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MSI psyc 10: andrea mcdade

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MSI psyc 10: andrea mcdade

Dear Future Psych 10 MSI Learning Assistant,

First, congratulations on your new position. Being an MSI Learning Assistant will likely be one of the most rewarding jobs you have ever had. This position will allow you to hone your teaching skills and develop the ability to communicate with a diverse group of people and make new connections each quarter. Being a tutor is an on campus job that lets you make an impact in the lives of so many students and you will probably see them around campus later on and still have a connection with many of them.

As for the actual position, Psych 10 is an extremely fun class to teach. One thing to remember going into it is that this class is specific to Developmental Psychology, something that a good chunk of psych majors will not be interested in if they are pursuing other branches of psychology. This is a good thing though because it gives you the chance to help them become interested! One thing I find really useful is to relate all of the concepts they learn back to their own lives and give real life examples that make something abstract become meaningful. It’s especially easy to do this with Psych 10 because every student had a childhood and grew up and went through a lot of the developmental stages they are learning about.

One thing to remember is that this position will be scary and difficult at first. Speaking in front of a group of students who expect you to know everything can be hard, but it will definitely get easier over time. Something that I found helpful is to incorporate some personal stuff into the session- get to know your students beyond just being students and you will connect more with them and build rapport. Also, let them know from the beginning that you’re a student too and you don’t know everything; this eases some of the expectations and pressure on you. Most importantly, have fun with this job! You will really get out of the job what you put into it; it can be something that changes your life and that leaves you smiling at the end of every day (like it is for me) or it can just be work and it’s up to you to take the extra steps to make it something special.

Good luck and have fun!

-Andrea McDade

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