Residential Learning Community FAQ

How do I decide which Residential Learning Community is best for me?
Review our website to learn all about the RLC program. See if there is a residential learning community offered in your major. If not, look at the communities open to any major. Review the different program components and see which ones sound like the best fit for you. If you need some general information contact us.

Will I be isolated in a Residential Learning Community?
Not at all. Although Residential Learning Community residents are assigned to live near one another, there are only about 20-30 RLC members on a floor with 50-80 residents. Choosing a Residential Learning Community gives you the best of both worlds—the opportunity to live near students in your major or interest area, and the chance to interact with a diverse group of students in your hall.

What are the benefits of living in a Residential Learning Community?
Residential Learning Community students gain an immediate supportive group of students, faculty, and staff. You get connected to a small group of people with common academic or special interests. You have an opportunity to get to know faculty and staff a little better. You can participate in a variety of programs planned especially for your RLC. Although the RLC gives some focus and support to what you're doing in college, it isn't meant to dominate your college life and isolate you from others. It really should complement the diverse activities and people you're going to experience in college.

Is there any extra cost associated with being in a Residential Learning Community?
Not at all. As a university, we are committed to the success of our students. And we know that a program such as the Residential Learning Community program can really make a difference in the life of our students. So we want to make this program affordable for all students choosing to participate.

How much time will being in a Residential Learning Community take?
In most cases, six or seven activities are scheduled each semester – activities like study groups, social events, field trips, getting together for sporting events, etc. Weekly or bi-weekly meetings are held to inform residents of upcoming activities and to plan future events. So it may seem like you're spending extra time with your RLC, but hopefully you would have spent your time studying or hanging out with your friends anyway. The RLCs would like you to actively participate but usually you have options.

Do Residential Learning Communities last the entire first year?
Yes they do. Knowing how critically important it is for our first-year students to successfully transition to the university, participation in an RLC lasts for your entire first year on campus.

Can I live with a friend even if they don’t have the same major or interest in the Residential Learning Community?
Yes you can IF space is available. We will allow you to bring a roommate with you, even if that person isn’t in the major or interested in the Residential Learning Community. However, we also hope that RLC students live with one another so they can benefit from the impact of sharing the same major or area of interest. When signing up for your RLC space, you will have the opportunity to choose a roommate from among the other RLC students interested in your same community. Please note that if you have requested and been accepted into a Residential Learning Community, you will only see potential roommates who also have been accepted into that RLC.

Can I also be in the Honors program?
Yes. You can participate in the honors program and still participate in a Residential Learning Community as well. Some first-year honors students choose to live together in the same Freshman Connections halls. Others enjoy living in other Freshmen Connections halls with RLC students sharing their major or area of interest. If this is the case, you will want to apply for both the Honors program, and fill out a housing application where you will be able to select a Residential Learning Community as well.

What are the academic benefits to being in a Residential Learning Community?
Students in RLCs have generally earned higher first-semester grades, are less likely to be on academic probation, and have persisted longer at the university than non-program participants. They also tend to graduate from the university in less time.

BUT A WORD OF CAUTION: Although RLCs provide the environment, structure and support system to support a first-year student’s transition to the university, it is up to each individual student to work hard in college in order to be successful. No program in and of itself can assist a student without their commitment to succeeding academically while at college.

Not sure you're interested in a Residential Learning Community?
That’s perfectly fine. Not everyone is ready to participate in an RLC. But if you are looking for an additional way to feel connected and supported during your first-year at NAU, then consider joining a Residential Learning Community.