Information for Course Coordinators

Communications and connections in PASS-supported courses

The relationship between PASS Leaders and Course Coordinators is key to the smooth delivery of this student support service. PASS Leaders are trained to help students without re-teaching concepts or providing content answers/solutions. They are also keen to help you support students in your courses in ways that enhance student engagement without adding too many extra tasks to your busy workload! 

There are many ways in which PASS staff and volunteers work to promote easy and clear lines of communication between teaching staff and leaders/leaders and students. Below are a few notes on the communication and set-up processes for PASS-supported courses. Please contact if you have questions or suggestions about these processes or any other aspect of PASS.

PASS Timetabling

Timetabling is a complex process for PASS. PASS staff work with information about formal class times, and with individual volunteer leaders, to create a timetable that ensures access to the greatest number of students possible. Timetable details are released during Orientation Week, for a Week Two start to sessions, and the PASS Leader assigned to your course will contact you directly, as soon as these details are available to them, with an information slide and/or drafted announcement to be posted on MyUni to promote sessions to your students.


PASS Leader MyUni access

Once the selection process has been finalised, PASS Leaders are added centrally to the relevant MyUni course(s) as Auditing Students. This MyUni role has been selected for PASS Leaders as it allows them to post in Discussion Boards, and to use the Groups function to create a MyUni Group for participating students, in a way that does not allow them to view grades or other sensitive student information. To maintain student privacy and program integrity, it is very important that Course Coordinators do not alter the PASS Leader's MyUni role to that of teaching assistant or other role with administrative access.

PASS MyUni Groups and Assignment Help tool

To help your students access PASS, and to avoid additional workload for Course Coordinators, a PASS tile is created in the Assignment Help tool of your course that links to a hidden page with instructions for your students about how to add themselves to a PASS group, and details of remote and face-to-face PASS modes (including protected Zoom meeting links and passwords).

PASS Leader/Course Coordinator communication

First steps and information sharing

Once they have MyUni access, the PASS Leader for your course will contact you via email, to introduce themselves, pass on information about the timetable, and request a meeting/organise a conversation so that they can answer any questions you might have about PASS support, and ensure they are across any changes to the course structure or any other relevant information you would like them to have. This is a great time to negotiate the regularity and type of communication that will work best between you. PASS Leader Volunteers are always very keen to be flexible and responsive in this regard, knowing that teaching staff are incredibly busy; it is also important to note that PASS Leaders are volunteers and are studying themselves. 

PASS Promotion

As the number one way students hear about PASS and choose to attend is Course Coordinator promotion/endorsement, PASS Leaders will be keen for you to help them forward information to the students in your course. At the beginning of semester, and at other key times such as after the mid-semester break, and in the lead-up to end of semester revision periods, they will ask you to help them in this regard. Again, they will be trying to reach the greatest number of students, while not adding too greatly to your workload, so at these key points they will forward PPT slides with relevant information that you can include in your lectures where appropriate, and they will also send through scripted announcements that you can simply cut and paste into a MyUni announcement (if you are unsure about information included in any announcement drafted by a PASS Leader, please feel free to discuss this with them or email to clarify/edit as needed).

PASS Leaders will also use their MyUni Group, university Social Media accounts, and, when restrictions allow, lecture and other in-class visits to promote their sessions. Promotion of the PASS program is a core part of our successful provision of support to students each semester, and is particularly important in the case of first year students. Please see below for further key details of what PASS support entails, how students tell us PASS helps them, and how we approach supporting formal teaching activities. 


PASS Leader

  • PASS leaders will be expected to prepare and facilitate 1-2 online or face-to-face study sessions per week.
  • A PASS leader will also be expected to spend approximately 4-6 hours per week in the following activities:
  • Attending in person, or via MyUni / Canvas, at least 50% of the weekly lectures
  • Consulting with academic staff, as appropriate, to clarify key concepts, course/assessment details, and promotional needs
  • Developing and selecting resources for the PASS sessions in collaboration with other PASS leaders
  • Undertaking up to two weekly 50 minute PASS sessions for groups of 5-25 students; assisting the students to work together to better understand course content and required academic skills
  • At the beginning of each session, identifying areas that present challenges to participating students and adapting prepared materials accordingly
  • Completing all required administrative record keeping tasks
  • Assisting with promotion of PASS to relevant cohorts, including some public speaking tasks

Ongoing training and coaching support is provided by PASS staff and PASS Senior Leaders to enable PASS leaders to successfully complete the above tasks.

Course coordinator 

  • Providing relevant text books to PASS leaders
  • Providing PASS leaders with an overview of the course, and guidance on key concepts to emphasize
  • Being the reference point for PASS leaders in regard to clarifying academic questions and issues
  • Ensuring that PASS leaders are added as Auditing Students to the relevant course MyUni site so that they can view recorded lectures, power point slides, assessments and related due dates, and course notices (but not grades or submitted assignments)
  • Ensuring that appropriate promotional PASS messages and notices are uploaded to the relevant MyUni site, and PASS leaders are given the opportunity to promote PASS at occasional lectures, tutorials or workshops
  • Recommending proposed selected PASS leaders for future iterations of their courses; the PASS Coordinator takes the lead in recruitment and selection of leaders but input is always encouraged and welcome!

What is PASS?

Weekly 50 minute peer-led study sessions focused on key concepts and skills

Student led learning enhancement activity:

  • Facilitated by students who have recently excelled in difficult courses
  • Responsive to the needs of current students

Course-based retention strategy:

  • Targets courses with high degree/perception of difficulty
  • Supports courses with high attrition/fail rates

What can PASS do for your students?

Improved marks:

  • Approximately 1.2 mark improvement per session attended

Condensed study time:

  • 1 hour of PASS equivalent to 4 hours individual study

Support to stay at university:

  • Twice yearly surveys consistently report students noting PASS as a factor in their decision not to withdraw from courses

Cohort connection:

  • Attending students report PASS has assisted them in connecting with peers in their courses
  • Brings high-achieving students together with those who might be struggling

Based on data drawn from PASS annual reports and studies completed by the Australasian Centre for PASS, University of Wollongong.

What can PASS do for course coordinators?

Provide an auxiliary learning environment for students to engage with and practice applying concepts from your courses

Support your students in developing study skills central to broader disciplines

Facilitate 360 degree feedback based on students’ understanding of content, teaching activities and iterative changes to courses