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Welcome to the Academic Learning Services (ALS) Course Proposal Overview!
We appreciate your interest in proposing an ALS course, and we look forward to working with you throughout the process. Please read the information below to consider if the course you are proposing would be a good fit for the ALS department.
The ALS course designator was created in 1995 by the Faculty Senate Curriculum Council. Prior to that time, developmental and transition courses were offered under a UNIV course designator or were housed in the College of Liberal Arts with an LS course designator. The Faculty Senate Curriculum Council recommended that an ALS course designator be created for developmental and transition courses and further recommended that the ALS course designator be administered through Academic Affairs. For a time, the Director of Undergraduate Academic Programs served as Chair of Academic Learning Services. When the Academic Success Center was established, the new Director assumed the title and duties of Chair of ALS and had oversight of course offerings, scheduling, grading, course evaluations, student concerns, and other administrative duties associated with the course designator.
The ALS department adheres to the National Association for Developmental Education philosophy “to help underprepared students prepare, prepared students advance, and advanced students excel.” The philosophy developed by educators such as Hunter Boylan and Martha Cazzaza calls for a holistic view of student development, including academic and personal growth, an emphasis on curricular and co-curricular learning, and a comprehensive network of student support. Best practice calls for challenging students with rigorous content and workload in ALS courses and giving them the support they need to be successful. Additionally, such an approach relies on identifying student strengths and assisting them to maximize their potential for learning.
Mission and Goals
ALS courses offer students support in orientation and transition into the university, career decision-making, study skills, peer education, and developmental reading. ALS courses are offered only at the 100 – 200 level and must have clearly defined learning outcomes. Courses must include academic activities such as reading, writing, speaking, and critical thinking. Courses should also feature active learning and reflection. Course delivery, activities, and workload for ALS should be commensurate with expectations for academic rigor in the disciplines.
ALS courses assist students in transitioning to the University and in acquiring a basic foundation of skills necessary for success in the university environment. ALS courses are not intended to form a significant part of any student’s degree program. In fact, there is a limit of 15 credits of ALS courses that can be applied toward credits required for graduation. ALS courses are offered by units throughout the university.
Want to submit an ALS course proposal?
Email us with an inquiry - let us know your idea and what term you'd like to hold your first class - and we'll send you our course proposal form:
Interested in what it takes to submit a course proposal?
Take a look at our New Course Proposal Guidelines.
Curious about curricular design, syllabus construction, and assessment techniques? Visit the following links for more information.
We've compiled this information from various resources - it's research-based, and not simply what we think looks and sounds good. We're sending you to the pros, here!
Wondering about the timeline from the moment you submit your proposal to the first day of your class?
Have a look below, and thank you for your interest in ALS courses - we're excited to hear from you!