Peer assisted learning and generation Y : a case study

Carver, Tracey (2010) Peer assisted learning and generation Y : a case study. In 2010 ALTA : Australasian Law Teachers Association Conference 2010 : ' Power, Regulation and Responsibility : Lawyers in Times of Transition', 4-7 July 2010, The University of Auckland, New Zealand. (Unpublished)

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In recent years Australian Law Schools have implemented various forms of peer assisted learning or mentoring, including career mentoring by former students of final year students and orientation mentoring or tutoring by later year students of incoming first year students. The focus of these programs therefore is on the transition into or out of law school. There is not always as great an emphasis however, as part of this transition, on the use of law students belonging to the same unit cohort as a learning resource for each other within their degree. This is despite the claimed preference of Generation Y students for collaborative learning environments, authentic learning experiences and the development of marketable workplace skills. In the workplace, be it professional legal practice or otherwise, colleagues rely heavily on each other for information, support and guidance.

In the undergraduate law degree at the Queensland University of Technology (‘QUT’) the Torts Student Peer Mentor Program aims to supplement a student’s understanding of the substantive law of torts with the development of life-long skills. As such it has the primary objective, albeit through discussion facilitated by more senior students, of encouraging first year students to develop for themselves the skills they need to be successful both as law students and as legal practitioners. Examples of such skills include those relevant to: preparation for assessment tasks; group work; problem solving, cognition and critical thinking; independent learning; and communication. Significantly, in this way, not only do the mentees benefit from involvement in the program, but the peer mentors, or program facilitators, themselves also benefit from their participation in the real world learning environment the program provides.

This paper outlines the development and implementation of the above program, the pedagogy which influenced it, and its impact on student learning experiences

Impact and interest:

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ID Code: 71773
Item Type: Conference Item (Presentation)
Refereed: No
Keywords: Peer Assisted Learning, Skills Development, Generation Y, Torts Student Peer Mentor Program, HERN
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > LAW AND LEGAL STUDIES (180000)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Law
Current > Research Centres > Australian Centre for Health Law Research
Current > Schools > School of Law
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2011 please consult author.
Deposited On: 18 May 2014 22:22
Last Modified: 18 May 2014 22:22

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