Student tutors

Information for Students

The University of Reading has a long standing reputation for working with local schools and the 'Students in Schools' scheme (formerly Student Tutoring) has been established for over 20 years and continues to thrive. The scheme enables students to volunteer to work alongside teachers in local schools with the aim of raising the aspirations of school pupils and encouraging them to continue into higher education.

Each year several hundred students visit over 40 local schools including primary, secondary and special schools where they help make a positive difference to the learning experience of young people. At the same time the volunteers gain valuable experience in communicating their knowledge and ideas, as well as improving their self-confidence and employment prospects.

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How Does it Work?

Typically students volunteer for two hours a week for 10 weeks, although many choose to carry on beyond this. The students can be undergraduate or postgraduate, from any discipline and often help in subjects outside their area of study such as art, music, sport and general literacy skills. Overseas students can offer native language support to children whose first language is not English as well as bringing a different cultural perspective to their classroom. Our students have supported children in a wide range of languages including Mandarin, Thai, Tamil, Romanian, Arabic, Greek and Urdu.

2015 - 2016 Students in School Programme

We will be recruiting student volunteers to participate in one of 4 x 10 week blocks of classes starting on:-

Block 1 - w/c Monday 19th October

Block 2 - w/c Monday 16th November

Block 3 - w/c Monday 18th January

Block 4 - w/c Monday 8th February

If acceptable to the school there may be a few exceptions to this timetable especially for 1:1 language support but the majority of students will start their volunteering in the weeks specified. Students commit to 10 weeks although with timetabling commitments and University holidays these will not always be consecutive.

How can my school become involved?

Schools wanting to participate next year should register their interest here and we will keep you informed about how to get involved.

Each participating school nominates a link teacher who will act as the liaison between the school and the university. The link teacher will tell us who would like the help of a 'Students in Schools' volunteer and then compile a list of requirements by subject, level and any particular skills required.

Once this has been agreed the link teacher or the individual teacher(s) can submit their requirements online via the Students in School request form

The deadline for submitting your school's requests is Friday 25th September 2015 although we would ask you to get your requests in as soon as possible.

We will take further requests after this date although it will be less likely that we will be able to find volunteers for you.

DBS checks

We will submit DBS applications for all of our student volunteers. Most schools that participate in the scheme are happy for our students to start in school as soon as their DBS application has been submitted and accept them as a 'Visitor' until their DBS certificate is issued.

Benefits of Tutoring

There are tangible benefits for everyone who participates in the Students in Schools scheme whether as a student, a teacher or a schoolchild. Here are just a few of the positive comments on their experiences.

From a primary school pupil:
'When you have tutors you get more fun and you enjoy being with them'

From students
'I liked being able to make communication easier for a child that couldn't speak English. This allowed them to make friends and contribute to class discussions'

'It was so rewarding when a student finished a good piece of work under your supervision, or suddenly understood something when it had been explained a different way. I was able to gain more experience in communicating effectively with children'

From a secondary school teacher
'Another volunteer, thank you so much, this is fantastic news! Exactly what we needed! Thanks again. The other students are doing really well so far and it its really hepful!

More Information

If you would like any more information or have any questions on how the scheme could help in your school please call or email -  Judy Macdevitt on 0118 378 6144 or j.macdevitt@reading.ac.uk

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