Reorienting College 101

Student success  courses, also known as College 101, have the potential to help students adjust to community college, persist and graduate, but need to focus on key skills, according to a new study from the Community College Research Center at Teachers College, Columbia University.

 College 101 courses . . . typically try to impart non-academic college “know-how” by providing information about college and campus services, assistance with academic and career planning, and instruction in study habits and personal skills. These courses are based on the premise that non-academic skills and behaviors are often as germane to college success as academic preparation, and are an increasingly popular intervention as two- and four-year institutions seek to improve graduation rates.

While College 101 courses provided students with important information, students need more opportunities to apply and practice skills, researchers concluded.  The lessons were not re-enforced in students’ academic classes.

Earlier CCRC research has found that College 101 students earn more credits in their first year and are more likely to make it to their second year. However, the benefits fade over time.

College 101 courses should focus on the most important non-academic skills students must master to succeed in college, researchers recommended.