In Fall 2020, recognizing the distinctive challenges presented by the virtual learning environment—and identifying opportunities to facilitate meaningful relationships among faculty and students—Barnard College created the Preceptor Program as a partnership between the Office of the Provost and Beyond Barnard. Since then, the Preceptor Program has supported more than 500 students with wages in the context of a meaningful campus role, and has facilitated connections between faculty and students. Above all, Preceptors have made substantive contributions to the quality of classroom learning in virtual — and now hybrid — environments. The Preceptor Program was born, like so many initiatives, out of a need created by the COVID-19 pandemic. Its endurance is a testament to the fact that Preceptors have become central to the classroom experience for many faculty and students.
Student Preceptors support faculty teaching in virtual, hybrid, and in-person formats. They manage in-class logistics, help prepare faculty for upcoming class sessions, and provide attendance and Q/A logistical support. They also manage online discussion boards, post classroom recordings, and monitor other digital forums for comments and questions about the class. Preceptors play a pivotal role in ensuring that virtual classes are held smoothly, and promote a productive virtual learning environment.
They have access to support at Beyond Barnard, along with Barnard's IMATS and AV Services teams. But perhaps most importantly, Preceptors often develop mentoring relationships with faculty and serve as near-peers for their fellow students in classroom settings. The program has promoted a more open and productive classroom environment.
Questions about the Preceptor Program can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.