SERVICE-LEARNING AS THE ENABLING COMPONENT FOR DEVELOPING PROFESSIONAL BASIC COMPETENCES AT THE UNIVERSITY
University of Granada (SPAIN)
About this paper:
Appears in: ICERI2014 Proceedings
Publication year: 2014
Conference name: 7th International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 17-19 November, 2014
Location: Seville, Spain
Abstract:The purpose of this study was to identify the potential benefits of a cross-age peer mentoring service-learning program on professional basic competences (occupational orientation: achievement motivation, power motivation and leadership motivation; occupational behavior: conscientiousness, flexibility and action orientation; social competences: social sensitivity, openness to contact, sociability, team orientation and assertiveness; psychological constitution: emotional stability, working under pressure and self-confidence) of university student. The sample was composed by 37 students mentors from the Degree of Primary Education Teacher Training at the University of Granada (Spain). The dependent variable professional basic competences was measured by the Business-focused Inventory of Personality (Arribas, Corral, & Pereña, 2008). After selecting and constructing the necessary instruments to gather all demographic and academic relevant information from the sample, and being paired up and assigned to their mentees (with their tutors and families), the intervention consisted of 213 mentoring sessions with the mentees (one weekly 90-min mentoring sessions during the last two thirds of the school year), 30 coordination sessions with the tutors, and 40 sessions of psycho-pedagogical training with the families. Sessions were delivered by mentors after receiving a four hours training session on mentoring skills, knowledge, tasks, rights and duties and were regularly monitored by the program coordinators to check for potential program inconsistencies or diversions from original design. Mentors also had to report after each session by completing an ad hoc online questionnaire. The results show significant pre-post differences in mentors’ scores in several professional basic competences measured by a standardized test. Some recommendations are provided to improve higher education competency based instruction methodology.
Keywords: Service-learning, peer learning, competency based education, teacher training.