Peer Learning Assistant (PLA) Faculty Mentors

The UGA Active Learning Peer Learning Assistants (PLAs) are undergraduate students who are recruited to assist faculty members in encouraging student participation and active learning approaches in classrooms, which has shown great benefits to the UGA teaching and learning community. Currently, CTL has organized an Active Learning Peer Learning Assistant Faculty community to support the expansion of the UGA Active Learning PLA program. 

The Center for Teaching and Learning (CTL) is currently accepting applications for the inaugural Active Learning Peer Learning Assistant Faculty Mentor Program! We encourage faculty with a strong record of effectively incorporating peer-learning assistants (PLAs) to facilitate active classroom learning and their commitment to PLA-related mentorship to apply for the 2024 Active Learning PLA Faculty Mentor program. 

Active Learning Peer Learning Assistant Faculty Mentors (PLA faculty mentors), supported by CTL personnel, will mentor UGA faculty who partner with PLAs to promote student engagement, participation, and learning in their classrooms. PLA faculty mentors will meet their faculty mentees and participate as facilitators during the monthly PLA faculty meetings and workshops. PLA faculty mentors will also provide consultative support to faculty mentees on best practices for PLA management and mentoring, especially for those new to PLAs. They will regularly meet with the CTL to share their observations and insights about PLAs and the PLA faculty program.  

Program Goals

The goals of the Active Learning PLA Faculty Mentor Program are to: 

➼ Offer a peer support community for UGA faculty who partner with PLAs to promote student engagement, participation, and learning in their classrooms

➼ Provide PLA faculty with resources, consultation, and peer feedback on best practices on PLA management and mentoring (especially for those facing similar challenges, e.g., student resistance to active learning, large lectures, STEM courses, etc.)

➼ Encourage the PLA faculty to enhance their capacities in effectively adopting and implementing active learning and other evidence-based pedagogical practices through the assistance of PLAs in the classrooms;

➼ Engage the PLA faculty with scholarly publications and pedagogical-related research to enhance student learning and PLAs’ professional development in the classrooms. 

Responsibilities & Opportunities

The PLA Faculty Mentor Program runs parallel to the academic year for three mentors. The AL mentors typically take on the following responsibilities & opportunities:

1. PLA faculty monthly meetings and workshops  – PLA faculty mentors will assist and serve as co-facilitators for the monthly PLA faculty meetings and workshops in the Spring and Fall semesters. 

2. PLA faculty Kickoff meeting/ Orientation  – PLA faculty mentors will meet with the current PLA faculty cohort in the PLA faculty Kickoff meeting/ Orientation (hosted by CTL and scheduled before the fall and spring semesters). PLA faculty mentors will get to know their faculty mentees and share their experiences about working with PLAs.  

3. Host Open Office Hours (virtual or in person; once a month for one hour) – PLA faculty mentors will host open office (coffee) hours once per month for PLA faculty to ask questions and seek feedback about using PLAs in their classroom teaching. 

4. Mentoring Sessions – PLA Faculty Mentors will provide consultative support and peer feedback to PLA faculty (one-on-one and group) on their PLA management and coaching, as well as classroom-related challenges (such as student engagement, attendance, and/or participation).  

5. Peer Observation of Teaching with PLAs – Each PLA faculty mentor, with CTL’s training resources and support, will facilitate Peer Observation of Teaching with PLAs for up to two assigned faculty from the current PLA faculty cohort.  

6. PLA Faculty Mentor / CTL Check-ins – The PLA faculty mentors will meet with the CTL Active Learning team once every semester to share about their engagement with faculty mentees, update the CTL on the instructional progress of the PLA faculty cohort, and address PLA development and concerns, if any.

7. PLA Faculty Handbooks and Resources – PLA Faculty Mentors will work closely with the CTL to share their observations and insights on the PLA Faculty program and contribute to the development of the UGA PLA Faculty Handbook and program-related faculty resources (e.g., resource guides and/or mini-workshops for effective PLA recruitment, preparation and coaching). 

8. Active Learning Summit – PLA faculty mentors are invited to attend the Active Learning Summit and submit a proposal for a panel discussion about the PLA faculty community and best practices for PLA collaboration and management. 


The Active Learning PLA Faculty Mentor Program is open to all faculty partnered with the PLA program by the Office for Student Success and Achievement (OSSA) for at least two semesters at UGA before their application. PLA faculty mentors should demonstrate a commitment to active learning and have a track record of effectively utilizing PLAs in their classrooms for active learning practices.  

Applications will be evaluated based on their demonstrated dedication to PLA mentoring and coaching and innovation teaching with active learning pedagogies and their potential for positive contributions via PLA-related mentorship among their fellow faculty.  


The call for applications for the 2025 Active Learning Faculty Mentor Program will be coming soon.

The selection process includes an individual online application and a 20-minute finalist interview.

Applicants will be notified by the end of the Fall 2024 semester. 


For additional information, contact Associate Director for Active Learning Initiatives Ching-Yu Huang at

To Apply

To apply to the Active Learning PLA Faculty Mentor Program, applicants will submit a letter of interest and a current CV. In the letter of Interest  – In a letter of no more than two pages, please summarize the following:

1. Your experience of collaborating with PLAs to implement active learning in your classrooms,

2. Why do you believe PLAs are valuable to classroom teaching regarding student engagement and active learning?

3. How would you contribute to this mentoring program as a PLA faculty mentor? 

When you have the letter and CV to submit, please do so at this link: