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Frequently Asked Questions

Top 20 Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What is a Learning Community?
  2. What will we do in a Learning Community Hour?
  3. Which Learning Community should I join?
  4. What are the benefits of belonging to a Learning Community?
  5. Who can sign up?
  6. Can I sign up for an Learning Community in a college that I’m not in?
  7. Does the Learning Community I sign up for in the first semester carry on in the second semester?
  8. When does LC sign up open?
  9. How do I sign up?
  10. When I try to sign-up for a Learning Community, I get a message saying I’m not eligible and don’t have the requirements to sign-up. What do I do?
  11. Am I guaranteed to get into the Learning Community I choose or am I notified at a later date that I have been selected?
  12. How do I view the schedule for the LC classes I am automatically registered in?
  13. What can I do if my Learning Community schedule won’t load on my LC’s webpage?
  14. How will I know who is in my Learning Community if there are, in many cases, more than 100 people in my classes?
  15. What does “.3” and “.6” mean in the courses (i.e., ENG 110.6)?
  16. Do I have to register in the classes associated with my Learning Community?
  17. Do I have to register in other classes?
  18. What if I need help with my registration in PAWS?
  19. What if I need to drop one of the Learning Community classes I signed up for?
  20. Is there a fee associated with joining a Learning Community?
  21. If I still have questions who do I contact?


Q: What is a Learning Community?

A: A Learning Community (aka LC) is a small group of first-year students who take a common set of 2 or more classes together who meet for an additional one-hour a week as a group in a Learning Community Hour. The Learning Community is comprised of first-year students, professors who teach the courses, peer mentors who guide the LC, and an alumnus, your college and the University Learning Centre who support you and your group.

There are 29 LCs offered this fall (2013) in 5 Colleges: Arts and Science, Agriculture & Bioresources, Kinesiology, Engineering, and St.Thomas More College. In those 29 LCs are 3 Aboriginal Student Achievement Program LCs. Each LC is designed to meet your interests not just your course requirements.  To receive our updates, including information on when the list of 2014 Learning Communities offerings become available, please join the Learning Communities Newsletter (by submitting your email and name to the right of this text), friend U of S Learning Communities on Facebook, and follow @UofS_LCs on Twitter.

E.g. LaFontaine LC (AR01): Biology/Chemistry/English

The LaFontaine LC is composed of Biology 120, Chemistry 112, English 110, and the LC Hour.  The LC is named after Alika LaFontaine, a U of S alumni and a family physician in Alberta.

For more information visit http://www.usask.ca/ulc/lc/about

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Q: What will we do in a Learning Community Hour?

A: Your Learning Community Hour will be facilitated by 2 Peer Mentors (awesome, 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 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 Skills
  • Exam Preparation
  • Academic Advising
  • Multidisciplinary Discussion Panels
  • And other fun activities decided on by your group!

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Q: Which Learning Community should I join?

A: 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:

Visit the UofS Academic Advising website for more information on Academic Advising in your College.

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Q: What are the benefits of belonging to a Learning Community?

A: The benefits of joining a Learning Community are countless.

Join a Learning Community to:

  • Help you adapt to university expectations and campus life
  • 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 (i.e., Alumni Namesake Mentors)
  • 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 

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Q: Who can sign up?

A: Students who are starting their first year of university at the U of S in the Colleges of Arts & Science, Agriculture & Bioresources, Kinesiology and Engineering are eligible to sign up for a Learning Community. Aboriginal Student Achievement Program students can sign up for any Arts & Science LC but there are unique choices specifically designed for Aboriginal students--if you’re interested please email ASAO@arts.usask.ca


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

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Q: Can I sign up for a Learning Community in a college that I'm not in?

A: No, you cannot sign up for an LC in a College that you are not currently in. The exception is St.Thomas More (STM) College - you do not need to be a STM student to join the STM LC.

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Q:Does the Learning Community I sign up for in the first semester carry on in the second semester?

A:  All Learning Communities that take place in the fall have their last LC Hour during the final week of classes in Term 1. That said, some LCs have courses that carry on into Term 2 (e.g. English 110.6. The '.6' designates that the course runs from Sept.-April). In that case, the English 110.6 course would continue into Term 2, but the last LC Hour would still be at the end of Term 1. Some Learning Community participants become quite good friend in the first semester and choose to stay connected during the second semester informally. 

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Q: When does LC sign up open?

A: To receive our updates, including when LC sign up opens for 2014-2015 Learning Communities, please join the Learning Communities Newsletter (by submitting your email and name to the right of this text), friend U of S Learning Communities on Facebook, and follow @UofS_LCs on Twitter.


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Q: How do I sign up?

A: 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.

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Q: When I try to sign-up for a Learning Community, I get a message saying I'm not eligible and don't have the requirements to sign-up. What do I do?

A: 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.

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Q: Am I guaranteed to get into the Learning Community I choose or am I notified at a later date that I have been selected?

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

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Q: How do I view the schedule for the LC classes I am automatically registered in?

A: Your Learning Community schedule can be found on your Learning Community’s webpage, which can be found by visiting 
http://www.usask.ca/ulc/lc/2013FYLCs

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Q: What can I do if my Learning Community schedule won't load on my LC's webpage?

A: Contact the LC Team at lc@usask.ca and ask for them to send you the schedule.

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Q: How will I know who is in my Learning Community if there are, in many cases, more than 100 people in my classes?

A: 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). 

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Q: What does ".3" and ".6" mean in the courses (i.e., ENG 110.6)?

A: 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.  

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Q: Do I have to register in the classes associated with my Learning Community?

A: 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 after you sign up. Your actual registration in PAWS will show up when registration opens for first year students in June, 2014. 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.

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Q: Do I have to register in other classes?

A: 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 6 or 9 credit units in Term 1. 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. 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.

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Q: What if I need help with my registration in PAWS?

A: Student Central offers registration support. They can be reached by phone at 306.966.1212 or on the web at http://www.students.usask.ca/studentcentral/. Access registration tutorials athttp://students.usask.ca/academic/registration/tutorials/.

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Q: What if I need to drop one of the Learning Community classes I signed up for?

A: 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. Withdrawing from courses will follow the same tuition refund and academic penalty dates, as seen on http://students.usask.ca/academic/registration/changes/.

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Q: Is there a fee associated with joining a Learning Community?

A: No, there is no fee associated with joining a Learning Community, but students are financially responsible for any University of Saskatchewan registration activity.

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Q: If I still have questions who do I contact?

A: 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

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