Personalized Mentor Support at Core of WGU's Innovative Learning Model
At competency-based online university, faculty members serve as full-time mentors whose sole responsibility is facilitating student learning and success
SALT LAKE CITY, Jan. 10, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- As the country recognizes the value of mentorship during National Mentoring Month this January, online Western Governors University (WGU), www.wgu.edu, celebrates the contributions of the more than 750 mentors who work all year to ensure the success of our students.
WGU is a competency-based university, where bachelor's and master's degrees are earned by nontraditional students--often busy, working adults--studying independently to master defined competencies at their pace in the learning style that works best for them. The faster a student can learn the required material and prove that knowledge, the faster he or she accelerates through the degree program. In this nontraditional setting, the availability of one-on-one academic and personal support on an as-needed basis is critical, so the role of faculty has been redefined, with mentorship at its core.
Of WGU's 1,300 faculty members, 760 are mentors. Two distinct mentor roles--Student Mentors and Course Mentors--exist at WGU to focus solely on supporting students' academic success. Other faculty functions, such as curriculum development, grading and assessment, and degree program management, are assigned to other members of WGU's faculty, each specializing in a specific function. This allows mentors to devote their full attention to students.
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