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What is Supplemental Instruction (SI)?
The Supplemental Instruction (SI) model of student academic assistance helps students in historically difficult transferable or basic skills courses master content while they develop and integrate learning and study strategies. Goals of SI include (1) improving student grades in targeted courses; (2) reducing the attrition rate within those courses; and (3) increasing the eventual graduation rates of students. All students in a targeted course are urged to attend SI sessions, and students with varying ability levels and ethnicities participate. In addition, SI sessions are an opportunity for students to work together with other classmates to compare notes, discuss readings, ask questions, develop organizational tools, and prepare for examinations. Students in targeted SI-Lite courses are provided an in-class tutor/SI-tutor to assist with the lab portion of classroom instruction, to assist with course content understanding, and to provide outside study sessions as deemed appropriate.
- Participation in SI is voluntary, free-of-charge, and is open to all students in the course.
- The SI tutor attends course lectures for targeted students.
- The SI tutor is trained in group facilitation methods and general learning techniques.
- The program is only offered in classes in which the academic departments support SI.
- The SI tutor facilitates and encourages the group to process the material, rather than acting as an authority figure who lectures to participants
- The program builds confidence and teaches transferable learning and collaborative strategies.
Supplemental Instruction is open to all students enrolled in the selected targeted courses. Students from all ability levels benefit from the SI program. Research indicates that colleges offering SI demonstrate that students who attend regularly do better than those students who do not.