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More Help on the Way for Sophomores in Fall with Launch of Learning Communities

Students heading into their sophomore years in seven different majors have the chance to enroll in sophomore learning communities, an expansion of a popular and successful first-year initiative.

Date: 5/14/2008 12:00:00 AM
By: Carey Hoffman
Phone: (513) 556-1825

UC ingot   This year, sophomores at UC were given a boost with the introduction of the Cincinnati Sophomore Initiative. Come September, another tool will be added to help ensure sophomore success, with the introduction of sophomore-level learning communities.

On May 14, when upcoming sophomores begin registering for fall 2008, students following major requirements for Advanced Medical Imaging Technology, Biology, Business, Chemistry, Communication, Health Sciences, and Psychology fields will have an opportunity to enroll in a learning community designed to keep them on track as they take some of their toughest courses.

Carol Tonge Mack
Carol Tonge Mack advising a student at her desk.


"The second year can be a lot different than the first year for students," says Carol Tonge Mack, director of the Cincinnati Sophomore Initiative (CSI) and associate academic director of the Center for Exploratory Studies. "This is a time when students shift focus to intense major exploration, especially when taking courses which are considered rigorous."

The seven sophomore-level learning communities being piloted this fall include courses that students in the targeted majors traditionally find difficult and which must be passed successfully in order to progress.

What is unique about these communities is the built-in learning support structure. Each learning community will include a pre-scheduled time for supplemental instruction conducted by specially trained leaders who work closely with course professors to reiterate lecture and quiz content and facilitate exam preparation.

This approach is an adaptation and expansion of the first-year learning community program.

"We often receive requests from students for sophomore-level learning communities, so when Carol asked about the possibility of offering these through the CSI program we were delighted," says Pam Person, director of the Center for First Year Experience and Learning Communities. "The collaboration with the involved faculty, the Learning Assistance Center’s supplemental instruction program, the CSI and our center promise to provide a tremendous opportunity for sophomores in these majors."

Students interested in enrolling for one of the sophomore learning communities should contact their academic advisor for course template and call number information. For more information students can also contact:

Center for First-Year Experience and Learning Communities, 556-4949

Cincinnati Sophomore Initiative, Center for Exploratory Studies, 556-6541

The Cincinnati Sophomore Initiative is programming supported by the UC Alumni Association Mastercard grant. See the CSI Web site for more details on the sophomore experience. 

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