All first-year seminars share a common set of learning objectives that address issues of transition to the university environment. This first-year seminar is offered in a variety of formats, including a freestanding 1 credit course, a similar course linked to a general education requirement with the transition learning objectives embedded in a departmental introductory course, a hybrid online course, and an integrative course linked to two or more discipline-based courses to form a themed learning community. First-year seminars are designed to assist entering students as they form connections with the IUPUI community, including other students, faculty, and advisors in a prospective major. Different first-year seminars are sponsored by the various academic units.
First-Year Seminars and Experiences
UCOL-U 112 Critical Inquiry
This course facilitates the acquisition of collegiate academic skills for first-year students by identifying and applying strategies such as critical thinking, independent learning, reading, writing, and information management in relation to a specific academic discipline. Requirements and formats vary according to the introductory discipline course to which it is linked.
The IUPUI Summer Bridge program is for incoming first-year students and is held in August before fall classes begin. Students are divided into groups of 25 based on their interest in pursuing a particular major or in exploring various major options. Bridge participants establish networks for success with faculty, advisors, student mentors, and librarians; make friends with other students; learn to handle college-level expectations for reading and writing; receive individualized support for math; begin connecting with a school and major; become acquainted with the campus; and gain experience in using instructional technology.
Themed Learning Communities
Themed learning communities (TLCs) involve two or more discipline-based courses paired with an integrative first-year seminar in which entering students enroll. TLCs engage students, faculty, librarians, advisors, and others in a community of learners that explore interdisciplinary connections both in and out of the classroom. Students are encouraged to explore relationships among different academic disciplines and develop a comprehensive perspective on higher education. Through the use of thematically linked curricula, service learning, and co-curricular experiences, TLCs provide enriching learning experiences that foster interdisciplinary understanding. TLC faculty have developed creative strategies to integrate their assignments across disciplines and with co-curricular events.