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What Are Commuter Success Pathways?

San Diego State University offers a variety of Student Success Pathways for incoming first-year students. This is a campus-wide initiative in which multiple offices and colleges work in collaboration.

The goals of the various pathways are that incoming students will:

  • Build relationships with peers, faculty, and staff.
  • Feel a sense of belonging on campus.
  • Become part of a small community of students with common academic or social interests.
  • Receive academic support from one course and apply it more deeply in another.

Students who enroll in a Student Success Pathway in their first semester tend to:

  • Achieve a deeper understanding of course material.
  • Have confidence in their academic work.
  • Have higher GPAs and lower instances of academic probation.
  • Have higher satisfaction with campus life.
Incoming commuter students are placed into one of the Commuter Success Pathways, and in most cases, they have the ability to choose the pathway that fits their needs and interests. 

 

 

Commuter Success Pathways:

 

1. FRESHMAN INTEREST GROUP  (1 UNIT) 

A Freshman Interest Group is a university seminar course taken by a small cohort of incoming first-time freshmen. In many cases, the  seminar is focused on a specific topic  or theme like Leadership, Women’s  & Gender Equity, LGBTQ+ Pride, or Community Service. 

For example:  

» General Studies 100A : Commuter Student Success Pathways (1 unit)

2. COMMUTER SCHOLAR SEMINARS (4 - 5 UNITS)  

A Scholar Seminar includes a General  Education (GE) course (3-4 units) that  usually relates to the student’s major.  A discussion/analysis 1-unit course is  connected to that GE course and is  intended to empower the student to  excel in the course. The discussion course is led by a Graduate Teaching Associate (GTA) who specializes in the subject matter. Students in this pathway take both  courses. 

For example: 

» Psychology 101 (3 units) + Psychology 296 Discussion/ Analysis (1 unit) 

3. COMMUTER LEARNING COMMUNITIES (5-6 UNITS) 

A Learning Community is a small group cohort of  students who attend a set of courses and/or experiences together. Benefits include: establishing a supportive  peer group, course content that helps students’ transition to college life by  accessing peer and campus resources, an enhanced sense of connection to the  campus community, and access to high impact educational practices.  Students enrolling in General Education courses and university seminar as part of a Learning  Community improve their chances of excelling not only in the GE and other connected courses, but throughout  their academic career at SDSU. Some  communities include mentoring. 

For  example:  

» Commuter Scholar Seminar (4-5 units)  + GENS 100B (1 unit) 

» GE Course (3-4 units) + GENS 100B  (1 unit) 

4. INTEGRATED CURRICULUM  (6 UNITS) 

An Integrated Curriculum pathway involves a small cohort of students who enroll in two required General Education (GE) courses together as a linked  community. The instructors for the two courses work together to integrate the content between the two distinct courses. This means that the texts/concepts from  course A are also included in course B,  and often, vice versa. The Integrated  Curriculum pathway offers a supportive community in order to maximize success,  and data shows that students often do  better in both courses. 

For example: 

» Rhetoric & Writing Studies 100 +  Political Science 101 (6 units) 

» Rhetoric & Writing Studies 100 +  ARP 205 Exploring Leadership (6 units) 

5. CULTURAL IDENTITY CENTER LEARNING COMMUNITIES 

The SDSU Cultural Centers offers the following learning communities: APIDA, COMUNIDAD Latinx, DREAMer, Elymash Yuuchaap Indigenous Scholars and Leaders, Henrietta Goodwin Scholars, Young Men of Color Alliance, Pride House, Women and Gender Equity Learning Community.  These cultural centers and the learning communities support student success through a framework that addresses equity, justice, and inclusion.  

 

 

 

*Commuter Life Academic Mentoring (CLAM): Students may be assigned a CLAM mentor as part of their Learning Community, or in some cases, in lieu of a Learning Community. CLAM mentors assist first-year students in identifying campus resources that may help them become more connected to SDSU.