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Putting it together: Supportive strategies for learning and assessment using peer mentoring

Peter Davis and Peter Bullen
Department of Construction Management, Curtin University of Technology
With the use of practical peer mentoring the writers have created a collaborative assignment task that brings first year students together with final year students. There are several objectives to consider; the key issues in terms of this paper are the enhancement of assignment submissions and to enable students to benefit from peer review.

In terms of scope the first year students are given a case study based on an actual project where they are required to discuss management issues arising from it in the context of the project management unit they are undertaking. As part of the assessment, students are required to diarise in a reflective journal their liaison with their student mentors. The reflective journal describes; where the mentor has been involved, how they have assisted in the assignment process, and instances where mentor has offered tangible assistance or guidance in the areas of leadership, control, planning, etc, as these are the knowledge areas of the unit. The fourth year Project Management students for their part have a task to assist in outcome of the first year assignment. They adopt role of a project manager and apply project control techniques; ensuring that the assignment progresses in a smooth and orderly fashion.

The outcome is a deeper understanding of subject matter for the first year students, an insight into a mature student perspective of the processes and principles for assignment work, together with significant exposure to a young 'project manager' and project management principles. An understanding of academic requirements from peers as opposed to teaching staff and alignment with an early exposure to principles of mentor programs provides recognisable benefits in many aspects of pedagogy.

Please cite as: Davis, P. and Bullen, P. (2003). Putting it together: Supportive strategies for learning and assessment using peer mentoring. In Partners in Learning. Proceedings of the 12th Annual Teaching Learning Forum, 11-12 February 2003. Perth: Edith Cowan University. http://lsn.curtin.edu.au/tlf/tlf2003/abstracts/davis-abs.html

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Last revision: 13 Jan 2003. This URL: http://lsn.curtin.edu.au/tlf/tlf2003/abstracts/davis-abs.html