The Learning Commons is a group of academic programs that provide support to members of the Quinnipiac community. On the Mount Carmel Campus, the Learning Commons is located in the north wing of the Arnold Bernhard Library. Please call reception with questions: 203-582-8628.
On the North Haven Campus, the Learning Commons is located on the second floor of the School of Law Center. Please call reception with questions: 203-582-7851. The Learning Commons offers the following support services:
Peer Academic Support
At Quinnipiac, the work a student does with their professor is complemented by a strong peer support system.
The Peer Catalyst (PC) Program, certified by the College Reading and Learning Association, supports mostly first-year students. Peer Catalysts serve both as facilitators of student learning and as observers of student behaviors and attitudes. These functions are complementary and allow PCs to be valuable resources to both students and faculty. Peer Catalysts, like their chemical namesakes, help students transition from one state to another, from being a high school student to being a QU student. PCs work alongside students and faculty members to support students’ development of lifelong learning skills, achievement in FYS and other courses, and utilization of opportunities on campus. Their work consists of taking part in class meetings and meeting with students out of class.
The Peer Fellow Program, developed from the Supplemental Instruction model by a certified coordinator, provides weekly study groups for various challenging gateway classes for majors. Trained in group dynamics and active learning, Peer Fellows attend each class meeting, develop a weekly agenda with the professor, and meet with interested students to work on topics and challenges so that students can increase their chance of academic success. Peer Fellow study session schedules are posted on the Learning Commons web page and also are available at our reception desk.
The Peer Tutoring Program, certified by the College Reading and Learning Association, provides individual tutoring for the great majority of 100-level courses and many 200- and 300-level courses, and supports many of the graduate degree programs. Students meet with peer tutors on an appointment basis to address material in a specific course. Tutors also can help students improve study skills, time and task management and academic goal-setting.
The Study Table Program serves students enrolled in various foundational courses, including mathematics, chemistry and physics. A study table is a venue of support where students can drop in with questions they may have on homework or an upcoming test. Study table mentors can support both individuals and groups. Students visiting a study table should bring prepared questions on specific topics so that there is a focus for the visit. Study tables are also useful for guided group support when students have similar questions in the same class. Study table schedules are posted on the Learning Commons web page and also are available at our reception desk.
Support for Students with Disabilities
The Office of Student Accessibility (OSA), located in the Learning Commons on both campuses, provides students with disabilities equal access to all university activities, programs and services. The office is led by a director and supported by an assistant director as well as accessibility coordinators. Working collaboratively with all university departments to engage and support the intellectual and social development of students with disabilities, the Office of Student Accessibility employs polices that promote equal access for academic excellence and the development of self-advocacy skills. Reasonable accommodations are provided based on submission of appropriate documentation, which is reviewed by the OSA staff in compliance with university policy, section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, and the Americans with Disabilities Act as amended in 2008 (ADAAA). Questions and requests can be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org or 203-582-7600. Further information, including our Accommodation Request Form, can be found on our website.
Academic Development and Outreach
Students can work with one of our professional staff members to address their academic goals and to discover their strengths. Working closely with students’ professors and other support staff, Quinnipiac’s academic specialists and academic coaches provide students with opportunities to discover and leverage their strengths. Students can develop an action plan, work on problem solving, discuss new learning strategies, and many other topics necessary to students embracing academic challenge. Our professional staff also work with students who have been referred to our services by their faculty through Quinnipiac’s early alert system. This program helps direct individual students to appropriate academic support during the semester and facilitates dialogue among those working to support the student. Academic specialists and academic coaches also work with faculty to bring learning skills into the classroom.
Our academic coaches work specifically with first-year students, starting at orientation and carrying through their entire first year. A consistent point of contact for first-year students, academic coaches connect individually with first-year students over the summer to welcome them and to address any questions that may have arisen after their orientation. They provide developmental advising, addressing topics such as self-regulatory behaviors, appropriate autonomy, future focus, and the nature of self-efficacy, one’s perceptions of one’s abilities and values. Academic coaches are very aware of the transitional challenges faced by new members of our intellectual community and work to engage students in meeting those challenges successfully.
- connect individually with first-year students early, during orientation and throughout the entire first year
- help new students address Quinnipiac’s academic expectations.
- engage in developmental advising
- discuss, model and encourage evidence-based learning strategies
- address transitional challenges faced by new members of our intellectual community
The academic specialists offer a similar set of resources as academic coaches, but their audiences are students beyond their first year, faculty members and programs. Academic specialists, by virtue of the breadth of their work, help students continue to develop the skills and mindsets introduced to them by our academic coaches. The specialists also work with faculty and programs, collaborating on student support initiatives. Academic specialists are full-time, professional staff members that generally work during business hours.
- help students continue to develop the skills and affects introduced to them by our academic coaches
- re-contextualize the evidence-based learning strategies and developmental work begun in the first year
- help students adjust to and address the increasing demands of cognition and affect, often through metacognition
- share data collected through Learning Commons support activities is shared with faculty and programs, identifying opportunities for support and development