What is Supplemental Instruction (SI)?

Trinity Western University implemented Supplemental Instruction in the Fall of 2018. SI is an academic support program that is geared at peer facilitation sessions that lead to personal and academic growth. Sessions are held weekly by trained SI Leaders who prepare lesson plans, answer student questions and assist learning in the course.  Students not only learn the class material but are taught successful study techniques, furthermore students engage in discussion and create meaningful relationships and memories.

The SI Leaders are students who have previously excelled in the course, are recommended by the Professor and also attend the class lectures, take notes, and are model students. The goals of Supplemental Instruction are to aid in overall success and retention for students and leaders in targeted courses.

Supplemental Instruction is a completely optional, voluntary and free program that is offered to Trinity Western University students. SI is not a remedial program and does not specifically target students who are failing. SI is open to students of all stages in the course, and nurtures an environment catered to students of all ethnicities and identities. Students are encouraged to take advantage of this program!

Which courses are currently offered and how are they chosen?

For the Spring 2019 semester the following courses are offering Supplemental Instruction:


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Not A,B,C but rather D,F,W

Supplemental Instruction is added to courses that have a DFW Rate of 20% and above. These are historically academically challenging courses.

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The Courses, Fall 2018

Financial Accounting, Business Research & Decision Making, Business Statistics, Intro. to Chemistry, Organic Chemistry, Statistics for Health Care Students, Introduction to Probability and Stats, Calculus 1, Global Environmental Issues

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Why Peer Facilitation?

By working as a group on solving problematic issues, students tend to develop a sense of relatedness, and this can benefit new students within the sometimes alienating environment of university (Downing, Ning, 2010)

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The Data Collection

Data collected for SI analysis: Attendance (but not for professor), Number of SI sessions attended, Final course grade for SI attendees compared to rest of class, Anecdotal data from students, SI Leads, SI Supervisors and Faculty Members

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Our Goals
  1. SI participants receive a lower rate of D,F,W
  2. SI participants receive a higher mean final GPA
  3. SI participants PERSIST at higher rates
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Our SI Leaders
  • Cumulative GPA above 3.0 (>B+ in the course they lead)
  • Endorsed by a Faculty Member
  • Rigorous Group Interview, Individual Interview Process (11/80 hired)