PBA’s learning communities provide a perfect way for you to connect with other students who have similar academic interests. They also further the connection between you and your professors — and allow you to explore your proposed major much earlier in your PBA experience. Learning communities are curricular approaches that intentionally link two or more courses, usually around a particular interdisciplinary theme. You will enroll in a learning community along with a group of other students, called a “cohort.” This experience:
These groups are required for students who have not yet chosen a major. Specialized sections focus on career exploration and decision making.
The biology major learning community is designed for entering freshmen who wish to work in the biological sciences. In the first semester, students will be exposed to some of the basic concepts fundamental to an understanding of the natural sciences by completing Biology I, a mathematics course which will help enhance quantitative skills, while the First Year Experience course will help with the transition into college life. Our goal is to provide a solid background upon which to achieve success in upper-division classes, graduate programs, and as professional scientists.
Frederick M. Supper Honors Program
The Frederick M. Supper Honors Program exists to establish a community of scholars. This community, consisting of faculty and students, encourages, challenges, and supports one another in the endeavor to seek wisdom. Honors students share a genuine passion for intellectual contemplation and discussion, and members of this community provide leadership for the entire student body. The primary goal of the Honors Program is to encourage students to develop a thoughtful and insightful Christian worldview. The study of a variety of ideas and concepts provides a coherent frame of reference for all thought and action. Recognizing that one’s worldview provides the basis for values and decisions, an honors education is intended to produce servant-leaders who glorify God in thought, word, and deed. In the first semester students who have been invited to and accepted by the honors program will take The World of Polis and Covenant. Other classes include Rhetorical Eloquence and the First Year Experience, and Writing About Literature.
Lower-Division Nursing Majors
The lower-division nursing learning community is designed for entering freshmen who are thinking about becoming nurses. The foundation of nursing education is basic sciences. Principles of Chemistry provides a foundation for understanding physiological processes and medications. Biology I provides the foundation in life sciences required for later studies in Human Anatomy and Physiology. Together, these courses prepare students to take Microbiology and Nutrition. The First Year Experience class explores issues in professional nursing and helps students to see themselves as nursing students.
Medicinal Biological Chemistry and Pre-Pharmacy
This learning community is designed for entering freshmen who wish to enter pharmacy school after completing required undergraduate preparatory courses, or who enter as majors in Medicinal Biological Chemistry. In the first semester, the schedule will include Biology I, and General Chemistry I. A mathematics course will help enhance quantitative skills, while the First Year Experience class will help with the transition into college life. Our goal is to provide a solid background upon which to achieve success both in graduate pharmacy programs and as professional pharmacists.
This learning community is planned for entering freshmen with a declared major in psychology. General Psychology and the First Year Experience are the two classes in this community.
Rinker School of Business Majors
Entering freshmen who are declared business majors will be enrolled in: Introduction to Business and the First Year Experience course.
School of Ministry Majors
This learning community is for freshmen entering a School of Ministry degree program. This community will challenge students to grow in the knowledge, skills, and character needed in various ministry settings. Courses in the community include Foundations of Christian Ministry and the First Year Experience. This experience will enrich and encourage students to become emerging leaders in ministry.
Teaching Majors (elementary education, secondary English or math, K-12 art or P.E.)
This learning community is planned for entering freshmen students with a declared major in one of the teaching fields: elementary education, secondary English or math, K-12 art or P.E. The First Year Experience and Intro to Teaching are the two courses in this community.
Discover your calling through exploration.
Not everyone dreams of becoming a pediatric nurse, or elementary art teacher, or college philosophy professor. Some have to try a number of majors before finding the one that fits. Still, others have so many interests it seems that they will never be able to decide. Once upon a time, these thoughts and feelings made choosing a major an overwhelming task. But not anymore! Exploratory Learning Communities at PBA allow students to discover their major by fostering exploration within the support of a community-building cohort asking similar questions and seeking the same answers. Through standardized assessments, guided curriculum, and experiential learning, students explore a host of opportunities based on their interests. Exploratory Learning Communities bring students one step closer to discovering their calling.