Independent Study with Faculty Members

Independent study is a course taken for credit, which is tailored to fit the interests of a specific student, and which occurs outside the traditional "classroom/laboratory setting."

Independent study is carried out under the direct supervision of a faculty member having expertise in a particular area of investigation. Consequently the project will be done in the department primarily responsible for the field of study. Prior to enrollment in independent study, students must obtain the approval of their advisor, faculty sponsor, and the faculty sponsor's department chairperson.

Independent study may be taken for variable credit. The amount of credit to be granted should be mutually agreed upon by the student and the faculty sponsor prior to registration. When a project is to cover more than one term, the designation XC (extended course), rather than incomplete, should be used on the final grade sheet for the first term of work.

Academic units offering independent study will be responsible for administering such work. Specific guidelines, which define the responsibilities of both faculty and student for administering the independent study, are noted below. Alternative guidelines that incorporate these basic points are acceptable.

Faculty Resource: Prof. Patrick Neal

Program Guidelines

  1. The success of an independent study project is often related to the amount of advance planning expended on the project. Consequently, planning for the project should, whenever possible, be initiated in the semester before the course is taken.
  2. By the end of the add/drop period, students will be required to submit to their faculty sponsor a specific plan which must include, but not be limited to, the following
  3. During the first full week of classes te student and the faculty sponsor will meet and prepare a document which includes the following:
  4. It is the responsibility of the faculty supervisor to ensure that all the provisions outlined above have been satisfactorily accomplished. Copies of all documents and schedules mentioned must be filed with the department chairperson by the end of the add/drop period. Faculty sponsors should retain the completed projects, along with faculty evaluations, for review, if necessary, by appropriate school/college committees.