Students Teaching Students invites proposals for courses

October 06, 2020

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Students Teaching Students (STS) is inviting undergraduate students at the University Park campus to design and teach their own credit-bearing courses. An information session is scheduled for 7 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 7, via Zoom. A link to the session can be found here.

STS’s first semester in spring 2020 saw more than 100 undergraduates participating in STS-led courses. Leading up to the spring semester, STS founders Michael Miller and Josie Krieger worked with administrators in Undergraduate Education for approvals and teaching consultants and professors in the Schreyer Institute for Teaching Excellence on training, course design and compliance.

The independent, student-run organization offers student-created, credit-bearing classes taught by undergraduates and advised by faculty. All students at University Park, regardless of academic year, are welcome to submit proposals for new classes.

“We know that talent is distributed across all ages and years, and we offer opportunities accordingly,” said Krieger, a history and economics double major at Penn State.

The application requires a draft syllabus and listing a faculty champion to sponsor the course. STS student instructors also will be required to undergo training through the Schreyer Institute for Teaching Excellence.

“Every student who builds an STS course is given support every step of the way,” said STS Assistant Director Amanda Mohamed, who is triple-majoring in Spanish, labor and human resources, and global and international studies. “Alongside their faculty champion, each student instructor has an instructional consultant and student advocate who help them transform their idea into an official one-credit, special topics course.”

Miller, who is pursuing a bachelor of philosophy in his self-designed major of values-driven product design, said STS will be working with the University, the Schreyer Institute for Teaching Excellence, student instructors and faculty champions to verify that courses are delivered in a format that maximizes safety and flexibility.

The STS courses won’t substitute for courses required to graduate, or satisfy General Education requirements, and will be in addition to the courses students need to complete their degrees. They will, however, contribute to the minimum number of credits required to graduate.

STS is also looking for undergraduate students to join its leadership ranks, and students can apply at stspsu.org/joinus.

Penn State Undergraduate Education is the academic administrative unit that provides leadership and coordination for University-wide programs and initiatives in support of undergraduate teaching and learning at Penn State. Learn more about Undergraduate Education at undergrad.psu.edu.

Last Updated October 06, 2020