Undergraduate Policies

Independent Study

Students may earn credit through a supervised learning experience in which the student plays a significant part in determining the learning objectives and anticipated outcomes. IS provides students a unique opportunity to work closely with a faculty mentor while studying a subject of their own choice. This learning experience, however, should not duplicate material delivered within an existing course catalog. Only students who are prepared to devote considerable time and effort should undertake IS. Planning of the scope and structure of this learning experience should begin in the semester preceding enrollment, not during the term of the IS.

Before registering for the IS, students must secure the written approval of a faculty member who has agreed to supervise the work. Approval of IS can be expected if the faculty member has the time and the interest to supervise the student’s work, and if the supervisor and the student can agree in advance on a suitable subject for independent study. Faculty members may choose which applicants they wish to supervise. The decision will be determined by the faculty member’s time available, professional interests and his/her estimate of an applicant’s prospects for doing suitable work.

The student plans specific activities and goals with the help of the cooperating faculty member. S/he must then receive approval for the plans and complete the Independent Study agreement form, which is available online at the Registrar’s website. The student is responsible for bringing the completed and signed form to the University Registrar for official enrollment purposes.