WHAT IS A PEER CATALYST?
A Peer Catalyst (PC) serves as an active liaison between the professor and the student in order to not only ensure that the student understands the assignments, expectations, and purpose of a given course, but to also ensure that the professor meets the needs of the student and provides them a fulfilling learning experience. A PC attends the course on a weekly basis to facilitate the flow of discussion; peer catalysts also meet with the professor to prepare for the next class and each student to answer any questions they may have. A student is recommended as a Peer Catalyst by a professor of theirs who believes that the student excels in and understands the goals of a particular course.
During the Fall 2015 and 2016 semesters, I worked alongside Professor Christopher Hakala as a Peer Catalyst for the debut of the First Year Seminar (FYS101) course. This course is taking place of what used to be the QU101 Seminar Series. FYS101 revolves around critical inquiry, the main purpose being to teach first-year students how to formulate well-substantiated questions, analyze arguments logically, and utilize the proper resources in order to reach a conclusion to those questions and arguments. By doing this, the students will not only create their own "Guiding Question" that will serve as a foundation for an investigative Capstone Project their junior year, but they will also adapt and engage in a higher level of thinking that will prepare them for the remainder of their collegiate learning experience.
I have updated my e-Portfolio weekly by reporting all progress that my class makes in order for both professors and students to see the new and improved freshmen seminar. I am thrilled to have this opportunity to change the University curriculum for the better, especially with the education of our incoming freshmen class in mind.
PEER CATALYST CLASS EVALUATIONS
Below is a link for you to access my evaluations of each FYS101 class thus far. They are all stored in this designated folder in my Google Drive archives and are updated on a weekly basis. This will allow you to catch a glimpse of what is going on in the FYS course that I work in, how it has progressed, and how the students have adapted to the new First Year Seminar.