The University Learning Center (ULC) houses several different peer tutoring services in one office. For many years, these services were in different locations around campus: The Writing Center was originally housed in the English Department in Morton Hall (and then later in the library), the Math Lab was located in the Math Department in Bear Hall for many years, and Learning Services was a part of General College (now University College) and was in the library. All of these centers provided peer tutoring, but they were not coordinated and students had to travel all over campus to find the academic support they needed.
The University Learning Center is designed to be the singular, central location on campus students come to for peer tutoring academic support. Since the ULC opened in 2005, students have come to one office to receive a variety of academic tutoring, such as collaborating with a writing tutor about a paper, meeting weekly with a learning tutor, or dropping in at the Math Lab to talk with a math tutor. Even the Supplemental Instruction program, which provides large group tutoring for particular classes in a variety of spaces across campus, is based out of the ULC office.
Though centrally located in one place, the ULC still relies on the support of, and partnership with, various areas across campus, including the departments of English, math, psychology, creative writing, biology, chemistry, and foreign languages; the University College, Cameron School of Business, Watson School of Education, and Randall Library; Disability Services and University Testing. These partnerships, and others, ensure that our services remain current and responsive to UNCW academic expectations.
The benefits of being centrally located in one space are high: not only are students able to easily find the support they need, but now these various tutoring services routinely collaborate to further enhance our services. Additionally, the tutor training program has become both more uniform and more rigorous: tutors now engage in a nationally certified training program requiring, among other things, participation in a workshop series, producing a research paper, and reaching a minimum number of tutoring contact hours.
Combining our various peer tutoring services in one location has improved the quality of the academic support UNCW offers students as well as the quality of the pre-professional experience we provide the students who work as peer tutors in the ULC.