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Peer Assisted Learning (PAL)

Peer-assisted Learning (PAL) is a well-established model learning which sees level two and three students leading sessions for level one students to assist with their learning, assessment ability, and life at university. It has a number of proven benefits to the students, the session leaders, and the university. 

For Level 1 Students

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What is PAL and what will I get from it?

  • Achieve higher levels of confidence in your academic work
  • Gain deeper understanding of your course content
  • Work with students who have 'been there, done that'
  • Meet new people on your cours
  • Ask questions you didn't get to in your lectures

These are just a few of the benefits you'll see if you attend PAL sessions during your first year at Brunel. 

PAL sessions are one hour long and held once a week or fortnight, depending on your department. They are led by second and third year students from your course who have already been through the topics and modules yo are currently studying, and therefore can provide unique support and insight into how to tackle them successfully. 

The informal, flexible nature of the sessions means you can have a say in what support you want, the content you cover, and allows you to ask questions you didn't have answered in your lectures.

Who is PAL for?

We currently have PAL running in the following departments:

  • Biomedical Sciences
  • Business School
  • Civil Engineering
  • Computer Science
  • Economics and Finance
  • Maths
  • Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering
  • Occupational Therapy
  • Politics and History
  • Psychology

All level one students from these departments may attend.

It is important to note: PAL is not a remedial class; it is not just for students who are struggling but has been proven to benefit everyone who attends regularly.

How do I get involved?

If you are in one of the above departments, you will automatically be enrolled on the PAL scheme upon your arrival at the university. An email will be sent to your Brunel account with details of upcoming sessions, and you simply need to turn up! There are no limitations on who or how many people can attend each session. 

If you have any queries, or do not receive information at the start of the year, please email: PAL@brunel.ac.uk

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What does a PAL leader do?

PAL leaders work in pairs to plan and facilitate sessions for level one students on a weekly or fortnightly basis. While this can sometimes be challeging, particularly on top of your own workload, it is a challenge that our current PAL leaders report to be fun and rewarding in a variety of ways.

Why should I be a PAL leader?

  • Develop a range of transferable skills which look excellent on a CV
  • Consolidate your own learning by creating activities and tasks to use in sessions
  • A HEAR accredited activity, meaning you will have an extensive report of extra-curricular activities to show off to your future employers

In addition to this, you will receive full training from the PAL team at the start of the year to give you the skills and confidence to lead a group, and continued support from the team throughout the year whenever you need it.

Want to be a PAL leader?

If your department runs a PAL scheme, you can apply to be a leader. We usually recruit towards the end of the academic year, but if you want to be a PAL leader, please contact PAL@brunel.ac.uk to enquire for more information about applications. 

Otherwise, please fill out the form below and return it to PAL@brunel.ac.uk as soon as possible.

If you would like to find out more information about becoming a leader in your department, please contact PAL@brunel.ac.uk

Already a PAL leader?

If you're already a PAL leader and what to find out what's been happening with PAL lately, join us on Facebook and Blackboard Learn


For Academics

PAL supports rather than replaces core learning for level 1 students. Its student centred approach creates a confidential and safe environment to support transition in to the University. Students work together to solve any problems they may have around academic content whilst sharing study skills to create more independent learners.


PAL is centrally managed through the ASK Academic Skills team. This includes training, facilitating debriefs, observation of sessions, attendance monitoring and evaluation. Every department has an academic coordinator who is responsible for timetabling PAL sessions, recruitment, attending debrief sessions and promoting PAL.


If you are interested in setting up a PAL scheme in your department, please email PAL@brunel.ac.uk  

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 PAL Videos

Find out more about attending your PAL sessions and becoming a PAL leader by watching our PAL videos.

What is PAL?

Come to PAL


Be a PAL leader