▲ Let's check out major tutoring!
You're probably having difficulty in studying major subjects at least once. Especially, this includes freshmen. For these students, our university is carrying out a 'Major tutoring' system. Major tutoring is the system that a student or graduate student who gets an A grade within a subject is a tutor and study together with the tutee. The Dankook Herald (DKH) interviewed major tutoring members and asked if major mentoring is worked well or not.
First, in Jukjeon campus, the Dankook Accreditation Center for Educational Development (DACED) supports either with a volunteer credit or 250,000 won of scholarship. 50,000 won per group is also provided for a stationery fee. Lastly, the groups can use the study room in Toegye Memorial Central Library if requested. An anonymous tutor(Dept. of Chemical Engineering) said, "There is nothing that is seriously problematic and I don't have much problem with the tutoring since the support from DACED is good enough." Also, Jeon(Dept. of Chemical Engineering), a tutee, also replied "The tutoring is well-scheduled. I had hard time with studying my major but now my tutor helps me a lot. All three groups which are now participating in major tutoring are progressed regularly, and it seems that most of tutors and tutees are satisfied with their plans and contents. Tutee Lee (Dept. of Political Science and International Relations) said, "Thanks to DACED's support, we can use the study room which is a stable place we study every week."
However, when asked the tricky part of major tutoring, a tutor said, "When I explain concepts to juniors, I know I should sink to their level but it's hard since I've learned much deeper than them." Also, all tutors and tutees complained of the number limit of major tutoring. "There are 20 study groups, but only three major tutoring groups can be offered. I wish DACED increase the number so more students can participate in," said Lee.(Dept. of Political Science and International Relations) Tutee Jeon (Dept. of Chemical Engineering) said, "I wish DACED could support books related with my major, and the increased scholarship for tutor since it is given only once in a semester."
DKH delivered students' opinions to DACED of Jukjeon campus and asked about what's next semester for selection plan of major tutoring. About this, they replied "Last semester, few students applied major tutoring so we reduced the number of teams and instead, increased some benefits from this semester. But next semester, we will increase the number of teams after adjusting students number as many students are about to participate major tutoring. And nothing at all was decided about the number of teams, so there is no plan for raising aid too." Moreover, they said "We request reports from students as a part of monitoring every five weeks and ten weeks. And at the end of the major tutoring, we hold a conference for sharing good study skills.
The success of major tutoring in Jukjeon campus was done by students' active efforts and DACED's steady care. Students' formed groups and set detailed plans to be chosen as major tutoring teams. Along with students' effort, DACED supported with the benefits that fulls students' demand. Also, the monitoring system of DACED made the major tutoring substantially effective. However, it seems that little more specific supports, such as providing needed books, are required.
Then how about Cheaonan campus? Cheonan campus accepts below 24 hours for volunteer work by studying hours. Tutors said "Due to major tutoring, I can earn service hours and study my major. Also I'm glad to help my junior in school. But even though tutor started for each other, they reached the limit because the system is not well established. Graduate student, tutor Lee(Dept. of Literary Creative Writing) said "I've tutored my junior for four years but year by year, there is no advance. Above all, I heard university students who work as tutors receive service hours. But I can't get any benefit because graduate student do not need service hours for graduation. If I receive a certificate, I could write this experience on my resume. But there is no paper like certificate. Besides l feel uncomfortable when I make handouts or binding because I have to spend my money. So I need school's support even with a small cost for the student."
Tutor, Kyong(Dept. of Chemistry) said, "DACED have to give practical help. When the most of classes have begun, the Office of Academic Affairs is closed. So it is hard to get minor things like chalk. I think that class will make progress well if they concern about every detail. Also purpose of this program is to progress students' grade. But there are too many students so I can't care of each student. They have to propose alternatives about these problems." After the interview, Cheonan campus has more problems than Jukjeon campus. In Jukjeon campus, they can get study room easily compared with Cheonan campus that don't have stable places to study.
By contrast, thanks to the tutors who get great grades, tutees said they could study for an exam more easily. Also they could learn again what they didn't fully understand in class. Above all things, because major tutoring is only carried out with students, tutees said we could approach the class of tutor more flexible than that of professor. However, there are some groups who don't regularly gather because of the tutors' lack of responsibility. Tutee, You(Dept. of Spanish) replied, "I think tutor's duty is the most important thing in group study but they are not. The biggest problem is they are not punctual because of personal circumstances. I think tutors have the least responsibility as there is no supervision system. We had studied at a time in case of out of time. Also, I want DACED to provide us some fixed study rooms prevent for moving problem."
Based on these opinions, DKH interviewed with DACED of Cheonan campus. They answered, “It's difficult to provide a certificate for tutors autonomously because the initiative isn't up to us. In addition, we can't evaluate tutors' ability during only one semester...The problem of aid is arranged with use of our copy machine or printer for tutors. Also, the problem of the study room is still in conference with the university so there is a plan for it."
Like this, DACED of Cheonan campus doing their best to compensate some defects. However, they just meet groups to talk about some problems as the way of supervision. This doesn't seem to be enough to explain the tutoring is worked well or not. Even though major tutoring is carried out by both campuses, the budget is spent differently so supporting for students are different too. But compared with Jukjeon campus, Cheonan campus is in short supply relatively and many students have complaints about it. Also, there are some groups who don't gather regularly. It seems on Cheonan campus there is a need to construct organized supervision system.
To improve these problems, above all, the students' positive attitude is needed. In the case of Cheonan campus, the study room problem that makes students uncomfortable is an urgent matter. A useful guide of the student advisory committee who are representatives of students is needed. To make major tutoring better, the university has to collect students' opinions carefully and improve them through periodic feed back.
So-Yeon Kim firstname.lastname@example.org