What is a Learning Assistant (LA)?

A Learning Assistant (LA) is an experienced, trained peer tutor who is assigned to assist students in a particular course. The LA attends the lectures and holds study sessions to help students succeed in challenging courses. The LA has successfully completed the course you are taking, so has expertise in the material you are studying. Because the LA is in class with you, he or she knows how your instructor is approaching course material and what content is being emphasized.

LA’s have diverse backgrounds and know multiple ways of approaching the concepts being taught in your course.

How do I know if I have a Learning Assistant in my class?

Your instructor will introduce your Learning Assistant to you during the first week of class. At that time, the LA will provide you with contact information and set up times and days for study sessions.

What does the Learning Assistant do in my class?

The Learning Assistant (LA) will attend classes with you. Look for your LA to arrive early, sit up front, and listen to the lectures with you. As a result, your LA will know what topics your instructor is covering and will help you connect with both the instructor and the material you are learning.

How does the Learning Assistant help?

The Learning Assistant will provide all of the students in your class his or her email address. The LA will also set up regularly scheduled study sessions and review sessions before exams. The LA tries to come to class early and stay late to answer specific questions you may have. The LA is there to help you connect to the course and the course content.

What classes have Learning Assistants?

Selected sections of many entry-level General Education courses are served by Learning Assistants, with special emphasis on science and math. Here is a sample of some of the courses served by Learning Assistants in recent semesters:

  • Math classes … From Basic Math to Calculus
  • Biology … including Anatomy and Physiology, Natural Science: Biology, Principles of Biology I and II, Genetics
  • Chemistry … including Principles I and II, Organic I and II, GOBC I and II
  • Physics … serving classes up through Classical Physics II, Physics for Life Sciences I and II
  • Modern Languages … including French, Spanish, Arabic