A304MC – Mentoring Research

 Definitions of Mentoring:

  • “Mentors are people who, through their action and work help others to achieve their potential” (Shea, G.F. Mentoring; a guide to basics 1992)
  • “Behind every successful person, there is one elementary truth; somewhere, somehow, someone cared about their growth and development. This person was their mentor.” (Kaye, B L, Up is Not the Only Way)
  • Mentoring is ” a process that supports and encourages learning to happen” (Parsloe & Wray, Coaching and Mentoring 2000)
  • ‘Mentoring is a powerful personal development and empowerment tool. It is an effective way of helping people to progress in their careers and is becoming increasing popular as its potential is realised.’
  • ‘Mentoring is most often defined as a professional relationship in which an experienced person (the mentor) assists another (the mentee) in developing specific skills and knowledge that will enhance the less-experienced person’s professional and personal growth.’
  • ‘Peer mentoring is a form of mentorship that usually takes place between a person who has lived through a specific experience (Peer Mentor) and a person who is new to that experience (Peer Mentee)’
  • ‘Mentoring is a learning relationship based on encouragement, constructive comments, openness, mutual trust, respect, and a willingness to learn and share. ‘

Peer mentoring is usual a one on one relationship. It is a unique type of learning relationship, which is voluntary. It is more about enabling the learner rather than teaching them. It is learner-centred and involves trust, honesty, openness, and an acknowledgement of the learner’s role in shaping the learning process. It is always about a POSITIVE view of the world, recognising strengths and celebrating achievements. It develops the mentor as well as the mentee. Most peer mentors are picked for their sensibility, confidence, social skills and reliability.

Top 10 ways to communicate:

  • 1. Listen
  • 2. Breathe
  • 3. Say “I”
  • 4. Avoid judgement, blame, denial of responsibility
  • 5. Separate facts from opinion
  • 6. Be aware of emotions
  • 7. Be aware of needs and values
  • 8. Ask for what you want
  • 9. Be aware of body language
  • 10. Be aware of individual and cultural difference


  • Definition: Providing useful information about someone’s approach, skills or actions, in order to encourage professional development.
  • Constructive Feedback: Talking about BOTH what the mentee is doing AND what the mentee needs to improve.

Good Feedback: 

  • Behaviour – concentrate on the mentees’ behaviour, not their personal.  And practice what you preach!
  • Encourage – keep criticism simple and constructive. Encourage and motivate – set achievable goals, give regular feedback, offer helpful advice.

Sensitive – treat them as adults, appreciate their situation; imagine you are on the receiving end.


  • In order for the peer mentoring relationship to be productive, it is important to understand that there are certain boundaries and expectations which both the Peer Mentor and Mentee need to adhere to.
    • I promise to do the best of my ability
    • To further the skills and knowledge of my mentees
    • To create a positive learning environment

Peer Mentor Code of Conduct:  

In order for the peer mentoring relationship to be productive, it is important to understand that there are certain boundaries and expectations which both the Peer Mentor and Mentee need to adhere to

  • I understand that it is expected of all the Peer Mentors and Mentees to be reliable and punctual for scheduled sessions, in order to make the mentoring relationship effective.
  • If there is an issue that a Peer Mentor feels may put a Mentee or someone else in danger, they will have to inform the Mentoring Tutor.
  • I understand that if I am unhappy with my experiences associated with the mentoring processes that I can speak to the Mentoring Tutor about it.
  • Peer Mentors and Mentees must not act in any prejudicial or discriminatory manner towards members of staff, students, visitors or members of the public. They should counteract such behaviours or practices by challenging them and reporting them to the Mentoring Tutor.
  • Peer Mentors must attend all relevant training sessions when required to do so.
  • I must take responsible care of health and safety policies, University codes of practice and follow all University policies which have already been implemented.

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