Center for Advising and Academic Support (CAAS)
Doing homework, writing essays, or even catching up with lectures can be overwhelming in college, especially if English is your second language. But don’t worry! St. Olaf has the free academic resources offered by the Center for Advising and Academic Support. CAAS provides writing support, speaking support (for class discussions and presentations), help sessions for specific classes, and even individual tutoring sessions with a qualified student tutor. The office will also help you get the accommodations if you have a disability.
Writing and Speaking for First-Year International Students:
When you arrive at St. Olaf, you will take a short diagnostic writing test which will determine whether you will take a writing class just for international students (WRI 107) or a writing class for both domestic and international first-year students (WRI 111). One option is not better than the other; it just depends on your past writing experience. WRI 107 can be very helpful in building a strong foundation and developing writing skills for other classes and your next four required writing classes at St. Olaf.
There is also English speaking support for students whose English is not their first language. You can sign up for a conversation partner and the student will meet one-on-one with you to help with spoken English through casual conversation.
Learn more about the resources available to you here:
Writing Help Desk
The writing help desk in Rolvaag Library is available for all St. Olaf students who need help on their papers. They could help you from brainstorming ideas to polishing final drafts. Learn more about it from here: https://wp.stolaf.edu/asc/writing-help/
Even for native English speakers, participating in class discussions and giving presentations can be hard. There are tutors available for all St. Olaf students who need help on practicing and gaining confidence in speaking in class. Learn more about it from here: https://wp.stolaf.edu/asc/speaking-center/
Help Sessions for Specific Classes (SI)
Many courses at St. Olaf offer help sessions led by fellow students who have taken the class before. These help sessions are called SI (supplemental instruction). Usually, on the first day of class, the professor will tell you if the course provides SI sessions. SI sessions can be very helpful in understanding the class material. Learn more:
Free one-on-one peer tutoring is available in most courses upon request, referral, and in consultation with faculty. Tutors collaborate with faculty and CAAS to monitor student progress. Some faculty may require a meeting with students before students can request a tutor from CAAS. Learn more about it from here:
Disability and Access (DAC)
If you have a learning disability or another disability that affects you academically, please check out the resources available to you through the Academic Support Center. We care about you and want to make sure you get the support you need!