Skip to Main Content
Weather Notification  JMU Weather Alert : Due to inclement weather, JMU will be closed on Thursday, Mar. 5, 2015 Read More >

Peer Assisted Study Sessions

You are in the main content
Cover Photo Image


Faculty Guide to P.A.S.S.

What is P.A.S.S. (Supplemental Instruction Program)?

P.A.S.S. is a learning enhancement program. It is designed to organize and improve the ways in which students prepare for class outside of class. P.A.S.S. is attached to courses to provide students with a systematic and disciplined approach for processing the course material assigned by the professor. Through this program a peer leader is assigned to a course. This is a student who is usually recommended by the professor and has demonstrated proficiency in a targeted course and undergoes P.A.S.S. training. The peer leader attends the course to keep up with the course content being presented and to model effective student practices and attitudes. The peer leader schedules and conducts two group meetings a week at times convenient to members of the class. During these sessions, the peer leader uses interactive learning strategies which encourage involvement, comprehension, and synthesis of course content. In addition, the peer leader will incorporate demonstrations of effective study techniques.

Why was my course selected for P.A.S.S.?

P.A.S.S. targets historically challenging courses. In other words, this course contains content that students consider to be difficult. It is designed to support faculty teaching and is assigned to a course because of what is being taught, not because of the manner in which it is being taught.

What will I be required to do?

P.A.S.S. is not intended to create additional work for faculty. You can support P.A.S.S. by granting time for occasional in-class announcements and be supportive of the program by encouraging students to take advantage of the out of class sessions. Faculty should avoid the suggestion that only those who do poorly will benefit. Additionally, we will be in contact with you about the following aspects of the program:

  • Assisting us in selecting and approving candidates for peer leaders for your course;
  • Meeting briefly with your peer leader outside of class when necessary.

What should I expect from the P.A.S.S. peer leader?

The peer leader will attend all class meetings; maintain a professional attitude about matters such as class standards, grades, and student complaints; discourage students from attending the out of class study sessions as a substitute for class; share materials with the cooperating faculty member before use, if possible; and provide feedback to the cooperating faculty member if requested to do so. Peer leaders are not Instructors, guest lecturers, paper graders, teaching assistants or gofers. They are there to supplement the course content.

What should I expect from the P.A.S.S. program?

That we will cooperate with faculty in selecting candidates for peer leaders and place leaders only with the approval of the cooperating faculty member; train all peer leaders according to established guidelines and standards; monitor the activities and presentations of peer leaders for as long as necessary by attending class with them, helping plan sessions and supervising their performance; provide supplies, training, in-service experiences, consultations for peer leaders; and provide cooperating faculty with an end-of-term comparative analysis of student performance. (Copyrights by the Curators of the University of Missouri, 2003)

Who do I contact if I have additional questions?

Rory A. Lazowski, Ed.S.
Coordinator - Supplemental Instruction, Instructional Faculty

You can reach him by:

Mail:
800 S. Main St.
MSC 1007
Harrisonburg, VA 22807
Visiting:
951 Madison Drive
Wilson Hall, Room 415
E-mail: lazowsra@jmu.edu
Telephone: 540-568-4370