Program Overview

The First Year Foundations Program offers programs and services to both entering and continuing students, including placement testing, summer programs, intensives for students repeating a class, outreach and assistance. Take a look below for details on our major programs for students.

Placement Testing

All students entering WPU are evaluated to determine what curriculum is the best place for you to begin your studies in Mathematics, Reading and Writing.

  • For new freshmen we use a combination of SAT's, placement test scores and high school performance/curriculum to make placement decisions.
  • For new transfer students we use a combination of previous coursework, placement and SAT scores to determine any course needs.

Summer Programs

WPU is committed to assisting students in meeting college readiness requirements as soon as possible. This is why we offer a range of free summer options to students who place into developmental coursework. Based on placement testing students are often offered some of the options below to complete their developmental coursework before their first Fall semester with no tuition cost:

  • Online Refresher Programs: available in math and reading to students who miss our placement score cutoff by a few points. These programs are free, online, and provide students an opportunity to improve their skills with direction and qualify to re-test their placement.
  • Extended Workshop Programs: available in math and reading to students who, based on placement scores, need additional instruction to succeed at college level. Workshops are five weeks in the summer, taught by skilled professionals in small groups, and allow students to re-test their placement at the end of the program.
  • Hybrid Saturday Programs: available in math and reading to students who, based on placement scores, need additional instruction to succeed at college level courses - but cannot commit to a 4 day a week program. Workshops are Saturdays with online practice during the week - students get personal assistance on Saturdays along with online practice during the week.
  • Writing Tutorials: available to students who need additional assistance in college-level writing; these tutorials are one-on-one assistance with a skilled professional; following instruction available throughout the summer students have th eopportunity to re-test their placement.
  • Live Online Extended Workshops: because many students live too far away to attend in person workshops, but want to improve their skills, we offer live, interactive math workshops to students who qualify. Just like the in-person workshop students who finish the program are able to re-test their placement.

Outreach, Early Alert and Learning Assistance

The Director of First Year Foundations works with faculty to identify students having difficulty in Foundations courses and to provide assistance.

Students are welcome to meet with the Director to create an academic plan, identify assistance and tutoring options on campus, and get help addressing barriers to success. Email Salwa Zito at  if you are interested.

Students on Early Alert, or those having difficulty will often be contacted by Linda Refsland to plan for improvement. Students are strongly encouraged to take Early Alerts seriously and reach out to advisors and other professionals trying to help.

Registration for Foundations Courses

Current students with Foundations needs must be placed into required courses, and cannot register for the class on their own. The First Year Foundations Office assists students with this process through online scheduling and in-person meetings. Look at How to check my foundations requirements at the left for more details.