When you are part of a Learning Community that is exactly what happens…you get to know all of your classmates and you work together as a team the entire semester. Being part of a Learning Community also creates an environment where students feel supported and motivated by their peers and professors. One student, Michelle, wrote: “I have learned so much from my fellow classmates and have had so much encouragement. I really don’t think I could have stayed this semester if it wasn’t for them.”
Students who participate in a Learning Community become a part of a “cohort.” The cohort takes the same classes at the same time with the same students and the same professors. (Side note: No – you will not get the same grades, but, generally, students in cohorts share commons goals of achieving success!)
At SCC, there is a Learning Community called PALS: Pathways to Academic Learning and Success. The name is also very fitting because, by the end of the semester, students really do feel like pals and have developed a friendship that will continue throughout their college journey. This is particularly true for Cheneka who wrote: “The Learning Community is a wonderful program. I met great people, I had a great experience, and I learned a lot about myself that I can improve on.”
Learning Communities are great for all students, especially for those who are new to college and want to experience an academic setting where teamwork, camaraderie, and mutual respect are expected from each other. The great thing about a Learning Community is that everyone in the class has personal and academic goals to succeed…and they all want that for each other as well. And, because students get the opportunity to know each other, they are comfortable asking for help, participating in class discussions, and working in groups.
PALS was a good fit for Tonia who stated that returning to school after 36 years was “scary.” Tonia is completing her second semester of the PALS sequence and encourages other students to participate: “Since joining the Learning Community, my fears have subsided and my confidence has grown. I recommend the Learning Community to get your feet back in school.”
The PALS Learning Community is currently recruiting students for the Spring 2013 semester. There is a PALS Learning Community at both the main campus and West Sacramento Center. Ideally, students who are accepted into PALS will participate in the Learning Community for a full year.
Listed below are the two PALS Learning Community cohorts:
SCC Main Campus: (Math and English reading)
MATH 34 - 4 units
EngRd 110 - 3 units
HCD 310 – 3 units
West Sacramento Campus: (Math and English writing)
MATH 28 - 3 units
Math 80 - 1 unit
ENGWR 51 - 4 units
HCD 110 – 3 units