Study Smart at PASS. You have to study, so why not study in a group led by a student who has successfully completed the unit?

PASS (Peer Assisted Study Sessions) is free, voluntary and offered in tough units which tend to have high in-completion rates.

PASS is for all students—whether you are struggling, doing OK or a high achiever.

Students who attend PASS learn effective study skills and develop communication, problem-solving and critical thinking skills while meeting lots of other students.

The 50-minute weekly sessions are led by a PASS leader, a student who recently completed the unit so knows what you are going through and wants to help you succeed.

Check the PASS timetable for Trimester 3, 2017 to see if there are PASS sessions for your unit.

To register your interest in attending sessions complete the PASS Expression of Interest Form. All Trimester 3 sessions are CloudPASS sessions.


CloudPASS is the online version of regular PASS for Cloud based units. All students can attend.

CloudPASS sessions (at a set time each week) are conducted in Skype for Business, a program available to all Deakin students. CloudPASS students can also share ideas and questions on our CloudPASS Facebook groups.

Become a PASS leader


Being a PASS leader not only provides a fantastic paid, on-campus job, it also enhances your own study and employability by developing myriad knowledge and skills, including all of the Deakin graduate learning outcomes:

  • Discipline-specific knowledge and capabilities: improved content knowledge
  • Communication: facilitating and mentoring, including giving feedback; listening and understanding others, empathising, speaking clearly and directly
  • Teamwork: application of leadership and team skills such as decision making and giving feedback; negotiating and liaising with faculty and students
  • Problem solving: identifying problems and creating practical solutions using a range of strategies
  • Critical thinking: making decisions and communicating clear goals and deliverables
  • Self-management: experience in self-management, taking responsibility and trying new ideas and techniques
  • Digital literacy: using a range of technology to facilitate learning, including CloudDeakin, Blackboard Collaborate, websites, tools, resources and student-produced videos.
  • Global citizenship: developed awareness of diversity and how it impacts various situations


Current Deakin students who have recently completed the unit and achieved a distinction or higher can apply for PASS leader positions.

If you apply you will undergo a full recruitment process. Candidates who successfully pass the CV and interview stages are called back for pre-hiring training to ensure they understand what PASS is all about and are suitable to lead PASS study sessions. Pre-hiring training is free and covers areas such as:

  • how to conduct active, facilitative study sessions
  • understanding the boundaries of peer-professional working relationships
  • effective communication
  • troubleshooting.

Once the recruitment process is completed, applicants may be offered PASS leader positions. PASS leaders are provided ongoing professional development and support. If you are interested in becoming a PASS leader or would like more information, please contact Robyn Mortimer, PASS Coordinator.

Staff information

Units considered most appropriate for PASS generally have large enrolments and contain content that students may often find difficult. To achieve maximum impact, the following selection criteria are suggested for units:

Units considered most appropriate for PASS generally have large enrolments and contain content that students may find difficult.

  • be core units with large student enrolments, particularly of commencing students
  • have high failure or non-completion rates
  • be seen as historically difficult.
    If you would like to have PASS in your unit, please contact Robyn Mortimer, PASS Coordinator.

What are lecturers/teaching staff required to do?

PASS is maintained by the PASS coordinator, supervisors and leaders so requires little time from lecturers involved; however, lecturers in PASS-supported units are expected to:

  • promote your unit's PASS session(s) (lectures, unit guide, CloudDeakin)
  • allow the PASS leader to make class announcements when needed and provide them with student-level CloudDeakin access
  • meet briefly with the PASS leaders, if possible, to be informed of what is happening in the PASS sessions. Leaders can provide valuable early feedback on concepts students are struggling with
  • provide the PASS coordinator names and contact details of potential PASS leaders

What should I expect from PASS leaders?

PASS leaders are not tutors and do not re-lecture or introduce new material. They are role models who lead study sessions for the unit. They show how successful students think about and process unit content. They facilitate collaborative learning activities which assist students to understand, engage with and apply unit content. The PASS leader in your unit will:

  • attend up to two hours of lectures per week
  • discourage students from attending PASS as a substitute for lectures and tutorials
  • maintain a professional attitude about matters such as subject standards, marks, and student complaints
  • provide you with feedback and share PASS if requested
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