The Early Start Experience

The U of L Early Start Experience

Are you worried about your first semester of university? Nervous about meeting people, or building the skills needed to succeed academically? The U of L Early Start Experience is a two-week course to help you! This is a special offering of Lib Ed 1500, The First Year Experience, specially  designed to promote student success and to ease the transition from high school to university for incoming first year students.

Students will:

  • Get a full course credit for a special enhanced version of LBED 1500, The First Year Experience: Mapping our Communities.
  • Build social networks with a diverse group of incoming students.
  • Develop the skills & resources needed to be successful in university.


Deadline:          Applications will be accepted, as long as space remains, until August 18, 2023. 

Dates:                 August 21 to September 1, 2023

Cost:                Standard uLethbridge tuition fees for one course (part of student’s total 40 courses)


1. Acceptance to the Early Start Experience is conditional on being accepted to uLethbridge for the Fall 2023 term. ESE is open to students in all majors/programs.

2. Registration: You will be registered in Summer Session III for the course LBED 1500, as an Open Studies student. Complete the Open Studies application form (PDF) at and select “Early Start” in the last section.

3. There is an initial $140.00 fee ($40.00 open studies fee/$100.00 tuition deposit). Once you send in the form you will be contacted about payment information.

4. What will it be like? | The program will run from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day, Monday to Friday, starting on the morning of Monday, August 21.  (Note: We will end at noon on the last Friday, September 1.)
But we are not expecting you to sit through lectures from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. every day for two weeks! There will be 2 to 3 hours of lecture per day most days, but that will be broken up and interspersed with lots of activities, tours, discussion time, work on homework and projects,  etc.

To get more information, get on our mailing list, or to receive the application forms, please contact:

Dr. Shelly Wismath
School of Liberal Education       
Phone: 403-329-2529


“I am filled with amazement with how much more prepared I am for the year. Many—if not all—of my fears, worries, and concerns were all addressed during the classes.  I feel confident that I will be able to use the tools provided by this program, and that I will be able to succeed…no thrive…in my first year.”   2020 Early Start Student

Over these past two weeks, I have learnt much more than I initially thought I would. I learnt how to navigate the university; and now, I can walk around with confidence, knowing exactly where I am going. But more importantly, I have learnt about all that is possible here at the University of Lethbridge. Just by coming here, I have opened the door to a world of possibilities that wouldn’t have been accessible to me back home.

In ESE I evolved academically from a high school into a university student. My high school self was nervous, full of doubt, and wondering what I had gotten myself into. I was really worried about starting university in the fall, what course work would be like, and how I would find things on campus. Basically, I was a quivering mess. My thoughts of what university is like have changed vastly since the first day. I learned in this course what the university workload and pace was like. I learned about all the opportunities that the university offers. I have turned from a quivering mess into a confident student.

For more on what past students and teaching assistants have to say about ESE -