University College

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Office of Academic Success is a means to aid students in achieving educational, career and personal goals through the utilization of a full range of institutional and community resources.

Academic Success provides:

  1. A guided transition from high school or the world of work into University life by developing personal adviser-advisee relationships (using faculty, staff and peer/student mentors); assessing basic skills and knowledge; assessing career interests and related activities; and helping to develop an academic plan based on student skills and interests.
  2. An introduction to a liberal education and its importance in lifelong learning by developing proficiency in basic academic skills necessary for academic success at the University (reading, writing and mathematical skills); developing proficiency in personal skills that support learning (study skills, time management and interpersonal skills); and introducing students to the breadth of human knowledge, including historical consciousness, issues of cultural ethnicity and nationality, global interdependence, and values and ethics in personal, professional and community life.
  3. Opportunities to explore various areas of interest, major areas of study and career options by introducing students to the concepts, strategies and resources associated with career planning; offering on-the-job experiences (co-ops, internships and field experiences); and developing the ability to evaluate career options, to set realistic personal and academic goals, and to measure progress toward the attainment of those goals. Students will develop Career Advantage plans.

Academic Scheduling and Placement Testing Centers

The Academic Scheduling and Placement Testing Centers serve to coordinate placement testing, schedule development for entering students, develop schedules for entering students, preregister students for developmental courses and monitor successful completion of such work. The centers also provide retesting opportunities for students and serve as the areas responsible for all students who have not declared a major, who are on academic probation or who need assistance with basic academic skills. The Academic Scheduling and Placement Testing Centers do not replace faculty advising but help to coordinate and supplement it.

First-Year Seminar

UNI 100 First-Year Seminar (FYS) is designed to help students make a smooth transition into the University environment. It is a 1-credit course required of most first-time students. Topics covered in the course include time management, campus life issues, information literacy, writing/studying skills, math/reading skills, financial aid, academic and career planning, health issues, and individual assistance. Transfer students are not required to complete FYS if they transfer a course equivalent to UNI 100 (FYS) or if they transfer a total of 24 or more credits. Students who take FYS develop a success plan designed to help them persist and graduate in four years. The success plan consists of four components: an academic plan, a personal (extracurricular) plan, a career advantage plan and a financial plan.

Academic Assistance Programs

Academic Warning - Students whose cumulative GPA falls below a 2.00 for one semester will be placed on academic warning. Students on academic warning will be expected to participate in Academic Healthy U and other services offered by the Office of Student Retention and Success.  Students who are on academic warning will meet one-on-one with a trained graduate assistant several times throughout the semester and receive weekly emails with helpful hints and an offer of academic assistance.  This program is designed to give students on academic warning additional support to strengthen academic study skills.

Academic Probation - Students whose cumulative GPA falls below 2.00 for the second consecutive semester are placed on academic probation. Students on academic probation will be expected to participate in the Probationary Assistance (PASS) program and other services offered by the Office of Student Retention and Success.

The PASS program provides the additional structure and support that may be necessary for student academic success. Participation in the PASS program is required of students who are on first academic probation as well as students who have been dismissed for academic reasons and are subsequently readmitted.

The goal of the PASS program is to provide students on probation with the tools needed to obtain good academic standing. PASS offers small group sessions of 8-10 students who meet weekly with a trained graduate assistant. The program is designed to help the student build a foundation for success through relevant information, activities and discussions. The small group sessions allow the leader to tailor the meetings to more closely meet the needs of each group. PASS provides an opportunity for each student to create an academic/personal plan for success based on individual goals. 

Data indicate that students who participate actively in PASS have a greater probability of succeeding academically than those who do not.


The Office of Student Retention and Success is available to students who need information or general assistance, or who encounter difficulties with processes, procedures or personalities on campus. Established means of dealing with such concerns are used (students are informed of the appropriate processes or procedures to follow and are expected to use these). The Office of Student Retention and Success monitors the concern(s) and becomes directly involved only if established means do not resolve the issue(s).

Developmental Courses

At California University, student success is the priority. Ensuring that students are scheduled in classes of sufficient but not excessive challenge is a key to academic success. All new freshmen (students attending a postsecondary institution for the first time) and some transfer students have the opportunity to take placement tests before their first registration at California University to determine their levels of ability in mathematics and writing.

Students who do not achieve predetermined scores on these tests must enroll in appropriate developmental courses. These courses, ENG 100 English Language Skills and DMA 092 Introductory Algebra, are described in the course listings in the University catalog. Because these developmental courses are preparatory to a university academic experience, the credits awarded in them do not count toward the fulfillment of the number of credits for graduation, nor may they be used in fulfillment of General Education requirements. However, the grades achieved in these courses are used in establishing a student's grade-point average, class standing, eligibility for financial aid and eligibility for participation in co-curricular activities. Moreover, students who do well in preparatory courses also do well in college-level classes. Remember, student success is our priority.