F-LEARN™ is for students entering FAU from high school. F-LEARN™ students may have dual-enrollment courses and also just graduated from high school.
F-LEARN™ is a living-learning community (LLC) that focuses on science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) students’ academic success. By working with on-campus partners, LEARN™ provides a select group of first-year students an inquiry-based/hands-on learning experience through an early research opportunity that is generally reserved for upper-level students.
Students in this program will:
- Experience a small learning community at a large research university. We strive to provide opportunities for our LEARN™ students to build one-on-one relationships with faculty, staff, and other students on campus.
- Receive personalized academic advising, priority registration, and a scholarship.
- Enroll in Introduction to Research courses to produce a research proposal and poster presentation.
- Engage in a 12-week research apprenticeship with a graduate student-faculty mentor team.
- Participate in academic, social, and community service activities through FAU-sponsored events to build and strengthen their network of peers.
- Acquire skills that will make them qualified and competitive to apply to upper-level undergraduate research programs and internships.
Academics are a strong component of the F-LEARN™ program. All accepted students will take two classes together. Part I, Fundamentals of Research and Inquiry, is taken in the fall semester and Part II, Introduction to Undergraduate Research Design, is taken in the spring semester. In Fundamentals of Research and Inquiry, students will learn how to navigate the FAU community, available resources, and the FAU laboratory environment. They will gain the skills necessary this first semester to excel in their academic lives at FAU and become accustom to the research process. In Introduction to Undergraduate Research Design, students will expand their research skills and will develop a research proposal while exploring their specific research interests.
A main component of both courses is the participation in a weekly 3-hour research apprenticeship. Through this experience, students will work with a Graduate Research Mentor in their discipline. The level of involvement in the project may vary depending on the field; however, the experience of actually doing research as a first-semester freshman is rare.
LEARN™ students will have various mentors during their time in the program. Each student will be assigned a Peer Mentor who is an upperclassman involved in research. Through monthly meetings with their Peer Mentor, students will receive assistance in their transition to FAU, first-hand suggestions for time management, and someone to talk to who is excited about research too! Additionally, all students are assigned a F-LEARN™ Residence Assistant (RA).
F-LEARN™students also benefit from graduate student mentorship. Graduate students offer invaluable advice on graduate education, research experience, and possible insight into future careers. Each Graduate Research Mentor will be assigned one or two students to mentor in the lab environment throughout the 12-week apprenticeship. This mentor will teach basic lab procedures and provide socialization to the lab environment. The graduate mentor will be available to share their experience as an undergraduate researcher as well.
Throughout the year, every F-LEARN™ student will benefit from faculty and staff mentoring.
The LEARN™ community component is built on a variety of experiences together. All students in the program will attend a one-day orientation before classes begin to meet both their cohort and the mentors working with them throughout the year. During this orientation, they will participate in team building exercises.
Throughout the semester, students will attend at least 3 academic, 2 social, and 1 community service event pre-scheduled by the program staff. Many of these events are organized on-campus to build the LEARN™ team into the greater FAU community.