Unlike tutoring programs, SLA targets courses rather than students. SLA workshops are strategically paired with courses that have historically high rates of failure and withdrawal. These include developmental courses, gateway courses, and courses necessary in a sequence. Therefore, SLA is available to all students, from freshmen to seniors, and impacts students at all ability levels.
However, many of the SLA-supported courses are at the freshmen level, as often first-year students are not prepared for the rigors of college-level academics. Incoming freshmen may struggle with time management and study skills in addition to the challenges of the university curriculum. The SLA workshop addresses all of these student needs by enhancing the course material with study skills specific to the content.
Some students may be reluctant to register for courses with SLA when they see the additional workshop time built into their schedule. It is important for students to note that this additional time provides a unique opportunity for students to process material, enhance their skills and collaborate with other students. Furthermore, after the first course assessment (test, quiz, paper, etc.) students with adequate grades (as determined by the professor) are not required to attend the workshops.
In addition, students enrolled in SLA sections are more successful that students in the non-SLA sections. From the program's beginning in 1993, statistics have shown that nearly two-thirds of SLA sections had higher pass rates than non-SLA sections, with an average difference of 10.8%. In terms of grades, this means the difference of one entire letter grade.
Moreover, SLA students report very high rates of satisfaction with SLA.