An Evaluation of a Pilot Study of the Personal Tutoring Programme in Improving Skills Development at the University of Trinidad and Tobago

Andrew Hunte, Wasi Z Khan, Rohanie Maharaj


Personal tutoring provides professional skills development and support to students as they matriculate through their respective university programmes. Recently, there has been a growing trend of students facing academic difficulties in their first year of undergraduate study at the University of Trinidad and Tobago (UTT) which have impacted on student retention rates. This paper shares the experiences of a pilot study of the Personal Tutoring Programme (PTP) launched in term 2 (January to May) of the 2018 academic year, at the UTT where five hundred and thirty-two (532) students along with forty-eight (48) personal tutors (PTs) engaged in activities that promoted academic and social support. During term 2, PTs met with their assigned tutees at least once per week. The evaluation of the PTP in skills development was based primarily on pass rates of term 2 courses in the Certificate of Applied Engineering (CAE) and Bachelor of Applied Science Common Year I (BASc Common Yr I). These programmes are used as entry requirements to specialized diploma and bachelor level programmes at UTT. Within the BASc Common Yr I, there were marked improvements in the Engineering Thermodynamics course while in the CAE programme, there were marked improvements in the Applied Engineering Mathematics II course with 100% pass rates in two campuses where it was offered. Student feedback was indicative of the positive impact of the PTP which improved students pass rates with engineering courses that traditionally were difficult for them. Overall the PTP contributed to the holistic development of the students. 

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International Journal of Higher Education
ISSN 1927-6044 (Print) ISSN 1927-6052 (Online) Email:

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