An Ecosystem for Learning: The Rutgers Learning Assistant Program

Student leading a study group

This Spotlight article is part of the An Ecosystem for Learning series, in which we discuss spaces, programs, and people who are helping to create a university in which classrooms and courses are linked with other spaces and contexts, and students are encouraged to actively engage in the learning process, and to create, collaborate, and innovate during their time at Rutgers.

The Learning Assistant Program, a partnership between the Rutgers Learning Centers, the Math and Science Learning Center, and several academic departments, is one exciting way in which Rutgers is moving towards a university-wide learning ecosystem.

Learning assistants (LAs) are undergraduates who were previously successful in the course and who join instructors in their classrooms to provide support to students by helping to facilitate active and collaborative learning. The experience provides the LAs with an opportunity to develop their own leadership and teaching skills, while also learning the content at a deeper level by helping their peers learn. The majority of LAs support active and collaborative learning in introductory courses in physical and natural sciences, while the remaining LAs provide support in engineering courses, a philosophy course, upper-level STEM courses, and science courses for non-science majors.

For more information, visit the Learning Assistant Program Web page or contact Dr. Mary Emenike at 848-445-1662.