Introduction to LCIE: Undergraduate

The Lindenwood College for Individualized Education (LCIE) is an accelerated program in which students combine extensive self-directed study with a once-per-week class meeting earning nine semester hours of university credit in twelve weeks. Because of the accelerated format, students can expect a minimum of twenty hours of out-of-class work per week. The program often merges academic goals with practical knowledge applicable to the student’s workplace.

The goal of the adult-centered LCIE program is to establish the habit of life-long learning beyond degree completion. Upon entry, each student is assigned an academic advisor to guide the student to graduation. The student-advisor link remains critical throughout a student’s career in the LCIE program. Accreditation policies require that LCIE students contact their faculty advisors on a quarterly basis.

Student Profile

The prospective LCIE student is employed full-time for at least one year or part-time for at least two years in a responsible position. He or she is seeking a degree to enrich advancement opportunities or to make career changes through the acquisition of new skills. LCIE graduates constitute a strong network of people in leadership positions throughout the greater St. Louis, St. Charles, and Belleville metropolitan area.

Student Enrollment Process

Once students enroll in the LCIE program through the admissions department, a faculty advisor is assigned. Students are required to meet in person with their advisor for enrollment in their second cluster in the program, as well as for enrollment in their final cluster in the program, which serves as their exit interview. During the remainder of their time in the program, students have the option to either (1) meet in person with their advisor for enrollment, or (2) contact their advisor by email or by telephone for enrollment. This contact must occur each quarter during the student’s appropriate registration week according to academic rank. During this advisor contact time, the advisor discusses degree and enrollment options, and opens the student’s portal for online registration. Students will then register themselves for classes through their student portal. Once the initial enrollment is completed, the faculty advisor closes the student portal. If a student decides after the initial enrollment to make a schedule change or withdraw from classes, the student must contact the advisor again, who will open the student’s portal for the enrollment change. It is the responsibility of the student to schedule this contact time with the advisor and to complete the enrollment process each quarter.

The Cluster

Central to the theory and practice of adult education is the ideal of the synthesis of knowledge. LCIE seeks to achieve this goal through the construction of the cluster. Clusters are comprised of a faculty member and approximately 12 to 14 students who meet for four hours weekly during an evening or weekend. Each student is enrolled in three related subject areas, called cluster groups that are, in many cases, integrated into one seminar. Students pursuing a bachelor of science degree must enroll in a one hour lab in conjunction with the science cluster. The cluster provides students with an opportunity to explore basic subject areas beyond the confines of a single discipline.

These cluster group meetings provide a collegial environment in which students present their work and share their learning. A major objective of this format is the development of knowledge synthesis, so LCIE students can expect their learning to be measured in a variety of ways: written and oral presentation, class discussion, research papers, group projects, and traditional testing. However, as is true of most higher-education programs, in LCIE it is up to each professor to determine how students are to be assessed and graded; therefore, tests and quizzes may be used to supplement papers and presentations as assessments of student mastery.

The cluster follows the quarter schedule and meets one evening a week for four hours, integrating related courses of study. Three semester hours of credit are awarded for successful completion of each course in the cluster for a total of nine semester hours per cluster. Students pursuing a bachelor of science degree must enroll in a one hour lab in conjunction with the science cluster for a total of ten semester hours. The cluster begins with a first assignment, given to the student when he or she enrolls in the cluster. This assignment is due on the first day (evening) of class. Subsequent homework assignments are delineated in the syllabus, and, due to the accelerated nature of the LCIE program, it is expected that a student will spend, at a minimum, twenty hours per week working on these out-of-class homework assignments. This time commitment may vary, however, depending upon the student’s level of expertise in a given cluster. A student in a management cluster, for example, who has worked several years in a middle management position, and who has completed a variety of corporate sponsored management courses, may, in fact, spend less time working on assignments for this cluster.

Due to the accelerated nature of the cluster (program), the rewriting of papers or the assigning of extra credit homework to improve a grade, or grades, is not permitted.