Special Programs

Directed Studies

Directed Studies is a selective freshman interdisciplinary program in Western civilization. One hundred twenty-five freshmen are admitted to the program each fall.

The Literature, Philosophy, and History and Politics tracks of Directed Studies together comprise one coherent program of study, and students must enroll in all three tracks simultaneously. Successful completion of the fall-term Directed Studies courses is a prerequisite to enrolling in the spring-term courses.

The Freshman Web site describes the program and explains the application procedure. Additional information is available on the program’s Web site.

Freshman Seminar Program

The Freshman Seminar program offers first-year students the opportunity to enroll in small classes with some of Yale’s most eminent faculty members. Roughly fifty freshman seminars across a wide range of subjects are offered every year, in both fall and spring terms. Some seminars provide an introduction to a particular field of study; others take an interdisciplinary approach to a variety of topics. Whatever the subject and method of instruction, all seminars are designed with freshmen in mind and provide a context for developing relationships with faculty members and peers.

A description of the program and application procedures can be viewed on the program’s Web site.

Residential College Seminars

The Residential College Seminar program, instituted in 1968, is devoted to the development of innovative courses that fall outside traditional departmental structures. The instructors for the seminar program are drawn from the University community and from the region, including individuals outside academic life such as writers, artists, participants in government and the public sector, and experts from the arts and the media. The college seminar program encourages innovative courses, and student committees in the residential colleges play a significant role in selecting seminars, but all courses in the program must satisfy standard requirements for academic credit in Yale College and must be approved by the relevant faculty committees that oversee the curriculum.

Each residential college sponsors at least one seminar each term. Additional seminars are occasionally sponsored directly by the program and are equally open to students from all residential colleges. Descriptions of the seminars are found on the program’s Web site.

The DeVane Lectures

The DeVane Lectures are a special series of lectures that are open to the general public as well as to students and to other members of the Yale community. They were established in 1969 in honor of William Clyde DeVane, Dean of Yale College from 1939 to 1963. Details of the course are listed under DeVane Lecture Course in Subjects of Instruction. Supplementary meetings will be held for those students taking the lectures for credit.

Reserve Officers Training Corps (ROTC)

Yale hosts both Naval and Air Force ROTC units, which offer qualified Yale College students an opportunity to pursue their regular Yale degrees while also preparing for leadership positions in the United States Air Force, Navy, or Marine Corps. Regardless of financial need, participating students may receive significant help in meeting the costs of a Yale education. Further information about the Air Force ROTC program can be found on the Yale AFROTC Web site or under Aerospace Studies in Subjects of Instruction. Further information about the Naval ROTC program (including the Marine Corps program) can be found on the Yale NROTC Web site or under Naval Science in Subjects of Instruction. Students not matriculated at Yale who are participating in a Yale ROTC program as part of a cross-town arrangement are subject to Yale College’s Undergraduate Regulations.

Francis Writer-in-Residence

The Francis Writer-in-Residence in Yale College is a distinguished writer of nonfiction who teaches either one or two courses each academic year. He or she is actively engaged with undergraduate life and serves as an academic mentor through seminars, readings, meetings with students, and other activities. The Francis Writer-in-Residence for 2015–2016 is Anne Fadiman.

Rosenkranz Writer-in-Residence

The Rosenkranz Writer-in-Residence in Yale College is a distinguished professional writer, chosen from fiction writers, playwrights, critics, journalists, screenwriters, essayists, poets, and social commentators. Both as a fellow of a residential college and as an instructor of one or two courses in each academic year, the Rosenkranz Writer-in-Residence meets formally and informally with students through classes and through readings and extracurricular activities. The Rosenkranz Writer-in-Residence for 2015–2016 is Louise Glück.

Yale Journalism Initiative

The Yale Journalism Initiative brings a distinguished writer to campus to teach an advanced journalism seminar, ENGL 467. Students who complete the seminar may apply to become Yale Journalism Scholars, a distinction that provides access to summer support for internships, career counseling with a journalism specialist in the Writing Center, and invitations to meet professional journalists at events both on and off campus. For more information on the initiative or on becoming a Journalism Scholar, see the Journalism Initiative Web site.

Education Studies Undergraduate Scholars Program

The Education Studies Undergraduate Scholars program establishes an interdisciplinary cohort of scholars who are interested in education practice, policy, and/or research. Each Scholar completes electives within the Education Studies curriculum, a summer or academic-year field experience, and a senior capstone project. Education Studies Scholars also explore educational topics through symposia led by Yale faculty and advising relationships with mentors. Students may apply to the Education Studies Undergraduate Scholars program in their sophomore year. The prerequisite for applying is EDST 110, Foundations in Education Studies. For more information, see the program’s Web site.

Energy Studies Undergraduate Scholars Program

Yale Climate & Energy Institute (YCEI) sponsors the Energy Studies Undergraduate Scholars program. The program promotes a multidisciplinary approach to the linked challenges of energy and climate, and provides students with training in the science and technology of energy, the environmental and social impacts of energy production and use, and the economics, planning, and regulation of energy systems and markets. Energy Studies Scholars acquire the broad knowledge and skills needed for advanced studies and for leadership in energy-related fields. Further information is available on the program’s Web site.

Special Academic Program in Human Rights

The Special Academic Program in Human Rights seeks to equip students with an academic foundation from which to engage meaningfully with human rights scholarship and practice. The program is based on an understanding that human rights constitutes a rich and interdisciplinary field of study, drawing on bodies of work in history, literature, economics, political science, philosophy, anthropology, law, and area studies. The program provides students with relevant analytical, conceptual, and practical skills; connects students to affiliated faculty and peers; supports student research projects and internship opportunities; and offers career guidance in the field. For more information see the Human Rights program Web site.

Global Health Studies Program

The Global Health Studies program is designed for students interested in understanding and addressing pressing global health challenges. Although courses in global health are open to all undergraduates, students desiring greater depth in the field are encouraged to apply to become a Global Health Fellow (GHF). Fellows are typically selected in the fall of their sophomore year although, in exceptional cases, juniors may also be accepted. GHFs complete an interdisciplinary course of study that includes required and elective courses and fieldwork (e.g., internships with NGOs, or field-based research either with faculty or independently with faculty guidance). In the summer after junior year, GHFs conduct their own independent global health fieldwork, for which they receive support in the form of course work, designated funding, and mentorship from an assigned global health faculty adviser. During their senior year, GHFs are expected to incorporate their fieldwork and classroom experiences into their senior requirement and to develop a publication-worthy written product. Additional information can be found on the program’s Web site.

Center for Teaching and Learning

The Yale Center for Teaching and Learning (CTL) provides an array of teaching, tutoring, writing, and technology-enabled learning programs distributed across the University. The Center supports effective course design and promotes evidence-based teaching methods for University instructors, including faculty and teaching assistants. The Center also supports student learning and provides opportunities for students to develop as teachers, mentors, and leaders. Both the Center for Language Study and the Yale College Writing Center are included as units within the CTL. More information is available on the Web site of the Center for Teaching and Learning.

Center for Language Study

The Center for Language Study (CLS), a unit of the Center for Teaching and Learning, provides resources for students of foreign languages and for language courses. The CLS also provides support for nonnative speakers of English through its English Language Program. For undergraduates enrolled in a foreign language course, the CLS offers peer tutoring in the target language. For students in Yale College and in the graduate and professional schools, the CLS offers specialized language programs such as Directed Independent Language Study (DILS) for the study of languages not taught at Yale, and the Fields program for discipline-specific and advanced language study. For professional school students, the CLS offers courses in language for special purposes, such as Spanish or Chinese for medical professionals. All language learners at Yale have access to CLS facilities, including its study rooms and multimedia labs. For more information, including hours, a list of resources, and information about Yale’s foreign language requirement and placement testing, see the Center’s Web site.

Expository Writing

The Yale College Writing Center, a unit of the Center for Teaching and Learning, supports a range of courses and tutoring services to help undergraduates improve their writing. The English department offers several courses specifically designed to prepare students for writing throughout the University, and other departments in the humanities, social sciences, and sciences complement this offering with courses (designated WR in the course listings) that give special attention to the conventions and expectations of writing in particular disciplines.

Beyond the regular departmental offerings, the Writing Center provides several ways for students to get help with writing. The most important of these is the presence of a Writing Tutor in each residential college. Tutors meet with students on a one-to-one basis to discuss rough drafts of work in progress, research techniques, revision strategies, or other matters relevant to effective writing. Tutors can help with any writing project: senior essays, course papers, graduate school and fellowship applications, or anything intended for publication. The Writing Partners, another resource, are undergraduate and graduate students who offer drop-in help to students at any stage of writing. Finally, the Writing Center Web site offers information on using sources effectively and avoiding plagiarism.

The Yale College Writing Center is maintained through the continuing support of the Bass family, the Newhouse Foundation, and other foundations. Its mission is to encourage excellence in writing and the use of writing for learning throughout the College. More detailed information is available on the Writing Center Web site.

Science and Quantitative Reasoning Tutors

Tutoring programs for science and quantitative reasoning courses are offered through the Center for Teaching and Learning. The Residential College Math and Science Tutoring program offers tutoring in the residential colleges to all Yale College students. Tutoring is available at scheduled times and on a walk-in basis, and is provided in all areas of math and science as well as in economics. Information about tutoring can be found at each residential college dean’s office and on the Residential College Math and Science Tutoring Web site.

To assist students who require more personalized or longer-term support, the Center for Teaching and Learning also administers a Science and QR Tutoring program. This program provides individual tutoring to undergraduates in the full range of science and quantitative disciplines, including economics. Any student enrolled in Yale College who is experiencing academic difficulty in a course, as confirmed by the instructor, is eligible for up to ten hours of tutoring per course each term free of charge. Further information is available at each residential college dean’s office and on the CTL Web site.

Resource Office on Disabilities

To ensure that all students have an equal opportunity to make the most of their Yale education, the Resource Office on Disabilities facilitates individual accommodations for students with disabilities, and works to remove physical and attitudinal barriers to their full participation in the University community. The office provides technical assistance, information, and disability awareness training to any member of the Yale community.

Current and prospective students with disabilities are encouraged to contact the Resource Office on Disabilities to schedule a meeting with staff at 35 Broadway (rear entrance), room 222. Inquiries can be made by mail to Resource Office on Disabilities, Yale University, P.O. Box 208305, New Haven, CT 06520-8305, or by phone at (203) 432-2324. Additional information is available on the Resource Office Web site.

Simultaneous Award of the Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees

Yale College students with appropriate qualifications may enroll in courses in the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences. Such enrollment requires permission of the course’s instructor and of the director of graduate studies of the department in which the course is offered.

A limited number of students of demonstrated ability may undertake graduate work that will qualify them for the simultaneous award of the bachelor’s and master’s degrees at the end of their senior year. Details of the requirements are listed under Special Arrangements in the Academic Regulations.

Combined Bachelor’s and Masters Degree Programs in the Professional Schools

Well-qualified students may be able to structure their undergraduate programs so as to become eligible for a master’s degree in Public Health, Forestry & Environmental Studies, or Music after one additional year of graduate study at Yale. For more information see the respective program descriptions in Subjects of Instruction.

Eli Whitney Students Program

The Eli Whitney Students program is designed for individuals with high academic potential who seek to obtain a bachelor of arts or bachelor of science degree from Yale College and who may need to study on a part-time basis. The program enrolls a small number of students who have demonstrated leadership and maturity and who enrich Yale College through their life experience, sense of purpose, and character.

A minimum of eighteen course credits from Yale as a matriculated student is required, and the degree must be completed within seven years. The program is described more fully under Eli Whitney Students Program in the Academic Regulations. Additional information is available on the program’s Web site.

Yale Visiting International Student Program

The Yale Visiting International Student program (Y-VISP) invites selected undergraduate students from Y-VISP partner institutions to pursue full-time study in Yale College for one academic year. Y-VISP students maintain a full course load, live in the residential colleges alongside Yale College students, and are fully integrated members of Yale College’s academic, residential, and extracurricular communities. Y-VISP oversight and governance is managed by the program’s director and the Y-VISP Steering Committee. Additional information is available on the program’s Web site.