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ERIC Number: EJ1077444
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013-Jun
Pages: 11
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1475-7257
Peer Mentoring to Develop Psychological Literacy in First-Year and Graduating Students
Burton, Lorelle J.; Chester, Andrea; Xenos, Sophie; Elgar, Karen
Psychology Learning and Teaching, v12 n2 p136-146 Jun 2013
First- and final-year undergraduate students have unique transition issues. To support both the transition of first-year students into the program, and the transition of third-year students out of the program and into the workforce or further study, a face-to-face peer mentoring program was embedded into the first-year psychology curricula at RMIT University, Melbourne, Australia. The 34 peer mentors, third-year students taking a course on mentoring and career preparation, worked in pairs with small groups of first-year students (N = 231) in class time to help them develop study skills that underpin the first-year assessment tasks. This article reports on a peer mentoring program designed to develop and consolidate psychological literacies of both first- and third-year students. Comparing pre-and post-tests for first-year students, there was a significant increase in self-ratings across 8 of the 9 ability areas used to measure psychological literacy. In contrast, third-year mentors only showed significant change in the ability to understand basic psychological concepts. Correlational data reveal, for mentees, final course grades were significantly correlated with domain-specific psychological literacy, comprising knowledge and understanding of basic psychological concepts, scientific research practices, application of psychology, and ethics; for mentors, final course grades were significantly correlated with general psychological literacy, comprising cultural competence, critical thinking, problem solving, communication, and self-awareness skills. While first-year students indicated an overall positive experience with the mentoring program, the third-year mentors showed strong support for the program. The key implications are discussed.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Australia
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A