School of Economics

School Personal Tutoring Statement 2019-20

The Personal Tutor system will provide you with a named member of academic staff, your Personal Tutor, who will support you throughout your time at the University, giving you academic support and a route to pastoral support.

You, as a Tutee, will work with your Personal Tutor to reflect on your academic performance, how this contributes to your aspirations and helps you to engage as a member of a community of learners. You will also be supported throughout your time at university by a Student Support Team. More details on the Personal Tutoring system can be found at: My Personal Tutor

Your Personal Tutor

Your Personal Tutor will:

  •   help you to review your academic progress and performance regularly;

  •   help you to think about your learning, how it contributes to your future development, prepares you for your time at university and your career;

  •   help you to become a confident, active member of a community of learners;

  •   help you to deal with any concerns or problems that might affect your studies and refer you to other staff in the School and support services as appropriate. You can find out who your Personal Tutor is via MyEd.

Undergraduate Students

During your early years at the University your School will schedule meetings with your Personal Tutor to enable you to settle in and build a relationship. Contact will gradually become less formal in the latter years of study, however you are actively encouraged to request meetings with your Personal Tutor as required throughout your time at the University.

As much as possible, we aim to offer students continuity of Personal Tutor, though some changes may be inevitable due to staff leave and changes.

One-to-one Meetings:

You will have three individual meetings scheduled with your Personal Tutor during your first academic year. The first of these will take place in the Welcome Week, with a follow-up meeting later in Semester 1. The third meeting should be early in Semester 2, once your December exam results are available. In the later years, there will be two meetings – usually early in Semester 1 and in Semester 2.

These meetings will be arranged by your Personal Tutor – you will receive an email asking you to sign up, usually on-line, for a time that suits you. Meetings will be scheduled for 15-20 minutes, but you can ask for more time if you feel it is needed. If you wish to arrange an additional meeting, you can contact your Personal Tutor to arrange it, usually via MyEd.

These meetings are focused on your individual progress – how you are doing, what you might be doing well in or struggling with, what your options are and your plans for after the degree programme, etc.

If you are not on campus (e.g. studying abroad for a period, or on placement, or studying an online degree) then your meetings may take place by telephone, live internet call, or a web conferencing application. Email exchanges are not considered to be meetings unless they take place within a pre-agreed timeframe to enable you to have a “conversation” (e.g. if you are overseas and emailing within a 24-36 hour period to take account of time differences).

Exchange students will normally be allocated to the School Exchange Coordinator as their Personal Tutor for their Honours years for consistency of treatment in relation to course choices, course loads, etc.

Group Meetings:

Each year you will be involved in at least one group meeting and other activities designed to support your development as a member of an academic community. If you are just coming to the University, there will be several meetings during Induction Week; these are designed to make sure that you are aware of what you need to know about the University system, your degree programme, your course choices and to meet your fellow students. One of these will be with your Personal Tutor.

In later years, these meetings will each have a specific purpose relating to the stage you have reached in your studies, such as entry to the Honours Years, Honours Dissertations and Careers Advice.

Group meetings vary in size and duration: the initial one will be in a small group with your Personal Tutor, but others may be in a lecture theatre, involving the whole year’s intake of students.

Peer Support

Peer Support activities are also available and we would encourage you to get involved with these as they are a great way to engage with other students. Our Student Experience Officer, Christina Napier (G2, 30BP) is helping to coordinate peer support activities and can be contacted for further information at study.economics@ed.ac.uk.

Information about other Peer Support activities across the University can be found at the following link: EUSA Peer Support

Support Contacts

Within each School there are a number of other roles working in partnership with Personal Tutors to make sure the Personal Tutor system works for you.

Student Support Team

Each School has a Student Support Team (SST) working with Personal Tutors to support you. We currently have two SSO’s: Kirsty Hope and Dawn McManus.

They act as the first point of contact with any queries, requests for meetings, requests to change Personal Tutor, etc. Contact economics.sso@ed.ac.uk or drop by in person Mon-Fri 9am – 5pm (G7, 30BP).

Senior Tutor

Each School has a Senior Tutor who oversees the effectiveness of personal tutoring within your School. If you feel that you cannot speak to your Personal Tutor (and sometimes people simply do not get along due to no fault of either side) please contact your Senior Tutor or SSO.

The School of Economics Undergraduate Senior Tutor is Dr Steven Dieterle (2.04, 31BP) – Steven.Dieterle@ed.ac.uk - who has overall responsibility for Personal Tutoring within the School of Economics.

Manager of Student Welfare

We also have a Manager of Student Welfare who works with the Personal Tutors, Student Support and Central Services. The Manager of Student Welfare offers 1:1 bookable or drop in coaching sessions when you find you are struggling. This service offers time and space to explore what is on your mind and make action plans to move forward.

Most questions you might have will be directed either at your Personal Tutor (if they are academic questions like “how do I go about choosing my courses?”) or the Student Support Team (if they are administrative questions like “how do I get a letter confirming my status on the programme?”). If you are not sure who to ask, just ask the SSO’s and they will help or advise you who to contact.

We aim to respond to all your queries within one or two working days.