Supplemental Instruction/PLTL

For Students: Facts about Supplemental Instruction (SI)

What is SI?
Supplemental Instruction, or SI, is a series of weekly review sessions for students taking historically difficult courses. SI review sessions, or "workshops", are available to all enrolled students who want to improve their understanding of course materials and their grades.

SI workshops provide a chance to get together with other members of your class to compare notes, discuss important concepts, and develop strategies for studying the subject, approaching the homework, and preparing for exams.

Who are the SI "Coaches"?
Your SI coach is a competent student or staff member recommended by someone from our faculty for this position. He or she has mastered the material that will be covered in the course. Your coach will be in class with you at every meeting (in most instances), hearing what you hear and reading what you read. What he/she will not do in SI workshops is re-teach. Instead, the job of coach is to help you understand the material that has already been presented during class. SI can help you learn the course material more thoroughly, but it is not a substitute for attending class.

What does it cost? SI costs you nothing except your time. Assistance is free! Come as often as you like. Keep in mind, though, the statistics show that the more you come, the better your grade.

What’s in it for me?
Your review sessions are informal and voluntary; no classroom credit is given for attending unless otherwise specified by the instructor. Your payoff is a better understanding of the material, enhanced study skills, and, if you attend sessions regularly, the potential for a higher grade. In our pilot program, the final exam grades for those students who attended SI workshops were as much as 29% higher than the grades of students who did not attend. Subsequent semesters of SI across all disciplines demonstrated similar results.

When do the SI workshops begin?
Your SI coach will let you know when the first SI workshop will be held. At every SI workshop session, please bring your books, notes, and all other class materials, as well as paper and a writing implement. Plan to spend an hour at a regular workshop; exam review workshops sometimes run a little longer.

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