In2science mentors are placed in secondary school science and mathematics classes over a 10 week placement each semester.

 

In2science offers two delivery methods, in which mentors share their own experiences and motivations for studying at university, and help relate school work with real-world examples.

In-class mentors work with high school students in year 7-10 science and maths classes, with a special emphasis on engaging students from underrepresented groups (including low SES and female students). The mentors are trained volunteer STEM university students who, over the course of 10 weeks, assist students with laboratory classes and coursework, aiming to positively change student attitudes towards science and maths and develop student STEM aspirations for year 12 and beyond. Mentors work with the teacher, acting as a valuable resource to help them meet the learning needs of all groups of students.

Case study (extended video): mentoring at Copperfield College

Benefits

Benefits for secondary science and maths students:

  • opportunity to meet positive role models in science and maths;
  • a new dimension and interest to study science and maths;
  • additional support with work and more individual attention;
  • improved oral communication skills by explaining to mentors tasks and thinking;
  • improved academic performance though additional support and understanding;
  • stimulation to go on to further education.
  • Learn more about the program’s impact on students.

Benefits for teachers:

  • free classroom assistance and support;
  • more freedom to manage the learning environment;
  • lessons can be more enjoyable and easier to handle;
  • greater capacity to meet the learning needs of all groups of students;
  • opportunities for excursions to partner universities;
  • opportunity to learn about university students and courses;
  • opportunity to discuss the latest issues in science, engineering and mathematics;
  • opportunity to establish links with university colleges/faculties of science and engineering.
  • Learn more about the program’s impact on teachers and schools.

Ways of using the mentor

In-class mentoring can be undertaken one-on-one, with small groups of students, as a ‘classroom rover’, or in any combination throughout the placement.

One-on-one/small group

In2science mentors can work closely with 1-4 students for all or some of the 10 week placement. These students are identified by the classroom teacher when requesting a mentor. Examples of individuals/groups who would benefit from a one-to-one mentor include but are not limited to:

  • struggling/at risk students
  • gifted and talented students who are losing enthusiasm
  • female students in a majority male class
  • students with English as an additional language

Classroom rovers

The role of the classroom rover is to support the teacher, especially during practical experiments. Where possible, the subject specialisation of the mentor would be selected to compliment the teacher’s knowledge (e.g. placing a physics student with a biology specialist teacher who is teaching physics), so the mentor can enhance the student experience by providing additional background knowledge.

Online eMentors work with regional and remote Victorian high school students interested in STEM subjects. Trained university STEM mentors and high school student mentees meet online via a customised platform that allows them to share resources and interact via audio, video, and chat. The In2science eMentoring program aims to inspire, motivate and mentor regional and rural students interested in studying STEM to year 12 and beyond.

Case study video: eMentoring at Catholic College Wodonga

Benefits

Benefits for secondary science and maths students:

  • become independent learners and improve study skills with the confidence to embrace their future and passion, regardless of location;
  • have a greater appreciation for the problem solving skills that rely on science and maths in everyday life applications;
  • have an increased awareness of the impact science and maths may have on their own future career aspirations;
  • improve their own outcomes in science and maths;
  • develop a greater appreciation and interest in studying science and maths subjects to year 12 and beyond.

Benefits for teachers:

  • provide extra motivation for engaged students to continue performing well in science or mathematics;
  • benefit from subject specialties of mentors;
  • opportunities to further learn about university studies and courses;
  • have the chance to discuss the latest issues in science;
  • have the chance to gain some subject specific professional development;
  • opportunities to make links with the university science faculties.

Contact us

If you would like to be involved in the In2science program, please contact Dr Alison Every, In2science Program Manager.