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Blog 143

Blog 143

My Placement Experience with SCOTAY (Student Consultants on Teaching at York)

By Zigeng Liang

To be honest, when I first approached the Student Consultants on Teaching at York (SCOTAY) program in September, I considered it is an impossible task for me. When I was told that as a student consultant, I am expected to advise professors with years of teaching experience to improve their teaching, as an undergraduate student, I had no confidence that I am competent for this job. However, as the training progressed, I have a different understanding of the project now. Professors who participate in the program are not necessarily facing any challenges or struggling with their current pedagogy. So, we student consultants do not have to be obsessed with finding shortages in instructors’ teaching method. It is also important to find out what they have done well and to encourage them to maintain their existing strengths in their pedagogy. In addition to improving the quality of teaching, the SCOTAY program also offers a chance for instructors to reflect on their own teaching and acquire a students’ perspective on their classroom management, and, of course, a chance to celebrate their achievements in teaching.

During the training session, I also learned a lot of theoretical knowledge like UDL (Universal Design of Learning) and BOPPPS. BOPPPS stands for Bridge, Outcomes, Pre-Assessment, Participatory Learning, Post-Assessment, and Summary. A Bridge is a hook, a motivational statement, which helps gain students’ attention. An Outcome of the study should be share after the Bridge, making students clearly know the learning intention. Pre-Assessment can help the instructors to find out what students already know about the topic. It can also be used as a reminder to refresh the students’ memory. Participatory Learning is the activities for both instructors and students in the classroom to achieve the learning outcome. Post-Assessment is a chance for learners to demonstrate the learning outcome and it comes in many forms. For example, an oral question, a quiz, a test, or a writing assignment. Summary is a reflection of the outcome and a preview of future courses can also be included. BOPPPS is not only a useful framework for instructors to organize their teaching and lectures, but also a practical way for our student consultants to organize our observations.

Participating in the program is a rewarding experience for me. The experience of being an observer is very different from being a student in the classroom. By observing the classes, I can have a whole picture of what happens in the classroom without having to concentrate on the content of the lecture, which I believe is beneficial for me as a future educator. Also, it is an opportunity for me to reflect on and improve my learning.

Despite the many challenges involved, I think I am very fortunate to be a participant in the program.

About the Author

I am a fourth-year student of the faculty of Education with two years of experience as an Economics student, currently, it is my second year in the program of Educational Studies. As an international student from China, I hope to became an educator back home with international vision and perspective after graduation.