Academic Courses

The following courses are designed to help students develop skills to be a successful university student.

ARS 110 Explorations in Creative and Research Activities

Explorations in Creative and Research Activities is a community-building seminar for first-year or transfer students ready to plan independent, mentored research and creative activities with the intention these will become integral to their college education. Assignments will focus on sharing and supporting the unique process of developing a project and connecting with mentors. The major course goal is to launch each student on a path toward a specific, future participation in a conference such as USM's Thinking Matters.

LAC 180 Academic Self Management

This three-credit learning strategy course explores the six major control components that usually contribute to high academic achievement: motivation, methods of learning, use of time, performance factors, and relationships to both physical and social environment. Presentations and readings involving learning research and theory are interconnected to student participation, assessment, and self-monitoring activities. Students will engage in the self-management and prescriptive process to determine what specific academic behaviors will best assist individual academic performance.

Requirements—Students must be registered in at least one other college course in order to provide an application-practice field. Credits achieved by successfully completing this course can be used as elective credit toward the minimum 120 needed to graduate.

LAC 197 Information Power Unleashed

This one-credit course helps students to recognize when information is needed and how to locate, evaluate, and effectively use the needed information. Topics include basic computing skills, web evaluation, locating and using books, articles and other media, critical thinking, plagiarism, citation style, primary and secondary sources, Boolean searching, and basic considerations of the writing process.

Contact instructor Bill Grubb at (207) 780-4672 or at for more course information.

Requirements— Credits achieved by successfully completing this course can be used as elective credit toward the minimum 120 needed to graduate.

HRD 110 Choices, Changes & Careers

This three-credit course is designed to assist students with the career exploration process, and to provide an opportunity to become a more marketable employee. Students will learn to create an intentional path based upon past experiences and new self-insights, applying theories on career and personal development, while also taking a "hands on" approach to learning.  This will include the application of results from the Myers Briggs Type Indicator and the Strong Interest Inventory, the use of online tools and resources, and an action-oriented plan for the acquisition of new skills.     Prerequisites:  Fewer than 45 earned credit hours.

MAT 9 Developmental Mathematics

A review of fundamental topics of arithmetic needed for a study of algebra. This course will cover the following topics: Addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division of fractions; use of decimals and percent; estimation; addition, subtraction, multiplication and division of real numbers; exponents; order of arithmetic operations; distributive property; combining like terms; substitution to evaluate expressions and formulas; grouping symbols; addition and multiplication principle; equations with fractions; formulas; sets; writing and graphing inequalities; solving inequalities and problem solving. Successful completion of an exit exam at a C level or higher is required. Credit earned in MAT 9 does not apply or accumulate toward any degree program at the University of Southern Maine. It does carry "institutional" credit which means the credits count towards financial aid, athletic or residential requirements, but not towards graduation.