Skip to main content

Individual Studies


Independent and Directed Study

Independent Study is advanced critical study or research on a specific topic under the guidance of a faculty member in a department. Students may register for course 400 in the related academic department with the permission of the faculty member and the department chair.

Directed Study is study of a particular topic of interest under the direction of a faculty member. Students may register for courses 199, 299, 399 and 499 in departments that offer directed study. Permission is required from the department chair and the instructor.

No more than 6 credits in independent and directed studies combined may be applied toward the Bachelor of Arts degree. In one term, no more than 1 credit of independent study and 1 credit of directed study may be earned in a given department. Courses in IND/DIR may not replace coursework regularly offered and/or are part of the faculty-approved curriculum. 

Private study

In exceptional cases, a student who is a graduation candidate and who critically needs a course may petition to take a required course through private study with an instructor. The student must petition the Committee on Advanced Standing and Degrees and the Dean of the College for final approval. The student is responsible for all fees above and beyond regular tuition.

Approvals will only be considered when:

  • The course is not offered at a time when the student needs to take it. 
  • The course is required for the student to complete their major and/or degree. 
  • The course is not enabling early graduation.
  • The student is responsible for securing a faculty member who will agree to teach the course in a Private Study arrangement*
  • The student is responsible for making petition to the Committee on Advanced Standing and Degrees with supporting statement from the department in which the course will be offered.
  • Pre-payment is required in the business office prior to enrollment

All regular academic policies, including enrollment and grading deadlines, apply for private study courses. For information, students should consult their advisor, a faculty member and the Dean of the College.

*The college is not obligated to offer this option to a student and faculty are not obligated to teach in a Private Study arrangement.