Weekly LC Hours aim to (a) engage students in academically enriching discussions and self-directed learning, (b) facilitate community engagement within, between and beyond their Learning Community, and (c) enhance academic and professional skills. Each LC develops a unique character of its own and advances a deeper understanding of people, issues, and ideas.

What is a Learning Community at the U of S?

About LC Hours

When you sign up for a Learning Community (LC), you will meet weekly with your Peer Mentors and other community members to:

  • Learn as a group: Have you ever had the answer on the tip of your tongue but just can’t seem to communicate it? Group learning refines your ability to communicate; increases creativity, innovation, and collaboration; and makes studying for exams much more effective.
  • Build community: Learning Communities evolve organically – from the individual to the whole. This is your chance to establish new norms, shape the environment in which you live, and leave your LC Legacy.
  • Explore your interests: Have you ever had a conversation with someone whose life’s work you admire? Have you ever been surprised by something that piques your interest? Learning Communities encourage you to think about your interests in a new light.
  • Enrich your academic experience: Increase your exposure to new perspectives and challenge yourself to make connections between disparate ideas. LC students have the opportunity to examine complex problems and issues from multiple points of view, thereby sharpening their critical thinking and problem solving skills.

Opportunities for All

  • experience the mutual benefit of mentorship
  • discover a new sense of community
  • share your interests, passions, and/or research with a diverse group of learners and the wider community
  • engage in meaningful interactions and collaborations with students, faculty, alumni, staff, and the wider community
  • develop the skills you need to succeed in your learning and your career

Values & Goals

Values

  • Mentorship: the mutual exchange of maximum understanding
  • Collaboration: reciprocal learning aimed at reaching consensus or achieving a common goal
  • Leadership: inspiring the balance between freedom and responsibility
  • Multidisciplinarity: applying one's discipline in more than one direction & focusing on issues and problems through the lenses of 3-4 different perspectives
  • Humility: to recognize the limits of our knowledge, to continue to ask questions, and to be open to contrary evidence
  • Self-Directed Learning: the motivation and freedom to seek new knowledge that is both personally meaningful, and develops one's sense of global citizenship
  • Critical Thinking: understanding a problem or issue from multiple perspectives, and bearing in mind that knowledge is never gained through any single perspective alone
  • The Social Good: a commitment to a future where short term, local behavior and long term, global values converge

Goals

1. To connect you

  • to other students in your college
  • to successful upper-year students (Peer Mentors)
  • to your professors
  • to alumni
  • to your college/university communities

2. To assist you in making the connections between

  • the different courses you're taking
  • what you're learning and your life

3. To increase your sense of direction

  • as an independent learner
  • towards a chosen academic program
  • towards your career goals

LC Project Highlights

Contact Learning Communities

We recommend that you consider your Learning Community options, then email a First-Year Academic Advisor in your College with specific questions about which LC best fits your academic goals and interests and to schedule your advising session.

Email a First-Year Academic Advisor:

  • College of Agriculture & Bioresources First-Year Advisor - email: aglc@usask.ca tel: 306.966.6646
  • College of Arts & Science First-Year Advising - email: aslc@usask.ca tel: 306.966.8793
  • College of Arts & Science Academic Advisor for Aboriginal Student Achievement Program - email: ASAO@arts.usask.ca tel: 306.966.4754
  • College of Education Programs Office - email: ed_learningcommunities@usask.ca tel: 306.966.7654
  • College of Engineering Advising - email: englc@usask.ca tel: 306.966.5274
  • College of Kinesiology Academic Advisor - email: kinlc@usask.ca tel: 306.966.1101


Contact Learning Communities at Student Learning Services

For general inquiries about AgBio, Eng, and Kin LCs please contact Joel Fonstad, Coordinator, Academic Transition and First-Year Enrichment Programs in Student Learning Services

Frequently Asked Questions

A Learning Community (aka LC) is a small group of first-year students who meet for one-hour a week as a group guided by two successful upper year student Peer Mentors. Learning Communities help you to transition to university by meeting new people, getting to know campus resources, and helping you to grow as a student in the university environment. Being in an LC gives you the special opportunity to meet upper year students, alumni, faculty, and advisors through a variety of informative, fun, interactive, and helpful LC Hours. You'll also have a chance to build skills, engage with ideas, and learn more about yourself through the various activities your LC may do. 

First-Year Learning Communities are course based, meaning students in the LC take a set of common courses with the other students in the LC. These Learning Communities are comprised of first-year students, professors who teach the courses, peer mentors who guide the LC, alumni, your college, and Student Learning Services at the University Library who support you and your fellow students.

Your Learning Community Hour will be facilitated by 2 Peer Mentors (successful senior students) who offer their knowledge, experiences, and guidance to help you develop skills to optimize your potential for success. These meetings are interactive and often thought provoking. You will be making connections between people and ideas, while challenging yourself to be a better student and strive for your program and career goals.

Some of the meetings will include the following:

  • Study strategies and tactics for better learning
  • Exam preparation
  • Academic advising
  • Multidisciplinary discussion panels - an opportunity to hear about a world issue from the perspectives of multiple researchers on campus
  • And other fun activities decided on by your group!
We suggest you pick your Learning Community based on your interests.  No matter which LC you choose, joining an LC is the best choice you can make!

If you want help finding the right LC for you, email a First-Year Academic Advisor in your college:

  • College of Agriculture & Bioresources - email: aglc@usask.ca tel: 306.966.1784
  • College of Kinesiology - email: kinlc@usask.ca tel: 306.966.1101
  • College of Engineering - email: englc@usask.ca tel: 306.966.5274

If you aren't entering one of these colleges, please visit the U of S Academic Advising website for more information on Academic Advising in your College.

The benefits of joining a Learning Community are countless.

Join a Learning Community to:

  • Connect with students, alumni and professors who share common interests and/or goals – your academic social network!
  • Benefit from mentorship and support by successful, senior students (i.e., Peer Mentors) and recent graduates from the U of S
  • Help you adapt to university expectations and campus life
  • Help you select a set of courses that satisfy requirements (including electives!) for your degree
  • Develop the skills to conquer your new academic environment
  • Create meaningful connections between ideas and people, within, between and beyond Learning Communities at the UofS

Students who are starting their first year of university at the U of S in the Colleges of Agriculture & Bioresources, Kinesiology and Engineering* are eligible to sign up for a Learning Community.

Sign up early – space is limited, and spots fill on a first-come, first-serve basis.

*Learning Communities are also available in the Colleges of Arts & Science and Education. Please see their websites for more information.

No, you cannot sign up for an LC in a College that you are not currently in.

All Learning Communities that take place in the Fall have their last LC Hour during the final week of classes in Term 1. Some Learning Community participants become quite good friends in the first semester and choose to stay connected during the second semester informally.

Monday May 9th, 2016 at noon.

You must have a U of S network services ID (NSID) handy to register. If you don't have your NSID, please see your admission letter. If you need help accessing your NSID or password, please contact Student Central at 306.966.1212 or askus@usask.ca.

If you've got your NSID ready, see our sign-up/apply page to see a step by step explanation of how to sign-up.

The first step here will be to contact Admissions (306-966-6718) with your NSID in-hand (e.g. abc123). Let them know that you are a first-year student wanting to sign-up for a Learning Community, but that the system is giving you an error. If your status is good, please call the LC Team at 306-966-8057.

As long as there are spots remaining in your preferred LC, you are guaranteed a spot - all you need to do is sign up!

Our Learning Community schedules can be found on the current Learning Community’s page. You can use these to plan any other courses youmight take in your first term. Once you've been registered in your LC courses by our office, they'll show up in your PAWS account as well.
Contact the LC Team at lc@usask.ca and ask for them to send you the schedule.

You will be able to identify your fellow Learning Community members because you will see them in your Learning Community classes, labs, and tutorials, and (most importantly) during your LC Hour (weekly meeting with your LC peers and 2 Peer Mentors).

These numbers refer to the amount of credit units you will receive once you’ve completed the course. A course with “.3” means it runs for one term only (ie: Sept-Dec). A “.6” means that the course runs for the full academic year, or two terms in length (ie: Sept-April). If your LC includes ENG 110.6 you will automatically be registered in both term one and two.

No. Once you sign up for a Learning Community (LC), you will be registered by staff at the University in the classes associated with the LC you chose. The registration will not occur automatically; however, your space in the three sections is reserved as soon as you sign up and receive your confirmation email. Your actual registration in PAWS will show up when registration opens for first year students in June, 2016. Check your Registration channel in PAWS to see your class schedule – when the registrations have been completed you will see the courses and times there.

Students can register in up to 5 classes (i.e. 15 credit units) per term. To be considered a full time student, you must register in at least 3 courses (i.e. 9 credit units) in a term. The LC courses make up 9 credit units in Term 1 for AgBio and Kin LCs and 16 credit units in term 1 for Engineering LCs. Students who sign up for the LC will be registered in the classes. Once registration opens for first-year students, you will register for the rest of your classes (if any). When making your schedule, ensure that the times of your additional classes don’t overlap with the times of your Learning Community classes, labs, tutorials, and weekly LC Hour.

Student Central offers registration support. They can be reached by phone at 306.966.1212 or thorough their website

After first-year registration begins, if you decide you don’t want to be in 1 or all 3 of the LC courses, you are responsible for making changes to your registration through PAWS. We ask that if you are withdrawing from all LC courses that you also withdraw from the LC Hour. Please contact us if you have any further questions about the etiquette of withdrawing.

Withdrawing from courses will follow the same tuition refund and academic penalty dates, as seen on the registration and making changes website.

No, there is no fee associated with joining a Learning Community, but students are financially responsible for any University of Saskatchewan registration activity, including the tuition assessed for the courses associated with the LC. There is no additional charge for being part of an LC.

If you have any remaining questions about upcoming Learning Communities, please contact:

Joel Fonstad
Coordinator, Academic Transition and First-Year Enrichment Programs
Phone: 306.966.8057 
Email: lc@usask.ca

He'll answer them.