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Learning support tutors

Our learning support tutors can help you to learn effectively and develop your academic skills

The Learning Support tutors in the Faculty of Science and Health can help you to develop your study skills and support you with a range of different assignment types.

Who can use the Learning Support service?

The Learning Support service is available to all undergraduate and postgraduate students in the Faculty of Science and Health. The tutors support students achieving marks across the whole range who want to develop their academic skills.

What can the tutors support with?

The Learning Support tutors can offer advice and support with:

  • Finding and using academic sources
  • Planning and structuring assignments to create logical, cohesive work
  • Writing in different formats such as essays, reports and dissertations
  • Understanding and incorporating criticality
  • Citation, referencing and avoiding plagiarism
  • Proofreading and editing techniques (guidance for you to implement yourself)
  • Understanding and making the most of your feedback
  • Revision skills and exam techniques
  • Organisation and time management
  • Improving presentation skills
  • Maths and statistics

Booking an appointment with a tutor

There are 3 types of appointments you can book, each up to 45 minutes in length:

  • Face-to-face meeting 
    Meet with one of the tutors at an agreed time and place on campus to discuss the things you’d like support with.
  • Video call
    Speak with one of the tutors at an agreed time via video call to discuss the things you’d like support with. You don’t need to be on campus for this type of appointment.
  • Email feedback
    The tutor will book an appointment into the calendar to issue feedback on a section of your work and email it back to you. You don’t need to be “available” at the scheduled appointment time.

You can book appointments individually or bring up to 4 peers from your course with you for a small group appointment.

How to book

You can request appointments via the booking form on the Learning Support Science Moodle page. You may need to scroll down and click “enrol me” to access the page. Once you've completed the booking form, one of the tutors will respond to you within 2 working days.

Appointment invites will be sent to you by email via your Google calendar. Please read the instructions provided in your calendar invite, and any subsequent emails, so you know how to access your appointment and get the most from it.

Important things to note

Appointment guidance and limits

To ensure fair access to the service for everyone, students may book:

  • A total of 5 appointments per teaching block. 
    (Of those 5 appointments, you may use a maximum of 2 per assignment.)

We recommend that you consider your study needs and assignments early, so you can plan when and how you wish to use your 5 appointments throughout the teaching block. 

Appointments must be requested at least 1 working week in advance. Please note, at busier times you may need to request your appointment further in advance. Please request an appointment no later than five working days before your submission date.

Making the most of your appointment

To ensure your appointment is as helpful as possible, you will need to send the following to your assigned tutor at least 24 hours before the meeting:

  • Assignment guidance
  • Marking rubric (if you have it)
  • Your draft (if applicable)
  • Any other documentation which may be helpful

The Learning Support tutors are not able to provide feedback on an entire draft. You will need to let your assigned Learning Support tutor know which section you'd like feedback on.
 
Your assigned Learning Support tutor will give you all the necessary appointment information, including where to send your work, via a Google calendar invite. If your appointment is for the earlier stages of an assignment, you will need to bring your ideas ready for discussion.

Study skills vs. academic content

Our advice and guidance is based on general academic principles; we cannot provide specific support with subject content. For queries with academic content, please refer to your programme or module teaching, Moodle content and the advice of your lecturers. If academic staff on your course provide different advice to us, we recommend that you follow their guidance as they set and mark your work in its entirety.

Any advice given during appointments is intended for you to use as a guide and should be applied to the remainder of your draft, and your other assignments, as appropriate.

Meet the team

There are currently four tutors on our team:

Toby Scott-Ward - Toby has a biosciences PhD and a PGCert in higher education, with extensive experience in research processes, student tutoring at the University, and the application of core scientific statistics and mathematics in the health sciences.

Emma Tribbeck - Emma has a background in science, with experience in teaching functional maths and academic study skills, and supporting students at secondary, FE and HE levels who have additional learning needs or a learning difference.

Emma Cufley - Emma has a degree in Biomedical Sciences and holds qualified teacher status. She is experienced in supporting students with a variety of learning needs, developing academic study skills and providing targeted interventions.

Gemma Potts - Gemma has an MRes with experience in social science research methods, including research design, data collection and data analysis. Gemma is a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy and has been supporting students with their academic writing, poster and presentation skills for several years. 

Contact us

For all enquiries relating to Learning Support for Science and Health, please email sci.learningsupport@port.ac.uk using your UoP student email address.

Data sharing and confidentiality

Our service is confidential. However, to provide effective support, we need to collect some data for our records as detailed in our Data Protection Statement, including your student ID, name, school, programme, level of study and your reason for seeing us.

On occasion, it may be in your best interest for us to inform staff in your school/department that you have been to see us, however, you can choose whether or not you agree to this when you complete the booking form.

If, however, we have concerns about your wellbeing or safety, we will contact the relevant staff in line with the University's guidance on safeguarding.