Resources for PLAdawgs
A UGA STEM Peer Learning Assistant (PLAdawg) is an undergraduate who supports a course they previously completed with a high degree of success. Unlike other models such as Supplemental Instruction, PLAdawgs provide learning support during regularly scheduled class meetings. PLAdawgs apply the semester prior to serving in the classroom, and are required to participate in three elements of the program. The three pillars of the PLA experience are Content, Pedagogy, and Practice. Many faculty across campus utilize undergraduates in their courses in similar ways, but in order to be a PLAdawg, all three elements must be included.
PLAdawgs meet weekly with their supervising faculty to discuss upcoming content and review materials in advance of class meetings.
Pedagogy Training in UNIV 1204
All STEM PLAdawgs enroll in a 1-credit-hour, 3000-level course during their first semester as a PLA. In order to best prepare our Peer Learning Assistants, curricula and materials have developed to provide training in pedagogy, including strategies and techniques that can be used in mentoring environments. The content was created to serve all STEM disciplines.
All PLAdawgs regularly attend class meetings and provide support to their peer undergraduates during various active learning events.
Experiential Learning (EL) Credit
Content + Pedagogy + Practice = A Significant Learning Experience
An important benefit to students who serve as PLAdawgs is that they practice leadership and teaching. PLAdawgs (https://uga.givepulse.com/group/388206-PLAdawgs) is an approved Experiential Learning activity, which is documented as an EL “Internship” on your EL Transcript (ELT). This may fulfill part of your EL Requirement (ELR) depending on your major. Participants complete the PLAdawg semester-long EL Internship by simultaneously:
- attending 1-hour weekly meetings with the instructor of the course they are supporting
- enrolling in a 1-hour course to learn about pedagogy methods for effective teaching (UNIV 1204)
- working a minimum of 75 hours supporting a course