UNIV 101/201 Educator

It is generally considered an honor and a recognition to be selected to participate in the UNIV 101/201 program. This is a unique opportunity to connect with students, especially for those whose full-time position does not allow them to interact with students on a daily basis. UNIV 101/201 Educators are able to build relationships and connections with first-year students both inside and outside the classroom.

Educators typically receive $2,000 for teaching an individual section or $1,000 for co-educating the course (subject to availability).

Selection Process

To be eligible to become a UNIV 101/201 Educator, applicants must:

  • Current member of the NIU faculty or staff
  • Completed a master’s degree
  • Prior college teaching experience
  • Attend all First- and Second-Year Experience required educator development training, workshops and conferences)
  • Supervisor’s approval to be a UNIV 101/201 educator;
  • Completed application and required documentation

Fall 2018 Application

Course Information


After successfully completing the course, students should be able to:

  • Apply different strategies to manage effectively the transition to college.
  • Demonstrate an awareness of key resources that support student academic success.
  • Demonstrate competency in foundational skills such as communication and collaborative learning.
  • Demonstrate understanding and respect for the diverse values and perspectives of other cultures.


Each section of UNIV 101/201 must incorporate the following into its requirements: 

  • Blackboard, MyNIU and NIU Student E-mail
  • Success strategies
  • Common Reading selection
  • Educator/student conferences
  • Educator choice

A certain number of class meetings will be open so that Educators may devote time to their areas of interest. This will allow specialized sections of UNIV 101/201 to respond to their target audience or Themed Learning Community requirements. Educator Choice may also be used for activities related to:
Educator’s research interests, community service, career exploration, alumni involvement, etc.

While course content and activities may vary to some degree from section to section, all course activities must reflect the objectives of UNIV 101/201 and be appropriate for a one credit-hour course. For students, a one-credit course signifies two hours of outside-of-class work for every hour they spend in class.

Assisted Learning

Peer Educators

All UNIV 101/201 course sections will be assigned a Peer Educator (PE), a sophomore, junior or senior student, to assist in the course, if available. PEs share on topics from a student’s perspective and incorporate personal stories to enhance the course. 

Specialized Sections

Specialized sections are defined as any UNIV 101/201 section that incorporates material, ideas, or connections beyond the scope of the core UNIV 101/201 guidelines. Specialized section requests may be considered by UNIV 101/201 course coordinator(s) based on program needs. Specialized sections and Educators must adhere to all requirements and guidelines of the UNIV 101/201 course. Extra information, activities, etc. will be in addition to meeting course core requirements.

Themed Learning Community

Sections Typically, a Themed Learning Community (TLC) consists of two or three courses taken by students as a cohort in order to examine a common theme across disciplines like the humanities, natural sciences and social sciences. Based on program needs, course coordinator(s) will make final decisions on whether or not UNIV 101/201 sections will be embedded in TLCs and made available to students. 

Specialized UNIV 101/201 Section

Complete the request form for UNIV specialized sections.

Blackboard Training

View Blackboard Training schedule 

Upcoming Meetings