Freshman Learning Communities

At SNU, we believe that the best learning happens when students, faculty and staff work together in community. We also believe that high school only partially prepares you to succeed in college. That has a lot to do with a new and different set of expectations of college life and work. Students across the US struggle to make that transition. We want you to make a successful transition to college. To help you do that, we have designed an approach called Learning Communities. 

As an incoming SNU freshman, you are expected to enroll in one paired course learning community in your first semester. This means that you will enroll in two linked classes with a group of other freshmen like you and you will see the same classmates 5 days a week all semester. Class sizes are kept small, averaging between 20 and 35 students, to create a familiar atmosphere. By being in the same two classes with the same small group of students, you will find a natural group of friends with which to study. You’ll support one another to become highly effective, successful college students in your first semester, which will set you up to successfully graduate four years from now. 

You will meet your Learning Community professors at the same time you meet your fellow students - during our four day New Student Institute (NSI). The professors will serve as your Faculty Mentors, getting to know you in casual settings (including a visit to their home) before classes even begin! The faculty have chosen to participate in this program because it lays a solid foundation for greater levels of engagement and learning while here at SNU. The professors who teach these Learning Communities have worked together to design a learning experience that will help you connect with them and your peers, introduce you to the skills you need to learn effectively at a college level, and empower you to integrate the knowledge and skills you are learning in both courses to create something significant and meaningful. 

Finally, you’ll get to know a larger group of SNU faculty, staff, and students who believe that their success is measured by your success. During the semester, your Learning Community will have access to several workshops on transitional support led by Student Development Staff, get to meet the Library Director and Library Faculty during a session on Library and Research Literacy, and before the end of the term upper division students will lead a discussion on preparation for enrollment advising. The faculty, staff and students serving the Learning Communities will get to know you personally, help you identify and apply your God-given strengths, and help you develop into a highly effective member of our Christ-centered community of scholars. 

If you have any questions about SNU’s Learning Communities, please contact Dr. Dennis Williams, Dean of Teaching and Learning; Dr. Heather Clemmer, General Education Director, or Mrs. Misty Jaggers, Director of Student Success.