For Counselors and Teachers


College Preparatory Math, Academic Reading/Writing and Advisement

CUNY Start, a program teaching academic skills preparation for individuals planning to attend CUNY colleges, is recruiting students for Fall 2015. CUNY Start offers intensive instruction and college advisement in reading, writing and math on either a full-time or part-time basis. Individuals who complete the program are significantly better prepared for college-level coursework, and in many cases are able to bypass required remedial coursework.

Students in the program enroll after applying to enter CUNY, but prior to registering for courses on a campus. The full-time program, which is offered at all seven community colleges, College of Staten Island, and Medgar Evers College, is 25 hours per week for 15-18 weeks during the day. The program covers academic reading/writing and pre-college math.

The part-time program, which is 12 hours per week for 15-18 weeks, is offered at Hostos Community College, Borough of Manhattan Community College, Bronx Community College, College of Staten Island, Kingsborough Community College LaGuardia Community College and Queensborough Community College during the afternoon or evening. You can enroll in the part-time program to study either reading/writing or math.

Most students in CUNY Start are referred to the program after taking the CUNY Assessment Tests. The program is suitable for anyone planning to pursue a college degree who needs to improve their academic preparation: those who have just graduated from high school and those who have been away from school for many years as well as people with high school equivalency diplomas. For information on where to refer students, please click here. Students should be sure to mention if they have not yet submitted an application for admission to CUNY. Colleges offering the program are also holding frequent information sessions.

CUNY Start Course Descriptions

CUNY provides college transition instruction in two content areas: math and reading/writing. The full-time CUNY Start program of 25 hours/wk provides both Pre-College Math (140 hours) and Academic Reading/Writing (140 hours). The 12 hours/wk part-time program focuses on either Pre-College Math (130 hours) or Academic Reading/Writing (130 hours).

Pre-College Math

Pre-College Math focuses on more complex topics in algebra such as functions in new settings and the manipulation of expressions. Understanding is maximized through in-depth study of core math concepts in an interactive, supportive learning environment.

CUNY Start Core Values - Math <pdf>

Academic Reading/Writing

Through an interdisciplinary curriculum, students build key reading and writing skills and broaden their general background knowledge. Skill development includes argumentative and analytic writing, and college-level reading and study skills.

CUNY Start Core Values - Reading/Writing <pdf>

College Success Preparation

All CUNY Start students participate in weekly sessions to explore their academic identity and learn about college structures and campus resources. College advisement helps students align their career goals with educational requirements and prepares them for academic achievement and graduation.

CUNY Start Core Values - Advisement <pdf>

"If I hadn't gone through CUNY Start I really don't think I could have handled the college writing assignments."

- A CUNY Start student after her first semester at LaGuardia

CUNY Start Publications

Two articles by Steve Hinds, CUNY Mathematics Professional and Curriculum Developer, describe the approach to math instruction used in CUNY Start and why that approach is particularly effective with students who need to build academic skills before starting college-level courses.

Read More >> <pdf> "More than Rules"

Read More >> <pdf> "More than Reshuffling"