The Peer Assisted Learning (PAL) program is an academic assistance program at UW-Platteville that is free to students enrolled in select courses. Once a faculty-mentor commits to the PAL program, he or she will recommend or select a student to be a PAL Leader. This is a student who has previously taken and excelled in the course. The PAL Leader will attend the class, observing lectures and participating in classroom discussions, and then host peer-led sessions that are free and available to students who are in the class.

By attending the lectures, the PAL Leader is able to develop a rapport with the students, become aware of content areas where the students may be struggling, and take current notes, making it all the more likely that students will attend the PAL Leader’s sessions (outside of class time), where they can get additional study support. The PAL Leader creates a relaxed learning environment, where students can ask questions and gain clarity on course concepts.

The faculty-mentor and Tutoring Services staff share the responsibilities of training PAL Leaders. Faculty provide content-specific resources and best practices for learning in their discipline, and Tutoring Services offers guidance in best practices for one-on-one or small group tutoring. While using the PAL program is completely voluntary, research has shown that students who seek help from PAL Leaders during lecture and outside of class are more likely to earn higher grades in historically difficult classes.

For faculty members who have a PAL Leader in your classroom, please be sure to let your student know how about the PAL Leader’s sessions.

We encourage all faculty members to learn more about this exciting program. If you think that a PAL Leader could help your students succeed, contact Cindy Albrecht at for more information at the PAL program.