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Contact Erika Hanson, First-Year Seminar Coordinator, at (910) 962-3166 or email

First-Year Seminar

About FYS

The purpose of the First-Year Seminar (FYS) is to support new students as they integrate into UNCW and into the college experience. This highly interactive classroom fosters a sense of community, with no more than 25 first-year students per class, and offers an environment conducive to academic and personal development.

Through readings, discussions, assignments, and out-of-class activities, students will apply and develop effective academic and personal strategies; hone critical thinking, writing, and oral presentation skills; engage in academic major and career exploration; and become familiar with the expectations of the university as well as campus resources.

As a three-credit required course in the University Studies curriculum, the First-Year Seminar reflects a commitment to ethical and intellectual development and to promoting the growth of well-informed, creative, literate members of society. FYS is taught by UNCW faculty, staff, and administrators who are dedicated to first-year student learning and success.

Results from the 2006 National Survey on First-Year Seminars show that first-year seminar courses attribute to persistence to sophomore year and graduation, improved peer connections, increased use of campus resources and involvement in campus activities, and increased academic abilities and grade-point averages (National Resource for the First-Year Experience and Students in Transition).

Goals of FYS

  • Students will demonstrate an understanding of and participate in the powerful learning experience of higher education at UNCW.
  • Students will demonstrate self-knowledge and appreciate the value of human differences.
  • Students will understand and illustrate information literacy.
  • Students will demonstrate and understand health and wellness dimensions.
  • Students will identify and apply information to prepare the foundation for life-long learning.

Click for more detailed goals and student learning outcomes,

What Students Have to Say About FYS

"I have learned skills that will be useful for the rest of my college career and life. This class made me realize that as long as I work hard and keep my priorities in order, I can achieve success. I am definitely taking more responsibility for my learning."

"It was an excellent opportunity to interact with a group where every member was in a similar situation. This connection helped."

"I will admit I was nervous coming to college. I didn't know what to expect. UNI taught me how to be the best student I can be. Now I never want to spend one day being less than my best."

"UNI 101 taught me valuable information. From study skills and time management techniques, to realizing the importance of attending and preparing for class and learning about campus resources. I have applied these skills to my studying and can see an improvement in my grades."

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