UNC-Chapel Hill believes all admitted students can thrive in college, graduate, and grow into lifelong learners.Learn more about how we define success
What is Thrive@Education?
The Thrive@Education curriculum is a collection of new and long-standing courses for undergraduate students designed to help them be successful at Carolina and beyond. Courses are taught by Education faculty, Student Affairs and campus professionals, as well as talented doctoral students. There is no application process and courses are open to all undergraduate students. Courses include a broad survey course with learning and well-being that connects to UNC resources for ﬁrst year students (EDUC 190), to courses on career development (EDUC 131, 132), as well as upper level undergraduate courses with in-depth content on well-being (EDUC 231) and learning (EDUC 330, 387). We also oﬀer speciﬁcally designed courses to help transfer students (EDUC 301) and others succeed on campus (EDUC 130).
Promote UNC-CH undergraduate student success and well-being
Strengthen, deepen and systematize our engagement with the campus-wide efforts of Thrive@Carolina
EDUC 190: Special Topics in Education - First Year Thriving
2 Credits, Letter Grade, Gen Ed: Pending
The course will analyze the scholarship on academic and personal transitions and potential paths for thriving at a liberal arts institution. We will bridge contemporary research in learning science, as well as emerging adulthood, cultural competence, positive psychology and more. The research is linked to UNC-CH campus resources and high impact strategies students explore and practice. Students will increase self-awareness and self-advocacy to maximize their experiences in the classroom and in the Carolina community.
All EDUC 190 instructors participate in a doctoral course called Teaching Thriving to ensure expertise and high quality teaching.
EDUC 190 Instructor
“Honestly, one of the hardest things for me during my first year of college was how much I missed my mother’s cooking. And then I found a gourmet deli down the street…”
EDUC 190 Instructor
“Going away to college, I was worried that I would not make new friends. That fear went away during orientation. I made new friends who have become lifelong friends.”
THRIVE 101 Instructor
“I knew going in that my undergraduate (and even my Masters) experience could be whatever I wanted it to be and I always tried to remember and stick to my core values and seize the opportunity for new and exciting experiences. A caveat to that and one of the most important things I had to figure out the hard way in my long academic career is to be balanced between work and play.”
Megan Rauch Griffard
EDUC 190 Instructor
As a new college student, I tried many things that I quickly discovered I was both immensely terrible at and ill suited for, including–but not limited to–the rowing team, ROTC, poli sci, and making small talk. Thankfully, once I figured out I was pretty okay sometimes at problem solving my self-made dumpster fires, I realized that this is something I could use to help other people.
EDUC 101 Instructor
“Before classes started, my roommate, suitemates, and I decided to explore campus. While in the middle of campus, it started to POUR down rain! We didn’t have umbrellas or know how to navigate the buses so we had to run all the way back to south campus and were completely soaked by the time we made it back!!”
EDUC 190 Instructor
“My first year of undergraduate school was all about finding balance between enjoying life and being responsible. It was a foray into self-discovery where I had to learn my limits, self-regulate, and hold myself accountable without a parent’s oversight. Spoiler alert: I didn’t always succeed. But those undergraduate years were some of my most formative and I wouldn’t change a thing.”
EDUC 231 Instructor
“When I first started at Roanoke College I had never camped before, but after four years I eventually became the Leader of the Year and oversaw the entire outdoor recreation program. If you’re passionate about something, continue to learn about it!”
EDUC 190 Instructor
“I had Chamber Singers rehearsal every day at 1:00 p.m. for three years. That regular, ongoing community of friends made a real difference, and I cannot imagine my undergraduate years without it.”
EDUC 132 Instructor
“The first week of school I failed at eating in the cafeteria. Every time I went to eat they were closed and I had no idea their hours. I wound up adjusting my schedule not around classes or my job but the food!”
EDUC 131 Instructor
““I was afraid to take chances – apply to be an orientation leader, apply for an internship – for fear of failure and missed some cool opportunities that way. But once I decided to just “go for it”, I realized that I’m capable of a lot and “failing” actually made me more resilient.”
In addition to the core First Year Thriving course, these additional courses offer unique opportunities for more in-depth study of core learning, career, transition, and thriving content.
EDUC 231: Thrive@Carolina and Beyond
3 Credits, Letter Grade, Gen Ed: SS, CI
Learn about the science of thriving and strengths-based strategies for young adult development. The course will bridge contemporary literature on positive psychology (e.g., hope, optimism), developmental assets, resiliency, cultural competence, engagement/connectedness, positive youth development, and more. In particular, learn and work on thriving as a student at UNC-Chapel Hill.
EDUC 330: The Science of Learning
3 Credits, Letter Grade, Gen Ed: SS
In this three credit hour course, students will be introduced to the science of learning literature, which covers educational, cognitive, and social psychology, as well as studies in behavioral neuroscience, the learning sciences and disciplinary education. Students will be expected to understand the conceptual and empirical foundations of the science of learning, and they will also be asked to apply this understanding to case studies, problem sets, and their own education. This course is appropriate for students who want to know how people learn, and how to leverage that understanding to improve their own, and others’ learning.
Transition courses are challenging, credit-bearing courses developed for students during key transitional periods of the undergraduate experience. These courses are offered by the School of Education in partnership with the Office of Undergraduate Retention in the College of Arts and Sciences and Thrive@Carolina.
1 Credit, Letter Grade
This course will provide students with knowledge to succeed at a research university. Students will consider what it means to have a liberal arts education and will learn about motivation, resiliency, and self-advocacy. Students will reflect on their current work toward academic success and their path to graduation.
3 Credits, Letter Grade, Gen Ed: SS, EE-Fieldwork
Course challenges students to think critically about educational issues as they transition to a research university. Through readings, videos and activities, students explore the value of higher education, the development of intelligence, and the role of habit and happiness in college success. Students also conduct and present original qualitative research.
Career courses are offered for all students in a developmental sequence to progress through career exploration and planning. The courses are offered through the School of Education in partnership with University Career Services.
1 Credit, Pass/Fail
EDUC 131, Career Exploration is a one hour Pass/Fail course offered to first and second year undergraduate students. The course is designed to help students choose and plan for their majors and career paths. It is offered through the School of Education and taught by Career Counselors from University Career Services.
1 Credit, Pass/Fail
This course is designed for juniors and seniors who are preparing to embark on their post-Carolina job search. Students will learn how to develop the necessary tools and skills required to execute an effective job search.
Tutoring courses are available to students who receive high grades in the classes they wish to tutor and wish to be trained in effective tutoring strategies prior to working with students. Tutors are supervised by instructors throughout the semester. The courses are offered through the School of Education in partnership with the Learning Center.
3 Credits, Pass/Fail
May be repeated for credit. 6 total credits. 2 total completions.
Peer Tutoring is an APPLES service-learning course that provides undergraduates the opportunity to serve fellow students through tutoring. Tutors must have an overall GPA of 3.0 or higher. Interested students must apply to be a peer tutor to enroll in the course.Click here to apply.
Words from our students:
This was by far one of my favorite classes at Carolina. The instructor is an extremely engaging professor who really cares about his students, and he genuinely wants to see us succeed. I have learned a great deal from this course, primarily due to the excellent examples used by the teaching staff.
My favorite class I've taken at UNC so far. Everyone should take this class!
Great class that helps you intellectually discover yourself.
He is one of the most genuine professors I have ever had. He is passionate about the material he teaches, conveys instructions clearly and motivates students to perform the best they possibly can. Simply outstanding!!
This instructor is one of the best professors I have ever had, he is very personable and wants his students to succeed not only in their classes, but in life.
Student Advisory Board
Larissa BurkeJunior, Anthropology
Emily HillardJunior, Education
Aliyah JordanSenior, Exercise and Sports Science
Taylor KoenenJunior, Undecided
Daniel LigonsJunior, Communications
Bonnie OpdykeJunior, Nutrition
Bekah PoundsJunior, Psychology
Olivia SmithSenior, Business Administration
Stacy SimmonsJunior, Biology
Jacob ThomasSenior, Computer Science
Faculty/Staff Advisory Board
Cheryl BolickAssociate Professor
Robert MartinezAssistant Professor
Jeff GreeneAssociate Dean and Professor
Audrey FultonDirector of Advising and Undergraduate Student Engagement
Gary MillerDirector of University Career Services
Christy ClemonsPeer Tutoring Coordinator, The Learning Center