Quantitative Skills Support (Q-Support)

A community where students “engage in mutual learning” and “learn how to learn!”

Quantitative Skills Support, also known as Q-Support, began in the AY 2023 Autumn Term. A pilot was conducted in the Autumn and Winter Terms with the cooperation of instructors of collaborating courses and CTL Management Committee faculty members. In December, it was officially decided to continue Q-Support into AY 2024 and beyond.

At Q-Support, as part of the learning support aimed at fostering the fusion of the arts and sciences and cultivating comprehensive knowledge mentioned in ICU’s AY2021-2025 Medium-term Plan, we offer support to enable all ICU students, regardless of their background in the arts or sciences, to acquire the prerequisite and basic knowledge required to take General Education Courses and Foundation Courses concerning mathematics, information science, and statistics. Through this, we aim to create an environment where students can learn without being constrained by their background in the arts or sciences and to allow flexibility in major selection.

The concept of Q-Support is “a space to think and learn together.” When working with fellow students, undergraduate Learning Supporters (LSs) adopt the following stance: “Study together. Think together to work out ways to learn.” LSs do not simply give answers to questions or teach how to solve a problem. Rather, they ascertain a student’s understanding of prerequisite knowledge and endeavor to foster the student’s “ability to learn,” which is useful for solving other problems and in other learning activities.


For example, Q-Support can offer support for:

  • Collaborating courses (listed below)
  • Students who are wavering whether to take courses with prerequisites in mathematics, etc.
  • Students who wish to study in advance, review, or learn through self-study, topics covered in information science courses they have not taken
  • Students who are not confident with high school–level mathematics
  • Students who wish to learn basic probability and statistics
  • Students who wish to learn linear algebra and basic calculus
  • Students who wish to acquire basic skills in programming … and so on.

◇Examples of topics discussed at Q-Support (AY 2023 Autumn and Winter Terms)◇

  • Mathematics
    • “I only completed Mathematics I in high school, and I feel nervous about taking calculus.”
    • “What do you study in math courses at university?”
    • Integration of trigonometric functions
    • Finding the maximum of a bivariable function
  • Information science
    • “I get an error message when I run this program. I don’t understand what the error message means.”
    • “I have no concrete image of the algorithm.”
    • “I don’t know what process I should go through to figure out how to build an algorithm for a problem.”
  • Statistics
    • “I don’t quite understand what the following terms mean—they appear in the Introduction to Probability and Statistics course: ‘expected value,’ ‘variance,’ ‘degrees of freedom,’ and ‘standard deviation.’”
    • “I didn’t study math at high school, so I’d like to study the basics of statistics.”
    • How to create cross-tabulation tables in Excel
    • “I conducted data analysis, but don’t know how to interpret the results.”

Walk-in (no appointments necessary): Lunchtime and 4th and 5th periods (12:50- 16:20), Monday to Friday
Last entry 16:00

Othmer Library 1F (area beside the Writing Support Desk [WSD])
Located within the spacious Group Learning Area, Q-Support can offer both individual and group support. Students are also welcome to use the space around Q-Support for private study.

◆AY 2024 Spring Term◆
April 9 (Tue)–June 14 (Fri)*excluding May 3 (Fri)

◇Collaborating couses◇

We are collaborating with the following courses this term. LSs conduct publicity activities in classes and receive guidance from instructors of collaborating courses on policies and methods concerning the support offered. As stated above, Q-Support is also available for students seeking support unrelated to collaborating courses.

  • GEN026 Ideas of Data Science
  • GES039  Statistical Information Literacy
  • MTH101 Calculus I
  • MTH102 Introduction to Mathematics
  • ISC103 Foundation of Computers
  • ECO103 Statistics for Business and Economics

◇Subject areas◇


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