College Support Programs
At OJC We're Focused on Your Future
The Learning Commons
Funded in part by a U.S. Department of Education Title III, Part F STEM grant, the Otero Junior College Learning Commons is home to Wheeler Library, the Venom Pit Coffee Shop, TRiO Student Support Services, and the Academic Success Center. The state-of-the-art facility features updated technology and equipment to facilitate greater learning and collaboration in the STEM fields as well as all areas of academic study.
Wheeler Library in the Learning Commons
Wheeler Library provides a variety of services including research assistance and technical support. The library offers a large collection of print resources including reference, non-fiction, and fiction books, as well as a wide-range of newspapers, magazines and professional journals and DVDs. Reference titles and several full-text databases are available digitally through the library’s website, which is accessible either in-house or remotely.
The Internet, including the OJC computer network, is available through a wireless connection so that students can use their own devices. Learning Commons staff can assist students with course reserves, interlibrary loan, holds, finding and checking-out resources, database login issues, and equipment.
Desktop computers are available for student use, laptops are available for on-campus use, iPads can be checked out for three days, and graphing calculators can be checked out for an entire semester. Students also have access to video cameras, video editing software, and study rooms.
Library instruction and research support are available to orient students to library services including searching the online catalog, accessing research databases, basic Internet searching techniques, and website evaluation.
The Academic Success Center
The Academic Success Center (ASC) is adjacent to Wheeler Library in the Learning Commons. The ASC provides students with additional areas to study independently and in group settings. Students who visit the Academic Success Center can make appointments with academic tutors or peer coaches throughout the day and into the evening hours.
Students can receive free one-on-one tutoring in the ASC in all math and science courses, along with free tutoring in research and writing.
Group tutoring and interactive experiences that supplement classroom lectures and labs are held daily in the Academic Success Center. Commonly referred to as PLUS Sessions, students can attend these sessions free of charge to gain the additional support and understanding they need or success in their math and science courses. Anatomy and Physiology models, Apple TVs and other assistive learning devices are available for student use.
In addition to individual and group tutoring, our professional tutors and peer coaches manage three study zones per week in the Learning Commons. These zones include: (1) Research, Reading, and Writing; (2) Math; and (3) Science. Collaborative student learning is encouraged within these study zones and tutors and peer coaches are available to assist students as needed.
TRiO Student Support Services
TRiO Student Support Services (SSS) program is a federally-funded TRiO Program under the U.S. Department of Education. This program focuses on students who are first-generation, low-income, and/or students who have a documented disability. The goal of the program is to increase the college retention and graduation rates of its participants and help students make the transition from one level of higher education to the next. All services are provided free of charge to TRiO Student Support Services participants. Services provided by TRiO include:
• Academic Advising
• Career Exploration
• Personal Counseling
• Community Referrals
• Financial aid assistance and resources
• Tutorial services – individual, group, or drop-in tutoring
• Workshops and cultural events – skills, budgeting, and museum tours, etc.
• Transfer assistance to four-year colleges and universities including tours, applications, financial aid and scholarship searches
• Textbook assistance program
The Center is located in Wheeler Hall, Learning Commons/Academic Success Center. For further information call 719-384-6835.
Services for Students with Disabilities
Students with documented disabilities should contact the Coordinator of Disability Services, located in McBride Hall, Room 132, or call 719-384-6931 within the first two weeks of the semester about free services to assist them. Services include: tutoring, note takers, readers/writers for tests, time for in-class reading/writing, in-class aide for reading/writing, accommodation of physical setting in classroom, tape recorded lectures, enlarged print on handouts/tests, sign language and oral interpreting, adaptive equipment, alternative testing, software/hardware accommodations and other specialized academic procedures.
Procedures for Documentation of Disability
Students with a disability are required to contact the Coordinator of Disability Services 719-384-6931, in the first two weeks of the semester if they need assistance. The coordinator will evaluate the documentation of a disability, facilitate reasonable and appropriate accommodations, and monitor academic progress. It is the responsibility of the student to supply adequate documentation of disability and bear the cost of provision of such documentation. When documentation is received, the student and the coordinator determine reasonable and appropriate accommodations and details for permission to conference. Instructors in each of the student’s classes are then notified of necessary accommodations. For more information, call: 719-384-6931.
Students have numerous options to find additional academic support through group and individual tutoring sessions.
Writing Center for English, Reading, Writing
Students enrolled in Developmental Education English courses, as well as all students enrolled in English and writing courses, can access free tutorial services in the Writing Center, located in the Academic Success Center/Learning Commons. The Writing lab is staffed by English faculty and peer tutors who work individually with students as well as in group sessions. Drop-in's are welcome as well as by appointment. For more information call 719-384-6849.
The Math Center is located in McBride Hall, Room 129. The Math Center is open Monday - Thursday from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. and on Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. The College's full-time math faculty are officed in this area as well as two full-time math tutors. Students can drop in or make appointments to work individually or in groups for specific math courses. For more information call 719-384-6862.
Nursing students can access tutoring support through faculty and peer tutoring sessions as well as organized group study sessions. For more information call 719-384-6878.
Students enrolled in many of the science courses at OJC can attend daily and weekly Science PLUS Sessions. PLUS Sessions are supplemental instruction sessions that provide hands-on group tutoring for specific courses. Students have access to hands-on learning resources such as Anatomy and Physiology models, Apple TVs and other assistive learning devices. PLUS Sessions are held in the Academic Success Center Collaboration Room. For more information call 719-384-6860.
Students who are participants in the TRiO Student Support Services program have access to free tutoring either on a drop-in basis, by appointment, or though organized group study sessions. TRiO tutoring is offered in the Academic Success Center. For more information call 719-384-6835.
Staff tutors offer other tutoring support to students in the Student Success Center, usually by appointment. Peer tutors are also available in the Academic Success Center during the day and into the evenings on a drop-in basis. For more information call 719-384-6835.