LAL, DSL Merge as Tutorial Services

As part of the College’s Student Success Initiative, the former Learning Assistance Lab (LAL) has been renamed Tutorial Services. The change is the result of a strategic planning effort which included faculty and student input.

Three years ago, Dr. Medea Rambish, Interim Dean of Academic Support, personally visited approximately a dozen in-session classrooms to garner students’ opinion regarding the LAL.  It was the first time classrooms had been visited in order to acquire student opinion on this topic.

“It was important to consider input from all constituencies involved,” Dr. Rambish stated.

The students were asked, among other questions, “Do youknow what [LAL] is?”  Though many knew, the name change was instituted in order to eliminate confusion that some students indicated had occurred when they were freshmen.

The Developmental Studies Lab was also renamed the Foundational Skills Lab — Skills Lab, for short — which provides additional support for sub-100 level courses.  Students receive assistance on basic skills such as reading, writing, and mathematics, as well as in other subject areas.  The Skills Lab is now co-located with and falls under the umbrella of Tutorial Services.

These services are available at both Central and West campuses, and as of fall 2011 are in new locations at each campus.  At West Campus, students can find Tutorial Services in South Hall room 159. And at Central Campus, Tutorial Services is located in College Hall room 180. Both labs share space with the College’s libraries.

“The Library is designed to be a showpiece and because it provides academic support services, it makes sense to co-locate Tutorial Services in the same space,” said Dr. Rambish.  “When all is said and done, it will be much easier for students to take advantage of these services.”

With an eye on the future Rambish states, “We will continually monitor the space here at Central Campus to ensure the environment is conducive to learning.  At West, we will monitor space as well, but we know in years’ past that that space, also co-located with the library, served the students well.”

Montgomery County Community College continues to offer online tutoring to all enrolled students, including live, after-hours tutoring, which runs from late night to early morning.

To learn more about Tutorial Services, visit Students, faculty and staff can also log on to the College’s portal at for additional information.

~by Robert Gardner, Liberal Studies

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