Academic Innovation & Distance Education (AIDE)
The mission of Academic Innovation & Distance Education at Bunker Hill Community College is to advance the College’s goals by providing innovative and effective instructional design, digital teaching and learning resources and timely support that helps students and instructors succeed. AIDE promotes inclusive, accessible and collaborative teaching and learning solutions to the BHCC community.
Bunker Hill Community College offers several alternatives to classroom instruction that allow students to complete all or part of their course work online. These alternative modes of instruction include full asynchronous online courses, as well as hybrid courses that are part online and part in class. Academic departments can provide information about their online and hybrid course offerings.
The Commonwealth Honors Program at BHCC
Honors Program Office
The Commonwealth Honors Program at Bunker Hill Community College is a statewide program overseen by the Honors College at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. Bunker Hill is one of many of the Commonwealth’s colleges and universities that is a member of this program.
Within the Commonwealth Honors Program, students will find and create opportunities to excel academically in a rich and challenging environment and to become a member of a diverse and inclusive community of scholars, building on the strengths of the college community’s diversity. For admission requirements and benefits, including transfer opportunities and scholarships, visit bhcc.edu/honors.
BHCC Learning Communities
BHCC Learning Communities provide students with the opportunity to explore contemporary issues in a challenging and supportive environment. Learning Communities foster stronger relationships among students, faculty and staff and offer culturally relevant and active learning experiences.
First-time to-college students pursuing associate degrees and enrolled in nine or more credits are required to take a Learning Community Seminar or a Learning Community Cluster within their first year.
Learning Community Seminars are three-credit college level courses designed to help incoming students identify academic goals and pathways. Seminars engage students in early career exploration and feature integrated support services, including peer mentors and success coach advisors. Most programs of study recommend or require specific Learning Community Seminar courses; for example, students in the Liberal Arts take HUM-120 . Students may check their program maps to find recommended seminar courses.
Learning Community Clusters enable students to take two or more courses together organized around a common academic theme. Clusters prepare students to work together in collaborative environments and provide opportunities for students to accelerate progression through developmental English and math.
For more information about BHCC Learning Communities, visit bhcc.edu/learning-communities.
Bunker Hill Community College provides a variety of alternative learning options for students who are self-directed learners.
These options address individual learning styles or provide flexible options for those constrained by time and/or distance. Online, weekend, individualized courses through the Center for Self-Directed Learning, and independent studies through the Contract Learning Program provide these types of non-traditional learning opportunities.
Boston Welcome Back Center for Internationally Educated Nurses
Welcome Back Center
The Boston Welcome Back Center assists immigrant nurses in obtaining their Massachusetts nursing licensure and re-entering the nursing workforce. Many internationally educated nurses come to Massachusetts and find it difficult to obtain a license to practice here. The process can be complicated and involves working with several different agencies, and sometimes meeting additional educational requirements. The Center incorporates educational case management services, career guidance and group activities to address the educational and vocational needs of our population. The Welcome Back Center’s main office is located at Bunker Hill Community College’s H-Building.
The Welcome Back Center addresses several pressing and systemic needs in healthcare delivery in the Greater Boston region:
- Creating new pipelines into the nursing field to relieve regional workforce shortages.
- Enhancing the racial, ethnic and linguistic diversity of the area’s nursing workforce.
- Building cultural competencies in the nursing workforce and college environment.
The Welcome Back Center offers a range of specially designed, customized and accelerated educational interventions that address participants’ English proficiency needs and nursing/ educational skill gaps, thus expediting re-entry into the nursing profession.
Center for Self-Directed Learning (CSDL)
Students may enroll in college credit courses available through the Center for Self-Directed Learning (CSDL). Students have the flexibility to make their own schedules, and complete assignments and tests according to their unique learning needs. The CSDL provides multi-media resources for individualized, independent instruction under the supervision of professional learning specialists and professional tutors.
Students are always active participants in the learning process, solving problems, answering questions and developing skills. In order to ensure that effective learning takes place, student progress is evaluated on a continuous basis. Courses can extend over the entire semester, or be completed in a few weeks, depending on the student’s needs.
Course facilitators and tutors are available to guide and assist students at all times during scheduled hours of operation. For schedule information, see the posted schedule or ask a staff member for help. Refer to the CSDL website at bhcc.edu/csdl for a detailed listing of course offerings.
Independent Learning Contracts
A Learning Contract is an opportunity for students to complete coursework under the individual supervision of a faculty member under specific circumstances including the need for a learning experience to extend beyond the academic program curricular offerings. Learning contracts are generally approved when in the professional opinion of the Dean and Department Chair the student needs this contract in order to complete their degree in the present semester through no fault of their own and there is no other way to meet the requirement.
Prior Learning Assessment (PLA)
The Prior Learning Assessment program (PLA) provides a process for evaluation and, when appropriate, awards academic credits for learning acquired outside the traditional college environment. In order to receive PLA credits, students must provide evidence that their prior learning is equivalent to college-level learning and it must correspond to the courses offered at BHCC. The PLA Coordinator assists students in preparing portfolios and documenting credits.
Methods for assessing prior college-level learning include: Advanced Placement examination (AP); military education and experience evaluation; College Level Examination Program (CLEP); credential evaluation; departmental examinations; and portfolio evaluation. Students may apply a maximum of 45 credits toward an associate degree at BHCC.
Office of Community Engagement
Bunker Hill Community College’s Office of Community Engagement provides multiple pathways for students to engage as active and responsible members of their communities. BHCC students work with community-based organizations as assigned through their courses, contemplate civic and ethical issues with each other on campus, or simply volunteer in their local communities. The College partners with a range of Greater Boston community-based organizations, including after-school programs, community centers, environmental advocacy groups, food pantries, and refugee and immigration centers. The College’s Office of Community Engagement supports faculty integration of community engagement projects into the curriculum, coordinates co-curricular volunteer programs, and provides a pathway for local community-based organizations to partner with the College.
Partnerships with Secondary Schools
Dual Enrollment and Early College Program
Dual Enrollment Office
High school students from Greater Boston area schools can earn high school and college credits simultaneously while gaining familiarity with the college experience through BHCC’s dual enrollment programs. Students may enroll individually, or through partnerships with area schools or districts. The program includes dual enrollment and early college programs offered in partnership with area school districts such as Boston, Cambridge, Chelsea, Everett, Malden, Medford and Revere.
High School Articulation Agreements and Curricular Alignment
BHCC shares articulation agreements with many local high schools, awarding college credit for certain advanced courses taught at high schools. BHCC faculty in Mathematics and English are working with their colleagues in several area high schools to align high school and college curriculum, ensuring students arrive at college ready to take college-level courses.
Massachusetts Distributive Education Clubs of America (DECA)
Massachusetts DECA is a co-curricular career technical high school student organization that operates in over 60 comprehensive and technical high schools in Massachusetts. DECA has been operating on a continuous basis at BHCC since September 1993. madeca.org
Summer Transition Program
Launched in 2012, the Summer Transition Program enables new, transfer, or readmitted students with an assessed need for English Language Learning (ELL), developmental English or math coursework to receive intensive instruction in order to get a head start prior to fall entry (at no cost). The program consists of bridge courses in ELL, developmental writing, and math. Textbooks are provided to students enrolled in the program at no additional cost. Bridge classes enable students to benefit from intensive instruction over the summer, so that they can progress to college-level or upper developmental level courses in the fall.
Student Success Program (TRiO)
BHCC Students must apply and be selected to participate in the Student Success Program. The program’s goal is to assist students in their efforts to be successful in their studies, graduate, and transfer to a four-year college or university by providing comprehensive academic and student support services and transfer assistance. Program participants are known for having an average GPA of 3.0 or higher, successful program completion rates, and strong leadership skills. TRiO Student Support Services Grant is funded by the United States Department of Education.
Workforce and Community Education
The Vision seeks to empower diverse learners with quality education that will advance career achievement and personal goals.
The Mission is to provide opportunities for education and training leading to professional advancement and lifelong learning while meeting the workforce needs of the communities we serve.
Beginner English Language Learning (BELL) programs are offered through our English Language Institute. Basic English Language Studies (BESL) supports students who are preparing to study at the college or require more English language skills to succeed in their lives. Intensive English Program (IEP) supports international learners who need to acquire English skills quickly in order to pursue college studies in the United States.
Community Education and Adult Learning Pathways empower personal advancement through market-driven courses designed to achieve students’ personal and professional goals.
Corporate Learning and Professional Development programs provide high quality, industry demand-driven programming to emerging, transitional, and incumbent workers in a corporate setting. Training is customized for businesses, emerging entrepreneurs and to support the professional development needs of individuals.
Small Business and Entrepreneurship partners with businesses, chambers and local government to offer training for small businesses in multiple languages.
The Language Institute offers English Language Learning programs and foreign language learner courses.
Adult Education and Transitions to College Programs
The Adult Education programs at the Chelsea Campus and through our Boston Consortium Partners in the South End of Boston support the adult learner needs of our Greater Boston community. These programs develop English language proficiency, content skills to acquire a high school credential and pathways to post-secondary education or jobs.
Through the Transitions to College program, adult learners are offered a no-cost option to begin their college career. All of these programs are supported by grant funds from the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (MADESE).