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What is Supplemental Instruction?

Supplemental Instruction (SI) is a voluntary academic support program that utilizes peer-led study sessions in historically difficult courses. SI sessions are highly structured study sessions led by SI leaders who have previously taken the class and have demonstrated strong knowledge of course content. SI leaders attend the concurrent class lecture, take class notes, and model strong study skills. SI leaders are chosen based on faculty recommendations and work closely together with the professor to identify the difficult content to cover in SI sessions.

SI is FREE to all students enrolled in the supported course. As a non-remedial program, SI is designed to target courses with high D or F grades, and withdrawal rates. Students who actively engage in SI and frequently attend SI sessions typically see one-half to one-full letter grade higher in course grades compared to those who do not attend SI.

The SI program supports students of varying levels of academic preparedness and strengths. Therefore, all students are encouraged to attend. Students will find SI sessions incorporate a cooperative and collaborative learning environment.

What is the Purpose of SI?

Supplemental Instruction is to help students integrate content knowledge along with study skills in a collaborative environment. The purpose of SI is to:

1.     Increase student retention in historically difficult courses

2.     Assist students reach academic potential in difficult courses

3.     Increase graduation rates of students

ACU’s Supplemental Instruction Program

ACU’s SI pilot program began fall 2016 with one Bible course. With the approval of the Institutional Review Board, a study (Fleet, 2017) of at-risk students and Supplemental Instruction on academic achievement was conducted with students enrolled in BIBL 101. The results of the study indicate that Supplemental Instruction positively influences test scores, final course grades, and overall GPA. The research provided the framework for the development of ACU’s Supplemental Instruction Program under Tina Fleet, Supplemental Instruction Coordinator. ACU’s program closely follows the University of Missouri-Kansas City (UMKC) Supplemental Instruction model. Since the inception of ACU’s Supplemental Instruction Program, biology courses have been added to the list of SI supported classes.