CAPTA Connects Tutor Presentation Recap: “Benefits of Peer Tutoring: How Peer Tutoring Helps Develop Traits From the IB Learner Profile”

Over the next several weeks, we will be featuring Tutor Presentation Recaps from our 2015 Conference, CAPTA Connects. This recap is by Sarah Adeli, a Junior tutor from the Edison Writing Center.

It is commonly believed that writing centers are established for the sole purpose of improving the writing of tutees. While this is the ultimate goal of writing centers, it is misleading to believe that tutoring is only beneficial for tutees. Students who are accepted into writing centers already possess one necessary skill set: the ability to write. However, many people don’t realize that peer tutoring allows tutors to unconsciously build and strengthen certain traits that are initially present.

This presentation, called “Benefits of Peer Tutoring: How Peer Tutoring Helps Develop Traits From the IB Learner Profile”, will be an in depth study of a writing center that demonstrates the development of IB learner traits through peer tutoring. The goal of the International Baccalaureate (IB) program is to develop internationally minded people who will help create a better and more peaceful world. The IB Learner Profile consists of ten attributes that students must exhibit in order to fulfill this goal. Attendees hopefully learned how tutors develop traits mentioned in the Peer Tutor Alumni Research Project, such as communicators, reflectors, and risk takers, and they also discovered if these traits help the writing center as a whole fulfill the aim of the IB program.

In preparation for the presentation, the presenters conducted interviews and gathered information through surveys in an effort to determine the IB characteristics most prominently found amongst tutors, and how the traits mature through tutoring. To further explore this, the presenters examined how different writing center related activities, including outreach programs and classroom assignments, relate to the growth of these traits. This information was applied to situations that escalate beyond writing centers, such as the advantages in college and future careers, and how these developed traits influence their academic standing.

The session was concluded with a collaborative discussion amongst participants. Peer tutors had the opportunity to share and discuss traits that they have found to be most eminently developed through peer tutoring. The audience became informed of the various beneficial traits tutors develop and strengthen throughout their writing center career, and how they can implicate similar strategies to those of the Edison Writing Center in an effort to replicate their results.

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