Objective: Tutors should be able to recognize tutoring situations which could require ethical decision-making; tutors should be able to make appropriate decisions, based on program policies.
1. Why do you think it's important for a tutor to have a Code of Ethics?
2. What potential ethical problems could arise in a tutor/tutee relationship?
3. Read the "Tutor Code of Ethics"
4. Why would adherence to these items promote successful tutoring?
5. Read "Ethics and Strategies for Good Practice." Of the 12 principles of good practice presented in this article, list the five that are most important to you as a peer tutor and explain why they are important to you.
6. Read the following scenarios and describe your options for handling each situation and how you would respond.
6a. You are at a party on a Saturday night. You are meeting lots of neat people and having a great time. A friend introduces you to a friend of hers; you hit it off and get into a deep conversation. At one point she mentions her roommate and you recognize the name immediately as a student you have worked with a great deal this semester. Before you realize it you say, \"Oh, I know her, I've tutored her!" Your new friend then says "Wow, really? I'm really worried about her and her studies. What do you think is going on with her?" How do you reply?
6b. The professor of a class for which you tutor has given you a copy of her upcoming exam. This has never presented a problem for you, but this time things are a little different. There are several heavily weighted questions from a part of a lecture which the professor did not stress as being that important. You hadn't even planned on discussing it at all. When you bring it up in the last session before the test, the students say, \"Nah, that stuff wasn't important, let's move on.\" How do you respond?
6c. You are helping a student. Without any warning, he describes having taken part in a felony. How do you respond? What is your responsibility?
6d. A student with whom you have had an unresolved conflict this past year comes into the lab for tutoring. This student needs help for a course which you tutor, and you're the only tutor on duty who can help this student. How do you handle the situation?
6e. As a drop-in tutor, you have had a really busy afternoon in the lab and are feeling a little frazzled. A student comes in, asks a question, and you start right in on what you understand to be the problem. After about fifteen minutes you stop and actually listen to the student. You realize that the concepts you've been working on were not those for which he wanted help; his needs have not been met. Additionally, there are now three more people waiting to see a tutor. Where does your responsibility lie?
6f. You are very attracted to a person you have tutored in the past couple of weeks, and you are thinking about talking with a roommate about the possibility of dating this person. What, if any, are the implications of this decision?
6g. You are tutoring a group of students who are having difficulty understand the concepts of a course. One of the students in the group mentions that the instructor's lectures are confusing and her tests are particularly challenging; the other students quickly agree, adding that they think the instructor expects too much for a general education course. The discussion quickly gets out of control as the students begin to make negative comments about the instructor and her teaching style. You also took this course from this instructor and are aware of some of the concerns expressed by the students. How do you respond?
6h. You are helping a student who has come to the Peer Tutoring Center. You have already helped the student with one question; when the student asks a second question you begin to suspect that the student is asking for help on a take-home test. What do you do?
7. On a separate sheet of paper, write a personal Code of Ethics for your role as a peer tutor.
8. Keep a journal for one week; notice and record any ethical situations or potential ethical situations that come up and how you respond to those situations.
9. Submit all your training materials to the Peer Tutor Coordinator.