On Campus

Syracuse University tutoring services expand programming this semester

Kiran Ramsey | Senior Design Editor

The CLASS program will now be hosted up the mount in Flint Hall along with Bird Library

Syracuse University’s Center for Learning and Student Success this semester is expanding services to a residence hall and will offer group tutoring for more courses.

Flint Hall will host tutoring as an extension of CLASS, which primarily is located on the third floor of Bird Library.

Students were eager to participate in tutoring on Sundays, during evenings and inside residence halls, said Margaret Usdansky, director of CLASS, in an email.

The center decided to also offer tutoring in Flint Hall, Usdansky said, and the program will launch in stages during the next few weeks.

The center’s programming in Bird Library was piloted in January 2017 and this semester is expanding to offer 10 courses, up from the four courses offered last spring.

CLASS offers tutoring in courses that have traditionally proven challenging for students.

This semester, group tutoring will be offered in:

  • Astronomy 101 – Our Corner of the Universe
  • Biology 327 – Cell Biology
  • Chemistry 106 – General Chemistry I
  • Chemistry 275 – Organic Chemistry 1
  • Earth Science 110 – Dynamic Earth
  • Economics 203 – Economic Ideas and Issues
  • Math 221 – Elementary Probability and Statistics I
  • Math 295 – Calculus 1
  • Physics 211 – General Physics 1
  • Psychology 205 – Foundation of Human Behavior

Usdansky said she received input from students and faculty in meetings and focus groups last year to offer university-sponsored tutoring for challenging introductory courses.

The center more than doubled the amount of classes offered in the last academic year.

CLASS is a product of the union of the former Tutoring and Study Center, along with the Academic Integrity Office, Usdanksy said. Therefore, it has the ability to work with several departments and offices on campus to promote student academic success, she added.

Usdanksy said CLASS’s services are changing in that students are being trained to become independent learners. This semester, students will learn research-based study strategies to learn more effectively on their own.

A new training program also has been developed for tutors. This program enables them to teach effective tutoring sessions that will use research-based study strategies. Tutors are handpicked by SU faculty.

“We’ve partnered with faculty to recruit highly talented SU graduate and undergraduate students with strong knowledge of the course material,” Usdansky said.

In addition to tutoring, CLASS offers academic integrity education and case administration. The center partners and collaborates with academic departments and offices across campus to promote academic success.

Usdansky worked with a team that included David Seaman, dean of the university libraries. Members of the library staff helped with new space, signage and furniture.

Currently, Usdanksy said the center wants SU students, parents, faculty and staff to know about CLASS and its services.

This team effort includes the participation of students, she added.

“Tutoring isn’t a magic bullet. To be successful, students need to attend class, participate actively and seek the help they need from faculty and teaching assistants as well as from academic departments and offices, including CLASS,” Usdansky said.

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