RSSP Bridge Modules

The RSSP Bridge Modules provides the opportunity to increase preparation for higher level coursework as students continue in the sciences. Modules focus on “threshold concepts” – ideas that are critical to entry to a new area of study. Additionally, RSSP Bridge Modules continue to reinforce and extend the intellectual community among students and faculty.

Current Modules

To provide support beyond Freshman year, faculty involved in the Regents STEM Scholars Program have designed online bridge courses in Genetics, Organic Chemistry, Physics, Biochemistry, and Disciplinary Writing. Each of these “on-ramps” asks of the students ~12–15 hours of their time and in return strives to prepare them for the intellectual challenges—new concepts, deeper dives into primary scientific literature, raised expectations for written work—of upper level science courses.

Bridge to Genetics

The Bridge to Genetics module is centered on a single focal paper from the primary literature, allowing Scholars the chance to stop and highlight key concepts along the way, as well as practice reading scientific papers.

Bridge to Organic Chemistry

The Bridge to Organic Chemistry helps students connect meaningfully with ideas they have already been exposed to but may not have fully understood from General Chemistry and see how these concepts will be applied in Organic Chemistry.

Bridge to Physics

The Bridge to Physics module was designed to hit on five primary topics that fit in the overlap between “concepts that students struggle with in physics” and “concepts that can be understood without having ever seen a physics problem before.”

Bridge to Disciplinary Writing

The Bridge to Disciplinary Writing module is designed to provide Scholars the chance to translate the communication of scientific knowledge from one context to another, preparing Scholars to adapt to any writing task in the sciences.

Bridge to Biochemistry

The Bridge to Biochemistry reviews key concepts and processes from earlier foundational Biology and Chemistry courses that are critical for success in Biological Chemistry. Topics include proteins, signaling, metabolism, and reaction equilibriums.

All modules are run online. Modules are 0 credits but do appear on students’ transcripts as a course with a passing grade. Each module lasts 2+ weeks with a wide range of online pedagogies and an expectation of ~12 hours of work.

Joshua De Los Santos (‘19) introducing himself in a video to the Disciplinary Writing course.

The bridge courses run online in Canvas, but we strive to sustain a sense of community among our students. Here we see Joshua De Los Santos (‘19) and Vicky Yanouskiy (‘20) introducing themselves in videos to the Disciplinary Writing course.

Bridge Faculty

Prof. Manus Patten, Biology
Prof. Diana Glick, Bridge to Organic Chemistry
Prof. Patrick Johnson, Bridge to Physics
Prof. Matthew Pavesich, Bridge to Disciplinary Writing
Prof. MC Chan, Bridge to Biochemistry