The academic student café is an option for the students of a particular subject or in a particular degree programme to turn up at a particular time (for instance three hours once a week) to get help for their academic work. During the time slot, teachers, student teachers or older students must be present in the café to help the students. The student café may be relevant for all subjects and all degree programmes but may be of particularly great help for students of very complex academic subjects or disciplines.
Activities in the student café offer the students help for academic tasks and thus contribute to developing their academic understanding. At the same time, the student café may be a space in which the students may speak freely with fellow students or teachers about topic that are relevant to their studies without feeling judged. The dialogue across academic subjects and year groups may also contribute to better social integration in the learning environment and have a positive effect on the students’ well-being in their line of study, as the student café may provide both academic and social support. The activity may also benefit older students, who are practicing their academic communication skills and may also include the student café in their CV’s.
You as a teacher must make sure that a framework is set up for the student café, and that the café is actually being used.
You may include the student café in the students’ timetable once a week or plot in specific days during certain periods of the semester when you know the students are working on a major assignment, an exam or a topic in the course which often requires extra attention.