Experiential learning and collaborative mentoring: a new way of facilitating skills among individuals

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    In the modern world, knowledge of English Language is considered to be vital. Rightly so considering the fact that English happens to be one of the most commonly spoken languages all around the world. Fluency in English is a required skill at a professional level. However, not every individual is brought up in an environment where the language is used in conversations. For these individuals, it becomes harder to learn the language and understand its syntax. Therefore, the students of Business and professional speech at the Institute of business management were given a project by their instructor Mrs. Shumaila Omar to help the students from the first semester to improve their English language and communication skills.

    Experiential learningThe students of the Speech classes were divided into separate groups and were assigned with the task of instructing 2-3 students regarding the use of English language in communication. The areas in which majority of the students needed help included accents, pronunciation and basic grammar mechanics. A lot of students were not very comfortable with the idea of communicating in the English language. Therefore various activities were conducted where students were asked to introduce themselves in English language. Likewise, the students were also given reading material which they were asked to read aloud with the instructors pointing out the areas where the pronunciation or grammar was inaccurate. Thus, by conducting these activities the Speech students were able to help out their younger peers in improving their language and communication skills.

    Experiential learningAccording to one of the Speech students Amara the initiative was a great move because the young students who were new to the university felt more comfortable studying with their seniors and hence, were able to learn more. She also stated that the two way process where the Students passed on the knowledge that they had acquired from their teachers to younger students was quite helpful for all the parties involved. She also highlighted the importance of reading. She stated that one of the activities given to the students included writing passages on their favorite sportsmen and characters. The students were also given a lesson in English punctuation and their knowledge was assessed through the write ups which they had written.

    According to another student Sara the project allowed the students of the Speech class to make a difference within the society. For her the project was much more preferable and challenging than a normal end of the term report.

    Experiential learningAccording to Dr Irfan Hyder, the dean of College of Business management and College of Engineering and Sciences, communication is an important trait that all business students needed to possess. He stated the importance of being able to express ones ideas properly and in detail. He was particularly impressed with the course instructor who had taken the initiative. He highlighted the benefits of experiential learning because it gave the students an opportunity to go out of their own comfort zones in order to achieve their goals. He once again emphasized the importance of communication skills in the business world and also stated that communication skills allowed students to better express themselves. He also appreciated the effort of the senior students and praised them for supporting their juniors.

    Overall it was a great initiative taken by the Institute of Business Management. The students felt that these activities should take place more frequently rather than just being limited to two or three sessions. The students should be allowed to engage in more projects similar to this one where they are given the opportunity to communicate with their peers and step outside of their comfort zones.  The project was an illustration of how students can make a difference by helping their peers in providing community service while also giving them an opportunity to develop themselves through the two way learning process.

    By Abdul Basit

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    Abdul Basit Yousuf, a guy with two girlfriends; technology and cricket. He is an ambitious person working day and night, possessing exceptional marketing ideas. All the content and articles you see on screen have his direction at the back. He is also one of the founding members of this website and is obsessed with making GenY the best content based website in Pakistan, He believes, “You can, because you think You Can”
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