Would you like to see the Mentor Program as more of a continued education program instead of a couple short classes?

True Pleasures True Pleasures
What I would like to propose is an actual mentor-ish mentor program. A mentor should be someone that you look up to and who guides you through things along your journey. As it is, students just take a couple classes and pass, most never to really interact with their former mentors again as much as they should. Sure, some don't pass and have to go through the process again, but is it really enough to help a person by helping them through only a couple reviews? There are loads of different toy types, material types, etc. that they should be taught about. How can that be done in only a couple classes?

I've seen a decent amount of people, who have graduated, still making fairly large mistakes and putting dangerous misinformation out there about toy safety and whatnot. Sure, the reviews that they wrote for their classes may have been fine, but new reviewers need to be helped and nurtured. I don't think it's a good idea to just help them a couple times and then send them on their way. How can we call ourselves mentors?
Answers (public voting - your screen name will appear in the results):
Yes
No
mama2007 , Airen Wolf , travelnurse , LadyDarknezz , Artishok , darthkitt3n , Kindred , Feisty , amazon , TheSinDoll , Ansley , PropertyOfPotter , Andrey2052 , Trysexual , padmeamidala , BG529 , indiglo , Do emu
18
Maybe (Please explain)
svalentine;)
1
Llamas, 'cause there's almost always llamas
brevado , unfulfilled , Petite Valentine
3
Total votes: 22 (22 voters)
Poll is closed
08/21/2012
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mama2007 mama2007
Quote:
Originally posted by True Pleasures
What I would like to propose is an actual mentor-ish mentor program. A mentor should be someone that you look up to and who guides you through things along your journey. As it is, students just take a couple classes and pass, most never to really ... More
No I don't think it should be a continued program lengthened. I am a mentor and IF i don't think the student is ready to do reviews on their own, I don't graduate them after 2 reviews. I wait until I see more progress and effort on their part. If the reviews are really good and well written and they take heart what I explain as far as grammar, punctuation, etc yes i will graduate them after 2 - 3 reviews. I've graduated 4 - 5 students already and about to graduate 2 more once they write their 2nd reviews to submit to me.
08/21/2012
Cinnyree Cinnyree
I feel that i can not truly vote in this yet, since I have been in no classes yet. I do agree that if someone is lacking they should be taught more. Maybe students should list their mentor on their profile. Then when anyone sees obvious mistakes they can contact the mentor and it can be said mentors choice as to put them through class again or just give them a lil nudge. As I said I am very new to this site and don't even feel comfortable enough to start classes. Maybe my opinion doesn't count but that is how i see it
08/21/2012
Airen Wolf Airen Wolf
As it was explained to me by the founder of the mentor program a mentor is a mentor until the mentor no longer has anything to do with EF or the student no longer has anything to do with EF.

We are supposed to be advocates for our students, teachers and guides. I know that if my students don't realize they can come to me whenever, for whatever they need then I have not explained this part of the system to them properly. If you see a former student still making glaring mistakes or putting out harmful information then you do have the right to approach them and ask if they still need some help. You can have them re-request to be in your class and continue to help them. Or if your polite inquiries are met with silence talk about the situation with JR or Stormy. I know they will help and be darn glad you are still interested in helping a former student.

Graduating a student doesn't, and shouldn't, end your contact with them! Seriously, if my former students have issues I am always MORE than happy to help.
08/21/2012
Airen Wolf Airen Wolf
Quote:
Originally posted by Cinnyree
I feel that i can not truly vote in this yet, since I have been in no classes yet. I do agree that if someone is lacking they should be taught more. Maybe students should list their mentor on their profile. Then when anyone sees obvious mistakes they ... More
Mentors are listed on the public page of every contributor who is in the program The site lists them. Once the student is graduated, though, they are essentially on their own. The mentor needs to explain to his/her students that he/she is always available for more than just review writing!

I am thinking maybe a work shop about how to be a mentor and what it entails could be a great thing. Not a "do it this way" sort of thing but a this is what you are expected to do and this is what you are allowed to do, sort of thing. Might be useful to know the scope of the job but allow the specifics to remain in the hands of the mentors.

I dunno just a thought for the Eden Universe to chew on for a bit!
08/21/2012
True Pleasures True Pleasures
Quote:
Originally posted by Airen Wolf
As it was explained to me by the founder of the mentor program a mentor is a mentor until the mentor no longer has anything to do with EF or the student no longer has anything to do with EF.

We are supposed to be advocates for our students, ... More
This is, of course, something that I would do. Unfortunately, not everyone seems to see it that way, though. I have yet to graduate any of my students. The ones I'm talking about are others that have graduated. It's sad to see that their mentors didn't really seem to help them out much, and that they keep putting bad information out there.
08/21/2012
True Pleasures True Pleasures
Quote:
Originally posted by Airen Wolf
Mentors are listed on the public page of every contributor who is in the program The site lists them. Once the student is graduated, though, they are essentially on their own. The mentor needs to explain to his/her students that he/she is always ... More
That would be a great idea!

Sometimes I wonder if some things are just for people to garner points, and maybe they just don't take the mentoring/learning seriously. Of course, I'm not saying everyone is like that. There's always going to be a few bad apples, though.
08/21/2012
Airen Wolf Airen Wolf
Quote:
Originally posted by True Pleasures
This is, of course, something that I would do. Unfortunately, not everyone seems to see it that way, though. I have yet to graduate any of my students. The ones I'm talking about are others that have graduated. It's sad to see that their ... More
Again, if you catch such mistakes point them out! I'd probably go to staff though because people can be very touchy even when you are trying to be helpful and kind, ya know? Staff are actually very gentle when dealing with these issues so it's not like you are reporting them to the police and they will be publicly flogged...though I dunno that might actually be a great punishment. The line would be 'round the block though and nothing would ever get done.

I had to deal with an issue very similar to what you are describing and it was handled in a very civil and pleasant manner that left everyone involved feeling relieved. Jus' sayin'
08/21/2012
True Pleasures True Pleasures
Quote:
Originally posted by Cinnyree
I feel that i can not truly vote in this yet, since I have been in no classes yet. I do agree that if someone is lacking they should be taught more. Maybe students should list their mentor on their profile. Then when anyone sees obvious mistakes they ... More
I definitely like this idea.
08/21/2012
True Pleasures True Pleasures
Quote:
Originally posted by Airen Wolf
Again, if you catch such mistakes point them out! I'd probably go to staff though because people can be very touchy even when you are trying to be helpful and kind, ya know? Staff are actually very gentle when dealing with these issues so ... More
Yeah, I might just send in a ticket. It's unfortunate that I would have to in the first place, though. What really got me going on all this was how many reviews on here are picked apart on Twitter because they have bad/harmful information on them. People tend to pick quite a bit on reviews from here, and it's usually with good reason.
08/21/2012
mama2007 mama2007
Quote:
Originally posted by Airen Wolf
As it was explained to me by the founder of the mentor program a mentor is a mentor until the mentor no longer has anything to do with EF or the student no longer has anything to do with EF.

We are supposed to be advocates for our students, ... More
I agree. I always let my students know if they ever need help with reviews or anything at all, please message me and I will be glad to help them best I can. I am good friends with a few who i have graduated
08/21/2012
travelnurse travelnurse
I talk to my mentor all of the time and she does give me feedback about my reviews. I don't think that it should become a requirement for her to correct me though. We are adults and need to take responsibility for ourselves. It shouldn't be meant as policing.
08/21/2012
GONE! GONE!
I would like to see drop-in, general classes for things like learning more about toy material types. Then someone who is an expert could cover the topic they know about and everyone could use the info to make their reviews better.
08/21/2012
LadyDarknezz LadyDarknezz
Nope. I still keep in contact with my mentor and I ask her for advice on products and reviews occasionally. However, what Gold Lion above me proposes sounds like an excellent idea because I spend lots of time looking up materials that I've never heard of but want to know more about to ensure that my reviews are accurate.
08/21/2012
Zombirella Zombirella
I have actually had some pretty great writers here lately that didn't need to do any more reviews with me besides what was required. I have students that write so well, I honestly don't have any suggestions for them and they end up doing great on their own. The minimum requirement is 2 reviews. We don't HAVE to pass someone after that and if someone feels a person isn't ready, they can keep them in class longer.

When I graduate someone, I always tell them to feel free to come to me if they ever need anything. I'm more outgoing online than I am outside and I'm fairly talkative, I like to hear from people and talk to people I've mentored, even if it's just a quick "hello, how are you?".

I have looked over reviews from people that weren't in my class that I offered help to and they chose someone else. I don't mind making new friends and when I have the free time (which is a lot lately), I have no problem giving them my opinions on their reviews and giving suggestions, if any.
08/21/2012
Zombirella Zombirella
Quote:
Originally posted by Cinnyree
I feel that i can not truly vote in this yet, since I have been in no classes yet. I do agree that if someone is lacking they should be taught more. Maybe students should list their mentor on their profile. Then when anyone sees obvious mistakes they ... More
If you sign up with a mentor, it will show on your page who your mentor is when someone views your profile and clicks the "about me" tab .
08/21/2012
Zombirella Zombirella
Quote:
Originally posted by Airen Wolf
Mentors are listed on the public page of every contributor who is in the program The site lists them. Once the student is graduated, though, they are essentially on their own. The mentor needs to explain to his/her students that he/she is always ... More
Sorry, you already answered that. I should have read all the comments first.

I have never had to keep anyone past two but I have, because they asked me to do another (or couple) more with them just to feel sure about their reviews. I only had to fail two people so far and that was because they never responded, they had drafts but never came back and didn't respond to my messages and I actually haven't seen them ever get back on Eden .

I also forgot to add that while I tell my students to feel free to ask me anything ever, about anything, that I also told them if they ever review something they aren't familiar with that they can always get another mentor or just simply ask someone that is a seasoned reviewer or reviewed many of those items to have a look at their review to see if they did okay.

Until I read Arien's comment, I actually had no idea that a student can take your class again in the future, that is why I just told them that they can find another mentor but I was always willing to look something over for them. Good to know that they can take a class with us again.
08/21/2012
Kindred Kindred
I only graduate a student if I feel they are able to write a Useful review on their own. When they do graduate, I send them a message congratulating them and letting them know that I am always available to them as a resource if they have any questions about a review or the site in general.
08/21/2012
brevado brevado
The mentor program isn't something I'm here for
08/21/2012
amazon amazon
I think the mentor program is great for people who struggle in writing effective reviews of products. It seems to work well now.
08/21/2012
PropertyOfPotter PropertyOfPotter
I think most mentors are open and willing to still help a former student should they come to them with questions or need more help. I don't think extending anything would be a good idea, it seems to work fairly well the way that it is.
08/21/2012
unfulfilled unfulfilled
I always tell my students that just because they've graduated with me they can come to me anytime with any question that they wish. I'm here for one and all to offer any advice I may have for those have questions regardless if they've been in my class or not.
08/21/2012
Petite Valentine Petite Valentine
Quote:
Originally posted by True Pleasures
This is, of course, something that I would do. Unfortunately, not everyone seems to see it that way, though. I have yet to graduate any of my students. The ones I'm talking about are others that have graduated. It's sad to see that their ... More
The system is set up to reward mentors/students for "quick" graduation, so I don't find this surprising. Whenever the topic comes up, EF says it's being discussed, so I guess we'll wait and see. If you see something really bad in a review, send a message to an admin.
08/21/2012
mama2007 mama2007
Quote:
Originally posted by Petite Valentine
The system is set up to reward mentors/students for "quick" graduation, so I don't find this surprising. Whenever the topic comes up, EF says it's being discussed, so I guess we'll wait and see. If you see something really bad ... More
Yes we as mentors get rewarded for graduating Reviewers who are not yet Advanced Reviewers. I don't think that it should be forced to continue the student if the student's reviews are pretty good and you think they will get good review ratings.

I help/lend a hand to the students I have had if i see or they ask for my help.
08/21/2012
Trysexual Trysexual
Mentors should not graduate someone if they aren't ready. Also, what is the proofreaders/editors job? Just to check grammar/spelling, get points or edit incorrect/dangerous information?

I've seen reviews get edited in literally minutes from submission, which from my standpoint isn't bad (and quite efficient), but I wonder what they are actually checking?

I saw a review for a metalworks toy that said it was Stainless steel, when in fact it was polished steel (which I only knew from reading/watching someone Else's review).

I guess the voting system filters out the useful and not useful reviews, so I don't think we need more big brother necessarily and a consumer should be using information from the manufacturer and the website, not some third party reviewer for their safety decisions anyway.
08/21/2012
Beck Beck
Quote:
Originally posted by True Pleasures
This is, of course, something that I would do. Unfortunately, not everyone seems to see it that way, though. I have yet to graduate any of my students. The ones I'm talking about are others that have graduated. It's sad to see that their ... More
I have had a number of students who told me this exactly!

I had a student who requested me the day they graduated , who told me that their mentor didn't even discuss with them if they were ready to graduate or anything like that. They were shocked when I sent them my opening letter for class with all the helpful information on it. I tell everyone how to navigate the site as best as I can, but tell them to play around with everything they see. If they have questions, I tell them to direct them to me.

I was shocked that a mentor wouldn't discuss graduation with a student prior to graduating them. And I had to give this person step by step instructions on how to do images. So, they weren't told how to navigate very well either.

I might graduate some students fast, but this is only after many messages and many discussions. I also will graduate them fast if they are submitting me awesome reviews right off the bat. Not all student's actually need a lot of help.
08/21/2012
indiglo indiglo
In a way, it can be used as a continuing education system - many people who really want to continue learning will have several mentors.

*MAJOR OPINION ALERT*

Ok, you have been warned.

Honestly, as mentors, we can't run other people's lives. I try the best I can with my students to help them with their reviews, but it would be impossible for me to teach each one everything about everything. We can only help with the reviews they submit to us during class, and once graduated their reviews are up to them. If they want continued help, many of us mentors let them know we'll be willing to help in the future, but it's up to the member to take advantage of that offer or not.

As for the question "Is it really enough to help them with 2 reviews and then send them on their way?" For a lot of people - no, it probably isn't "enough". They still may not be writing outstanding, EU reviews with no typos or errors. But what would be "enough" for everyone? And how would we measure "enough"? Perfect reviews every time? Is that even a reasonable expectation?

I know that a lot of us spend a lot of time and effort into mentoring students... but even so we can only do so much. Some mentors don't do much to help their students, and some students don't do much to really benefit from the help their mentors offer.

It's not a perfect system, and it never can be - because fallible people are involved in it. The mentor program as it stands now is still better than NO mentor program at all. (In my opinion, anyway.)

It helps new members learn the basic reviewing process, and then they have a foundation from which they can continue to learn - either by using other mentors, or by personally investigating things.

Also, when we see a less than perfect review, we have our vote with which to make a statement. If we see reviews, or posts on the forums with incorrect information in them - instead of blaming a mentor (who may or may not be responsible for said mistake) perhaps we could just take the initiative to nicely and kindly correct the mistake. The plus side of trying to be helpful is that we can get the Point Boosters on our accounts and earn more Eden Points for our normal actions around here.

To me, I prefer taking the attitude of "I'm here to help" rather than blaming mentors for not teaching a student absolutely everything we think they should know.

Your mileage may vary, and all that.
08/21/2012
Kindred Kindred
Quote:
Originally posted by Trysexual
Mentors should not graduate someone if they aren't ready. Also, what is the proofreaders/editors job? Just to check grammar/spelling, get points or edit incorrect/dangerous information?

I've seen reviews get edited in literally ... More
An editor checks a review for spelling and grammar, not content.

Also, there was a lot of confusion when the Metal Worx line first appeared as to the steel grade. I may be remembering incorrectly, but I think the product page may have listed them as stainless steel originally until the reviews started to reveal that they are not stainless. (I looked up one of my reviews and that is exactly the case)
08/21/2012
Do emu Do emu
Quote:
Originally posted by True Pleasures
What I would like to propose is an actual mentor-ish mentor program. A mentor should be someone that you look up to and who guides you through things along your journey. As it is, students just take a couple classes and pass, most never to really ... More
Unfortunately people will only get as much as they put in to something. If they don't feel like putting in the effort, I don't really think a continued program will help.
08/21/2012
Total posts: 29
Unique posters: 18