Considering the Role of Tutoring in Student Engagement: Reflections from a South African University
Student engagement has been defined as the extent to which students are engaged in activities that higher education research has shown to be linked with high-quality learning outcomes. The ubiquitous influence of the term ‘student engagement’ has been felt throughout the higher education landscape. This is especially true for South African higher education where student success has been poor. South African universities have been tasked to improve the student learning experience as a component of improving success. Some of the innovative teaching and learning practices often highlighted by research which are thought to improve student engagement include: having students adopt teaching roles such as peer assessment, tutoring and mentoring. These practices are thought to promote student engagement, leading to greater student academic success. Tutoring can therefore be seen as one of the key strategies to facilitate student engagement in order to achieve academic success. The following paper considers the role of tutoring in student engagement while reflecting on strategies used at a South African university to address the challenges associated with student success.
Keywords student engagement; tutoring; tutor; higher education; reflections; key strategies; South African universities