceptions about what really works. Yet, there are many evidence-based positive things that can be done to build sustainable, agile, flexible and successful tutoring systems within HE settings.
This webinar explores the mission and values required to imagine a workable and sustainable advising and tutoring infrastructure within modern-day HE institutions and considers the tools required to do so. It emphasises the importance of ensuring that advising and tutoring is at the forefront of strategies to improve support and outcomes for students at all levels of HE study. It draws upon the rationale for having strategic sponsorship, reward, recognition and visibility of tutoring at every level of the organisation. Reviewing the tools and resources required to do this, the session considers the development of tutoring principles, developing workable and sustainable tutoring models, the challenge of providing adequate training and development opportunities for tutors and also considers the resource and funding implication for making this happen. The session is underpinned by recent research and draws upon a case study which considers how one UK HE institution is currently re-imagining its tutorial system based on the considerations outlined above. The webinar will be relevant to any colleague supporting advising and tutoring within their organisation since the session touches upon what everybody can do to make tutoring work by taking a “whole of institution” approach.
Using Solution-focused Coaching with Students - Thursday 25 April 2019, 14:00
This webinar aims to help attendees:
- understand solution- focused coaching and the solution- focused approach;
- consider the key characteristics of using a solution- focused approach in the personal tutoring role;
- explore how solution talk and problem talk questions can impact student success;
- examine and demonstrate the use of frameworks (such as GROW, OSKAR and BATHE) for coaching conversations in tutoring interactions with students
- contemplate the role of success coaching in US Higher Education and it's potential relevance to the UK
“How can I be an effective personal tutor and what is out there to help me do this?” A qualitative study into staff perceptions of their personal tutor role and the influence of key resources - Thursday 21 March 2019, 14:00
The webinar aims to help attendees:
- assess the value of tailored personal tutoring resources (both student-facing and for staff development in the role) produced as part of a national research project;
- understand the background, rationale, key issues, and methodology behind our Lincoln-based research on personal tutoring;
- identify and discuss the findings and evaluation of this research;
- consider the implications of this research on personal tutoring both in terms of tutoring/advising practice and areas for potential future work.
It will include ‘thinking points’ for participants at various points along with time for questions at the end.
Knowing you: Learning Analytics, the Johari Window and Personal Tutoring - Thursday 21 February 2019, 14:00
This webinar will explore the issue of tutor – tutee relationships, focusing on how we can know more about our tutees in order to support them effectively. The current growth in the use of simple data and learning analytics to facilitate the work of personal tutors has the potential to facilitate communication and sharing of information, and thus enhance the quality of communication between personal tutors and their tutees to improve student engagement and support the tutee. However, tutors may need advice and guidance in how to make effective use of data from analytics systems. I contend that this information requires the lens of a humanistic framework in order to be transformed into the knowledge and insight that can support the tutor-tutee relationship. The Johari Window is presented as an example of a useful heuristic to support tutors in doing this. There will be opportunity for discussion around the use of learning analytics in personal tutoring, and other ideas for maximising value of the small amount of contact time tutors have with their tutees, in order to forge productive relationships. Participants who are interested may choose to be involved in a follow up piece of research.
The UKAT Research Committee Webinar - Thursday 17 January 2019, 14:00
The first UKAT Research Webinar will take place on Thursday 17th January 2019 from 2-3:30pm GMT. We would like as many UKAT members and their colleagues to join us as we discuss how to ensure that tutoring and advising practice is evidence-informed. Whether you have engaged in the scholarship of advising and tutoring before or are a complete newcomer and want to find out about what’s been published in the tutoring space and the projects we are supporting, please do sign up. You will have the opportunity to hear from participants in the UKAT research mentoring programme, about the work NACADA (The Global Community for Academic Advising) and to discuss the “gaps” in the literature and what we can do to address them.
Tutoring and Mental Health - Monday 20 November 2017, 12:00
This webinar explores current issues around student mental health, wellbeing and resilience, and the role that personal tutoring has to play. Consideration will be given to the role of tutors in working with students to cultivate grit and resilience, develop growth mindsets and normalise the challenges of university study. Also considered is the way in which tyutors can work with other other services to best support students with mental health needs.
Transition, Tutoring and Technology - Tuesday 18 July 2017, 12:30
It is widely recognised that the transition to university study is difficult for many students. Personal tutors have a crucial role to play in supporting students through this transition and helping them to succeed in the higher education environment. This webinar explores fundamental issues around transition, tutoring practices for supportive interventions, and the role that technology can play in both supporting students and identifying those students in need of support.