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Independent Study

Guidelines

icon pdf Independent Study Application (Read the following Guidelines before completing this form.)

Independent Study Projects exist for students who desire to engage in specific research or fieldwork experiences that are not typically part of the curriculum. They are not intended for students who are simply fishing for credits.

Students who undertake independent study projects must realize that their responsibility is twofold:

  • First of all, they are enrolled in an academic credit earning course. Thus, they must, upon completion of their semester’s work, provide documentation, for example, a research paper of 25 pages or more. It is expected that a minimum of 45 hours of work be expended per semester credit received.
  • Second, the student should be aware that this is an individual project requiring individual initiative central to the notion of independent scholarship. Students are expected to approach a faculty member with a specific proposal of study. The role of the professor is that of guide and reference person and, of course, evaluator of the final product. It is the student’s responsibility to make wise and prudent use of the professor. By regularly communicating with the professor and receiving feedback on the project, the student can insure that the final product is acceptable.
  • An unacceptable final project can result in either an incomplete or failing grade.
  • A student must seek the tentative approval of a sponsor no later than December 1 for spring term projects and no later than May 1 for fall term projects. At this time the student must submit a completed application with 500-word prospectus and a 10-item briefly annotated preliminary bibliography of secondary sources.

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