Students are at the heart of what we do and in the Learning Enhancement & Innovation Team, we strive to include a student aspect in our various projects and initiatives. Over the past few years, the LEI team has maintained a strong student presence with our Learning Enhancement Officers (LEOs). Our LEOs work closely with academics to provide at elbow support, are involved in the Program Enhancement Partnership process and the LEI Grants. Students develop a range of personal skills for future employment, such as time management and critical thinking skills while taking part in these projects.
We chatted with one of our long-standing LEOs, Nishant Krishnan about his experience, here is what Nishant had to say:
What sparked your interest in becoming a LEO?
I joined the LEI team in March 2016. A friend was working in MyUni Support at the time and suggested that I apply for the student ambassador role.
After reading the job description I was particularly enthused by the opportunity to provide course coordinators with meaningful student insight into how course content should be developed, deployed and delivered. I wanted to be able to actively shape my own learning experience and this role perfectly suited that end.
What has been your favourite part of being a LEO?
Working within a student team has definitely been my favourite part of being a LEO. Although we come from different faculties and have various extra-curricular interests, this role has allowed me to form friendships with a diverse group of students, some of whom I probably would not have met had it not been for this job.
What have you found most challenging?
The most challenging aspect of this role was being confident enough to voice my opinions during meetings with course coordinators, heads of departments and Deans. But what I soon came to understand is that stakeholders want to hear your feedback and being confident enough to provide your honest thoughts and insights into how content can be developed and delivered is extremely beneficial for everyone involved.
What skills have you gained from the experience in terms of employability?
The varied nature of being a LEO means that you develop a number of different skills. My 3 year tenure has improved my time management skills (ability to balance multiple projects), increased my confidence during collaborative work, and developed the ability to think critically and analyse problems to provide effective solutions.
Most importantly, this role has developed my communication skills to a point where I feel comfortable conversing with a range of stakeholders, whether they be fellow students or the Deans/Heads of Departments.
Can you describe a specific experience where you felt like you really made a difference as a LEO?
My most memorable experience is the first ever at-elbow support meeting I had with a course coordinator (during the initial rollout of Canvas). The course coordinator was not technologically savvy and was extremely stressed by the prospect of moving all of her course content onto the new platform. During the 1 hour meeting, I assisted her in creating and arranging content, and enabling external tools to improve the learning experience. By the end of the meeting not only had she mastered Canvas but was eager at the prospect of using a new tool that would improve her ability to impart knowledge.
How has being a LEO helped you with your future career goals?
Being a LEO has allowed me to pursue my vocation!
My dream is to work as a Forensic Psychologist, a job that combines my two passions of law and psychology. Recently I was offered a scholarship to study forensic psychology in the Netherlands. The Scholarship panel were particularly impressed by the breadth and nature of the LEO role and the responsibilities given to students. During my tenure I have conducted seminars, created course content, formulated marketing strategies and provided online support, all of which has allowed me to get one step closer of realising my vocation.
What advice would you give to others considering becoming a LEO?
Being a LEO has been an extremely rewarding experience. Whether you are a critical thinker or creative artist, the role is geared towards anyone and everyone. The breadth and diversity of the work means that you are never bored. I have often found my interest piqued by the weirdest and strangest subject matters.
Do it, apply!
Want to get involved? If you’re a student wanting to get involved with the Students as Partners program, please fill out the online form, or for teachers who would like to engage, get in touch with your faculty learning designer.
Learning Enhancement Officer
Nishant has been a LEO in the LEI team for 3 years and has recently graduated with a Bachelor of Arts with Honours, with Psychological Science as his major along with a Bachelor of Laws and a Graduate Diploma in Legal Practice.
Nishant’s career goal is to work in the field of Forensic psychology either as a trial consultant, court-appointed mental health assessor or counsellor for juvenile offenders.