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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 15, 2008
New 5-Week Program Teaches College Skills -- Fast!
A new program has been created by College of the Canyons to improve the speed at which students, whose assessment test results reveal below college-level skills, can complete courses to improve those skills and more rapidly and put them on the path to succeeding in college and transfer-level courses.
The Personalized Accelerated Learning (PAL) program’s format is based on a five-week model in which students participate in intensive classes in either an English or math track as well as a class that focuses on goal setting, learning styles, time management, and accessing resources that will help them be successful. The program will be offered for the first time this fall on both the Valencia and Canyon Country campuses. Morning, mid-day and evening classes will be available. The fall semester begins Aug. 25.
“We have offered classes like these to help students succeed for several years in our winter and summer sessions,” said Diane Fiero, the vice president of the college responsible for the program. “Research shows that many students who attend our spring and fall semesters like to be able to complete classes at a faster pace than the traditional 16 weeks. This way they can progress through three five-week math or English classes in one semester instead of three separate semesters.
"Five weeks,” stressed Fiero, “is the minimum length of time our faculty members think is reasonable to complete courses of this nature and allow for complete understanding and retention of the material.”
The format of the PAL program includes a couple of very attractive pedagogical advantages. First, as a student successfully completes one five-week class, he or she can move immediately on to the next level in the next five weeks. Secondly, the college has arranged for the same instructor to teach the same group of students as they make their way through the progression of classes. That way, instructors are more familiar with individual student needs and students can benefit from the consistency of instruction that a single instructor provides. Finally, students will progress together -- in a group known as a cohort -- through the classes. This way they get to know their classmates and they can help and support each other when needed.
In addition, students who enroll in the PAL classes will receive a specialized group orientation, dedicated counseling and tutoring opportunities.
Information sessions are being planned for prospective PAL students who would like to know more about this program. Meetings will be held on the Valencia campus at 3:30 p.m. Tuesday, July 22 in Hasley Hall, Room 234, and at 6 p.m. Thursday, July 24 in Hasley Hall, Room 235. Orientations will be held at the Canyon Country campus at 4 and 6 p.m. Wednesday, July 23 in Room 304 .
To become a PAL student and learn more about the program and orientation sessions, contact the PAL program office at (661) 362-3600. Once you are a PAL student you may enroll www.canyons.edu.