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Academic Placement

We use a placement approach that takes into account students’ learning strengths and needs.

Points of Entry

Students come to Landmark College with varying abilities in reading, writing, math, and information literacy. Through our placement process, we determine college readiness based on previous coursework, writing samples, and achievement scores. We want our students to be successful, and we tailor our incoming entry points to meet the needs of students, to meet collegiate standards, and to be sure that students are placed accurately in their entering curriculum.

There are three points of entry for incoming Landmark College students: Credit, Partial-Credit, and the Language Intensive Curriculum (LIC).

Credit Curriculum

The Credit Curriculum is designed for students entering with college level skills. Both required courses focus on delivering content while providing explicit skills instruction in what is often referred to as “the hidden curriculum.” Students are introduced to study strategies, writing process strategies, self-management techniques, and organization and time management.

Required Core Courses:

Perspectives in Learning (EDU 1011)

This course develops study skills in conjunction with learning about the brain, behavior, and cognition. Students learn concepts related to executive function and the critical role it plays in memory and learning. Recent research has shown that many people diagnosed with language-based learning disabilities, ADHD, or ASD may have challenges in this area. Students will also learn about the legal environment related to learning disabilities to develop their self-advocacy skills.

Composition and Rhetoric (WRT 1011)

This course provides reading, writing, and critical thinking skills development at the credit level in order to prepare students in meeting the demands of college level expectations within the course and across the curriculum.

In addition to the required core, Credit Curriculum students take two credit electives.

Partial-Credit Curriculum

The Partial-Credit Curriculum is for students whose reading and writing skills need further development. Assistive Technology is emphasized as a tool for accessing college instruction and assignments, and a supplemental reading lab is required so that students can develop their active and critical reading skills. Students enrolled in partial credit curriculum may earn 6 or 7 credits in addition to their two non-credit courses. Options for credit are available in Art, Math, World Language, or Physical Education courses. In order to move to the credit curriculum, students must earn a C- or better in their required writing course, and successfully pass their education course in order to be eligible for the credit curriculum. Students are expected to complete their writing and education requirements within two semesters.

Required Core Courses:

Foundations in Learning (EDU 1001)

This is a first-semester credit course designed to introduce students to habits and skills needed for successful transition to college, based on the philosophy of self-determination. The purpose is to orient students to a culture of goal-setting, strategic learning, self-advocacy, and metacognition through a highly interactive, hands-on curriculum. This orientation is accomplished through the study of brain-based research about learning. The course will emphasize the establishment of short and long-term goals for self management and the development of strategies to implement those goals. To achieve this end, students actively participate in resources such as the Center for Academic Support, Educational Technology Services, and Coaching Services. Use of technology will be introduced and will be emphasized for active reading, note taking, test taking, and summary writing. Organization of time, materials, and project planning will be modeled, practiced, and assessed. Readings from a variety of college-level materials will be used to begin development of individual strategy systems to extract essential ideas and implied meanings, and students will work to think critically and will summarize these ideas. Students will learn about the laws that protect individuals with learning disabilities and will develop their own voices to appropriately advocate for themselves in academic settings.

Developmental Writing (WRT 0911)

This course is intended to prepare students for credit-level composition work. This course focuses on independent mastery of writing process strategies and on practicing and integrating patterns of organization in personal and expository essays. Emphasis is also given to sentence expansion and variation and to the elements of style.

Language Intensive Curriculum (LIC)

The Language Intensive Curriculum (LIC) is a non-credit, one- or two-semester intensive program for students with significant needs in reading and writing—students who are reading and writing well below college level. The LIC emphasizes the use of assistive technology such as the required Kurzweil text reader and Dragon dictation software to help students develop skills and abilities that will be required in the credit program. Students take three developmental courses in writing, reading comprehension, and communication, plus a reading decoding class using the Wilson Reading system. Students who enter the Language Intensive Curriculum are required to use the many technology tools that will become part of their repertoire for interacting with credit-level classes in subsequent semesters. In order to move to the partial-credit or credit curriculum, students must demonstrate reading, writing, and technology proficiency within two semesters.

Required Non-Credit Core:

Developing Study Skills & Reading Comprehension (EDU 0111)

This course is designed to help students develop basic study skills and reading comprehension strategies. Students establish a multi-step system and learn to improve reading comprehension through the active reading process. Paraphrasing and summarizing skills are introduced. Students will read and interact with a variety of materials, including short stories, articles, essays, etc. This class will focus on understanding rhetorical structures, developing vocabulary, and using Kurzweil, Inspiration, and other Microsoft office suite features and Inspiration to aid in the active learning process.

Fundamentals of Writing (WRT 0111) 

Students in this course will learn to generate writing on a variety of topics as they are introduced to the concept of writing as a multi-stage process. They will practice writing process strategies for generating and organizing, including freewriting, brainstorming, and using Inspiration software. They will learn and apply knowledge of sentence and paragraph structure and the basic rhetorical patterns of narration, description, and illustration. They will read a selection of short fiction and non-fiction, use reading logs to develop their active reading skills, and write short responses based on these readings. Vocabulary development and technology skills will also be practiced and reinforced in this course.

Language and Communication (COM0111)

The primary focus of this course is to create a language-rich environment in which students derive meaning from language and generate language in an academic setting. By practicing oral language and communication skills, students will learn to be more effective in expressing their own ideas and responding to the ideas of others during classroom discourse. This course is also built on the premise that developing oral language improves reading and writing skills. Narrative and descriptive language are emphasized in readings, discussions, and other forms of communication. Vocabulary development and technology skills will also be practiced.

Wilson Reading (WIL0111)

The Wilson Reading System is a carefully sequenced program that teaches word structure and language to students who need to develop basic reading and writing skills. Landmark College Wilson instructors are certified by the Wilson Reading organization. Students who have deficiencies in phonologic awareness and/or orthographic processing benefit from Wilson’s explicit, systematic, and multi-sensory approach to learning to read and spell.


Eric Moschella
Director of Academic Support

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