SMU students often find that they need focused attention on one or more specific academic skills—and the A-LEC is here to provide help in the form of workshops on a wide variety of college-level study techniques. In one-hour sessions, students receive instruction in specific concepts and discover strategies for applying these principles to their own work. Whether you’re just entering the university or confronting the challenges of an advanced curriculum, you can benefit from sessions on Time Management, Test Preparation, Note Taking, Anxiety Management, and more. When you claim the skills to make your academic experience more efficient and effective, you improve your entire university experience.
As a SMU student, you can work with one of the A-LEC’s Learning Specialists to develop a personal system for managing time, tests, and texts. You can learn to employ and benefit from organizational tools such as the “Semester at a Glance” planner, the “Time Awareness” grid, the “Anticipating and Planning for Courses” outline, and the “Finals Preparation” battle plan. You can also just come in to talk with people who care about you and how you’re doing. To schedule an appointment, click here.
DASS is the primary contact for all SMU students with disabilities. This office assists students with disabilities to effectively utilize resources they may need and helps them work with professors and staff in obtaining appropriate and reasonable accommodations. DASS is dedicated to providing an equal opportunity to participate in the University's curriculum, programs, and activities. Students with disabilities can also pursue services such as classroom accommodations and/or academic coaching (for LD/ADHD) through Disability Accommodations & Success Strategies
, housed within the A-LEC.
Student Success and Retention (SSR)
The Office of Student Success and Retention (SSR) is dedicated to helping undergraduates achieve success. Our office uses a multifaceted approach to engage with students in one-on-one meetings, strategic check-ins, and collaborations with offices across campus. SSR staff provides assistance connecting students to campus resources and guidance to those navigating unforeseen barriers, all while helping troubleshoot ways to improve the student experience. Our goal is to support all of our students from their first day through graduation, ensuring academic and personal success while on the Hilltop.
HDEV 1210- Academic Success and Personal Development
is a two-credit, graded course designed to help students improve reading efficiency, executive functioning, and lifelong learning skills. Students explore strategies for organization, time management, note taking, and study-reading, as well as concentration, test preparation, and even management of test anxiety. With individual guidance from your instructors, you can improve your reading comprehension and develop a personalized system of strategic study techniques. HDEV 1211- Success Strategies
is a two-credit, graded course is designed to help students achieve greater success in their academic, professional, and personal lives through ongoing self-assessment and journal writing. Students earn the Oral Communication proficiency in the Common Curriculum in both classes.
Academic Center for Excellence (ACE)
Recognizing that everyone comes to college with different educational experiences, the Academic Center for Excellence (ACE) sponsor programs focused on those who identify as first-generation college students, may need assistance in adjusting to an urban city, or seek assistance in fully utilizing campus resources, be they academic, financial or social. ACE is also home to the Rotunda Scholars program, which provides an intensive one-year system of support for students selected based upon their admissions applications.