Life at a university can be sometimes tough, an assignment you are completely lost with, anxiety about your future career, and sometimes things just happen and the whole world collapses on you. BISLA is a small school for a reason, it creates a unique close community in which all are in a supportive environment which allows everyone to focus on learning and flourish. In this section, we presents you with some of the formal and informal means that are here to help you and guide you in times of need.
Every student has a faculty member assigned to them at the beginning of their studies that ought to guide them through their studies, help them figure out their minors and provide feedback both to the school about the courses and teachers and to the student about their performance. Advisors meet with their students usually twice a semester for either group or individual sessions. This does not limit students to interact with only one faculty member, but their advisor is supposed to be the person of the first contact. A list of advisors with assigned students is available on the BISLA website and is distributed by email at the beginning of the semester.
The Learning Centre
Help doesn’t always come only from faculty but also from fellow students. Learning Centre peer tutors are BISLA students who have proven themselves good writers and helpful peers and are supervised in their work by a faculty member. Students might be referred to the Learning Centre for assistance by their teachers, for example, before resubmission of a written assignment.
See all the parts of the learning centre below:
Writing tutors offer guidance and tutoring for all papers from any course, from Academic Writing to EU Policy (including guidance on literature reviews, research/term papers, reports, documentation, and bibliography/reference citations). Weekly assignments, however, may be brought in only twice a semester (and that before Reading Week) for the purpose of grammar and style checks. Expect to work with your peer tutor. They cannot (in fact, are forbidden to) make any changes to your paper in your absence, interfere with the content, or serve as free language editors. They can, however, and WILL help you become a better writer if you do turn up regularly.
Tutors for 2023- 2024
Learning Centre Policies
- Students can request help by emailing [email protected] to arrange a time and place for a meeting with the assigned tutor. Tutors can decide to hold the session at specific times during which students are welcome to stop by.
- A student who signs up with a specific tutor ahead of time will be helped first.
- Before any session between student and tutor, students should provide the tutor with a paper they wish to.
- A student may make no more than one appointment per day and three appointments per week.
- The student should bring a copy of their draft to the session.
- The student will come prepared with a writing utensil and assignment sheet (if necessary). They will also be ready with their questions about their writing assignment.
- Tutors cannot evaluate or assign a grade to a student’s paper. Only faculty and teaching assistants can evaluate student writing.
- The student is responsible for their work and all decisions made during the session. The student must be an active participant in determining the shape and nature of the session.
- Tutors cannot write, edit, or proofread papers for students. They will not correct grammar or provide alternative vocabulary. Tutors may use or refer students to educational software available online to help a student with grammar and/or vocabulary.
- The session’s goal is not to get homework done, but rather to guide students so they can do homework by themselves.
- Writing Tutors will prioritise their feedback as follows:
High Priority Mid-Priority Low Priority Does it answer the question? Focus Development Grammar Arguments/Ideas Organisation Word Choice Support/Evidence Coherence Citations Audience/Purpose Transitions (linking) Layout
- The Learning Centre tutors will only help students work on their own original work. If someone is discovered to have brought plagiarised work to a tutor, that student may no longer request help from the Learning Centre.
- Grading policies, grades, and/or instructors will not be discussed.
- Because tutoring sessions are confidential, tutors will not discuss students’ work with any third party other than the Learning Centre supervisor.
Life and study at BISLA can be challenging at times, and transition into university life and praxis as a degree-holding adult may also require other help. That is why we want to help the upcoming first years overcome those challenges we also faced. The program aims to contribute to building a culture of care and togetherness.
During Orientation Week, every student will be assigned with a fellow student from the second and third year to be their mentor.
A mentor is a person who provides guidance. A mentee is a person who seeks guidance. Therefore, the program’s goal is to provide guidance to those who seek it in a structured and helpful manner.
The program is purely voluntary; however, once you willingly become a mentor, you are expected to follow the guidelines and steps responsibly. The meetings happen during the first semester and are strongly recommended during the second semester. Each mentee will have a mentor by their side. The mentor will initiate the first meeting, and then the mentee will schedule the following meetings. These sessions will be tailored to suit each mentee’s individual needs. Our mentors will receive training to ensure the best possible outcomes.
Mentees have two options to choose from. Option one involves meeting twice a semester (September and December), but if the super advisor suggests more frequent sessions, the mentee will automatically be matched with a trained mentor. Option two is for mentees to have monthly meetings with a trained mentor, which is mandatory for international students. Our goal is to create a safe and supportive environment without any challenges.
With additional questions contact our coordinator of peer mentoring: Simona Jaďuďová via email at [email protected]
The “youngest” form of the BISLA support system is our alumni mentoring program. This program aims to advise you, the current students, on anything relating to your college experience, future career aspirations, or even personal life.
Sometimes it may be challenging to figure out on your own what you want to do in the future, what would be an adequate minor for you, or which topic you would like to choose for your bachelor thesis. For this reason, our alumni offer you their help with finding your way. Our alumni have all “been there before,” plus they have experienced the possibilities and opportunities after BISLA and therefore are the best resource when it comes to making the most of your time at BISLA and thinking about the bright tomorrow.
Depending on your interests, you can learn a broad range of things from our mentors. The major areas in which alumni could help you are the following:
Acquiring hard skills
Future aspirations/professional advising
Discussing academic fields of interest
Learning about graduate studies
Since our alumni community is composed of diverse experts working in various fields, you will be assigned to a mentor based on your needs and interests. During the program, you will set goals for the mentorship, and your mentor will support you and help you achieve them. It is all up to you and your mentor on how you proceed. The frequency of the meetings depends on your and your mentor’s time availability and your mutual agreement; however, to ensure the most efficiency, we recommend meeting regularly (usually once a month).
This program is run on a voluntary basis