University of Southern California
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Undergraduate Education

USC Learning Communities

College Academic Service Building (CAS) Room 120
(213) 740-2534

Director: Debra Bernstein

USC Learning Communities is a program for all USC College freshmen who have not yet decided on a major program of study. Groups of 15-20 students explore a variety of academic interests with the support of a USC faculty mentor, a staff advisor and a peer mentor from the College of Letters, Arts and Sciences.

Students in the learning communities take two courses in common in the fall semester of their freshman year. The courses are organized around a specific theme, such as "Media and Culture," "Medicine, Science and Technology" or "Law and Society." Students select the learning community which most closely fits their interests from up to 15 different themes. One of the courses is an introductory course to a major or minor, and the other course satisfies a general education requirement. In addition to common classes, students meet throughout the year and participate in field trips and other co-curricular activities designed especially for learning community participants.

Freshmen may apply to the program during a university orientation session or by returning the card attached to the USC Learning Communities brochure that is mailed to all freshmen who have not declared a major.

For more information, email Brandi Nichols at, Debra Bernstein at or call (213) 740-2534.