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Abstract

Can success rates in a gateway course be improved by linking it to a college success course? This article describes the results of a pilot study that linked a first-year biology course that had a high drop-out and failure rate to a college success course that included study skills. The proposal to link courses came from the work of a faculty learning community aimed at sharing strategies for increasing engagement in first year courses. Faculty involved in the link worked closely together. The college success course used biology content to provide hands-on study skills applications for students. The results illustrate that students in the pilot program did significantly better in the biology course as well as in their overall fall GPA than students in the same biology course who were not in the learning community.

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