Career Week 2014 Takes Place February 9th – 15th

February 6, 2014 by

DePaul’s annual Career Week offers you a series of networking events, workshops and career-building opportunities. Career Week 2014 events aim to provide direction on how to stand out in your job search and career. Events also strive to create meaningful networking opportunities and take place at the Loop and Lincoln Park campuses, as well as via webinar and teleconference.

Some events that do not take place on campus that might be of interest to you, as an online student include:

-Pros & Cons of Flex Work Arrangements: Feb. 10, 10am – 11am, webinar

-Virtual Speed Networking: Feb. 10, 7pm-8:30pm, webinar

-Salary Negotiations: Feb. 13, 10- 11am, webinar

-Ask the Career Advisor: Feb. 14, 10-11am, teleconference

See all events and sign-up at


DePaul’s Online Bachelor Degree Program ranked among the Top 50 in the nation by US News and World Report

January 14, 2014 by

US News and World Report ranked DePaul School for New Learning’s Online Bachelor degree program #48 out of 205 for Best Online Bachelors programs in the nation. DePaul moved up ten places this year ranking in the top 23% vs. 36% last year.

This ranking was based on factors such as student engagement, faculty credentials and training, student services and technology and a peer assessment score. DePaul’s SNL Online program scored high in the areas of faculty credentials and training, student services and technology. For more information, see

Externship: Mindfulness Meditation Retreat at Starved Rock State Park (Spring, 2014)

November 14, 2013 by

Pre-registrations are now being accepted for this course.  This unique hybrid course involves a four-day retreat (Thursday, April 24th through Sunday, April 27th, 2014) at the beautiful Starved Rock Lodge and Conference Center in Utica, IL (1.5 hour drive from Chicago). Starved Rock Lodge sits high atop a wooded bluff overlooking the Illinois River in the magnificent Starved Rock State Park.  Every student will have a private guest room in the lodge. There will be a fee of $715 for the retreat, in addition to the 4 credit hours of tuition for the L-10 and L-11 competencies. All the other pre- and post-retreat learning activities will take place online during the Spring, 2014 quarter.  See the syllabus for more details. The pre-requisites for the course are completion of Foundations of Adult Learning and the L-4 and L-5 competencies. It is necessary to pre-register for the course by contacting the instructor, Michael Skelley, directly at   

Mindfulness meditation practices are simple, relaxing, yet powerful ways of developing your mind so that you can to be more fully and freely engaged in your daily experiences. The approaches to mindfulness meditation that you will learn in this course are related to Buddhist traditions, but also draw from contemporary insights in neuroscience, psychology and philosophy.  No prior experience with meditation is necessary for this course. 

The course will be offered again in Fall, 2014 (Starved Rock retreat on Oct. 2nd – 5th, 2014) and Spring, 2015 (Starved Rock retreat on Apr. 16th – 19th, 2015)

Adult Student Week 2013

October 29, 2013 by

Adult Student Week, brought to you by DePaul Adult Student Affairs kicks off the first week in November. 

For those of you who are able to come to campus, there are activities all week long starting with a Kick off on Monday November 4th.

On Friday November 8th there will be an SNL Meet and Greet on the 11th floor of the DePaul Center featuring SNL Dean Marisa Alicea hosted by the SNL Student Association (SNLSA) and Student Government Association (SGA).  Join the SNLSA and DePaul SGA with refreshments, networking, raffles, and fun.  Enjoy candid conversation with fellow peers, faculty, and staff.  Cap the night off with a Live Streamed Town Hall Meeting in which you can ask questions and meet the people that make our SNLSA community grow. 

For more information and events schedule, please visit:

Meet Liz Coughlin, Program Director for Outreach & The Writing Center

October 8, 2013 by


1.  What is your job title and primary responsibilities at UCWbL?

I am Associate Director of the University Center for Writing-based Learning (UCWbL), and my primary role is Program Director for the Writing Center.  I also direct the UCWbL’s outreach initiatives, and I teach WRD 395, Writing Center Theory and Pedagogy, which our undergraduate tutors take, as well as Technical and Professional writing courses for the Department of Writing, Rhetoric, and Discourse (WRD).  I work very closely with our tutors and writers, of course, but also with faculty and staff across DePaul

2.  What do you like most about your job and working at DePaul?

I like the scholarship which permeates writing and writing center studies, but without a doubt the most rewarding part of the job is my work with our peer writing tutors, with colleagues within and beyond the UCWbL, and especially with the writers we work with, whose interests, talents, and needs challenge and inspire every day.  We work with undergraduate and graduate students, faculty, staff, and alumni from all corners of the University and we refer to our constituents as “writers.”

I’ve had the good fortune of working with great colleagues across the University, particularly at SNL.  We conducted 13, 335 appointments last academic year, and 1 in 10 writers who used the UCWbL were SNL students (graduate and undergrad).  On a historical note, back in 1998, SNL faculty and students were among our first participants when we first began providing feedback for writers online through DePaul’s Annotations Environment.  In those days we linked our online service to selected classes in an arrangement that in some ways resembles our Writing Fellows program today.  We worked with SNL College Writing and creative writing courses, Critical Thinking on the Web, Foundations, LL300 Major Seminar, Research Seminar courses, and at least one online course section — real cutting-edge stuff back then.  SNL participants were especially valued partners, because their feedback really helped us think carefully about building this service.  We have had SNL students and alums on our tutoring staff, and we hope to have more.

3.  Can you tell us more about the services provided at UCWbL?

We work with virtually all types of writing, at any stage in the life of a writing project, including eportfolios, conference presentations, creative, workplace, self-directed, application, as well as academic projects.
You don’t need to be in a writing class, you do not even have to have written a word in order to meet with us – we help writers brainstorm topics, analyze assignment requirements, and develop ideas all the time.  Although it can be difficult to find the time to make an appointment, especially at the very beginning of a project, when we help writers focus their topic and ideas early on, that can save time in the long run. Along the same lines, when we provide feedback for a work in progress, we generally start by focusing on its “global” features such as how it fulfills the assignment, its main ideas, supporting evidence, and the ways that things are explained and connected, and then fine-tune our focus down to the sentence level because the “big” components generally take more time and because that approach saves writers from spending time on sentence elements that their global revisions might end up even deleting.

Another point that I want to include here, although it’s probably obvious, is that although we are familiar with SNL courses, because of the enormous array of projects we see, we cannot be subject-matter experts, but we can and do operate as dedicated, interested general readers.  So much of our feedback begins with the phrase “as a reader” because one of our goals is to help writers to see if the words they’ve employed have conveyed the messages they intended to convey.
Writers may schedule up to two hours of appointments per day, up to three hours of appointments per week.  Their appointments can be one to one or group meetings, in-person, or online.

A service that I wish to single out for SNL is our Writing Groups. As the name indicates, this service is designed to enable a small group of people to work side by side and/or together on their writing projects.  The dynamic is different from one-to-one tutorials or conferences, for it allows writers to give as well as to receive feedback, which research as well as experience has shown can really sharpen the writerly eye of everyone in the group.  Writing groups also provide a forum for writers to talk about their work with more than one reader.  Writing groups can be organized in all sorts of ways, and their members can adjust their agendas according to their needs.  For example, some writers want to use their writing group time primarily to write, so we’ll set up their writing group to allow them to do just that, while also factoring time for them to take a writing break and talk with the group about their work.  We have several ongoing writing groups that people can join, but writers also can request a writing group.  For example, we can facilitate a writing group for a small cluster of SNL students working on their ILPs.

SNL writers and others attend our standing writing groups at Naperville and O’Hare on Saturday mornings, and we hope to resume our writing group at the Oak Forest campus as soon as staffing allows.  Even though they are small in scale, those writing groups are particularly important to us because we are not able to operate a full-service office location at the suburban campuses. Our suburban campus writing groups enable us to work with more writers than a one-to-one tutoring outpost would make possible.  Some of our suburban campus writing group members augment their writing group work with one-to-one written feedback or online real-time appointments.  We offer an online option for Writing group meetings, as well.

Our ongoing writing groups also include groups for creative writers, for screenwriters, and two groups for faculty (some are SNL faculty), which operate online using Google Hangouts.

4.  What types of services do you provide for students who reside outside the Chicago area?  

Writers who cannot get to our physical locations can use Chat with a Tutor for quick questions, Written Feedback, and Online Realtime appointments.  We have information about these services on our website at:

5.  What types of services do you provide for students who live in the Chicago area? Are services provided at the suburban campuses as well?

All online services I described above plus one-to-one and group appointments in our offices in the Loop and LPC, our Writing Groups at Naperville, O’Hare, Loop, and LPC campuses and online, and outposts in the Loop Library and in the new Learning Commons ( in the Richardson Library at LPC.

Meet SNL 2013 Graduate, Ryan Lee

September 18, 2013 by

Welcome to Fall Quarter at SNL Online.  We hope that the quarter is off to a smooth start.  We featured SNL 2013 Graduate Ryan Lee in our Summer Newsletter.  He shared some great tips for students taking online classes with us.  Here is what he had to say:

1.      What interested you about the School for New Learning online at DePaul University that you decided to complete your degree with us?

After completing my Associate’s degree, I was looking for a program that would allow me to continue my education but also would be flexible and match the growing commitments I was experiencing in my career.  The School of New Learning fulfilled all of these requirements for me.

2.      What was your favorite online course, and why?

Critical Thinking, by far, was my favorite course.  It was an opportunity for me to develop strategic thinking.  This was an area that I felt I was lacking, and used the class to try and bolster my inadequacy in this department.   Critical Thinking helped me realize that I already was thinking strategically in most aspects of my life, and that with the tools I learned, strengthened that side of me.

3.      What advice do you have for current students taking online classes?

Make the online class as powerful as an actual classroom experience.   By exploring the discussion forums, and participating in active conversation, you can capture a collaborative setting without even leaving your living room.   For me, the online class experience was most rewarding in that it allowed me to be adaptable in my life.

4.      Looking back as a student, is there anything you would have done differently?

I would have devoted a percentage of time to join a few social groups within the school community.

5.      What tools did you learn that you feel prepared you for life after graduation?

The number one tool was following the tenants of lifelong learning, and deepening a commitment to education past the time when I walked the stage for graduation.   It is important to always be evolving, and I feel that SNL developed, and embedded this tool into my brain, and will only improve my career and well-being.


More about Ryan: He is a 33 year old graduate from the School for New Learning.   His focus area was Business and Finance.  He is the Treasury Manager for Ryan Specialty Group in Chicago, Illinois and lives in Lemont, Illinois.  He has been married for 8 years to his wife Anne, and has two children, Gabrielle and Frederick.  His interests outside of work include landscaping his yard, reading, and listening to music.

Tips to Beat Summer Stress

August 8, 2013 by


By Valerie Worthington, who teaches LL 302 Externship: The Role of Fitness in the Examined Life at SNL Online. 
Summer in Chicago is always a great time to get out and about and to increase our activity levels. There are many simple ways to do this. Consider getting off the El a few stops early or parking a few blocks away and walking the rest of the way to your destination. Biking, paddleboating, even yard work can help us get moving and provide some health benefit. Remember that wellness is a decision–or many small decisions. If you are feeling stressed, counter that feeling in your body by breathing deeply, inventing a positive mantra you can say to yourself, (e.g., “I am calm”), and smiling. Try it: it’s a lot harder to feel stressed when your breathing is deep and even and when you are putting on a happy face.
Each small decision you make in support of your own fitness–to treat yourself lovingly rather than with frustration, to make food choices that sustain you, to make the time you spend with your loved ones meaningful and focused on healthy activities–leads to another small decision, and these can add up to a wonderful life.

Be Part of SNL Student Leadership

June 11, 2013 by

Are you looking for an opportunity to flex your leadership skills?

Want to have a stay in what types of events are held for SNL students?

Do you have an interest in business, project management, marketing, finance, or social causes?

Then YOU should consider being part of the SNL Student Leadership next term!

The SNL Student Association’s Mission is to:

  • Give SNL Students a voice within the college and the University at large
  • Serve as a conduit for internal and external University in formation
  • Provide forums for networking opportunities and other open exchanges
  • Serve as a general resources for students of SNL at DePaul University

If you are interested in applying for a DePaul Student Government seat representing SNL or other positions, or considering an SNLSA officer role in the 2013-14 academic term, please send your inquiry to  for more information, please also visit:


Christa Hinton’s Steps for Success at SNL Online

May 8, 2013 by

Dr. Christa Hinton is currently an Assistant Dean in the Kellstadt Graduate School of Business at DePaul University. Her primary focus is managing a team of talented career professionals in the Kellstadt Career Management Center. Since joining DePaul in 2001, Christa has grown the department to serve the career needs of both MBA and MS students through a wide range of job search and networking programs and online tools. As a prior business owner and DePaul MBA graduate, Christa lends advice and support to the MBA Association, Graduate Women in Business, the Kellstadt International Student Advisory Board and the Kellstadt Student Advisory Board. Recently earning a Doctor of Education (Ed. D.) degree, Christa’s research interests include exploring the relationships between employability and levels of hope as well as how motivation affects career development.
Christa Hinton
Christa teaches Essentials of Training and Integrated Marketing Communications for SNL Online.

3 steps that may be helpful for students to succeed at SNL Online:

1. Be proactive and organized.
2. Set up a daily schedule to check in with the class.
3. Clarify points with the instructor and classmates in the Q&A section of the discussion area.

The first step for success is to be proactive! During Preview Week (the week before class begins), log in to D2L and explore how the class works, review the assignments and organize your assignment due dates in your calendar. Order the book and download the articles for the class. If you have ANY questions about the class during Preview Week, email your instructor for clarification. If you are proactive and organized before the class begins, you will be ready to go on the first day the class goes live.

The second step for success for an online student is to set up a daily routine of logging into D2L and checking in with the class. Set aside about 30-45 minutes per day to log in, read the discussions, contribute thoughtfully to the discussions and read anything that your instructor has posted. When you get into the habit of checking in on a daily basis, you will know what is happening in the class and how to contribute in a way that demonstrates your mastery of the competences.

Lastly, it is important to clarify things that you do not understand/have questions about with the instructor. I recommend doing this in the Q&A section of the discussion area so that others can benefit from your questions/answers and you can learn from your classmate’s process as well. This helps make the class seem more like a group of people headed in the same direction – much like an in-person class. Students can answer their classmates’ questions in the Q&A discussion too, and this contributes to a feeling of camaraderie amongst the class. Feeling like you are part of the class keeps you interested and focused – both essential elements of success.

Need help with Writing?

April 24, 2013 by

If you are an online student and don’t live in the Chicago area, or would like assistance remotely, the following services are available:

Written Feedback: These are the most popular online appointments. A writer simply uploads a draft of a work in progress at and picks a time for a tutor to read and respond to it. During that time block the tutor responds to the piece and then the comments and feedback are sent back via email shortly afterward. This is a great option for busy people who might have a hard time making it into the actual Writing Center or meeting online at a specific time. Minimum 60 minute appointment.

Online Appointments: These are live two-way appointments where you can share a document on a screen with a live tutor during a specified time and communicate by either chat window or webcam. This lets you meet “face-to-face” digitally with a tutor in realtime. Minimum 60 minute appointment.

Chat with a Tutor: Chat with a Tutor is for when you have a quick specific question that can be answered in just a minute or two. You can launch a Chat with a Tutor session directly from the UCWbL’s main page instantaneously by typing “hello”. Super fast response, and no appointment needed.

Multiple appointments: Many students choose to start an recurring series of appointments with the same tutor and work through a series of assignments or even larger pieces of work like term papers, research papers, Advanced Projects or Independent Learning Pursuits. In these cases, the work is spread out over several pre-planned appointments. Generally a tutor can handle 8-10 pages of feedback per hour and any writer can schedule up to 3 hours per week of tutor help.

Head over to to get started!


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