Student news

Get involved in Peer Support

This academic year, for the first time, Peer Support will be available to students in every School in the University.

We are looking for students that are interested in getting involved in these rewarding and worthwhile projects.

What is Peer Support?

Peer Support comes in various forms, such as Academic Families, Buddy schemes and House systems. All types of Peer Support aim to create an academic and social space where students can ask questions, exchange ideas and share common interests.

Peer Support provides a place for students to receive informal, friendly advice on all aspects of university life.

Undergraduate students chatting


Becoming a Peer Support volunteer allows you to give help and support to junior students, but can also offer opportunities for you to engage in and facilitate debate, and think differently about your academic work. It can provide you with invaluable experience and skills that will be transferable to future employment, such as:

  • leadership and teamwork
  • time management and organisation
  • public speaking
  • planning, running and evaluating workshops
  • inter-personal skills

Developing skills like these over the course of the Peer Support programme can contribute towards an Edinburgh Award, and help you stand out from the crowd with employers. BioPALS is the Peer Assisted Learning Scheme for Biological and Biomedical Sciences. One of BioPALS Group Facilitators, fourth year Robin Fourman, commented:

[Peer Support] has given me some great experience of mentoring and facilitating, and has made me far more confident talking in and leading group sessions. It’s been good fun and good to be able to help the first years.

Get involved

Becoming a peer supporter in your department is easy. Contact your Personal Tutor or Student Support Officer to see what opportunities are available. You can also check the full list of Peer Support schemes at the EUSA website. This includes a number of central Peer Support schemes such as Tandem language exchange and the International Buddies scheme, which pairs international students with an Edinburgh student who has returned from a year abroad.