Regardless of intended major or academic background, all incoming Duke students need a fundamental grounding in quantiative concepts and skills in order to succeed at Duke. ASCEND introduces students to the academic rigor and methods of quantitative study in college. 

Risk-free Learning

ASCEND allows students to chart their progress in a risk-free, learning-oriented environment by collecting badges for various accomplishments. There are no grades. A student’s performance on the quizzes and problem sets in ASCEND will have no impact on their academic standing at Duke, and serves purely as a way to evaluate and improve their preparation for the credit-bearing courses they will take in the fall. 


ASCEND is not only an academic program, but also a social one. Your coach will have group meetings where you can interact with your peers online before you get to campus. ASCEND participants will have access to their coaches before the semester kicks off and watch videos created by your coaches at any time.  The entire ASCEND community will also get together to connect with faculty in Duke’s STEM departments.