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A student on her laptop represents the Curry College Summer PAL Hybrid program

*PLEASE NOTE: Due to COVID-19 health and safety issues, Curry College will not hold Summer PAL 2020 on campus. Given these circumstances, we are converting the online 3-credit "course" to a full, 3-credit online summer "program," more akin to a remote version of the in-person course. 

We expect that this new, modified program will be in high demand and space will be limited. Please email to reserve a space for summer 2020.

Although we are disappointed about not having the ability to host you on campus this summer, we are VERY excited about our online program! Please check back soon for more information, and in the meantime, feel free to reach out to our Summer PAL Coordinator, Maria Bacigalupo at

Newly Designed for 2020

Take the the newly designed, virtual Summer PAL online course as a "bridge" to your college experiences, so you can learn more about college-level work and resources. You can then bring your new learning strategies, self-awareness, study skills, and confidence as a well-prepared college student to the start of the semester!

Traditionally, Summer PAL online is taught as a single course, however, starting this summer we are offering our ENTIRE Summer PAL program remotely. Summer PAL online will now include (vs. previous years):

  • Asynchronous AND synchronous learning where students will have the opportunity to meet with their primary PAL professor, their mini-course teachers, and other Curry faculty and staff in real time in a virtual classroom
  • iPad technology, which will be mailed to you
  • Mini-courses offered synchronously twice per week
  • Two types of peer mentors (PAL Peer Mentors and PAL Peer Mobile Learning Tutors)
  • A social connections Zoom meeting with Peer Mentors for social time together 
  • A study hall for 4 hours per week

The Remote Learning Advantage

While remote learning is not the same as face-to-face learning, we are prepared to deliver rigorous synchronous (occurring at the same time) and asynchronous (occurring at your convenience) curriculum that supports our student-centered mission. Summer PAL has a long-documented history of preparing students for success in the fall. Students who complete SPAL are more successful in their four years at Curry College. While we regret that Massachusetts state guidelines have prevented us from delivering this curriculum in our traditional face-to-face format, we have worked diligently to think outside the box and develop an innovative and rigorous program that delivers the program objectives and learning outcomes through online format. 

Benefits of the newly redesigned Summer PAL online 2020 include:

  • Earn three college credits to start your college experience
  • 1:7 (approx.) teacher to student ratio
  • Curriculum Goals to build a robust:
    • Community of learners with other students including upperclassmen - Connections with peer mentors during class and in the evenings
    • Understanding of your learning profile emphasizing strengths and exploring learning challenges (metacognition) - Develop an individualized understanding of your learning and goals
    • Conceptual grasp of your own resiliency (ability to bounce back) - PAL consciously creates a resilient environment – both in person and online. (Take the Resiliency Quiz!)
    • Facility with technology - Free apps for use on your iPad
  • Experiment with assistive technologies - text/speech and speech/text software, and recorded texts
  • Explore ways to improve time management, organization, and executive functions
  • Discover strategies for better reading, writing, speaking, and note-taking that work for you
  • Have the ability to complete college-level reading and writing assignments

PAL 1180H - Summer PAL Online  (3 credits)

PAL 1180H is the online version of PAL 1180 - Summer PAL and is an intensive learning experience for entering first year students or transfer students who have been accepted into the Program for Advancement of Learning (PAL). Through this immersion style course, students have the opportunity to develop an understanding of themselves as learners within the context of higher education. This understanding is based on PAL's core learning outcomes: metacognition, self-regulation, active and engaged learning, critical thinking and reasoning skills, and expressive and receptive language skills.

Working with a PAL faculty mentor and a small group of peers, students will construct strength based strategies for written communication, reading, listening, note-taking, critical thinking, problem-solving, personal goal setting, organization and team-work. Activities include: developing an individual learning profile, experimenting with assistive technologies, and experiencing the rich learning resources of the Curry College community. Student learning culminates with a learning portfolio. Student learning occurs through web-based platforms, including daily collaboration with faculty and students.

Some preliminary assessment tasks, requiring about 2- 3 hours to complete, will take place online during June or July. Students will need to set aside time each day to complete online assignments. This is an excellent opportunity to earn 3 college credits with the possibility of taking a lighter course load in the fall, as a way to gradually enter into the overall academic and social college experience.

Suggested Daily Schedule

Monday thru Thursday (EST)
May vary with time zone

9:00 a.m. - Start asynchronous work or homework or do this on your own time.

1:00 - 2:00 p.m. - Asynchronous work (suggested)

2:00 - 5:00 p.m. - Synchronous Zoom sessions (required)

7:00 - 9:00 p.m. - SPAL Study Hall and Zoom room chats with PAL Peer Mentors and Tutors

Friday Schedule

Office hours with Professors, Mentors and Tutors


Leadership Team: Laura Vanderberg, Director; Maria Bacigalupo, SPAL Coordinator; Megan O’Brien, Assistive Technology Center Coordinator.

PAL Professor: You will be assigned a PAL Professor who will be your primary professor and in charge of your overall learning experience along with a group of about 7 incoming PAL students.

Mini-Course Professor: You will be assigned a mini-course professor from whom you will take a college-level course – for two of the 12 synchronous hours per week. You will be assigned additional homework from this professor.

PAL Peer Mobile Learning Tutors and Peer Mentors: These are talented, practiced PAL students who are upperclassmen and women. They will assist you with technology needs.

Summer 2020 Tuition:

  • $3,250 - This includes the cost of technology* (an iPad and peripherals)

*Technology FAQ:

Why iPads?  

Based on student feedback and other reasons, we have built our Mobile Learning Curriculum, iPAL, around the iPad as a shared platform. Students learn how to learn through technology.

Should students use both personally owned laptops and the iPads?

It is not necessary to have any technology beyond the iPad and accessories.

Do you recommend other electronic resources such as supplies or books for successful transition to college?

We work with each student to develop personalized learning tools and strategies, including digital and hard copy organizational, reading, note-taking, and time management tools, etc.


We encourage you to register early for Summer PAL since seats fills up quickly:

  • Preferred Registration/Deposit deadline: Please register/deposit immediately to hold a space.
  • Payment in Full deadline, Session I: June 22
  • Payment in Full deadline, Session II: July 13

Once you have submitted the online registration, an option to pay by credit card, and other options, will appear. There is a deposit required for this course. Please contact Student Financial Services ( with payment questions.

Register for Summer PAL Online
(Curry/PAL Accepted Students Only)

Already Registered/Deposited? - Pay the full balance

Summer PAL Scholarship:

Some limited scholarships are available for students who have deposited to the College and registered for Summer PAL. Summer PAL scholarship applications must be received by May 15.

PLEASE NOTE: We are no longer accepting Summer PAL Scholarship applications for 2020.

-"This online class was such a wonderful experience I am very grateful I had the opportunity to take this course!"

-"I have learned a lot about myself and have met some people through the class who are similar to me!"

-"Great class. I loved the different study strategies I learned and learning about myself. It really helped me stay focused throughout the summer and made my brain work. I know have a better understanding on how to take notes."

-"I really liked the way things were set up and how flexible the teacher was and that I was able to relate to what we were learning.

-"I think it helped me not only become more aware of what kind of learner I am but also helped me start college with a head start. The Summer PAL class was very helpful for me to help with transitioning from High School to College."

-"I am so glad I took this class. I know really feel prepared for the fall. I learned more about myself. I liked that the class helped with different aspects that are all apart of college life."

The virtual 2020 Curry College Summer Orientation for incoming students is required, but is a separate program from Summer PAL online  For more information about Summer Orientation visit

Take the next step

We're excited you're considering our internationally recognized Program for Advancement of Learning (PAL) and look forward to helping you reach your career goals.