March 29, 2017

Academic Assistance Available

Many believe that the best students are the ones who receive the highest grades in a class. However, research shows that the best students are actually those that actively work to enrich their learning. Such students not only master content knowledge, but develop their critical thinking, problem solving, and communication skills. Lafayette’s Academic Tutoring and Training Information Center (ATTIC) is one place on campus where students can go to access resources to enhance their academic abilities and success. The ATTIC works with faculty to provide an array of academic support options including academic coaching, supplemental instruction, mentored study groups (MSGs), as well as individual and group tutoring. These programs are designed to not only address course content, but also enhance the student’s understanding of how to independently approach and synthesize the course material.

For example, the Supplemental Instruction (SI) program is an innovative program offered for eight courses during the spring 2017 semester. The SI program is centered on weekly review sessions as well as drop-in hours that are scheduled at consistent times each week by Supplemental Instruction Leaders. SI Leaders are upper-class students who have previously completed the course and sit-in on a section of the course for a second (or third) time as part of their role. Course professors communicate regularly with SI Leaders and may provide supplementary materials to the SI Leader to share in the context of the sessions. The role of an SI Leader is not necessarily to answer a student’s question, but rather to guide the student to the answer by pointing them to available resources or techniques. The ultimate goal is to develop the student’s competence in utilizing these strategies so that they can more independently master challenging material as they progress at Lafayette and beyond.

If your student is having difficulty, encourage him or her to attend SI sessions, MSGs, Drop-in Labs, or to meet with an academic dean any time during the semester. A full schedule of the support options available each semester may be found on the ATTIC’s website [https://attic.lafayette.edu/tutoring-and-supplemental-instruction/]. The programs and support options are dynamic and continue to evolve based on student and faculty needs. Questions about the ATTIC can be directed towards the Center’s Director, Dr. Christopher Selena by e-mail selenac@lafayette.edu or by phone 610-330-5080.