Academic Support Programs

Academic Support programs for freshmen provide:

  • Regular one-on-one progress conferencing with a program advisor focusing on developing academic skills and developing strategies for academic success.  
  • Instruction on how to manage a college course load with a focus on the expectations of college professors, regular communication with professors, and the value of the course syllabus.
  • Demonstration of best practices for studying, note taking, and test-taking.
  • Assistance with self/time management, including how to use semester mapping for assignments and tests and how to create daily/weekly time management plans.
  • Introduction on academic policies and procedures and how they may impact students' decisions, such as class attendance, dropping/adding a course, and earning satisfactory academic progress.
  • Information on various campus resources such as peer tutoring, the Writing Center, Student Health and Wellness, Career Services, Campus Activities, and Student Records and Financial Services.

Programs offered:

The Academic Coaching Program at Niagara provides incoming freshmen with individualized mentoring and support designed to help them achieve their academic goals and succeed in college. Niagara’s Academic Coaches are full-time professionals who meet weekly with students during their first semester to help them:

  • Identify academic strengths and weaknesses;
  • Understand their learning style;
  • Understand and practice effective learning strategies including note taking and textbook reading strategies, study skills specific to course type, and/or test taking strategies;
  • Identify and overcome obstacles that may impact their academic success;
  • Develop practical time management and organization skills;
  • Encourage students to take ownership of their own academic success;
  • Learn how to track their own academic progress and use this information to make decisions about what they can do to improve their academic performance;  
  • Become knowledgeable about university resources, policies, and procedures that they can use to successfully navigate their first semester at Niagara.   

Who can participate? 

Niagara’s Academic Coaches are here to help students tackle academic challenges and reach their full potential.  Some incoming freshmen, based on a careful review of their high school academic record, are selected to participate in Niagara’s Academic Coaching Program to support their success at the university.  Students are notified of their selection during early summer and they will receive a letter from their assigned Academic Coach in mid-August providing information on how to schedule the first meeting.   

However, any incoming student can meet with an Academic Coach.  Students don’t have to wait until they have a problem to seek academic coaching – they can take the initiative by working with an Academic Coach from the start of their college experience!  To sign up for Academic Coaching, you can contact the Academic Success Center at 716-286-8072 or stop in the office in Seton Hall to schedule an appointment.

Student Testimonials:

  • “I like when I can sit down and discuss my classes, to find out my grades.  It makes me aware of the areas I need to focus on and [helps me]  pick a strategy to better myself.”
  • “It helped and made me feel proud that when I got a good grade I could tell someone other than my parents!”
  • “We took a step-by-step approach to my course load.  At the beginning of each week, we would go through the assignments that were due during the week.  Doing this gave me a rough idea of when I was busy during each month and when I had leisure time.”
  • “This helped me become more organized in each of my classes, and without this I probably would have dropped out of the school.”
  • “It helped me understand the transition from high school to college.”
  • “It helped a lot.  It really kept me on track with my schooling and taught me time management.”

The Academic Success Program (ASP) is a one-semester program for freshmen who find themselves in academic difficulty at the end of their first semester. ASP provides opportunities for students to meet with academic coaches to explore issues underlying their academic performance, and to explore a variety of strategies for fulfilling their personal goals and academic potential.  Students are notified by letter and email about their participation in this program right before the spring semester begins. 

Academic Coaching for Student-Athletes is provided for freshmen athletes in their first semester at Niagara, helping to monitor and support their academic transition. Academic coaching is also provided during the spring semester for select at-risk student-athletes with GPAs below 2.5.