Vital components of the Student Academic Success Programs team are located in the Altshuler Learning Enhancement Center (A-LEC). Various staff are devoted to helping students become more interdependent, self-confident and efficient learners. Their mission is to help students respond effectively to specific academic challenges, to articulate and attain their own educational goals, and to succeed at any level of the undergraduate curriculum. Each year, about one third of SMU’s undergraduate students participate in A-LEC programs, courses and services, including more than half of first and second year students. All A-LEC services are available to undergraduate students at no cost. Some services are available on a drop-in basis and others are available by appointment. Students may be referred to the A-LEC by their advisers, faculty or a resident assistant, but most students choose to come on their own. More information is available online at www.smu.edu/sasp.
Academic Counseling. Full-time staff members are available to work individually with students on study strategies. Some specialize in working with students with learning differences or students on academic probation.
Tutoring Services. The A-LEC offers subject-specific tutoring in most first- and second-year courses. Tutorials are offered in individual, small-group and review session formats. The tutoring schedule changes regularly and updates can be found on the A-LEC website.
Writing Center. English department faculty members assist undergraduate students at any stage of the writing process, from planning a draft to learning from previously graded papers. Faculty assist with all undergraduate writing assignments, from DISC through applications to graduate school. There are faculty who work specifically with students where English is not their first language.
Workshops. The A-LEC offers about 40 study strategy workshops each semester. Among the topics covered are note-taking, time management, test-taking strategies, textbook study reading, motivation and stress management.
HDEV 1110 - Reading and Learning Strategies Each academic year, hundreds of SMU students take HDEV 1110 to develop their advanced reading and learning skills. Every fall, some sections are reserved for prehealth students, transfer students and students with documented learning differences. Students can register for HDEV 1110 at the same time they register for their other courses.
HDEV 1211 - Success Strategies This course helps students develop strategies for creating success in their academic, professional and personal lives. Students engage in ongoing self-assessment and journal writing, learn study skills, and explore campus resources. The course is designed for students on academic probation and for those who are dissatisfied with their grades. Students can register for HDEV 1211 at the same time they register for their other courses.
Disability Accommodations and Success Strategies. DASS offers any qualifying SMU student with a disability comprehensive support services, including classroom accommodations. DASS assists with physical accessibility issues, referrals, and housing/dining accommodations for many conditions such as physical, visual or hearing disabilities and medical or psychiatric disorders. For undergraduate students with a learning disability and/or attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, academic coaching with DASS learning specialists is available in the areas of transitioning, learning strategies, educational planning and self-advocacy. All services are at no cost to the student. More information on the accommodations process and DASS resources is available online at www.smu.edu/sasp/dass.
Student Persistence and Achievement (SPA). The newest academic support area is located in the Academic Center for Excellence (ACE). In partnership with Student Affairs, the staff in ACE recognize that everyone comes to college with different educational experiences. Programs and academic counselors in ACE focus on those who identify as first-generation college students, may need assistance in adjusting to an urban city, or seek assistance in fully utilizing campus resources, be they academic, financial, or social. SPA plans and implements intentional programing and provides mentorship to students to support their academic pursuits. The staff partners with many campus departments to assist new students in their academic pursuits.
SMU Libraries are one of the greatest assets of the University, and comprise the largest private research library system in Texas, ranking third in the state with over four million volumes. Support for research and teaching for SMU students, faculty and staff is the primary goal of all libraries at SMU. The University’s library system is comprised of six libraries on the main campus and one library in Taos, NM.
- Fondren Library
- Hamon Arts Library
- DeGolyer Library
- Underwood Law Library
- Bridwell Library
- Business Library
- Fort Burgwin Library
Fondren Library is the main library on campus and serves students, faculty and staff in the areas of humanities, social sciences, business, education, science, and engineering, with over three million print and online resources. Subject librarians assigned to each discipline offer personal research services to students and faculty to support teaching and learning. Subject librarians collaborate with faculty to integrate information literacy concepts into university curriculum to support the academic mission of the university. Within Fondren Library, students have access to 1,000 seats of study space, including bookable study rooms and conference rooms with supportive learning technology. The Caren Prothro Learning Commons and nearby Collaborative Commons provide both individual and collaborative group spaces conducive to creative work, as well as a Starbucks café and the IT Help Desk to provide technical assistance to the University community. For quiet study, the Fondren Foundation Centennial Reading Room is a beautiful setting with vaulted ceilings and handmade wooden tables with reading lamps in a large sunlit space. The bold visual impact of this iconic reading room epitomizes the discovery, inspiration and community for which SMU is known. In addition to physical spaces, Fondren Library also manages the SMU Digital Repository, called SMU Scholar, which houses the scholarly output of the SMU faculty and graduate students. To support the research of the university, Fondren Library provides document delivery, as well as access to holdings from other libraries via interlibrary loan. Strengths of the Fondren Library collections include, classical studies, late 18th- and early 19th-century English literature, American history, Texas history, contemporary biography and literature, anthropology, political science, economics and other social sciences.
The Norwick Center for Digital Solutions (nCDS), located in Fondren Library, focuses on digitizing collections of rare photographs, manuscripts, imprints, art work, film, musical recordings, and other unique items for increased access via the Digital Collections website. nCDS serves as a teaching lab, with digital collections development and Digital Humanities practicums available to students.
Hamon Arts Library
The Hamon Arts Library, adjoining the south side of the Owen Arts Center of the Meadows School of the Arts, provides resources for the study of art history, communications, dance, film, music, theatre and visual art. With nearly 250,000 volumes of books, sound recordings and video recordings, the library’s collections support the Meadows curriculum and are particularly strong in European and American arts. The library also provides conference room facilities; group audio-visual study and presentation rooms; and public computers for research, study and arts-specific software projects. Two special collections units are administered by Hamon Arts Library:
The Jerry Bywaters Special Collections focus on the cultural history of the American Southwest. Visual arts holdings include archival materials and works of art on paper documenting the careers of artists such as Jerry Bywaters, Otis and Velma Davis Dozier, E.G. Eisenlohr, Octavio Medellin, Olin Travis and Janet Turner as well as correspondence of 19th-century French painter Rosa Bonheur. Performing arts holdings include two Japanese gigaku masks dating from the 7th to the 10th centuries, the papers of Oscar-winning actress Greer Garson, and materials documenting the careers of longtime SMU music faculty members Paul van Katwijk and Lloyd Pfautsch.
The G. William Jones Film and Video Collection, founded in 1970, holds more than 10,000 films and videos on a wide array of subjects, in all types of formats. The Jones Collection is best known for its Tyler, Texas, Black Film Collection, WFAA newsreel collection, and for the Sulphur Springs Collection of pre-nickelodeon films.
DeGolyer Library is a noncirculating special collections library that contains more than 170,000 volumes. In addition to rare books, the DeGoyler Library holds nearly 2,500 separate manuscript collections, nearly 1.5 million photographs and negatives, 2,000 newspaper and periodical titles, 3,000 maps, and an extensive collection of printed ephemera. Subject strengths include the American West, Mexico, railroad history, business history, and the history of science and technology.
The University Archives, part of the DeGolyer Library, are the official repository for SMU administrative and historical records of the University. The archives contain manuscripts, photographs, publications, records, and artifacts documenting the establishment and growth of the University. SMU administrators, faculty, local historians and media representatives are its principal users, but students and visiting scholars often use its materials for a variety of research projects.
Underwood Law Library
Underwood Law Library is the largest private academic law library west of the Mississippi River. Its collections include more than 660,000 law-related volumes and equivalents, ranking the library among the top 20% of law libraries in the United States. The library’s building is the fifth largest academic law library in the country. The subject area strengths of the library’s collections mirror the Law School’s curriculum and faculty research concentrations: corporate law, commercial and banking law, criminal law, securities, taxation, air and space law, constitutional law, intellectual property law, international law, law and medicine, and legal ethics. The library’s collection of antiquarian law books, including the McKnight Antiquarian Book Collection, is one of the leading collections of its kind in the country, with volumes printed as early as 1473. The library has more than 700 seats and 14 group study rooms.
Bridwell Library, primarily serving the faculty and students of the Perkins School of Theology, is the University’s principal research resource for the fields of theology and religious studies. It offers a print collection of nearly 400,000 volumes and more than 1,000 journals, and it provides access to a wide array of digital books, journals and databases. Among the library’s special collections are significant holdings in early printing, English and American Methodism, theology, religion, and the book arts. The interpretation of these collections is accomplished through class instruction, lectures, publications and exhibitions. Reference librarians are available to help students discover and use the many resources of Bridwell Library.
The Business Library of the Cox School of Business is located in room 150 of the Maguire Building. This library is open to all students regardless of major. The mission of the library is to provide the SMU community with authoritative business information, regardless of format; support the integration of information and technology into the curriculum; and act as a center for research and development for state-of-the-art information technology applications in the business education field. In support of this mission, students, faculty and staff have access to course-specific in-class instruction sessions, open enrollment research workshops and reference assistance from dedicated business librarians to enhance their use of current business news and financial, industry and market data from premier providers. The Business Library includes the Kitt Investing and Trading Center, quiet and group study areas, 70 computer workstations in individual and group areas, a multimedia studio, a group presentation practice room, a periodicals area, facility wide wireless access, more than 400 electronic resources, and a variety of print resources, including the Hillcrest Foundation International Resource Library, the Edwin L. Cox Business Leadership Center Resource Collection, the Maguire Energy Institute Resource Collection and the Cox Career Services Collection. Librarians are available all hours that the business library is open, providing research assistance both in person and virtually.
Fort Burgwin Library
The Fort Burgwin Library, located in Taos, New Mexico, serves students and faculty in the SMU-in-Taos program. It is focused on the history, literature, cultures and environment of New Mexico and the Southwest. The library, constructed in 2004, contains approximately 9,000 books and a small collection of journals and maps, and houses the Fred Wendorf Information Commons and a computer lab.
The Scholars’ Den is a gathering space for members of the various scholar groups at SMU. Its mission is to foster scholarship and community among its member groups by providing a hospitable place to study and hold scholarly events. Located in Clements Hall, the Scholars’ Den features group-meeting space, study areas, a kitchen/dining area and an informal lounge where students can gather to collaborate on academic and extracurricular projects. Additional information can be found by navigating to www.smu.edu/scholarsden.
Laboratories and Research Facilities
The University provides laboratories and equipment for courses in accounting, advertising, anthropology, art, biology, chemistry, communication studies, creative computation, languages, Earth sciences, film and media studies, journalism, psychology, physics, health and physical education, dance, music, theatre, and statistics, as well as civil, computer, electrical, environmental and mechanical engineering. The University is also home to a number of centers and institutes that are detailed in each of the school sections of this catalog. University facilities not listed below are described in sections for the individual schools.
ManeFrame II. SMU has one of the top supercomputers in the nation, ManeFrame II, which is capable of more than 625 trillion mathematical operations per second. Housed in the data center, ManeFrame II is available for faculty and student research in subjects ranging from particle physics to human behavior, water quality and drug discovery.
SMU-in-Taos. SMU-in-Taos, Fort Burgwin, is located 10 miles south of Taos, New Mexico. The facility includes classrooms, laboratories, offices, a computer center and a library, as well as living accommodations for students and faculty. The Fort Burgwin archaeology curation facility houses more than 1 million archaeological specimens from research projects conducted by SMU faculty and students. Northern New Mexico offers a multiplicity of research opportunities for both natural and social scientists. Pot Creek Pueblo, located on the fort’s property, is one of the largest prehistoric archaeological sites in the Taos region.
The Meadows Museum, founded by the late philanthropist Algur H. Meadows and located on campus at 5900 Bishop Boulevard, houses one of the finest and most comprehensive collections of Spanish art in the world, as well as selected masterpieces of modern European sculpture, from Rodin and Maillol to David Smith and Claes Oldenburg. The permanent collection of the museum numbers more than 3,500 objects, including paintings, sculpture, decorative arts and works on paper from the Middle Ages to the present. Artists represented include El Greco, Velázquez, Ribera, Zurbarán, Murillo, Goya, Picasso, Dalí, and Miró. The Meadows Museum hosts a regular program of loan exhibitions each year in its exhibition galleries, and it sponsors an active program of public lectures, tours, films, concerts and symposia, as well as access programs, children’s art programs and family days throughout the year. Museum collections are often used by SMU faculty in their courses. The museum membership program includes exhibition previews, tours of private collections and opportunities for travel. Docent tours of the collection are available to school, University and adult groups. The Meadows Museum has a museum shop on site as well as special event rooms. Additional information is available at www.meadowsmuseumdallas.org.
Office of Information Technology
The Office of Information Technology (OIT) provides computing, information processing, and communications resources to satisfy the needs of faculty, students, and staff. These services include an SMU email account, access to enrollment and financial data online, Internet access, telephone services, Web-based services, technical support, and a variety of software and hardware discounts.
SMU offers high-speed network connections throughout campus. Students can take advantage of both wired and wireless connections throughout all areas of the residence halls. Wireless coverage (PerunaNet) also extends throughout the campus in classrooms, libraries, common areas, and several outdoor locations. In addition to on-campus Internet connections, OIT provides off-campus access to resources via a virtual private network connection (VPN) and access to other research institutions Wi-Fi networks through eduroam.
All students receive an SMU email account, which will remain active after graduation. The email account may be accessed online via Office 365 (office365.smu.edu). Students also have access to a variety of Web-based services such as my.SMU, personal blog space (people.smu.edu), unlimited cloud storage space (smu.edu/box), and the Canvas Learning Management System (smu.edu/canvas). Academic information, including grade history, financial information, and class registration, is available through the my.SMU system.
OIT also provides complimentary on-campus IT support. Located in Fondren Library West, the IT Help Desk provides technical assistance for most common computing issues and installs of software applications pertinent to course instruction weekdays and weekends during the regular semester. Times will vary for breaks and summer. Please check the website at smu.edu/oit for the latest hours. The IT Help Desk provides support via phone at 214-768-HELP or in-house for a wide variety of technical questions related to networking, software installs, and the use of SMU IT resources. The OIT website (smu.edu/oit) provides information, step-by-step instructions, and answers to many frequently asked questions. Training On-Demand is also available through LinkedIn Learning (smu.edu/LinkedIn) for additional software.
Although most students have a personal laptop, SMU provides a number of public computer labs. Typically, the labs contain both Mac and PC workstations and support a variety of applications. Printing is also available through our PaperCut Pay-for-Print System (smu.edu/printing). If needing to purchase a personal copy of the software, discounts on software and computer hardware purchases are available throughout the year. More information can be found on the OIT website at smu.edu/oit.
For additional information on services provided by OIT, students should visit www.smu.edu/oit or call the IT Help Desk at 214-768-HELP (4357). SMU related technology news and updates are available on Twitter (@smuoit) and the IT Connect blog (blog.smu.edu/itconnect).