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Peer Instructor FAQ

Below are some frequently asked questions regarding Peer Instructors:

 

What do FIGS Peer Instructors do?

Peer Instructors (PIs) are responsible for teaching one section of a First-Year Interest Group Seminar (FIGS). Each FIGS class meets a total of ten times during the fall semester only (once a week for eighty minutes). PIs plan, develop, and implement their own course curricula—designing classes around their academic expertise and the nine FIGS Elements—and serve as helpful mentors, aiding students in adjusting to college life and understanding the many resources available at Rutgers.

 

What are the qualifications to become a FIGS Peer Instructor?

To become a PI, you must be a full-time, upper-class Rutgers undergraduate, a junior or senior with at least fifty-four credits completed prior to teaching your fall-semester FIGS class. You must also have a grade point average of 3.0 or higher (at the time of application and during the following semester), participate in all training sessions, and attend the Peer Instructor Education seminar in the fall.

 

How do I apply?

Applications are typically available in late November and due in late January. Check out the Teach a FIGS page for more information.

 

When will you hold interviews for the position?

Within a few days of the application due date, candidates who meet position qualifications will receive an email prompting them to sign up for a 90-minute group interview in late January/early February.  A limited number of candidates will be selected to participate in a 30-minute individual interview during February and March. Final selection announcements will be made in mid-March.

 

Who are the interviewers, and what does the process entail?

The selection committee consists of professional and graduate staff and former PIs, and the group interviews consist of several activities that will help us evaluate your teamwork, participation, and presentation skills. The individual interviews last no longer than thirty minutes and will be with three to five members of the selection committee. The purpose of the interviews is for us to get to know you better and for you to see if becoming a PI is the right leadership position for you.

 

What if I can't make the interview days?

You are expected to be available for the interview process so any missed interviews will be handled on a case-by-case basis. If you’re not available, you may not be eligible to apply for the position. Please email figs@echo.rutgers.edu with questions.

 

What if I’m studying abroad and can’t participate in the interview process?

In the past, we’ve coordinated Skype interviews with PI candidates who were studying abroad in the spring, but we are only able to consider students who can participate in both May and August training sessions.

 

What are we looking for in Peer Instructor candidates?

We are looking for candidates who are committed to their studies, involved in the Rutgers community, and excited about mentoring first-year students. Strong leadership and public speaking skills are a plus!

 

When does the position start, and what is the time commitment?

Serving as a PI is a major commitment. Once chosen, PIs must attend an orientation event in April and training in May and August, and they must plan and write their lesson plans during the summer months. Once the fall semester arrives, PIs teach their FIGS, attend Peer Instructor Education, and hold office hours for eighty minutes once each week (for ten weeks).

 

Are Peer Instructors compensated for their services?

Peer Instructors receive a stipend of $1250 (increased in January 2020) and 3 credits for the Peer Instructor Education course they enroll in during the fall they are teaching their FIGS course. 

 

What does it mean to be a Learning Community Peer Instructor?

Several of our FIGS courses are affiliated with a Learning Community offered at Rutgers. In the Discovery House program, students have the benefit of sharing three courses in common (one being their FIGS), which leads to greater connection with peers in the classroom and in residence halls and high levels of academic success. Discovery House FIGs are offered in Business, Health & Medicine, Law & Leadership, and Psychology. In the Bunting Cobb program, students share a common residential experience along with their FIGS course “Careers in the Sciences.”

Please note that Peer Instructors teaching a FIGS connected to a learning community DO NOT live with their students in residence.

 

When is Peer Instructor Education offered?

Four sections of PI Education will be offered in the fall. Specific class times will be announced prior to fall registration. Peer Instructors rank their class section preferences and then receive a SPN for registration.  While Peer Instructors receive 3 credits for the course, it only meets for 80 minutes a week during the fall as summer training hours count for course credit.  All PIs must be able to register for this three-credit course in order to teach FIGS.

 

How can I learn more about becoming a Peer Instructor?

For more information, e-mail figs@echo.rutgers.edu.