"Tell me, and I forget. Show me, and I remember. Involve me, and I understand"
In the study skills model, students attend the supplemental instruction sessions to learn how to more effectively take notes in class, annotate and absorb the readings, and prepare for exams. The supplemental instruction leader can use short activities, group work, and re-playing portions of lecture on videotape to help students become more efficient and effective at organizing and studying course information. Leaders can also help students prepare for memorization tests by introducing techniques such as flashcards, categorizing information, small group study strategies, and pneumonic devices.
Supplemental instruction leaders can assist students in narrowing topics for essays, developing theses, and brainstorming organizational strategies for different kinds of essays. Leaders can also meet students in a computer lab or library and assist with secondary research. In addition, the sessions can become non-threatening venues for students to develop and practice oral presentations, individually or in groups.
While instructors sometimes offer small credit for simply attending the supplemental instruction meetings, some instructors choose to offer supplemental projects that can only be completed by attending the out of class sessions. These projects are introduced, developed, and finalized in the out of class sessions. The projects can involve community involvement, professional or career exploration, or further study of course material. Projects or reflective writings might also be connected to a guest speaker or campus/community event or speaker.
For some courses, the greatest benefit of supplemental instruction is the room it offers students for intensive, small group discussion of course concepts. In this model, students bring in topics for discussion, current events, newspaper or magazine clippings, or guest speakers to facilitate greater exploration and debate of course material.