What is a First-Year Seminar Anyway?

First-year learning communities at Worcester State University are learning-centered, academic seminars on varied topics, paired with an English composition course. A seminar is a discussion-based course in which students and instructors exchange ideas and information and learn from one another. Emphasis is placed on creating community within the classroom. First-year seminars introduce students to college-level learning and facilitate student transition from high school to college, not only through the class itself, but through the X Hour instruction. First-year seminars differ from the traditional, lecture-based introductory course. They offer the opportunity for students to learn from one another, to explore new ideas, to learn about oneself and one’s abilities, and get to know a professor well in a small classroom setting. First-year seminars encourage active, reflective learning and enhance students’ critical thinking, information literacy, and written and oral communication skills.

Fall 2013: MWF 10:30 am in Sullivan 120
This course is a 3-credit* course that fulfills your LASC First Year Seminar requirement

Instructor: Tona Hangen
Assistant Professor of 19th and 20th century US History
Sullivan 327-D
Worcester State University
486 Chandler Street
Worcester MA 01602

e: thangen (at) worcester.edu

Office Hours

I have regular office hours Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays. If none of the reserved times work for you, please contact me for an appointment.


*By University definition:
Federal regulation defines a credit hour as an amount of work represented in intended learning outcomes and verified by evidence of student achievement that is an institutional established equivalence that reasonably approximates not less than –

(1) One hour of classroom or direct faculty instruction and a minimum of two hours of out of class student work each week for approximately fifteen weeks for one semester or trimester hour of credit, or ten to twelve weeks for one quarter hour of credit, or the equivalent amount of work over a different amount of time; or

(2) At least an equivalent amount of work as required in paragraph (1) of this definition for other academic activities as established by the institution including laboratory work, internships, practica, studio work, and other academic work leading to the award of credit hours.