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West Chester University

West Chester University
West Chester, PA 19383
610-436-1000



Undergraduate Studies and Student Support Services

Academic Development Program/Act 101 Program

Location: 231 Lawrence Center
Phone: 610-436-3274

The Academic Development Program is a special admissions program for students who do not meet current admission requirements but who show the potential to succeed as students at West Chester University. Students admitted to the program cpmplete a five-week summer session to assist them in developing academic skills in reading, writing, speaking, mathematics, and critical thinking, and to help them transition from high school to college. In addition, the program provides academic support through academic advising, tutoring, mentoring and academic monitoring, and counseling.  Upon successful completion of the summer session, students are admitted to the University for the fall.  The program continues to support students through coursework and with specialized academic support during the first year and beyond.

Learning Assistance and Resource Center (LARC)

Location: 224 Lawrence Center
Phone: 610-436-2535

The Learning Assistance and Resource Center (LARC) strives to provide quality academic support services that help students become independent, active learners who achieve academic success. The LARC offers tutoring services in most general education courses such as mathematics, natural sciences, social sciences, other languages, music, and introductory business. Interested students register on a first-come, first-served basis and are assigned tutors depending on availability. Tutoring sessions are 50 minutes long and are held by appointment only on a continuous basis for the remainder of the semester.

In addition to traditional tutoring, the LARC offers Supplemental Instruction (SI) in several general education and "high-risk" courses; furthermore, Academic Success Workshops (ASW) demonstrate the application of learning strategies and/or affective skills influencing learning, such as time management, test anxiety reduction, assertiveness, note taking skills, short essay writing, finals preparation, and motivation. Registration for the ASW is available at online, and the sessions are offered to student groups upon request. Online tutoring for general education math and science is available through Smarthinking. An access code for free online tutoring hours can be obtained through the LARC. The LARC website includes information on our services, a list of courses we tutor, and links to helpful resources: www.wcupa.edu/ussss/larc/students.aspx.

The LARC provides opportunities for paid practical training for undergraduate and graduate students. The LARC offers a comprehensive training program for new tutors, which includes seminars, workshops, individualized projects, and peer observation. Tutors employed by the LARC acquire the knowledge and experience necessary to meet the requirements for certification by the College Reading and Learning Association. Students interested in tutoring positions can apply online at www.wcupa.edu/ussss/larc/tutors.aspx.

Other Programs Housed in 224 Lawrence: Students concerned with academic challenges should contact the Early Alert Programs (EAP). The EAP connects students with graduate students from the Counselor Education program who review academic concerns, suggest methods to improve academic performance, and provide information, understanding and access to other University services.  Diversity 411 workshops offer WCU classes and student organizations an opportunity to learn key concepts and engage in an open dialogue about diversity.  Brother II Brother provides mentorship and advocacy for underrepresented minority students.  The program seeks to increase the retention and graduation rates and empowers students by teaching leadership skills and providing a greater sense of community.  For more information on these programs contact us at earlyalert@wcupa.edu or (610) 436-2187.

The LARC is open Monday-Thursday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., Friday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., and Sunday from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. You may contact us via e-mail at larc@wcupa.edu.

Office of Services for Students with Disabilities/TRIO Student Support Services

Location: 223 Lawrence Center
Phone: 610-436-2564

The Office of Services for Students with Disabilities (OSSD) offers services for students with physical and learning disabilities. The OSSD is designed to assist students make a successful transition to the University. We take a proactive stance that encourages students to understand their needs and strengths in order to best advocate for themselves.

At West Chester University we recognize that some students with disabilities want minimal assistance while others require the full range of support and services. To facilitate successful transition we recommend a comprehensive assessment of needs through our office. We can also provide advocacy with faculty for classroom accommodations, but we work to provide students with the tools to be independent.

The OSSD is located within the Division of Undergraduate Studies and Student Support Services. Our main purpose is to arrange for accommodations for students and create a level playing field within the classroom. In addition, we provide academic services through a federal TRIO SSS grant-funded program. We coordinate services with other units within the division, such as the Learning Assistance and Resource Center, the Academic Advising Center, and other University offices including the Writing Center and the Office of Residence Life and Housing Services.

Students needing financial support for personal services or interpreters should register with the appropriate agency at least six months in advance of matriculation. It is the student's responsibility to provide services of a personal nature (e.g., attendants).

Services offered through the OSSD may include the following:

  • Special summer orientation
  • Central documentation file
  • Advocacy with faculty
  • Referrals for LD testing
  • Alternative test-taking arrangements
  • Academic coaching
  • Priority registration
  • Note-taking support
  • Study skills tutoring
  • Adaptive technology
  • Interpreters for deaf and hard-of-hearing students
  • Peer support
  • Delta Alpha Pi Honor Society for students with disabilities

See the West Chester University Handbook on Disabilities and OSSD web site for additional information.

Pre-Major Academic Advising Center

Location: 222 Lawrence Center
Phone: 610-436-3505

The Pre-Major Academic Advising Center (PMAA) provides support to undergraduate students prior to admission to an academic major. The assignment to PMAA either reflects the student's own choice or a designation by the University because the student either does not meet all of the preparation and/or academic requirements for a particular major or a student's prospective major has reached its maximum enrollment for the academic year or semester. Pre-major students are encouraged to take prerequisite courses in their intended major and/or courses in a particular major program because of implied interests. Pre-major academic advisers assist students in interpreting University and departmental policies and requirements, as well as with appropriate course selection. They also make referrals and discuss vocational and career interests.

Together, the adviser and the student develop an educational plan of sound strategies for success.

The Pre-Major Advising Center is located in Room 222, Lawrence Center. Contact the center at 610-436-3305 or advising@wcupa.edu, or visit http://www.wcupa.edu/ussss/PMAAC/  for a wealth of information.