Dean: John D. Bell, Professor, Physiology and Developmental Biology
Associate Dean—General Education: John D. Lamb, Professor, Chemistry and Biochemistry
Associate Dean—Honors Program: Madison U. Sowell, Professor, Italian and Comparative Literature
Associate Dean—University Writing: Gary L. Hatch, Associate Professor, English
Associate Dean—First-Year Experience: R. Steven Turley, Professor, Physics and Astronomy
Assistant Dean: Carolyn Tuitupou
The Office of Undergraduate Education supervises and fosters essential university-wide elements of the baccalaureate: General Education, Honors Program, University Writing, and First-Year Experience, including Freshman Academy and New Student Orientation. These interrelated programs together promote and champion teaching and learning within an integrated university education. They aim to enrich the educational experience and to benefit the life of each undergraduate student.
The General Education (GE) components of the university core are overseen by an associate dean and administrative assistant. The Faculty General Education Council, consisting of faculty members from a variety of disciplines and chaired by the associate dean, regularly reviews general education courses and has final authority to decide which courses meet GE requirements. From time to time the associate dean, in consultation with the dean and the administration, initiates a broad-based, systematic evaluation of the GE program that may result in recommendations for changes.
General Education requirements are set forth in the University Core section of this catalog. Beyond this and the more detailed listing in the current class schedule, the recommended source of information and advice about General Education requirements is the individual college advisement center. The ten college advisement centers, together with the University Advisement Center (2500 WSC), provide assistance with registration, graduation requirements, policies and procedures, fields of study, changes of major, appeals, and many other aspects of academic life. The General Education Office (350 MSRB) regularly consults with each advisement center on issues related to GE.
The General Education Office promotes the university forum assemblies, which are designed to complement specific GE components of the university core or the idea of liberal education itself. A forum speaker may be nominated by any member of the university community (student, faculty, or staff). Nominations are evaluated by the Forum Committee, comprising faculty and student representatives, which recommends speakers to the university administration.
In an ongoing effort to strengthen the GE offerings in the university core, the General Education Office is engaged in faculty and course development through the GE Academy on Teaching and Learning, faculty general education seminars, and grants for course development and enhancement. It also oversees faculty teaching awards for excellence in general education (including honors GE) courses: the Alcuin Fellowships and the Karl G. Maeser General Education Professorships. (For a description and list of current recipients, see the Maeser Fellowships and Alcuin Fellows section of this catalog.) General education courses are taught by faculty from throughout the university, and the General Education Office works closely with the colleges in a collaborative effort to foster a strong and engaging GE offering within the university core.
The Honors Program, open to all BYU students following a brief orientation, complements the university's expansive educational agenda by providing the benefits of a small liberal arts learning community. These benefits include opportunities to enroll in small classes with high-quality teaching and learning that challenge students to reach their highest potential; fostering a spirit of ongoing inquiry that includes undergraduate research in a mentored environment; and underscoring the importance of combining personal excellence, faithful discipleship, and meaningful service. See the Honors Program section of this catalog for details concerning the program's requirements, offerings, benefits, administration, extra-curricular opportunities, and student-operated advisement center.
University Writing promotes effective written, oral, and visual communication, helping students to succeed in their academic work and laying a foundation for lifelong learning. The Aims of a BYU Education states that undergraduates should acquire "language abilities that enable students to listen, speak, read, and write well; to communicate effectively with a wide range of audiences in one's area of expertise as well as on general subjects." University Writing purposes to accomplish these objectives through general education courses in First-Year Writing and Advanced Written and Oral Communication—offered both in departments and in the Honors Program—as well as by enhancing writing instruction in courses throughout the curriculum.
Through the Writing Across the Curriculum (WAC) program, University Writing helps faculty members integrate writing instruction within their content courses. WAC trains teaching assistants as evaluators of writing; sponsors faculty workshops, often in conjunction with bringing writing experts to campus; and publishes a newsletter, Writing Matters. These efforts are supported by the Writing Fellows program. Writing Fellows is a discipline-based, peer-tutoring program that encourages and supports the development of mature student writing across the disciplines. University Writing also promotes student publication by encouraging faculty members to mentor students in research and writing and by supporting student academic journals.
Students have the opportunity to take part in any or all of these programs during their time at BYU to improve their abilities to communicate effectively in their own disciplines and across the curriculum.
The First-Year Experience Office (FYE) facilitates coordination of all university efforts that have an impact on new students. This includes helping new students develop habits of the mind to deepen and enrich their BYU experience, establish personal connections, find their way around campus, develop an awareness of available campus resources, and improve their sense of purpose and motivation by increasing their understanding of BYU's heritage and history. These efforts span the time between students' first contact with BYU and the end of their first year on campus.
Before students arrive at BYU, FYE coordinates projects that provide students and their parents with information through Web sites and e-mail. In collaboration with other university units, the office provides additional information and links about campus resources through mailings to new students (freshman and transfer), local firesides, and individual telephone contact. When students first arrive on campus, FYE—assisted by representatives from key university areas in a campus-wide undertaking—coordinates New Student Orientation to facilitate personal contact, an introduction to campus locations, campus life activities, advisement, and mentoring by peers and university faculty and staff. Throughout the student's first year, FYE provides additional transition assistance through Freshman Academy (see below), freshman seminars, peer mentoring, and other First-Year events. The seminars (Univ 101, together with Honrs 100) provide an opportunity for incoming students to have sustained engagement with a faculty member on an academic subject in a small-group context.
|DESCRIPTION:||Aims of a BYU education in a disciplinary context. Topics vary by section and semester.|
Director: Patricia B. Esplin
Associate Director: Fred Pinnegar
(801) 422-8176 or 1-877-890-5451
Freshman Academy is a one-semester learning communities program designed to integrate first-year students into the life of the university and connect them with campus resources. Relatively small groups of students take the same set of three or more classes together and may live near each other in residence halls. (Options for students who live off-campus are also available). Participation in Freshman Academy gives students an immediate sense of community and involvement in the life of the university.
Freshman Academy learning communities are a mentored environment in which upper-division students serve as peer mentors. These peer mentors, many of them former participants in the program, encourage students to adopt good learning habits, help them form study groups, and model successful learning practices. The peer mentors also help students connect with the cultural, academic, spiritual, and social resources available on campus and support faculty in each learning community.
To further enhance the academic experience, Freshman Academy professors often collaborate to explore the relationships among their courses, and they interact with students outside the classroom through field trips, shared meals, and other activities.
Because Freshman Academy allows students to register for several classes at once, participation reduces the difficulties many first-year students experience with the registration process. Students in learning communities have the opportunity to take university core, elective, and major-specific courses with other students who have similar interests.
The figure below is an example of a learning community composed solely of courses meeting university core requirements:
|Rel A 121|
|Engl 150||Engl 150||Honrs 150|
The next figure illustrates a learning community created for students with a particular major in mind. It combines university core and major courses:
|Rel A 121|
|Engl 150||Honrs 150||Honrs 150||Engl 150|
Many Freshman Academy students receive priority placement in on-campus housing, allowing them to live near other students from their learning community. These residency provisions make it easier for students to form study groups, work on projects, and develop long-lasting relationships. Contact Residence Life at http://www.byu.edu/housing/oncampushousing/ to apply for on-campus housing. In addition to class-related activities, Freshman Academy learning communities socialize, attend cultural events, and participate in service-learning projects together. All of these activities contribute to the individual student's achievement of the academic and spiritual aims of a BYU education.
Participation in a Freshman Academy learning community helps students become aware of the responsibilities they owe to themselves and to others. It is a serious commitment, and the program expects students to be true to their word, to attend and participate in classes, to work collaboratively with fellow students, to respect the dignity and individuality of others, and to respond to the spiritual and temporal needs of individuals and communities. By interacting with others in these ways and taking responsibility for their own learning, Freshman Academy students develop the attributes of responsible and engaged citizens.
Participants in the Freshman Academy program reflect the composition of the entire BYU freshman class in the distribution of majors and levels of academic preparation. A few learning communities are composed entirely or partially of honors-designated courses for highly-prepared and motivated students. All first-semester students are encouraged to participate in Freshman Academy during either the fall or winter semesters or summer term.
For more information about Freshman Academy and to view learning community options, please visit http://academy.byu.edu.
The Office of Prestigious Scholarships and Fellowships assists students in finding and applying for major externally funded scholarships and fellowships for undergraduate and graduate study (e.g., National Science Foundation, Fulbright, Rhodes, Goldwater, Truman, etc.) and scholarships for research opportunities, summer programs, and study abroad. Students are encouraged to review the online information describing each scholarship at www.byu.edu/scholarships. For more information contact Carolyn Tuitupou in 102B MSRB or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.