Honors College Students Utilize the Academic Success Center
College can be a stressful time for students, and some even feel like they are on their own when navigating their grades and schoolwork. The Academic Success Center (ASC) at Kent State University is a resource for students seeking the tools necessary to reach their academic goals. All Kent State University students, including students of the Honors College, are welcome to take advantage of ASC and its offerings. In fact, over 250 Honors College students visited the ASC in the Fall 2021-Spring 2022 academic year, totaling 2,499 hours of academic assistance.
To graduate from the Honors College, students must complete 24 credit hours of Honors courses and maintain a minimum 3.25 cumulative GPA. Honors students are held to a higher standard, therefore it is no surprise that the courses and content are more difficult to navigate. In the 2021-2022 academic year, Honors College students visited the ASC 2,130 times. According to Dinah Walter, an academic coach and senior Honors College student, “It’s okay to struggle or to need help with certain things. By definition, as Honors students, we take classes that are more difficult if you’re in the honors sections. There is no shame in asking for help or getting that support.” Dinah also noted that recognizing you need help and proactively signing up for sessions that will help you is a sign of being a strong student.
The Academic Success Center offers multiple services, such as tutoring, supplemental instruction (SI), academic coaching, and learning skills videos and workshops. Some services - such as tutoring, SI, and academic coaching - equip students with the skills they need to succeed from the perspective of fellow students. Academic coaching used to be offered in the format of graduate students coaching undergraduate students. However, that changed in the fall semester of 2020 to create a greater emphasis on peer-to-peer relationships.
Academic coaching is a resource of ASC that is not specific to any class. Academic coach Rachel Booth explained, “Everything is in a general sense to help people become independent learners.” Students can sign up to meet with an academic coach for a six-session program to grasp critical learning skills. There are nine skills students can pick from, including time management, test-taking, and other study techniques. From there, coaches will create a plan so that students are confident in their abilities well after finishing the program.
The goal of the ASC is to give students the resources they need to become “independent learners,” as stated on its website. Maddie Hornikel is a senior integrated language arts major who worked as a tutor in the Spring 2022 semester. “The joke [among the ASC staff] was that you want to not be needed anymore,” she quipped. The purpose of attending sessions at ASC is to build on study skills so that by the end, students are prepared to continue using those skills on their own.
For assistance in a specific course, many students utilize the tutoring services at ASC. You can schedule up to two sessions per week per class to review class material, prepare for an exam, and more. “[Tutoring at ASC] is very individual. You can just come and ask questions and get support or we can help you do review problems,” said tutor and SI leader Matthew Troyer. “We bend to the student's needs.” At the beginning of a session, the tutors ask students what they would like to work on regarding the class. This is how the plan of the session gets established. Even if the student and the tutor already had a set plan for the session, the tutors are flexible in reshaping the session so that students get the help they need.
Matthew is also an SI leader for the Academic Success Center. He currently holds a mentor position for SI and plans to lead SI for Elements of Genetics in the Spring 2023 semester. As opposed to tutoring, SI is more structured and group-based. Classes that have historically low grade averages typically have SI leaders. They are fellow students who have already taken the class and passed with a B average or higher. Leaders attend all the lectures alongside the other students and plan activities for study or review sessions outside of class.
The services at the Academic Success Center are available to all Kent State students, including Honors College students. Often, there is a stigma that Honors College students do not need additional academic support because the rigor required to be admitted to the Honors College is a testament to the skills they already possess. However, as Matthew explained, the transition from high school to college can be difficult. Classes are usually taught differently and students may need help adjusting their skills acquired in high school to better suit the college environment. As such, the ASC is available to those students who want to excel in their studies.
The Academic Success Center is located in the Center for Undergraduate Excellence (CUE) room 114. If Honors College students attend six sessions (during the Fall 2022 or Spring 2023 semesters) of any ASC services - whether tutoring, academic coaching, or SI - they will receive an Honors College beanie hat!
For more information about the Academic Success Center, please visit the ASC website.
For more information about the Honors College, please visit the Honors College website.
PHOTO CAPTION 1: Students studying together at a table in the Academic Success Center.
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