Faculty Resources

Teaching in the First-Year Experience

Teaching in one or more of the first-year experience programs is a great way to connect with freshman students early in their time at IUPUI. The first-year experience program offices are here to support you with professional development opportunities, funding and logistical support for out-of-class activities, and an energetic community of faculty and staff instructors who enjoy working with freshmen during such a powerful and transformative time of their undergraduate careers.

Students jump-start their first year of college during Summer Bridge and begin to feel at home at IUPUI.

Summer Bridge at IUPUI

Summer Bridge is an intensive eight-day program held during the two weeks prior to the start of fall semester. Summer Bridge is taught by an instructional team made up of a lead instructor, advisor, and peer mentor. During Summer Bridge, students establish strong support networks and get connected to IUPUI and the Indianapolis community while learning about college-level expectations for reading, writing, and math. Students also begin making connections to their schools and majors.


Students build a strong network of faculty and make lifelong friendships in learning communities.  

Themed Learning Communities

  • FYS + two general education or discipline-based courses.
  • All faculty responsible for planning and implementation.

Gateway Learning Communities

  • FYS + one or more gateway course(s).
  • FYS instructor primarily responsible for planning and implementation.

Living Learning Communities

  • FYS + common residential location.
  • FYS instructor and RA responsible for planning and implementation.

Learning Communities Planning Resources

Access the Box folders below for planning resources.

First-year seminar students explore academic, career, and co-curricular opportunities and gain skills for the college journey.

First-Year Seminar at IUPUI

Entering students at IUPUI are required to enroll in a first-year seminar (FYS) to facilitate their successful transition to college. The FYS is taught by an instructional team made up of a lead instructor, advisor, and peer mentor. In addition to introducing key information and skills needed to succeed at IUPUI, freshmen establish a network of support as they explore the academic culture of the campus.


Need funds for a learning activity?

A strength and hallmark of the first-year experience is that faculty and the instructional teams engage students in learning both in and out of the classroom. Funding and logistical support is available!

  • Request funds as late as two weeks prior to the proposed activity.
  • Support in- or out-of-class experiential activities.
  • Get logistical support.

NOTE: Activity funds are not for the purchase of classroom food or refreshments, but to engage students in learning experiences connected to your learning outcomes. Funding for classroom celebrations from the University College Student Council (UCSC) can be found here.


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