Welcome to Norwich! My name is Ted Ingham and I am the Director of the Academic Achievement Center [“AAC”]. I am writing to describe the role that the AAC can play in helping you achieve your academic goals at Norwich.
The AAC is the University’s primary learning support and academic achievement office, staffed by experienced professional Tutors, peer Tutors, and CAM’s [“Corps/Civilian Academic Mentors”] who can help you meet the challenges and achieve the distinction of a Norwich education.
One way to think of the AAC’s role is like an “Academic Coaching or Fitness Center” which helps students in ways that are similar to how a good athletic program develops student-athletes’ skills and performance. A sports team is led by a head coach, and in college that role is played in the classroom by your professors. Professors determine how the class will function, establish the performance environments for measuring student learning, and provide the learning tools that students need to master course materials. However, unlike coaches or high school teachers, professors will often not provide structured approaches to study, practice, and preparation for performance environments like tests, papers, or projects. They will assume that students are prepared to learn in a college environment that’s very different from high school.
This is where the AAC “Academic Fitness Center” comes in. An athletic program has conditioning coaches who help athletes develop fitness regimes as well as instruction on how to use exercise machines effectively. The AAC’s professional Tutors work like conditioning coaches to help students create study regimes that help them manage their time as well as provide instruction on essential study skills which apply to all their classes: active reading strategies, note-taking, critical thinking, and project management. This support is especially important for freshmen transitioning from high school to college.
An athletic program will also have position coaches who help athletes master the specific skills they need to perform in their positions. The AAC has professional tutors who provide 1-on-1 content area tutoring in specific subjects like Math, Criminal Justice, or History to help students master courses required for their majors.
Athletic programs have team captains who provide peer-to-peer information on how to be successful on their team. The AAC employs peer tutors in specific courses to help other students be successful in foreign languages, lab sciences, computer science, engineering, and nursing. In addition, all freshmen work with a CAM during their fall semester who helps them manage the new demands of their lifestyle and major.
These services are available to all students, included in tuition, and available by appointment. Therefore, you come to Norwich with an “AAC Membership,” and it is up to you to use the resources you’ve already paid for like with a gym. Our most successful students use these resources actively and we encourage you to do the same.
Please contact us this summer with any questions or concerns you may have about academic achievement at Norwich: firstname.lastname@example.org, 802-485-2130, and http://www.norwich.edu/aac. We look forward to working with you this fall and the years ahead!