First Year

Freshmen have a variety of Learning Community (LC) options to support academic success and integration into the life of the university, both inside and outside of the classroom. Some LCs are open to all students, while others are more tailored.

On-Campus Living

In housing, students in Living-Learning Communities (LLC) live together on the same floor and share experiences. Applications are required for the LLCs:

  • Outdoor Adventures LLC is designed for those wanting to explore the great outdoors at their own pace with others who share their interests. There is no academic requirement to live in this community.
  • In the First Year Experience (FYE) LLC, you will be living with other first year students who will share similar interests, take similar classes, and will have access to a variety of resources to help ensure a seamless transition into college life. Students register in 7-unit course blocks, including the First Year Seminar and English composition. A University Experience Associate (UEA) is embedded in each First Year Seminar, and meets with students outside of class in small Dolphin Interest Groups (DIGs) every other week. Limited to 60 students.
  • Student Undergraduate Research Fellows (SURF) LLC students are introduced to interdisciplinary research through six courses across the academic year that share curricular aims and assignments, and fulfill graduation requirements (Introduction to Interdisciplinary Research, First Year Seminar, English composition in fall; Continuing Investigations, American Politics, and English in spring). Limited to 21 students who live together in housing, this Living-Learning Community allows students to work closely with the five full-time faculty who have designed the courses, and peer mentors from multiple disciplines. This LLC is open to students from all majors, and those who are undecided.

Off- Or On-Campus Living

The following First Year Learning Communities do not have living on campus as a co-requisite. Applications and placement tests are required for RISE. Applications are not required for First Year University Experience Learning Communities:

  • RISE (Retaining, Inspiring, Supporting and Engaging) Students in STEM. Following placement tests for Math and Chemistry, incoming freshman majoring in or considering Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics will be placed in cohorts:
    • Math 95 and English 102 in an 8-unit block Fall, followed by a 6-unit block of Math 105 and English 103 in the spring. Limited to 40 students.
    • Chemistry (either CHEM 105 or CHEM 121), Scientific Thinking First Year Seminar, and English composition in 10 and 11-unit course blocks in the fall, followed by Chemistry (either CHEM 121 or CHEM 122), English and Communication in an 11 unit block in the spring. Limited to 2 cohorts of 60 students, for a total of 120.
  • First Year University Experience is a 7-unit block linked learning community consisting of the First Year Seminar and English composition, and is open to all majors and undeclared students, commuters and those living on campus. A University Experience Associate (UEA) is embedded in each First Year Seminar, and meets with students outside of class in small Dolphin Interest Groups (DIGs) every other week. Video on impact of the University Experience Program

Beyond First Year

  • Healthy Lifestyles Living-Learning Community strives to broaden students' views of what it means to "live well" by actively pursuing sustained healthy lifestyles through education, fitness, and community involvement. The Healthy Lifestyles LLC expects that students participating in the community subscribe to a sense of personal responsibility towards maintaining these values, as well as abstaining from the use of alcohol, drugs and tobacco. There is no academic requirement for this living-learning community. Open to sophomores, juniors and seniors in housing. Anacapa A building 3rd floor.
Name of Learning CommunityContact PersonSeparate Application to be in LC?Program Application DeadlineWho can enrollRequired to Live in Housing (share same floor/ experiences)Register in Specific Courses?How will they receive Academic Advisement on courses?
Outdoor Adventures LLCChad FehrYes (indicate in housing application)July 3, 2015FreshmenYesNoN/A
First Year Experience (FYE) LLCChad FehrYes (indicate in housing application)July 3, 2015FreshmenYesYesHousing will remind students about classes
First Year University ExperienceMarie FrancoisNoN/AFreshmenNoYesAdvising Session at Orientation
SURFers (Student Undergraduate Research Fellows) LLCMathhew Cook
Sean Kelly
Yes (complete separate application online)June 30, 2015FreshmenYesYesLLC Program will inform students of what specific classes to take
RISE (STEM)Phil Hampton
Carolina Mendez
Yes (complete separate application online)May 15, 2015 (priority)Freshmen STEM majors or undeclaredNoYesLC Program will inform students of what specific classes to take
Healthy Lifestyles LLCChad FehrYes (indicate in housing application)June 14, 2015Sophomores Juniors SeniorsYes, but no linked coursesNoN/A