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Supporting Systems for Student Self-Study

Keimyung University has tried to make an environment to help students study better and has implemented various systems to assist student self-study outside regular classes. Do you know what programs our university offers students to assist with their self-study? I examined how our university and each department have supported the many programs for student self-study.

The Center for Teaching & Learning has supported the studying activities of professors and students for four years. They have three programs to aid student self-study. First, Keimyung Learning Community (KLC) is a program that helps study groups. A group is composed of five to seven students. They should choose their own challenges about any department’s classes, or anything else such as TOEIC or various certificates, and students complete them during the semester. Second, the Keimyung Peer Tutoring (KPT) is composed of tutors and tutees who cooperate together during the semester. If there are freshmen or sophomores who want to study better or have difficulties studying, they can apply to become tutees. Similarly, if there are juniors, seniors, or graduate students who want to share their study skills and knowledge, they can apply to become tutors. Those hoping to become tutors will need a professor’s recommendation and a 4.0 grade point average. Finally, the last program is Learning Supporters. Students who are selected as Learning Supporters have to share their learning know-how with others actively and produce a newsletter each semester. They play an important role on campus as agents of change to create an academic atmosphere. Apart from these three programs, the center also offers the Study Skill-Up Program every Tuesday during semesters. The program introduces effective ways of learning including test preparation and presentation and report writing skills. The Center for Teaching & Learning gives certificate to students who completed their programs.

The Job Placement Office has offered mock TOEIC tests twice a year since 1994. The number of participants is increasing and now the average rate of student participation is 77.3 percent. In addition, the office helps students to make TOEIC study groups and supplies funds for their textbooks. They offer the Cat-TOEIC program, which is an online study program. Cat-TOEIC offers students who took mock TOEIC tests three levels of video lectures according to their test score free of charge.

The Department of English Language & Literature and the Department of European Studies support special lectures for TOEIC and English conversation every vacation. The lectures are free except for the price of the textbook. The Faculty of Law also supports special English lectures, but they have a different system from the departments of English Language & Literature and European Studies. They have offered freshmen special English lectures since 2006 and the students get credit for the special classes.

The Department of Journalism and Mass Communication offers students prizes for taking part in some exhibitions and special scholarships, which inspires students to study and work much harder. The Faculty of Law has a plan to give special scholarships to students who improve their TOEIC score in 2008. The College of Business Administration supports study groups and awards a prize to the best group every semester. They also support students studying TOEIC like the Faculty of Law, but they support in different ways. They pay for the TOEIC tests (37,000) of students who improve their score by 50 and 150 points within six months. In addition, the College of Business Administration supplies funding for TOEIC classes for students who take classes at the Center for International Education and have good attendance during vacations. In Keimyung International College (KIC), all freshmen have to participate in a special English program. KIC helps all its freshmen’s English skills through this special program each semester.

Most faculties and departments have programs to inspire student learning and studying apart from the five programs mentioned above. Many offices and centers of our university also try to develop new projects to assist student self-study. In addition, the Center for International Education is ready to offer students mock TOEFL tests this year. However, many students don’t have an interest in these programs. For example, the Job Placement Office has offered students Cat-TOEIC for 7 years, but the percentage of students who use this program is between 20 and 30 percent. The problem of our students’ lukewarm attitude towards these programs has been with us a long time, so our university’s many centers and offices should make substantial new plans to increase the participation rates. In other words, it is time to offer programs more often or promote the programs more actively. In addition, students also need to take an interest in the various supporting programs for student self-study. A new semester is beginning, so how about joining one of these programs to inspire and improve your studying skills?