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Sophomore Success Program- A Residential Model with Graduation in Mind. Cal Poly San Luis Obispo Housing & Residential Life October 2006.

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Sophomore Success Program- A Residential Model with Graduation in Mind

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Sophomore Success Program- A Residential Model with Graduation in Mind

Cal Poly

San Luis Obispo

Housing & Residential Life

October 2006


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Housing & Residential Life Mission Statement : To provide a living learning environment that encourages academic and personal development for a diverse community.

Sophomore Success Program

  • 2003 – opening of new on campus apartment complex which housed sophomores

  • Had explored concept of “ Sophomore Slump” in research


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Monograph Visible Solutions for Invisible Students: Helping Sophomore Succeed 2000 Pattengale and Schriener

“ If sophomores are not successful, institutions are not successful. And the costs are high for both institutions and students “

Pattengale and Schreiner - What is Sophomore Slump and Why Should We Care ?

“ Sophomores seem to place more value on the admissions, financial aid and registration services, residence hall issues, tutoring and career services, being involved, and a feeling of belonging on campus”

Juillerat - Assessing the Expectations and Satisfaction Level of Sophomores: How Are They Unique

“To optimize learning, we can design environment to guide sophomores in ongoing, structured exploration of the world and themselves”.

Schaller – Wandering and Wondering: Traversing the Uneven Terrain of the Second College Year

Sophomore Success Research


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Goal No. 1 : ACADEMIC PLANNING

Provide students with skills and knowledge to meet academic and career goals.

Learning Outcomes: To make this goal operational, students will be able to:

Describe a developed relationship with an academic advisor or career counselor.

Describe a long term academic plan to facilitate the successful timely completion of degree requirements.

Describe three ways their academic focus will support their career plans.

Sophomore Success Program Goals and Learning Outcomes


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Goal No. 2 : COMMUNITY

Provide students with an intentional social support framework, preparing them to become integrated members of the campus and local communities.

Learning Outcomes: To make this goal operational, students will be able to:

Name at least two university staff or faculty members they would go for assistance.

Describe three skills they have developed in order to make transition to living off campus more successful.

Name three aspects of being a respectful member of a residential community.


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  • Goal No. 3: AUTONOMY

  • To engage students in the process of becoming effective self advocates with the ability to affect change in their lives.

  • Learning Outcomes : To make this goal operational, students will be able to:

  • Identify two faculty members they would seek out for references and/or letters of recommendation.

  • Describe advanced or future aspects of their academic degree they look forward to engaging in (i.e. senior project)

  • Communicate their expectations for their educational experience and have the ability to identify resources to fill deficits in meeting those expectations when they arise.


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Key Sophomore Success Program Components

Fall Quarter :

Sophomore Advising Week - Facilitated by college. Academic Advisors, Career Counselors, Student Academic Services Counselors, Knowledge Managers from Library all participate.

MAP “Making Academic Progress” – On line. Students establish academic goals, identify academic resources.

Winter/Spring Quarters :

Faculty Mentor Program – Facilitate faculty and student interaction outside of classroom. Provide faculty with opportunity to involve students in projects and research.

Senior Project Exploration – Interactive programs in which students can gain insights and tips on the senior project requirement. Work to “demystify” the senior project.

Junior/Senior Year Planning – Follow up to Sophomore Advising Week. Students forecast plan for courses in order to make positive progress toward degree.


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Where is Sophomore Success Program Headed ?

  • The current pilot program is slated to expand in 2008 with addition of new housing units on campus, which will house sophomores.

  • Continued discussion and collaboration with campus academic partners to continue to develop student programs which will assist in persistence toward degree.


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For further Information

  • www.sophomoresuccess.calpoly.edu

  • Carole Schaffer

    [email protected]

  • Juliette Duke

    [email protected]


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