Supplemental Instruction at UAA

What is SI?

Supplemental Instruction (SI) sessions are weekly review sessions for students enrolled in historically difficult courses. SI targets tough courses!

SI provides a chance for you to get together with people in your class to compare notes, discuss important concepts, develop strategies for studying the subject, and to test yourselves before your professor does, so that when he/she does, you'll be ready.

SI is provided for all students who want to improve their understanding of course material and improve their grades.  The sessions are facilitated by a trained SI leader.

What is an SI Leader?

Have you ever wished you could do something over, knowing what you know now?  That's impossible, but you can come close in SI.  SI leaders are students themselves who have taken the class before and earned a high grade.  They are prepared to share with you what they have learned about how to study effectively for this course.  They know the course content and are anxious to help guide you through it.  They'll also be in class with you every day, taking notes and listening closely to the professor.

How does it work?

At each session you will be guided through course concepts by your SI leader, a competent student who has previously taken the course and been trained in group facilitation techniques.

Your leader will not re-lecture or give you his/her class notes.  Your leader will not do your homework or your thinking for you.

Your leader will help you make good use of your study time. After all, you have to study anyway.  You might as well do it with friends so that you can share your knowledge and figure things out together, right? Your leader will share with you the strategies he/she used to be successful in the course.  Your leader's job is to help you think about the lectures you hear and the books you read, and then put it all together into some kind of perspective during SI sessions so you can learn it more efficiently.

What's in it for me?

If you attend SI sessions regularly, chances are you'll earn a better grade.  Research shows that students who attend SI sessions regularly average one half to one full letter grade higher than their classmates who choose not to attend.  When you attend SI, you'll develop a better understanding of course content as well as more effective ways of studying.  Hopefully, you'll make a few new friends, too!

When do sessions start?

SI sessions start the first or second week of classes.  The only thing the SI leader is waiting for is knowing when you are available.  Remember, the secret of success is to study proactively!  Don't wait until the night before the test!!  Since you have to study anyway, why not come to SI and make efficient use of your study time?  Your SI leader will keep you informed about the times and locations for sessions.  

What does it Cost?

SI costs you nothing except your time.  Assistance is free! Come as often as you like.  Keep in mind, though, the statistics show that the more you come, the better your grade.

How will I know if SI is offered in my class?

On the first day of class your SI leader will make an announcement about SI.  You will fill out a short survey to let the SI leader know your class schedule.  Please bring your official schedule of classes with you to the first class period so you will be able to complete the survey accurately.  Each SI leader will set up three or more review sessions a week at times that are best for the majority of you.  You can attend one, two, or all three sessions. And each one will be different because you'll have new material to discuss.  SI sessions are informal.  Bring your notes; bring your textbook; bring your questions.