Student Peer Support as an Enabling and Empowering Pedagogy (73728)

Session Information: Learning Experiences, Student Learning & Learner Diversity
Session Chair: Dennis Lee Jarvis Ybañez

Friday, 24 November 2023 11:20
Session: Session 2
Room: Room 705
Presentation Type: Oral Presentation

All presentation times are UTC + 9 (Asia/Tokyo)

Student peer support has over the years become integral to student learning in higher education. Within the South African context, where students access higher education from mainly disadvantaged backgrounds and under-resourced educational environments, peer support provides vital opportunities for student learning that extend beyond the bounds of academic support. This study relates to peer support in terms of how tutors, mentors and teaching assistants engaged with students, and the perceptions of students receiving peer support. Principles of Ubuntu pedagogy, such as providing support from a position of love and care, and building positive, nurturing relationships with others, underpin the premises of this study. In this sense peer support is an enactment of social justice such that all students are afforded potential to excel in an inclusive, cooperative learning environment. For this qualitative study surveys were conducted with students who offered peer support, as well as students who received peer support to solicit their perceptions regarding learnings achieved. The survey included open-ended questions to solicit student perceptions. The findings revealed that students providing peer support are epistemic agents who facilitate pedagogical encounters to students who require academic and social support for epistemological access, and in this dialogical process both epistemic agents and students develop reciprocally. This study foregrounds the importance of peer support within the context of Ubuntu pedagogy, where care, sharing and concern for the other are central to opening vistas for student empowerment and success.

Desiree Scholtz, Cape Peninsula University of Technology, South Africa
Sandra Williams, Cape Peninsula University of Technology, South Africa

About the Presenter(s)
Professor Desiree Scholtz is a University Associate Professor/Senior Lecturer at Cape Peninsula University of Technology in South Africa

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Posted by Clive Staples Lewis

Last updated: 2023-02-23 23:45:00