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Academic Excellence Coordinator –  Kath Knott

Kath began at La Trobe at the beginning on this year and has already had a noticeable impact in the Academic Excellence space. Apart from being popular among the La Trobe residents, Kath has implemented a music, arts and culture program along with providing a genuine support for all residents with their studies.
Hi my name is Kath Knott and I am the Residential Education Coordinator- Academic Excellence. My role is part of the wider Residential Education Team and offers a number of services to support you in your academic development including a Textbook Borrowing Scheme, first year Study Focus Groups, NET Program, SWOT-Vac, Pearls of Wisdom, course guidance, plus more…
As a full time staff member I am available for one-on-one appointments with students on a needs basis, and I manage all of the academic support programs and services available to residents at each respective campus, including managing the development and supervision of the RA- Academic teams across the colleges.
2017 will be my first year as the Academic Excellence, prior to this role I was a Preventive Health and Engagement Officer, working to promote the health and wellbeing of young people in schools and sports clubs. In my spare time I enjoy netball and travelling, having been to New Zealand, Jamaica, Thailand, Indonesia, United States and Malaysia.I look forward to being part of the Residential Education Team to provide you with the best opportunities to learn in a dynamic, inclusive environment to ensure you a career ready.

Kath Knott

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Accommodation Services offers a number of services to assist students in their academic and career development including an Academic Excellence Residential Education Coordinator (a member of staff). This staff member is available for one-on-one appointments with students, manages all of the academic support programs and services available to residents at each respective campus, coordinates the development and supervision of the RA- Academic teams across the colleges, and works collaboratively with the residential education team to deliver cross portfolio programs and initiatives.

Academic Mentoring Sessions: All first year students are required to be involved in area of study specific Academic Mentoring Sessions (AMS). These group mentoring sessions meet on a regular basis and are organised and managed by a trained later year student leader known as an Academic Mentor (RA academic). Academic Mentors provide students with guidance throughout the year, covering such topics as:

  • Transition to Accommodation and University
  • Referencing
  • Study Skills specific to your course
  • Lectures & Tutorials
  • Exam Preparation
  • General Study Skills, such as time management
  • Course or Subject Content
  • Career Skills, such as Career Ready Advantage, Cover Letters, Resume Writing, Key Selection Criteria, The Big Interview and how to connect with the Career Ready Team.
  • Resilience, such as managing your inner voice, managing stress and anxiety, dealing with failure, and the importance of a positive mindset

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Academic Mentors (RA Academics): An RA- Academic is a student leader that is a later year resident that has been selected to assist first year residents with their academics, and their transition into university and into college life, as well as floor and community coordination. There are RA- Academics from each Academic College (SHE- Science, Health and Engineering, and ASSC- Arts, Social Sciences, Commerce).

RA Academics have also been selected for more specific courses and areas of studies to make sure that they can assist residents with more catered assistance to achieve the best results they can. Personable relationships are built with the RA Academics to ensure a direct referral pathway to the REC Coordinator for academic support programs and assistance for residents.

RA Academics are also located across many of the floors, towers, annexes and wings of each college, along with the RA- Health and the RA- Social student leaders. They assist with the events and activities that take place in these locations, as well as help to foster, create and maintain a community that takes pride in academic, wellbeing and social development.

RA Academics are provided with opportunities to; develop and enhance their own leadership, interpersonal and intrapersonal skills, demonstrate core employability skills to prospective employers, and develop professional networks within the University community. They also have the added benefit of personal satisfaction in making a difference to the academic and career development of their fellow residents.

Textbook Borrowing Scheme: (keep information) We currently stock nearly 300 textbooks, most of which are on required reading lists of LTU degree courses. Any of these can be borrowed by groups of residents.

A textbook is required to be shared between small groups (of three). Requests can be made by completing the Textbook Request Form available from the Accommodation Services office. Those who wish to borrow books must provide their contact details, the names of two other students who also wish to share the book and the details of the book they require.

Books can be borrowed for the whole of the semester or length of the subject if more than one semester, if required, but you must request through the Accommodation Services office if you wish to borrow the book for the entire year.

Please note that not all requests are approved, but the office will make every effort to purchase the book provided it is on a required reading list, over $100.00 and at least 3 residents’ request the book. All names and details must be supplied.

Specialist Subject Tutoring: (keep information)

Accommodation Services offers access to Specialist Subject Tutors. These are students of excellent academic standing, who apply to be on-call to provide extra support for residents. Specialist Subject Tutors (SSTs) may be later-year students, or former residents, or other undergraduate or graduate students as identified by Accommodation Services. Tutors are paid at a casual rate (either in the form of a direct payment or rent credit). Up to three hours of free tutoring may be provided to students who request tutoring each semester. Forms to be be a Specialist Subject Tutor or request tutoring are both available in Accommodation Services office.

SWOT-Vac: To assist and support the mental, social and physical wellbeing of residential students throughout this stressful time of each semester, Accommodation Services provides different activities, food and resources for all residents from each residence to access and take full advantage of. Activities and events are coordinated and facilitated by the RA Academic team who are critical to engaging their fellow residents in activities.Â

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Pearls of Wisdom: This event designed to provide student leaders, and second and later year students with inspiration and motivation in their studies and to provide networking opportunities for all involved. Guest speakers consist of La Trobe University prominent LTU staff members, current students and Alumni who have overcome adversity to achieve success through different pathways.

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NET Program: The NET Program supports the academic development of students who have received a Weighted Average Mark (WAM) of 52 or below.

Students in this position are contacted prior to the commencement of the semester and notified of their compulsory involvement in the program. They are contacted by the Residential Education Coordinator- Academic and are then required to attend an initial meeting to assess what option in the program will be the most beneficial to the student to assist in them achieving their academic best in the following semester. Assistance is provided in general study skills, time management, motivation, and referral to other support programs and/or services.

(Bundoora) IGNITE: Recognising an opportunity to expand arts and cultural programming for our La Trobe residents, in 2017 the IGNITE program was created as part of the suite of experiential offerings for those living on campus. IGNITE was also established to meet the specific needs of our international residents, who were identified as a cohort that would be keen to discover, explore and experience the incredibly diverse arts, cultural and live production scene in Melbourne.

This exciting new program has allowed our residents to ‘IGNITE’ their interest in a variety of categories including: theatre, biology, science, creative art, sport history, Australian culture, as well as through excursions to education centres and landmarks.  (insert picture)

Some of the IGNITE events included:

  • Aladdin, the musical
  • Priscilla, Queen of the Desert
  • Cirque Du Soleil
  • Nocturnal at the Melbourne Museum
  • Yarra Valley Cultural Tour
  • Sovereign Hill Winter Wonderlights
  • The Twelfth Night, Shakespeare under the Stars

Canberra

To broaden and diversify the educational and cultural experience, residential students will have the opportunity to visit Canberra as part of the Centenary of the ANZAC. Residents visit the following places:

  • Dharwra Aboriginal Cultural Tours: learn about Mount Majura and the habitat it is for a wide range of wildlife, including threatened species, and gain an understanding of Aboriginal culture by becoming part of the ‘The Dreaming’
  • National Museum of Australia: this tour will increase historical knowledge and understanding, and understanding of Indigenous culture and history
  • National Gallery of Australia: take a tour to enhance their understanding and knowledge of art and culture, and increase their awareness of cultural differences and cultural identity
  • Australian War Memorial: visit this world-class museum, shrine and extensive war archive, to gain an educative experience of war and its enduring impact on Australian society
  • Australian Institute of Sport: take an educational and engaging tour of the AIS
  • Parliament House: experience democracy in action, watch questions time, see bills being debated, and see some of Australia’s historical art and exhibitions
  • Royal Australian Mint: learn how coins are designed, the impact of the Gold Rush on Australia’s currency, and the introduction of decimal currency

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Excursions: educational and engaging excursions including Melbourne Museum, MCG & National Sports Museum and Melbourne Aquarium. Program is popular with international students, and provides opportunities to support social and emotional wellbeing, and build new friendships within and across their colleges.  (insert picture)