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Peer Tutoring

​To help support student success, the peer tutoring program is free and open to all DMU students. Striving to help students individually or in small group settings, peer tutors aim to help identify strategies, tips, and resources that may improve learning, comprehension, and confidence for students in particular areas of study.

The peer tutoring program may be used by students who:

  • are struggling academically
  • may have been out of school for a while
  • previously may have never had to study but who are finding they need to learn some strategies now
  • are doing okay but want to improve
  • are doing well and want to challenge themselves to attain a higher level of performance

Some Tips for Successful Tutoring Sessions

  • Make contact beforehand to change or confirm appointments made; make sure to agree on a location and time.
  • Email questions or topic areas to tutors at least one day before meeting to allow tutors time to adequately prepare appropriate materials and/or gather useful resources to help during the session.
  • Do not hesitate to take advantage of small group sessions. Other individuals may ask questions you haven’t thought of yourself.
  • If you are no longer interested in obtaining/providing tutoring services please indicate your unavailability to continue – no further rationale is necessary.
  • If you are interested in working with another tutor/student, please indicate your unavailability to continue and seek out another tutor/await another student response – no other rationale is necessary.

Things for All to Keep in Mind…

  • Be understanding: If you contact a peer tutor and they are unable to commit time presently, do NOT take it personally.
  • Communicate: Working together, agree upon the best method of communication for both parties – be that email, calling, text messaging, etc.
  • Be flexible: Tutors are students too and have coursework of their own to tend to – rescheduling may need to happen.
  • Be respectful: If you have a scheduled session to meet, MEET! If you are unable to follow through with your planned appointment, send correspondence as soon as you can.

One of the best methods to understand and retain knowledge is by trying to teach it to others. Becoming a peer tutor is an excellent method by which to develop a deeper level of understanding and can help prepare you and keep subject areas fresh on your mind for board examinations.

In order to become a tutor, a student must meet the following criteria:

  • Have passed the course they intend to teach with at least a B or above in Anatomy and/or Biochemistry. A grade of A- or above is required for eligibility in each of the remaining courses
  • Received signed approval from their program coordinators affirming a passing grade.
  • Communicate record of tutoring sessions (download form) to CTL on a monthly basis (between the 1st and the 3rd of every month, a written record of the previous month’s tutoring sessions should be received by CTL via email For example, between March 1st and 3rd, email CTL with the written record of your February tutoring sessions
  • Applications to become a peer tutor are due by the last working day of May each year.

If you receive an email request from a student regarding tutoring services, please respond within 36 hours whether you are able to help or not. If unable to commit to helping at this time, please reply using the generic response: “I apologize, but I am unable to serve as your tutor at this time”. If you are available, please schedule a time and place to meet to begin tutoring sessions.


  • Please respond to student requests for tutoring in a timely manner – if possible, within 36 hours
  • If a student contacts you about scheduling tutoring sessions and you are unable to commit, please reply with: “I apologize, but I am unable to serve as your tutor at this time” so the student will know to ask someone else.

IMPORTANT: We advise you to not commit to tutoring more than two individual students or one student and one tutor group. It is imperative that your own studies do not begin to fail due to overcommitting yourself to tutoring others. Additionally, there may be an instance in which CTL may contact you directly to help with individual students in need; maintaining a smaller case load of tutees would allow you to possibly help out in these instances.

Application Process

Application forms will be sent via email from CTL during the first week of April to all students that will be entering their second or third year of study as appropriate. The completed forms are due back either: electronically to or physically to CTL Administrative Assistant Fran, no later than the last working day of May. Application review will commence in early June and all students selected to serve as peer tutors will be notified by mid-July once final grades have been received and reviewed from the Registrar.

Please return electronic applications to or return physical applications to: the library circulation staff in the Library from 4/4-4/11 or after 4/11, please submit physical applications to Fran Smith-Fatten located in CTL (northwest corner of library, overlooking Grand Ave) no later than the last working day in May. Returning a paper version or an electronic version of the application are both acceptable.

Orientation Session

An orientation session for individuals serving as summer peer tutors will be scheduled in early June; a subsequent session for those serving as fall/spring peer tutors will be held in late July or early August. The luncheon meetings will allow for an explanation of the program, discussion of the benefits of serving as a peer tutor, and a question/answer session. Information regarding the sessions will be sent from CTL to all appropriate individuals at least one week in advance of the sessions.

Although all tutors are very capable students, please realize they may not have all of the answers to your questions. Your professors/instructors are available to clarify questions and provide assistance and certainly wish to be utilized in that role. Please do not hesitate to use both sources!

To request a tutor, contact CTL at indicating what subject(s) you need a peer tutor for. CTL will then reach out to the peer tutors in that subject area to see who is available. Once we have matched you with a peer tutor, we will send both students an email so that they can get in touch to arrange a time and place to meet. If for some reason you are not able to work out a time to meet, please follow up with CTL to let us know and we will try finding an alternative tutor.


  • If a tutor contacts you, please reply in a timely manner – if possible, within 36 hours.
  • Students may already be tutoring another student(s) and may not have the capacity to commit to helping you presently. If they respond indicating “I apologize, but I am unable to serve as your tutor at this time”, do NOT take it personally as they simply may not have the time and have been prompted to use this generic response to indicate such. Contact CTL to request another peer tutor.
  • Email tutors with questions you wish to review at least one day in advance of meeting. This will allow tutors time to prepare in the subject area content.
  • Due to the limited number of tutors in certain subject areas we cannot always guarantee placement but we will do our best to assist you. There may also be certain times of year when it is difficult to match you with a peer tutor because they are students as well and are also preparing for exams of their own. Please be aware that there are other resources available in the library and in the Center for Teaching and Learning that can be checked out by students.