Faculty selected for program participation engage in course transformation to reduce lecture time during class meetings and infuse the course with more active group-learning experiences. These weekly classroom experiences are co-designed and co-facilitated by the faculty and their team of LAs. The faculty select their own LAs from a pool of applicants, all of whom must have a minimum GPA of 3.0 and a grade of B or higher in the course for which they would be serving. The faculty mentor and guide the LAs throughout the semester, a process complemented by the formal LA training framework facilitated by LA Program team members and peer mentors.
Faculty members using the LA model engage in (1) building a safe environment for student interaction; (2) using materials and approaches that facilitate active engagement; (3) facilitating weekly prep meetings with their LAs; and (4) learning about using LAs effectively in their learning environments through participation in a community of practice. LA faculty at USM convene approximately three times per semester to discuss their experiences and share best practices. Many faculty also engage in assessment of their students’ learning and course transformation outcomes.