Explanation Illustration Intervention
General Middle School High School Undergraduate
The use of peer educators can improve the learning atmosphere. A review of US colleges found that approximately 80 percent of all higher education institutions utilize peer educators. Small-group learning is effective in a variety of contexts. At Northwestern, implementing a peer-facilitated science workshop resulted in higher retention. Evidence suggested particular benefits for minority students in the program. Most Women in Science and Engineering (WISE) programs include formal mentoring in which upperclassmen serve as role models for freshmen women. The mentors help with homework, give advice, and serve as role models during the freshman year, which can be the most taxing
A meta-analysis by Springer, Stanne, and Donovan indicated that students who learn in small groups demonstrate greater academic performance, express more positive attitudes toward learning, and persist in science and math courses and programs more than their more traditionally taught counterparts. They suggested that the provision of small group alternatives to lecture-based instruction may have large effects on the academic achievement of members of underrepresented groups and the learning-related attitudes of women.