Peer-Assisted Student Success (PASS)

What is PASS?

PASS is an internationally-recognised scheme, based upon collaborative learning, where students come together in a safe environment to facilitate learning. 

PASS typically involves higher-year student volunteers working in pairs with small groups of first-year students in weekly, timetabled sessions. 

PASS (known locally as Peer-Assisted Student Success, but internationally as Peer-Assisted Study Sessions) was first established at the University of Hull in 2011 and is supported by the Skills Team


How PASS works  

PASS Leaders are trained to facilitate peer learning and not to re-teach material. They help first-year students work together using facilitation strategies specifically designed for PASS.

PASS sessions are safe and welcoming spaces that encourage students to support - and learn from - each other, by sharing experiences and ideas. 

PASS is discipline based and is usually attached to a challenging module. However, PASS can also be at the programme level, as this opens the scheme to a wider cohort and helps build a sense of community across the programme. 

The topics that are covered in PASS sessions are completely student driven. It could focus on a recent lecture, a difficult theory or concept, or even an upcoming assignment. 

What do PASS Leaders do? 

  • They always work in pairs, or small groups, to facilitate weekly study sessions for students who desire an extra level of support from fellow students. 
  • They are trained to use facilitation skills and not to teach.
  • They design and deliver activities to promote student-to-student interaction and learning. 
  • They are trained to ask probing questions to encourage students to build knowledge.
  • They are trained to redirect questions back to the students so the students develop understanding between themselves.
  • They tease out subject areas where further help may be needed. 
  • They hold regular debrief meetings with an academic to feed back on subject areas the students may have found difficult that week. This gives the academic the opportunity to re-address any difficult concepts, where appropriate.
  • They are trained to signpost students to further help provided by the University of Hull.

What do students say about PASS? 

Here is what our students say about our PASS programme: 

  • "PASS has made me feel welcome in the University in the first three weeks"
  • "The PASS leaders were helpful and easy to approach"
  • "PASS is very helpful and removes a lot of anxiety about exams"
  • "The PASS leaders were a good influence to do well on the course"
  • "PASS helps you gain a better understanding of the subject"
  • “Brilliant for developing new skills that are great for a CV. Helped massively with building my confidence!” 

How to get involved in PASS 

We plan to expand PASS into new programmes across the University. Contact your lecturer to see if PASS is coming to your subject area soon.

Recruitment of PASS Leaders for 2022/23 will begin in the spring of 2022.