Julie Taylor - Personal Tutor Excellence award of 2019/2020
Learn more about how Julie has been recognised for all she does for students at Warwick, her duties and values, as a personal tutor. You can read the full article online at Our Warwick.
Could you please tell me how, as a Personal Tutor, you can support students with regards to their academic life?
“As a personal tutor I aim to support my students in a variety of different ways. I play a key role in providing academic support for my personal tutees to ensure they are well prepared for the assessed aspect of the programme. Many of the PGCE students I have tutored over the years have lacked confidence with the academic component and may not have engaged in their own studies for a number of years, so it has been necessary to co-ordinate personalised provision and signpost students to wider university services for additional support if required”.
“The personal tutor should also ensure students with declared disabilities have the support they are entitled to. On our programmes, personal tutors work with their students to create individual support plans for all students with declared disabilities/health issues. These plans are regularly reviewed to ensure the recommendations from disability services are taken into consideration both in university and whilst on professional placements”.
Is there anything you would like students to know about what their Personal Tutor can offer, that students might currently be unaware of?
“In addition to academic support, personal tutors have a pastoral responsibility to support and safeguard their students’ wellbeing. Particularly in the current climate, students may be feeling particularly anxious about embarking on their university journey and should be able to look to their personal tutor for support. Whilst personal tutors should not be viewed as counsellors, it is beneficial for students to have regular opportunities for contact with their personal tutor and to feel they can share any concerns they have, particularly whilst the majority of teaching remains online. Where students are encountering challenges that require specialist support, personal tutors will be able to signpost to the relevant people”.
What are some of the particularly positive ways you feel Personal Tutors can impact their students?
“We should not underestimate the importance of the personal tutor role. If personal tutors invest time in getting to know their students as individuals, the tutor will be a significant factor in a student’s university experience, potentially having a positive impact on both their academic and personal growth. Students I have tutored over the years have learnt a lot about themselves through a carefully tailored tutorial programme, allowing them to reflect on their own character and values in addition to their own wellbeing and academic progress. Providing such opportunities for critical reflection, where students learn to better understand themselves and aspire to keep growing and developing, can have significant long term benefits”.