First-Year Seminars

About First-Year Seminar

(one-term course taught in winter or spring terms)

First-Year Seminars offer every first-year student an opportunity to participate in a course structured around intensive writing, independent research, and small group discussion. The First-year Seminar program serves four purposes. First, by means of a uniform writing requirement, the seminar stresses the importance of written expression in all disciplines. Second, it provides an attractive and exciting supplement to the usual introductory survey. Third, it guarantees each first-year student at least one small course. Fourth, the program engages each first-year student in the research process, offering an early experience of the scholarship that fuels Dartmouth's upper-level courses.

First-year Seminars are offered in many different departments under the course number "07.XX", for example, WRIT 07.02.

Enrollment in a First-year Seminar is limited to 16 students. Enrollment above the limit is never allowed in a First-year Seminar course. Open slots are first-come, first-served. No waiting lists are maintained.

A First-year Seminar may serve in satisfaction of specific General Education requirements, provided that the individual seminar has been approved for this purpose, and for the specific year and term, by the Committee on Instruction. First-Year Seminars cannot serve for major or minor credit or as a prerequisite to the major.

Important Scheduling Guidelines Regarding First-year Seminars:

  • Successful completion of Writing 5 (or its approved equivalents) is a prerequisite for enrollment in a First-year Seminar (or Humanities 2).
  • The First-year Seminar (or Humanities 2) must be taken during the first year, in the term immediately following completion of Writing 5 (or its approved equivalents).
  • A student is not eligible to take part in an off-campus program until the First-year Seminar (or Humanities 2) is completed.