Mentoring in a university/senior high school colligate - A study of the learning environment and the mentor/protTgT relationship

Year: 2002

Author: Reynolds, Ruth, Grushka, Kath

Type of paper: Abstract refereed

The oral tradition of mentoring within the secondary school learning environment has been identified as an area in which more research is required. Insights into the phenomena experienced between mentor and mentee may inform the meaningful design and implementation of future mentoring relationships. Key factors contributing to the cognitive skills development of the mentee appear to be linked to the development of a mutually agreed upon set of operational dynamics in the mentor relationship. These operational dynamics are dependent upon the affective and social development of both parties within the learning environment. The factors of interest to the overall study are the student centredness of the teaching, the motivational techniques, the extended learning processes, the ways in which the class time is used and the overall classroom climate. This paper explores the emotional geography of the classroom and will identify the commonalities and differences in the social and affective learning of the mentors and protégé in two difference curricula experiences.

The University of Newcastle, the Faculty of Education and Arts and the Callaghan Collegiate have established links to support the collegiate strategic plan (2001) to provide quality teaching and learning environments. Within this plan mentoring has been identified as a key strategy. Tertiary education students have been engaged as mentors in school programs in the HSIE and Visual Arts Learning Areas. This paper explores contrasting mentoring styles that have evolved in response to the subject matter and skills expected from different discipline areas. Diary reports from mentor and protégé provide the raw material for the analysis in this paper.