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Humanities Tutor Training

First-Time Tutors’ Training

Since 2011, a successful training programme for first-time tutors has been established by the Humanities EDU. This programme takes place twice a year, at the start of each semester when new tutors are employed by Departments to facilitate undergraduate course tutorials. The half-day training is strongly recommended for all new faculty tutors, and usually takes place on the first Saturday of the semester so that tutors have undergone training prior to their first tutorial in departments.

The goals for these workshops are, broadly, to:

  • Acknowledge the important role of tutors in teaching and learning in the Humanities Faculty;
  • Work with new tutors to develop their skills in facilitating student learning in tutorial groups;
  • Develop awareness of the knowledge and skills needed for assessment of undergraduate students.

The first half of the workshop introduces the role of a tutor, and provides some guidelines for good tutoring, and what to do when a tutor runs into difficulties. The sessions use role-playing scenarios and draw on students’ own experiences of being tutored in order to generate some practical advice for first-time tutors. The second half of the workshop covers academic writing and how to provide feedback to students, and discussing the issue of plagiarism and how to respond to it. There are also sessions focussing on psychosocial issues which are facilitated by Student Wellness and DISCHO.

Tutors are also provided with a number of resources, including a Tutor Guide, the Humanities Faculty Reference Guide, and a list of referral sources. They are also added to a VULA site where additional resources are made available to them.

Humanities Tutors Talking about Teaching Programme

In 2016 Robyn Human began running an ongoing tutor training and development programme throughout the year, called ‘Humanities Tutors Talking about Teaching’. This programme is voluntary for tutors in the Humanities Faculty.

Topics covered during 2016 included:

  • Working with Students with Disabilities (Reinette Popplestone, Disability Services)
  • Managing Race & Racism in Tutorials (Dr Shose Kessi, Department of  Psychology)
  • Managing Gender & Sexuality in Tutorials (Mujahid Osman, Religious Studies)
  • Library Research Tips and Tricks (Humanities Librarians)
  • Pedagogic Strategies for Supporting Critical Thinking (Shanali Govender, Centre for Innovation in Learning and Teaching)
  • Pedagogic Strategies for Student Engagement (Shanali Govender, Centre for Innovation in Learning and Teaching)

In 2017 the Humanities EDU hopes to offer a 2-day Humanities Tutor Training and Development Workshop prior to start of the academic year. This workshop will target returning tutors who wish to build on their current tutoring skills, and will aim to provide both professional and personal development sessions.