2022-2023 Undergraduate Bulletin

First-Year Seminar

The First-Year Seminar (FSEM) Program offers students an introduction to the intellectual life of the University. Offered in the Fall quarter, the small class size provides an in-depth academic experience that is rigorous and engaging. In addition to developing self-motivated academic passion, students can expect to hone the academic skills essential for successful college work.

Each seminar focuses on one or more of the following academic skills: writing, critical reading and thinking, discussion, argumentation and debate, and information literacy. This program enables students to engage with faculty in the exploration of novel and challenging topics, and lays the groundwork for extraordinary academic and personal growth.

Faculty members teach their passions in which they have particular expertise and enthusiasm, and each First-­Year Seminar has a unique topic, with 80–85 different First-Year Seminars offered each fall quarter. For students to be able to engage with faculty in the exploration of these topics is an extraordinary opportunity for academic and personal growth. Instructors of the First-Year Seminars also serve as students’ academic advisors and faculty mentors for the entire first year. Students meet individually with their mentors during winter and spring quarters for advis­ing and registration help.

This course must be taken at the University of Denver. Any student who either withdraws from or fails the First-Year Seminar must meet the requirement through an additional Advanced Seminar course. Students transferring to DU are exempt from this requirement if they are classified as a transfer student.

FSEM 1110 First Year Seminar: Enhancing Speaking Skills for International Students (4 Credits)

This course introduces undergraduate first-year international students to academic culture. In addition, the course introduces some aspects of American cultural ideals and values as they pertain to academic life. Many first-year undergraduate students face challenges with course work, balancing academic and campus life. The demands can be much more intense for first-year undergraduate international students, who navigate all the same issues while in a foreign culture. The instructors in these courses are sensitive to the demands placed on international students, and serve as formal advisors to the students in this course. In this class, students are challenged to participate as members of an intellectual community. The course work is designed to improve critical thinking skills and logical reasoning through impromptu and prepared discussion as well as classroom presentations. Students are expected to read articles and watch video outside class, refer to assigned texts during class discussion, synthesize ideas from course materials, and state and support their personal ideas regarding course topics. Must be a first-year international student to enroll in this course.

FSEM 1111 First Year Seminar (4 Credits)

First Year Seminar topics reflect the intellectual passions of the faculty who lead them. Seminars introduce students to the rigorous academic expectations of university-level work; as small, highly interactive courses, they help students improve skills in one or more of the following areas: writing, quantitative reasoning, critical thinking, presentation and argument, and/or information literacy. The instructor of the seminar serves as the student's academic advisor and mentor for the student's entire first year. This course is required for all first-year students.

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