Iowa State University

Inside Iowa State
Jan. 9, 1998

Role reversal

Education students mentor faculty

by Tracy Griffin, News Service intern

The role of teacher and student is reversed in a new College of Education program.

In the graduate course "Technology in Teacher Education," students research the use of technology in teacher education courses. As part of the class, the students are mentors for faculty in the college to help them learn how to use technology in their own courses. The students work with their faculty mentees for one hour each week.

"Not only do faculty get help on their own time for their own needs, but they have someone who can answer questions about technology," said Ann Thompson, a professor of curriculum and instruction. The response from faculty who have been mentored is "extremely positive," she said.

Thompson said a couple of undergraduates, who were not enrolled in the course, also started mentoring faculty. The experiment went so well that the college's Educational Computing Club (TECC) is using the graduate course's mentoring program as a model for its own faculty mentoring program.

TECC is an undergraduate club based in the department of curriculum and instruction. Members learn more about technology use both within the department and in pre-K-12 schools.

"The mentors (TECC members) can help faculty learn how to use technology and identify software that would be appropriate for their classes," said Denise Schmidt, program coordinator in curriculum and instruction and TECC's adviser.

Schmidt said this semester, TECC will start matching club members with faculty for the mentoring program.

"It offers one-on-one help so faculty can learn what they want to . . . With technology it's the most useful way to spend everyone's time," Schmidt said.

TECC started two years ago. The group established an "Adopt School" program in which members help pre-K-12 teachers integrate technology into their classrooms. Members also have led workshops for Iowa State students in the introductory instructional technology courses.

Any department that is interested in learning about the mentoring program model should contact Thompson, 4-5287, or e-mail: Faculty interested in becoming involved with the mentoring program should contact Thompson, or Schmidt, 4-9141, or e-mail:

Iowa State homepage

Inside Iowa State,, University Relations
Copyright © 1997, Iowa State University, all rights reserved
Revised 1/8/98