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Jason VanOra, Ph.D.

Associate Professor of Psychology

Kingsborough Community College

The Graduate Center, CUNY


Learning Communities, community college, curricular integration, remediation, developmental education, student narratives.


This study explores the impact of a first-semester learning community (LC) program on the experiences of developmental students in community college. Through a series of semi-structured interviews, students shared four central benefits of beginning their college careers in an LC program, including: 1) access to a supportive social and intellectual community, 2) opportunities for interdisciplinary thinking, 3) changes in perceptions of remediation and enhanced self-efficacy, and 4) the occasion to experience a more active and engaging pedagogy. Students also articulated what they experienced as drawbacks of their LC experience, underscoring a perceived lack of opportunity to connect with the larger college community and hyperbonding among peers. I consider the implications of these findings for future research and practice in providing developmental students in community college LC programs with quality learning experiences.