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PASS (Peer Assisted Study Sessions) began at Western Sydney University in 2007. Since then it has expanded to run across most schools, supporting around 45 units and over 3000 students per year. PASS sessions are run on campus and online.
- PASS sessions are weekly one hour sessions that are held throughout the teaching session
- Format of a PASS session is largely determined by the facilitator and their group
- The sessions are structured to create a collaborative learning environment, but they are also informal, flexible and fun!
- Facilitators prepare a range of activities to suit the group of students
- The PASS facilitator's role is not to teach or to provide students with the answers, but to enable students to develop the skills to find the answers themselves
- Students may work through problems together, often in small groups, clarify and discuss issues or look at specific tasks
- PASS sessions address both deepening an understanding of both the content of the Unit and transferable study skills
- Although the PASS facilitator will plan for the session, it is also up to the group to determine the weekly focus based on their needs and interests
"The strategy of getting the student in the session to teach the others when they understood something was extremely beneficial. It cemented the knowledge in the one teaching and helped the one learning because it was a fellow student who was not very good at maths - just like you." PASS attendee"
Who attends PASS?
When do sessions run?
PASS sessions run for an hour each week throughout the teaching session. Multiple sessions are offered in larger units and students can attend as many sessions as they wish. The more PASS, the better!
For more information check the PASS timetable page.
What units are available in the PASS program?
PASS is offered in at least one unit in every Western Sydney University School, for a full listing go to the PASS timetable page.
PASS facilitators are senior students who have successfully completed the unit previously and who have good communication and interpersonal skills. PASS facilitators are not tutors and they do not teach content. Rather, they facilitate students to reach a deeper understanding of what has already been taught. They guide students through the course material and facilitate students' learning through planned activities and discussion.
The PASS Coordinator team have all been trained through the National Centre for PASS and work with PASS student mentors to train and support PASS facilitators.
How are PASS sessions different to tutorials?
Attendance at PASS does not replace tutorials or lectures. Rather, it supplements them through providing the opportunity to review, consolidate and clarify the course content in a focused, yet relaxed and informal environment with your peers.
How do I join the PASS program?
I can't make the scheduled PASS session?
If you and a minimum of seven of your classmates can make an ongoing commitment to a new session time, please email us your request to firstname.lastname@example.org and we will explore the possibility of adding a new session.
Please note we can only add session for units that are currently supported on your campus - check the PASS timetable for availability.
Are there online PASS sessions?
We run online PASS sessions through Blackboard Collaborate. This allows you flexibility on how you can participate in PASS.
Find out more on the PASSOnline webpage.