Supplemental Instruction: What Does It Mean?

– Mackenzie Durdak (Defiance, OH)

Defiance College is a place where students find themselves socially, but when it comes to academics many students underestimate the rigor compared to high school. Luckily, many services are offered at DC to help students keep on track while still allowing you to have fun outside of the classroom

For the academic realm of the college experience, Student Academic Support Services (SASS) offers SI study groups for students to receive additional outside instruction on class material.

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Nisa Clay, a SASS Studio Graduate Assistant, reports “supplemental instruction [SI] is an academic assistance program that uses peer-led study to help students in traditionally difficult courses.” During these sessions, Supplemental Instructors go over material already covered by professors and help reestablish concepts using different techniques. Even though these sessions are not mandatory, professors generally recommend for students participate if getting a good grade is a priority.

To elaborate, the benefits of Supplemental Instruction are that you get to learn and develop study habits with upperclassmen who have previously excelled in the course. New freshman students will begin to discover the study techniques that work best for them, as well as giving them an advantage over the students in class who do not seek SI study opportunities.

SI gives Yellow Jackets the chance to ask questions and get help from someone who has gone through the classroom experience as a student. According to Katie Haydett, an SI, going to these events consistently helps students “perform better on papers, tests, and quizzes.

Not all classes offer these study groups, however, incoming freshmen who are taking the classes often learn extra skills and techniques that will help past the individual course and throughout their college career. Classes on campus that include SI resources are General Chemistry I, Principles of Biology I, Microeconomics, Behavioral Statistics, and Introduction to Psychology. If a Defiance College student want a little more help or just wants to reaffirm what they think they already know, SI sessions would be the opportunity to seek.

Finally, do not forget about the future benefits of doing well in your classes at DC. If you are taking any of these courses at Defiance College and would like to work as an SI, you will need to complete the course successfully with high grade and a professor recommendation. The adage of “if you can teach it, you know it” directly applies to the position. Not only is being a Supplemental Instructor a paying job, but it will help you review the material continuously which will provide further reinforcement of your education.

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