What is AUx?

The American University Experience (AUx)is a full-year AU Core Curriculum course specially designed for students transitioning into their first year of college at AU. Students will complete AUx1 in their first semester and then complete AUx2 in their second semester.

Students will complete online learning assignments through Canvas (AU's e-learning platfrom)and meet weekly for small group discussions of approximately 19 students. AUx classes are co-facilitated by an AUx Instructor and Peer Facilitator. AUx Instructors and Peer Facilitators are specially trained to work with first-year and transfer students. 

The AUx program is continuing to evolve to better meet the needs and concerns of AU students. This summer, recognizing and seeking to address the harm Black students face, the program is incorporating antiracist pedagogy and practices into AUx1 and AUx2 and centering the voices of people of color in the curriculum. The changes are directly based on student, Peer Facilitator, and Instructor feedback and experiences.

timeline of implementation:

Fall 2016
  • AUx1 pilot #1 implementation
Spring 2017
  • AUx2 pilot #1 implementation
Fall 2017
  • AUx1 pilot #2 implementation
Spring 2018
  • AUx2 pilot #2 implementation


AUx1 draws on many academic disciplines including student development theory. The course is designed to help students navigate their academic, social, cultural, and psychological adjustment to university life. Themes covered in this standardized course include freedom of expression; campus resources; exploring and expressing identities; building academic success; budgeting time and money; health and wellness; finding community; rights and responsibilities; and diversity, bias, and privilege.

AUx2 seeks to create a space for learning about discourse and structures of power, privilege, and inequality. The course builds upon concepts introduced in AUx1, and is a starting point for the academic study of the structures of power as well as the practices that challenge those structures. AUx2 aims to equip students to begin the practice of engaging in discourse with intellectual rigor, ethics, integrity, and recognition of impact on individuals, communities, and structures.

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