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Article
Publication date: 29 June 2012

L.P. Steenkamp, R.S. Baard and B.L. Frick

Student success and attrition, especially in the first year, has received increasing attention both in South Africa and internationally. The purpose of this article is to…

Abstract

Purpose

Student success and attrition, especially in the first year, has received increasing attention both in South Africa and internationally. The purpose of this article is to explore peer tutoring as a possible approach to facilitate first‐year student success in Financial Accounting.

Design/methodology/approach

The perspectives of tutors and students attending tutor sessions (tutees) were investigated by means of questionnaires, which were complemented by an analysis of the tutees' performance in the subject compared with their participation in the tutor programme. Two cohorts of students (2008/2009) were included in the study.

Findings

The results suggest that the tutees experienced the tutor programme positively and were in favour of similar initiatives in their second year of study. The tutors thought the programme had beneficial consequences for tutees. Regular attendance of tutor sessions seemed to benefit at least some students, even though it is difficult to determine causality. English‐speaking students benefited from attending the tutor sessions.

Research limitations/implications

The results are not generalisable beyond the scope of the particular institution, but provide guidance for other institutions considering a similar intervention.

Originality/value

The implementation of a tutor programme entails investments in terms of both money and time. This paper considers the benefits derived from these investments, specifically in an Accounting and South African context.

Details

Meditari Accountancy Research, vol. 20 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2049-372X

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Article
Publication date: 2 January 2020

Lee Mackenzie

Desertion rates in Colombian universities remain unacceptably high. In the field of foreign languages, academic failure is particularly concerning since English language…

Abstract

Purpose

Desertion rates in Colombian universities remain unacceptably high. In the field of foreign languages, academic failure is particularly concerning since English language instruction is compulsory in most universities. To address the issue of poor student performance and high dropout rates, the University of Colombia has set up a peer tutoring scheme (PTS) for English as a foreign language (EFL) students in order to inform programme development. The paper aims to discuss this issue.

Design/methodology/approach

The study was informed by realist evaluation principles. Qualitative in-depth interviews were conducted with eight PTS stakeholders supplemented by documentary analysis of the programme’s publicity material on the PTS website. The data were analysed using thematic analysis.

Findings

Findings reveal discrepancies between the “espoused theory” about how the programme operates and the “theory-in-use”. In particular, according to stakeholders, the programme does not appear to be used by many of those EFL students who would benefit from it, which suggests that the programme is not as effective as it could be. Student and teacher contextual factors and mechanisms may explain the reasons for issues with programme effectiveness.

Research limitations/implications

Formative evaluations such as the current study can provide rich contextual information, but cannot be generalised to other settings. Also, this study does not explore the perspective of peer tutors and tutees, which means key variables may have been overlooked. Further research into the perspectives of tutors and tutees would therefore be needed to firm up these conclusions.

Practical implications

Due to the scarcity of literature into EFL peer tutoring interventions in higher education (HE), it is hoped that these findings will have relevance for similar contexts. The current evaluation highlights the influence of contextual factors such as willingness to ask for help, student motivation, student priorities, tutor credibility, teacher workload, timetabling and scheduling issues and involvement from teachers on the success of open-access peer tutoring programmes for EFL students in higher educational settings.

Originality/value

As far the researcher is aware, this is the first evaluation of an EFL peer tutoring programme in a private HE context in Colombia, and one of only a handful of studies into EFL peer tutoring programmes. The findings therefore have implications for those working in similar contexts.

Details

International Journal of Educational Management, vol. 34 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-354X

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Article
Publication date: 12 April 2008

Gary Ritter and Rebecca Maynard

Academically focused tutoring programmes for young children have been promoted widely in the US in various forms as promising strategies for improving academic…

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110

Abstract

Academically focused tutoring programmes for young children have been promoted widely in the US in various forms as promising strategies for improving academic performance, particularly in reading and mathematics. A body of evidence shows the benefits of tutoring provided by certified, paid professionals; however, the evidence is less clear for tutoring programmes staffed by adult volunteers or college students. In this article, we describe a relatively large‐scale university‐based programme that creates tutoring partnerships between college‐aged volunteers and students from surrounding elementary schools. We used a randomised trial to evaluate the effectiveness of this programme for 196 students from 11 elementary schools over one school year, focusing on academic grades and standardised test scores, confidence in academic ability, motivation and school attendance. We discuss the null findings in order to inform the conditions under which student support programmes can be successful.

Details

Journal of Children's Services, vol. 3 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1746-6660

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Article
Publication date: 1 February 1994

Stefan Wills

Proposes a framework for gaining a greater understanding of all types ofmanagerial learning, which builds on Bateson′s notion of levels oflearning, which provides an ideal…

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998

Abstract

Proposes a framework for gaining a greater understanding of all types of managerial learning, which builds on Bateson′s notion of levels of learning, which provides an ideal context in which to position the range of views expressed by the management tutors. Reveals that their assumptions and beliefs about learning and teaching tend to be guided by the essential nature of their respective subject discipline, which revolves around the notion of “hard” and “soft” disciplines and, hence, provides a rationale for teaching different types of learning and affects course content and design. Analyses the differences of approach by dissecting the learning process into a series of phases which are part of a cyclical model. Reveals large variations in the degree of importance placed on pre‐ and post‐course activity. Explores this model in greater depth by discussing a particular Ashridge general management programme, which uses this framework extensively to guide its development. Concludes by suggesting that management educators should refrain from deluding both themselves and their clients that all tutors, from a variety of subject disciplines, share the same basic assumptions about learning. In fact, it is imperative that they do not share the same basic assumptions, if they are really serious about tailoring learning to individual client needs.

Details

Journal of Management Development, vol. 13 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0262-1711

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Article
Publication date: 8 April 2014

Paul Comfort and John James McMahon

– The purpose of this paper is to determine the effects of peer tutoring on the academic achievement, during practical assessments, of the tutors and tutees.

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1017

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to determine the effects of peer tutoring on the academic achievement, during practical assessments, of the tutors and tutees.

Design/methodology/approach

Final year students on an undergraduate Sports Science degree programme provided optional peer tutored practical sessions, once per week (two hours per session) for 12 weeks, for second year students on the same undergraduate programme. Students were then assessed on their ability to demonstrate, coach and explain a range of dynamic resistance exercises.

Findings

A one way analysis of variance with Bonferroni post hoc analysis demonstrated a significantly greater academic achievement in the peer tutoring group (73.64±10.26 per cent) compared to students that were not peer tutored (46.20±20.27, p=0.003) and compared to the previous years’ cohort that were not peer tutored (56.83±19.18, p<0.001). Moreover, tutors also demonstrated significantly (p<0.001) higher grades (82.00±11.01 per cent) compared to the students that did not act as peer tutors (64.88±8.82 per cent).

Practical implications

This study demonstrates that peer tutoring during practical sessions in Sports Science programmes can enhance the development of practical skills and achievement of both tutees and tutors during practical assessments.

Originality/value

To the authors knowledge this is the first study to determine the effects of peer tutoring on both the tutors and tutees, in a Sports Science setting.

Details

Journal of Applied Research in Higher Education, vol. 6 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2050-7003

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Article
Publication date: 2 October 2007

Geoffrey Chivers

The purpose of this paper is to determine the ways in which postgraduate study in vocational fields supports the development of advanced competences amongst mid‐career…

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1489

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to determine the ways in which postgraduate study in vocational fields supports the development of advanced competences amongst mid‐career professionals.

Design/methodology/approach

The extensive written communications between health and safety professionals taking a postgraduate course in health and safety management and their tutor were investigated to determine the competence domains where learning was taking place or attempted. The individual written communications were analysed and each issue raised allocated to a learning area. The quantitative results for each area were determined. The learning areas were assigned to one or more competence development domains.

Findings

The quantified results demonstrate that the main domain where mid‐career professionals on this postgraduate course were most strongly challenged to learn and develop in advanced competences was the meta‐competence domain on the Cheetham and Chivers model.

Research limitations/implications

This study was based on written communications passing between a limited number of students and one tutor on a single postgraduate study programme. There is clearly great scope to extend this form of research given the large number of postgraduate vocational study programmes now undertaken by mid‐career professionals.

Practical implications

Tutors need to focus strongly on supporting the very demanding learning leading to the growth of meta‐competencies. Given the ready availability of relevant factual information to mid‐career professionals in the information age, there is much less need to focus on teaching facts, although supporting the interpretation and application of such factual information by students retains great importance.

Originality/value

Few other studies exist which attempt to analyse written communications between tutors and postgraduate students on professional/vocational courses in terms of how such courses are developing professional competences.

Details

Journal of European Industrial Training, vol. 31 no. 8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0309-0590

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Article
Publication date: 25 June 2019

Euan Wilson

The purpose of this paper is to examine best practices in supporting tutors in academic quality within private training enterprises (PTEs) in New Zealand and to make…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine best practices in supporting tutors in academic quality within private training enterprises (PTEs) in New Zealand and to make practical recommendations for people working in the tertiary education sector.

Design/methodology/approach

A hypothesis is proposed, which is then tested using a case study examining what support from the quality assurance section of a PTE’s tutors perceive to be important. The hypothesis is that additional feedback is required for tutors. The results are compared with those on the literature on quality assurance to see if there is consistency in themes.

Findings

The primary themes that emerged from interview and survey data were that tutors with more than three years of experience feel they would benefit from more regular, clear and constructive feedback and that these tutors need support during any programme-related changes.

Research limitations/implications

This research highlights that the quality of feedback is crucial in education and a worthwhile area of further investigation. Limitations include the size of the sample of interviewees and that the study was based on only one organization in New Zealand. Future research is also suggested, which could include data from other tertiary educational institutions.

Practical implications

The paper concludes with a practical overview of “dos” and two “don’ts” identified from the case study. The objective is to share recommendations in a practical and useable way with other practitioners.

Social implications

This account of an inquiry into internal quality assurance processes and outcomes offers transferable learnings to tutors, academic quality assurance teams, employers and other stakeholders across the education sector.

Originality/value

The conclusion drawn from this is case study is that educational organisations should ensure that anyone tasked with providing feedback to tutors is first coached themselves; otherwise, the feedback can be unhelpful.

Details

Quality Assurance in Education, vol. 27 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0968-4883

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Article
Publication date: 12 April 2008

Gary Ritter and Marc Holley

The use of random assignment can be effective and appropriate in the evaluation of programmes that serve children in schools. Because random assignment creates…

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104

Abstract

The use of random assignment can be effective and appropriate in the evaluation of programmes that serve children in schools. Because random assignment creates pre‐treatment equality between treatment and control groups, this methodology is particularly effective for understanding the impact of an intervention. Contemporary research on educational experiments has tended to focus on programme results rather than on their origin or implementation. While programme results are important, they provide little guidance to those interested in designing and implementing programme evaluations that use random assignment. This article shares the practical lessons learned from three educational experiments with researchers and practitioners interested in pursuing evaluations that use random assignment.

Details

Journal of Children's Services, vol. 3 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1746-6660

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Article
Publication date: 8 February 2016

Reina Ferrández-Berrueco, Tauno Kekale and David Devins

European policy is placing an increasing emphasis on involving employers and labour market institutions in the design and delivery of higher education (HE) programmes that…

Abstract

Purpose

European policy is placing an increasing emphasis on involving employers and labour market institutions in the design and delivery of higher education (HE) programmes that match curricula to current and future needs of the economy. The purpose of this paper is to investigate the curriculum development process for work-based learning (WBL) programmes and to connect it to the basic pillars, organizational and pedagogical strategies and key stages that enable higher education institutions (HEIs) to foster students’ learning, employability and innovation.

Design/methodology/approach

Case studies of 14 European WBL programmes in HE are reported using interviews and document analysis. These case studies are used to develop a final framework and examples of practice.

Findings

A framework was designed to develop WBL programmes that include three basic pillars and the interactions between them to enhance learning quality (doctrine), provide authentic experiences (authenticity) and respect the ways of developing and delivering WBL (culture).

Research limitations/implications

While selecting the cases on this “best practices” basis, some important pitfalls were not discussed. Thus, rather than offering a definitive theory, the authors provide a framework of issues that should at least be taken into account in the different stages of planning, delivery and reflection.

Practical implications

The framework is simultaneously a kind of “checklist” for WBL curriculum developers.

Originality/value

The research presents 14 case studies from programmes recognized in six European countries and develops an original WBL programme planning, delivery and evaluation framework that can also be used as a checklist for HEIs offering WBL programmes.

Details

Higher Education, Skills and Work-Based Learning, vol. 6 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2042-3896

Keywords

Content available
Article
Publication date: 4 July 2018

Felicity Kelliher and Seán Byrne

The purpose of this paper is to report on an action learning (AL) approach to curriculum design and delivery of a two-year part-time executive masters program, facilitated…

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2281

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to report on an action learning (AL) approach to curriculum design and delivery of a two-year part-time executive masters program, facilitated in part through a longitudinal work-based action research project. Program participants were a mix of mid- to senior managers operating in both the public and private sector and business owners, and all were in full-time employment.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper presents findings relating to participant and tutor perspectives of the program design, structure, and content. It also chronicles an AL tutor initiative run in conjunction with the inaugural program delivery, established to provide a collegial approach to learner facilitation, and to enable a research informed model of practice.

Findings

Findings suggest that the program allowed for greater action-reflection among and across all contributors (students, tutors, and program managers), and facilitated cross-pollination of AL perspectives, thus strengthening the interaction between practitioner and academic, and among academics themselves. Furthermore, the early involvement of tutors informed the work-based research project and larger AL program, and facilitated a matching of research interests between practitioner and tutor.

Originality/value

These findings suggest that an action-based model of knowledge transfer and development offers significant learning benefits to those partaking in an executive development program, resulting in the following insights: executive needs better served using a learner-centric approach; problem-oriented work-based assessment affords theory–practice balance; there is evidence of action-reflection “contagion” among all contributors; and the presented AL cycle has potential value in the conceptualization of reflective action.

Details

Journal of Work-Applied Management, vol. 10 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2205-2062

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