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The Peer Tutor Program

The Peer Tutor program is a four-year-old program that connects third and fourth-year students with incoming students, who have no idea what our flagship course, Introduction to Critical Thinking, will be like.

The members of the program are selected each year through a rigorous application process, for their ability to give astute constructive feedback with compassion and patience. A Peer Tutor assigned to an ICT class will work with that cohort through tasks such as brainstorming for assignments, gauging student writing, and holding office hours. They will also work closely with the instructor, perhaps designing activities related to critical thinking/writing or even holding a class or two, thus building their skills as a leader in the classroom. In other words, they are sharing their experience as a writer at Ashoka and helping others benefit from their journey. Being students themselves, not only have they taken ICT and many other courses first-year students are taking, but the Peer Tutors also keep the same hours as the students, making them their peers as well as tutors. This ensures that their insights on academic writing and related struggles come from a space of empathy, that leads students into becoming more confident writers.

Our peer tutors are an integral part of UWP’s collaborative and decentralised pedagogical framework – they function simultaneously as senior mentors to 1st year ICT students and assistants to ICT Instructors.  As a result, PTs bring a unique perspective to ICT classes while helping students sift through ideas for projects, write and revise drafts, and prepare for academic presentations. Their presence highlights the value UWP places on peer-learning and individually customised feedback in the process of engaging with critical thinking.

Peer Tutors for Monsoon 2023

  Name              Year    Major            
1. Rhea Khandelwal Fourth Psychology
2. Deeksha Puri Fourth Psychology
3. Anoushka Gehani Fourth PPE (Political Science, Philosophy & Economics)
4. Krishanu Kashyap Fourth Economics and Sociology & Anthropology
5. Sara Muthedath Fourth Sociology
6. Manasi Narula Fourth History
7. Shreya Khobragade Fourth English and Creative Writing
8. Riya Ray Chaudhury Third English and Media Studies
9. Amrutha Nathan Third English and Creative Writing
10. Ishabasya Bihan Moitra Third Mathematics
11. Harshini Dhiyaa Velsamy Third Computer Science
12. Deekshanya Roy Third Psychology and Philosophy
13. Shloka Sankar Third Economics and Finance
14. Geetanjali Roy Third English and Creative Writing
15. Ryan Karthik Pillai Third Political Science
16. Nupur Agrawal Third Economics and Finance
17. Aishwarya R Third History and International Relations
18. Arohi Sachar Third Psychology
19. Nikhil Mishra Third Biology
20. Mohan Rajagopal Third Economics
21. Ananya Surana Third English
22. Aishanya Gupta Third Economics with International Relations



Testimonies from the past couple of years have proved that this bond makes the program an excellent resource for Ashokans. Developing this program allows us to cultivate more peer-led communities in Ashoka, which is ideal for a writing-intensive liberal arts curriculum.

There have been many challenges in my two-year stint as a Peer-Tutor: many awkward silences, missed emails, early morning classes, and a shift to online learning, prompting battles with the most tiring and unreliable internet connections. However, working with the most courageous and joyful instructors and peers has also made the peer tutoring program one of the most enriching experiences I have had at university. I believe that this experience has seeded in me an absolute admiration for the act of pedagogy. It has taught me the joy of guiding someone through the betterment of their work, of helping someone argue strongly or to follow a curiosity. In the most stressful of weeks it has taught me the joy there is in laughing together with a classroom. And through these interactions, I have learnt to humble myself, and ever improve on how I engage with the people and ideas around me.
-Ayush Shah, PT Coordinator

Being a Peer Tutor in my 3rd and 4th years at Ashoka was a fabulous experience. Because of the Covid-19 pandemic from March 2020 onwards, each semester was vastly different from the next. Aiding the instructor in adapting syllabi around the constraints and opportunities of the online set-up was certainly a challenge — it also meant devoting more time to working with the students, and especially first years who were beginning university life online, but also acted as lessons in flexibility and empathy. Additionally, that ICT is a mandatory foundation course for all first-year students meant that I would be dealing with papers tackling myriad, possibly unfamiliar themes, which was daunting. However, with time, I learned mechanisms of universal feedback and editing, which otherwise would not have been possible in my major courses which are thematically similar. Finally, as one of three Peer Tutor Coordinators in my 4th year, I had the opportunity to manage team-meetings, and rework some of the policies of the Peer Tutor program owing to Covid-driven circumstances, which was also an incredible exercise in leadership and teamwork. Overall, being a Peer Tutor was an extremely rewarding experience that helped hone many of my own skills, and I genuinely enjoyed being part of an academic support network for students just entering into university!
-Teesta Rawal, PT Coordinator

My experience as a Peer Tutor was one of learning and growth. I learnt not just from the instructor and in classes but from students that came up with so many ideas and perspectives. Hearing from them and being able to listen to them was really enriching.
Saman Fatima

My time as a Peer-Tutor was incredibly rewarding, and went above and beyond anything I would’ve expected it to be. The students were each hardworking and constantly trying to improve in their own ways, and I was really happy seeing them grow over the course of the semester as they found their voices in academic writing.

I learned so much, with each doubt that was asked, each assignment I helped them ideate for, and even from the class that I took. I was forced to confront some of my own biases towards academic writing, and question why certain things should be the way that they are.

To Keshav, I have nothing but gratitude for being extremely helpful and inclusive, making sure to keep me in the loop no matter what. I think, seeing the same readings that I had read two years ago and watching a new set of students grapple with them in ways far more interesting than I had was both strangely nostalgic and also very instructive. The enthusiasm that the students showed in making their creative presentations was infectious, and a nice change from the gloom and doom that seemed to surround the everyday during this pandemic.

Above all, I’m grateful that I was able to, in some way, help all these students, just as my peer tutor Sanya did for me. In many ways, it was the best part of an otherwise monotonous semester.
-Naren Varadarajan

The Peer Tutor programme for UWP has been immensely helpful. I thoroughly enjoyed interacting with students who were just starting their academic writing journey. It helped me gain new perspectives and navigate through various questions and queries that the students had for me. It was absolutely insightful and I loved engaging with incoming batches by sharing ideas, having discussions and promoting critical thinking!

Neha Sheik

I think applying for the Peer Tutor program was one of the best decisions that I ever took. I have truly enjoyed attending classes, holding meetings and discussing different topics with the students. Moreover, I have learnt a lot from my brilliant ICT instructor- Krittika, whose humour, encouragement, guidance and patience all contributed in making my entire journey as a peer tutor memorable. These last two semesters have been exceedingly rewarding and I take away only good memories from my experience as a Peer Tutor.
-Vedika Puri

The Peer Tutor program has really helped me to be comfortable with academic writing. Over my term, I have spoken to countless freshers and have had interesting conversations that will no doubt lead them far at Ashoka. I am glad I could pass on my knowledge and struggles with research to the students and hopefully this has been of help to them.
Ashika Thomas

I had a lovely experience being a Peer Tutor. I’ve learnt so much from interacting with two diverse groups of students as well as figuring out how to best cater to their individual needs and help them make the most of the course in their unique ways. It has been challenging, fun and deeply rewarding. I’ve developed my own skills in the process and come out a better writer and helper myself, having seen how supportive my team was and how engaged the tutoring kept me. It made the pandemic a lot more bearable, and for that I am glad.
-Deepti Jayakrishnan

Being a peer tutor allowed me to take my experiences as an overly caffeinated first year and channel them into conversations/interactions with the students in my course. I learnt so much over the course of the year – including that both Chetan Bhagat and Twinkle Khanna are good writers, and that the origin of civilisations could have been burial grounds. Despite the obstacle that was online classes, the interactions I had with students during class and office hours kept up the spirits. We talked about Elephant Psychology and Feynman’s Law, and I’d answer questions about dhaba food and winters on campus. I’m grateful to have gotten to spend the last year contributing to the course, working on something I felt deeply invested in.
-Wynnona Fernandes

Being a peer tutor helped me critically reflect about my own writing and writing process in ways that I hadn’t done before. Reading the works of other budding writers who hadn’t necessarily been trained in academic writing exposed me to new ways of thinking about structuring and organising different kinds of pieces. All in all, the peer tutorship taught me new and innovative ways of thinking about and teaching writing.
-Samriddhi Agrawal

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Study at Ashoka