Advancing Intentional Student-Faculty Interaction: Freshman Seminar and Gateway Course Synthesis


The “freshman transition” and the “gateway experience” are critical to the success of all new college students, yet especially so for first-generation and underserved students. By creating a personalized freshman seminar course that is directly paired with a gateway course, this project is designed to increase first year student success and engagement at the Pitt-Bradford campus. The freshman seminar courses are designed to broadly address successful student transition to college, and gateway courses are academically challenging entry-level courses that have historically proven challenging for many students. The project is a pilot study in which students will participate in a freshman seminar section that is paired specifically with a gateway class they are also enrolled in. The instructor of the gateway course will team-teach the freshman seminar section alongside one of the freshman seminar instructors. In their portion of the personalized freshman seminar class, the gateway course instructor will work with the students on activities tailored to success in the gateway course, including purposeful mentoring, development of metacognitive skills, development of effective study and test-taking skills for that discipline, and career exploration.