Caversham uni student benefits from UniPass program, wins leader award


Curtin University psychology and speech pathology student Kate Tonta.
Curtin University psychology and speech pathology student Kate Tonta.

A CAVERSHAM psychology student will fly to Sydney for her first professional conference after being recognised for creating university study support sessions.

Curtin University psychology and speech pathology student Kate Tonta (24), who worked as a learning facilitator for the University Peer Assisted Study Success (UniPass) program, was one of four winners of the outstanding new PASS leader award.

UniPass involved free group study sessions run by students, who create engaging activities to help students revise content and improve their study skills.

Ms Tonta said her sessions were more interactive and student-focused than tutorials for students.

“It is an optional class which is offered to the traditionally challenging units with notoriously high fail rates,” she said.

“It is kind of more like a workshop where they work on activities that I create, it is a lot more student-focused.

“It is a much friendlier atmosphere; there is no professional lecturer there as it is just other students.”

Ms Tonta said she was surprised and excited after winning the award.

“It is an awesome opportunity because I have never gone to a conference before and I can meet a lot of people with very good ideas,” she said.

The third year student said she wanted to study a PhD and a Master’s degree to achieve her goal of becoming a lecturer.

“When I started my psychology degree, I wanted to become a psychologist or a researcher but the more that I have done UniPASS, I realised that I would much rather go into the academic part of things,” she said.

“I will be doing my honours next year.”

Winners would be recognised at The Australasian PASS and Peer Learning Conference on September 27 to 28 in Sydney.