Contexts of the Third Space: Learnings from two Professional Personal Tutoring Models at King’s College London

Xiaozhe Cai (King's College London)
Daniel Gellai (KCL)

Monday, April 8, 2024 11:30 AM - 12:15 PM

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Session Outline

Two models of professionalised personal tutoring are running concurrently at King’s College London supporting Undergraduate students at the Business School and Postgraduate Taught students at Arts and Humanities since Academic Year 2022/2023. The two pilots were created to provide dedicated, professional, and consistent pastoral care and specialised student advising replacing the older model of academic staff serving as personal tutors as part of their other responsibilities. Both projects are being reviewed every 6 months to improve practice based on students and staff’s feedback.

The successes of the two pilots highlight how professional personal tutors work as a team of ‘third space’ professionals (Whitchurch, 2008), pooling together unique skills and knowledge in academic requirement and experience at different levels, higher education administration, intercultural learning, and coaching and pastoral care. As frontline/generalist support staff, professional PTs need to be ‘jacks-of-all-trades’ to proactively correspond to students’ confounding needs and signpost to appropriate specialist services.

This presentation details the divergent activities arising from macro- and micro-level contexts of the pilots. We will showcase how our models fit into the existing structures and services of our faculties and institution. Additionally, we will share our challenges and limitations encountered during the implementation of these models, which would provide a more comprehensive understanding for institutions considering similar transitions.

This session addresses the following competencies of the UKAT Professional Framework for Advising and Tutoring
C3 - Academic advising and tutoring approaches and strategies
P1 - Create and support environments that consider the needs and perspectives of students, and respect individual learners
R7 - Collaborate effectively with campus services to provide support to students