Course Recommendations by Academic Department Fall 2018
Accounting: major / individual courses
We offer the following advice for first-year students contemplating majoring in Accounting:
- INTR 201 needs to be completed by the end of the your first-year
- ECON 100 need to be completed by the end of your sophomore year.
- ACCT 100 should be taken during your first-year Winter Term or during your sophomore year. It is a prerequisite to many of the Business Adminstration courses, so if you wish to take those courses during your sophomore year, taking ACCT 100 earlier, rather than later, will allow you to enroll.
- INTR 202 must be completed by the end of your second year.
- BUS 211 and 221 may be taken in the Winter Term of the second year if the student has satisfied applicable pre-requisites (listed above) in ACCT, ECON, and INTR.
Students are also urged to take as much mathematics as they are capable of handling. Be aware, however, that MATH 118 will NOT satisfy the statistics requirement for Accounting majors.
You are attending one of the finest liberal arts institutions in the country. Accordingly, prospective majors should fully immerse themselves in the liberal arts upon enrollment and continue to take courses outside accounting during their time at W&L.
Recommendations are the same as those for Accounting. In addition the prospective major should talk to the department head (Afshad Irani, email@example.com , 458.8628) and consider whether this major is appropriate.
Africana Studies: minor / individual courses
- Students seeking to complete the Program in Africana Studies typically begin with AFCA 130: An Introduction to Africana Studies. This course is open to all first-year students and satisfies an FDR requirement. Other courses in the program may also be taken in any sequence, though generally we recommend that students should wait until the sophomore year to take those courses numbered at the 300 level.
- This program requires a student to complete 21 credits in seven courses.
- Students should consult with Professor Ted DeLaney, Director of the Program in Africana Studies, Newcomb Hall, 540.458.8963.
Arabic: individual courses
Students seeking courses in Arabic should contact Prof. Antoine Edwards for placement information or to express interest in beginning Arabic.
Archaeology: minor / individual courses
Recommended for first-year students interested in the Archaeology minor:
- Take SOAN 206, ARTH/CLAS 200, SOAN 210, or SOAN 211
Art and Art History: majors / minors / individual courses
Recommended for prospective art majors:
- Art History: 101 and 102 (15 spaces held in 101 for first-years in fall term), 140, and 253, 254, 255, 258, 262, 263, or 267;
- Studio Art: 111 (12 spaces held for first-years in fall term), 112, 120, 131 (10 spaces held for first-years in fall and winter), 211, 217, 231
Recommended for first-year students taking art course for a humanities distribution, who have had some background in art or art history:
- Art History: 101 and 102 (15 spaces held in 101 for first-years in fall term), 140, 254, 258, 262, 263, or 267;
- Studio Art: 111 (12 spaces held for first-years in fall term), 112, 120, 131 (10 spaces held for first-years in fall and winter), 211, 217, 231
Recommended for first-year students taking art courses for a humanities distribution, but who have had no background in art or art history:
- Art History: 101 and 102 (15 spaces held in 101 for first-years in fall term), 140, (if background and interest in Asian art);
- Studio Art: 111 (12 spaces held for first-years in fall term), 112, 120, 131 (10 spaces held for first-years in fall and winter).
First-year students interested in studio classes should speak to the instructor and bring examples of their work if possible.
There is a minor in Museum Studies, and prospective students should talk with the Head of the Art and Art History Department.
Biology: majors / minors / individual courses
For first-year students taking biology for distribution requirements:
- Biology 101, 105, 111/113 (non-science majors who wish to take BIOL 111/113 are encouraged to do so during winter term)
Required for students planning to take advanced courses in biology:
- Mathematics 101, 102, Biology 111/113, and Chemistry 110.
For prospective biology, neuroscience, or environmental studies majors in their first year, a desirable schedule is:
- BIOL 111/113 (fall) and CHEM 110 (winter, for biology and neuroscience majors)
- Mathematics (through MATH 102)
- WRIT 100 (complete the writing foundation requirement)
Foreign Language foundation requirement
Business Administration: major / individual courses
We offer the following advice for first-year students contemplating majoring in Business Administration:
- INTR 201 needs to be completed by the end of the your first-year
- ECON 100 need to be completed by the end of your sophomore year.
- ACCT 201 should be taken during your first-year Winter Term and ACCT 202 during the Fall Term of your sophomore year. Both need to be completed by the end of your sophomore year.
- INTR 202 must be completed by the end of your second year.
- BUS 211, 217, and 221 may be taken in the Winter Term of the second year if the student has satisfied applicable pre-requisites (listed above) in ACCT, ECON, and INTR.
Students are also urged to take as much mathematics as they are capable of handling.
Be aware, however, that MATH 118 will NOT satisfy the statistics requirement for Business Administration majors.
You are attending one of the finest liberal arts institutions in the country. Accordingly, prospective business administration majors should fully immerse themselves in the liberal arts upon enrollment and continue to take courses outside business during their time at W&L.
Chemistry and Biochemistry: majors / individual courses
For first-year students taking chemistry courses for foundation and distribution requirements:
- CHEM 100 (fall term); and CHEM 106, CHEM 155, and CHEM 160 (spring term) all provide a four-credit laboratory science course.
- CHEM 110 also meets a distribution requirement, but it is intended only for students who plan to use science professionally (e.g., scientists, engineers, doctors, and other health professionals).
For first-years taking chemistry courses as part of any science major or in preparation for health professions:
- CHEM 110 and BIOL 111, 113 (one in fall term, one in winter term)
- MATH 101 and 102 are required in most science majors.
For prospective chemistry or biochemistry majors in their first year, a desirable schedule is:
- CHEM 110 and BIOL 111, 113 (one in fall term, one in winter term)
- Mathematics (for health professions or B.S. in biochemistry, through MATH 102; for B.S. in chemistry or chemistry-engineering, MATH 221).
- WRIT 100 (complete the Writing Foundation).
- Foreign Language Foundation.
Chinese: (see East Asian Languages and Literatures)
Classics: major / minor / individual courses
Who should take the placement test in Latin? A diagnostic placement test is offered online over the summer.
- All incoming students with academic experience in Latin and intending to study Latin at W&L should take the placement exam.
- Students with no prior experience of Latin need not take the placement test.
- Also, students who have scored 5 on the Advanced Placement Latin test need not take the diagnostic test. Such students should consider studying Latin at the advanced (or 300)-level.
- Finally, students not intending to study Latin at Washington and Lee need not take the diagnostic test.
Students with academic experience of ancient Greek and wishing to continue their study at Washington and Lee should consult Professor Michael Laughy, 540.458.4569. A good time to do this is during orientation.
Recommended for prospective classics majors:
- Latin and/or Greek;
- Courses in classics, ancient art, ancient philosophy, and ancient history.
Suggested for first-year students taking classics for FDRs:
- Classics 180, 200, 201, 203, 204, 205, 210, 215, 223, 225 238, 295
- Latin and/or Greek at appropriate level to satisfy either the language or the literature requirement.
Students interested in taking Latin are offered a placement test. On the basis of this test result, sometimes combined with a review of the student's secondary experience, a placement recommendation is made. If there is any reason to doubt the appropriateness of this placement recommendation the adviser should send the student to see a representative of the Classics Department. Students with no prior Latin study are welcome in Latin 101, and one might point out that the language requirement can be met by successful completion of only twelve credits. All upper levels of Latin are open to first-year students based on qualifications.
A note of caution to advisers: It is not a good idea to recommend Latin to students who claim that they are not good at languages. Students signing up for Latin 101 should be made aware that it is a very challenging course, and requires considerable diligence if the student is to do well. Please explore with your advisee his or her language needs. Latin is indeed a very useful course for understanding many European languages, and for offering insights into the structure of language as such. Any student undertaking the study of Latin, however, will find it necessary to make a determined effort from the very beginning to master the assignments.
It is unusual for an entering student to have studied Greek on the secondary level. Any such student who expresses a desire to continue study of this language should be referred to a representative of the Classics Department. First-years with experience in Latin are welcome in Greek 101. First-years without experience in Latin should not register for the course until they have first spoken to the instructor.
Classics courses at the 200 level are appropriate for entering students with a normal secondary background. In the case of Classics at the 300 level, first-year students should consult the professor, since the subject matter may presuppose a certain level of sophistication.
Computer Science: majors / minor / individual courses
Computer Science Courses for First-Year Students
- Students may satisfy the Foundations Mathematics requirement by taking CSCI 101 (Survey of Computer Science), CSCI 102 (Introduction to Computational Modeling), CSCI 111 (Fundamentals of Programming I), or CSCI 121 (Scientific Computing).
- CSCI 101 is intended for students who want an overview of the field in breadth and depth, with a focus on current topics like multimedia computing. Students who simply want to fulfill the FM requirement should enroll in CSCI 101.
- CSCI 102 is intended for students interested specifically in computational modeling, which is useful in the sciences, business, and economics.
- CSCI 111 is intended for students who want a first course in programming and problem solving that assumes no prior programming experience. Students who are potential majors or who want programming experience for other coursework should take CSCI 111. Note that CSCI 111 (or 121) is a requirement for a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics. The content and approach of the introductory programming course, CSCI 111, is similar to the AP A course in computer science. For potential computer science majors or minors in their first year, the ideal schedule is CSCI 111 in the fall and CSCI 112 in the winter.
- CSCI 121 (Scientific Computing), offered in alternate winter terms, is intended for science students wanting a programming course with scientific applications. Programming is done in Python. Note that CSCI 121 is a requirement for a major in Neuroscience and may also be used to satisfy the programming requirement for a BS in Mathematics. This course is offered in alternate winter terms and will next be offered in Winter 2017.
- For more information about the courses and major, see our department website, http://www.cs.wlu.edu, or contact Professor Lambert at 540.458.8909 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Creative Writing: minor
Recommended for prospective Creative Writing minors in their first year:
- After satisfying the first-year writing requirement, students may enroll in any 200-level creative writing workshop (ENGL 202, 203, 204, 205, 206, 207 or THTR 220), and/or in any 200-level literature class in English except for 299. Both workshops and literature courses at the 200-level may be used towards minor requirements.
Dance: minor / individual courses
- For first-year students taking dance courses: DANC 110, 120 and 250.
- Dance 110 is required of all students interested in performing in the W&L Repertory Dance Company Concert.
- No prior training or dance experience is required for DANC 240: Contemporary Modern Dance History, DANC 202: Dance Europe, DANC 233: Movement for Actors, and DANC 250: Ariel Dance Techniques
Digital Culture and Information: individual courses
Digital humanities is the application of digital methods and tools on the humanities and social sciences. Students learn the basics of technology in order to analyze and visualize data, design and write for the web, perform textual analysis, or create a map.
All DCI courses are open and APPROPRIATE for first-years. Some DCI-designated courses are cross-listed in other departments AND MAY NOT BE APPROPRIATE FOR FIRST YEARS. PLEASE CHECK WITH THE DEPARTMENT OFFERING THE COURSE.
- DCI 102: Data in the Humanities (SC), offered in fall
- DCI 108: Communication through the Web, offered in fall
- DCI 180: FS: Black Mirrors and Digital Culture, offered in fall
East Asian Languages and Literatures: majors / individual courses
The Department of East Asian Languages and Literatures (EALL) at Washington and Lee offers a major with an emphasis in either Chinese or Japanese. Students should explore the resources available on the East Asian Languages and Literatures web page where detailed information concerning all courses in language (CHIN, JAPN), literature in translation (LIT), film and culture (EALL) is available.
- Students with no previous training in Chinese may elect CHIN 111.
- Students with previous training in Chinese should read Language Placement for New Students.
- The EALL major with an emphasis in Chinese requires a minimum of three years of Chinese language. Students should begin their language as early as possible preferably during their first year.
- The department also recommends literature in translation (LIT) courses that relate to China and Japan and EALL culture and film courses.
- Students with no previous training in Japanese may elect JAPN 111.
- Students with previous training in Japanese should read Language Placement for New Students.
- The EALL major with an emphasis in Japanese requires a minimum of three years of Japanese language. Students should begin their language as early as possible preferably during their first year.
- The department also recommends literature in translation (LIT) courses that relate to China and Japan and EALL culture and film courses. .
East Asian Studies: minors / individual courses
The East Asian Studies (EAS) minor at Washington and Lee offers a concentration in either China or Japan. Students are encouraged, but not required, to pursue language-study to fulfill part of the minor.
For more information about the minor, consult the catalog, contact the EAS director, David Bello (email@example.com ), or visit the EAS website.
Economics: major / individual courses
Potential economics majors are encouraged to
- take ECON 100 in the fall term of the sophomore year or in the winter term of the first year.
- take INTR 201 during the winter term of their first year. INTR 202 should be completed by the end of the sophomore year.
- take one of the required 200-level courses -- ECON 203, 210, and 211 -- during the sophomore year. Most students begin with either ECON 203 or ECON 210.
- discuss any plans to study abroad with a first-year advisor or a faculty member in the Economics Department.
Prospective majors should fully immerse themselves in the liberal arts upon enrollment and continue to take courses outside economics during their time at W&L.
Education (Teacher Licensure): minors / individual courses
- First-years wishing to qualify for the Virginia state license for teaching in public schools must take a variety of course in three areas - general education, professional education, and student teaching.
- Minors are available in education and education policy.
- Students interested in the education or education policy minors should consider taking EDUC 200: Foundations of Education, which counts toward FDR SS5. EDUC 200-03 is offered as a first-year seminar in Fall 2018.
- Foundation and distribution courses that will assist in gaining licensure vary by endorsement area. However, all endorsement areas require PSYC 113, Principles of Development. In addition, all students seeking licensure must have certification they have had first aid and CPR training; PE 304, First Aid and Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation meets this requirement and is highly recommended. For more details and specific requirements for each endorsement area that W&L offers, please consult the Teacher Education website.
- Careful planning and time management are needed to prepare for teaching while also fulfilling all Washington and Lee degree requirements. First-year students who are interested in licensure should contact Haley Sigler, the Director of Teacher Education as soon as possible.
Engineering: (see Physics and Engineering for complete information)
- Students considering an engineering major should plan on taking the introductory physics sequence PHYS 111A and PHYS 112A and associated laboratories (PHYS 113 and 114) during their first year. If these courses are not completed during the first year, engineering course work typically will not commence until the junior year. If you do not get into PHYS 111A during fall registration, you should register instead for PHYS 111.
- Students considering an engineering major should also plan on taking ENGN 178: Introduction to Engineering during the winter of their first year. This is a project-based course which includes computer-aided drafting, 3D printing, design criteria, and computing programming.
- If your first-year adviser is not a Physics and Engineering department member, it is highly recommended that you consult with faculty in the Physics and Engineering department during orientation.
English: major / individual courses
- FDR writing requirement is found in the Writing section below.
Recommended for prospective English majors in their first year:
- Any 200-level literature course or workshop course (ENGL 201-295) may be used to fulfill major requirements at that level.
- After taking one course numbered between 201 and 295, a prospective major should take a second English course numbered between 222 and 299.
Environmental Studies: major / minor / individual courses
- Students interested in the major should seek to complete ENV 110 in their first year.
- Students interested in the minor should complete ENV 110 no later than the sophomore year.
- Students interested in either option should choose courses listed in the catalog as environmental studies which also meet FDR requirements. Choosing courses to meet both also helps to create flexibility later in your schedule. Courses that satisfy both environmental studies and FDR requirements and are available to first-year students include BIOL 111/113, ECON 100, GEOL 100, 101 or 105, and PHIL 150.
- Students interested in the minor or in a double-major including ENV should consider courses that fulfill curricular requirements for both ENV and their additional major. As the ENV curriculum is interdisciplinary, there are several courses that can count toward other majors or programs.
Film Studies: minor / individual courses
First years are advised to complete the FW FDR which is the prerequisite for either FILM 233 or ENGL 233: Intro to Film.
French: (see Romance Languages)
Geology: majors / individual courses
GEOL 100 and 101 are very popular classes and are open to first-year students, some sophomore students, and rarely Juniors and Seniors when sections do not fill with eligible students. We encourage anyone interested in Geology, Earth Science, Geophysics, Geochemistry, Environmental or related fields to enroll in these classes in your first year. If you are interested in Geology as a major, or Environmental Studies as a major or minor please contact a Geology Department faculty member about your interest.
First-year students may enroll in the following courses (*offered alternate years):
- GEOL 100 (4) General Geology with Field Emphasis--Fall
- GEOL 101 (4) General Geology-Winter
- GEOL 104 (3) Planetary Geology - Winter*
- GEOL 105 (4) Earth Lab -Spring
- GEOL 141 (3) Global Climate Change-Winter*
- GEOL 144 (3) History of Geology - Fall*
- GEOL 150 (3) Water Resources - Winter*
- GEOL 155 (3) Oceanography - Fall*
For prospective geology majors, we advise the following geology courses:
- An introductory course: GEOL 100 (fall) or 101 (winter) as early as possible
- A field skills course: GEOL 230 (spring), 231 (spring) or 275 (fall)
- additional topical courses: GEOL 104 through 209 above
- and, MATH 101, plus PHYS 111, 112 or CHEM 110, and 165 or 211 for students interested in the BS degree
Students interested in a Geology major or Environmental Studies major or minor are encouraged to take GEOL 100, 101, or 105 early. These courses are prerequisites for most of the other courses in the Geology department and they are required for (a major) or count towards (a minor) degrees in Environmental Studies. Students who express an interest in any of the earth sciences (geology, geophysics, environmental geology, earth science teaching, etc.) need to plan their course of study carefully to match their interests. Faculty members of the department will be glad to assist any advisee who needs help in this matter.
German: majors / minor / individual courses
Who should take the placement test? Any student who intends to study German. The placement test is taken online between July 22 and August 15, 2014. Please see details on the German Placement Testing website.
Recommended for first-year students taking German courses:
- Students with no previous training in German should take GERM 111 & 112 (emphasis on spoken language as well as grammar and reading).
- Students with previous training in German should take the German Department's proficiency test and may enroll in courses at the level recommended by the department.
Required for prospective German majors in their first year:
- Appropriate German courses as suggested by placement tests, likely beginning German (GERM 111 and 112), or intermediate German (GERM 261 & 262); however if the first-year student receives advanced placement credit or does well enough on the placement test, advanced German (GERM 311 and 312) is recommended.
- For recommended related courses for prospective German majors and minors in their first year, please contact the Department Head, Paul A. Youngman.
Greek: (See Classics)
Health Professions: individual courses
Required in the first year for students considering health professions (medicine, dentistry, etc.):
- MATH 101 and either MATH 102 or a statistics course;
- CHEM 110 and BIOL 111, 113, taken in any order.
Students interested in majoring in engineering or physics should start with PHYS 111, 113 and may take chemistry and biology in the sophomore year.
Recommended in the first year for students considering health professions:
- Complete the Writing Foundation. At least one advanced course in English (200 or above) is needed for medical school admission, but may be taken as an upperclassman.
- Foreign Language Foundation: continue to completion as soon as feasible.
- Other recommendations vary with choice of major department.
Please look at the Health Professions website or see Dr. Lisa Alty with questions about specific health professions career paths.
History: major / individual courses
- Recommended for first-year students: Any History course at the 100 level (except those for which you may already have AP or IB equivalencies: HIST 101, 102, 107, 108, 173, 174).
- For first-year students who plan to be history majors: you may count a minimum of 6 and a maximum of 12 credits at 100-level toward fulfillment of the major. Therefore, you are welcome to begin taking 200-level courses once you have completed 6 credits at the 100-level.
- Some 200-level history courses may be open to first-year students with 3 credits of AP or IB history credit in the relevant area or by permission of the instructor.
Italian: (see Romance Languages)
Japanese: (see East Asian Languages and Literatures)
Journalism and Mass Communications: major / minor/ individual courses
The department has two majors: Journalism and Strategic Communication. The Journalism major offers two sequences - Journalism or Business Journalism - both are intended for students planning journalism careers. Strategic Communication is designed for those who envision a career in public, corporate or government relations, or another persuasive communication field. There is also a minor in Mass Communications.
- Interested incoming students should consider the first-year seminar JOUR 180: FS:Politics, the Press and the Public (3).
Required of all prospective majors:
- Completion of the foundation requirement in English composition by the end of the first year.
- All prospective majors are encouraged to take JOUR 101 in the first year. JOUR 201, Introduction to Reporting, is open to first-years and sophomores who have completed JOUR 101.
- Students interested in the Business Journalism sequence may also take ECON 100 (available to first-year students in winter term)
- Students interested in Strategic Communication should take INTR 201: Information Technology Literacy by the end of the first year and INTR 202: Applied Statistics, by the end of the sophomore year (INTR 201 is a prerequisite).
See the Department's web site at journalism.wlu.edu, or the University catalog for details.
Latin: (See Classics)
Latin American and Caribbean Studies: minor / individual courses
The Program in Latin American and Caribbean Studies offers a minor that allows students to explore the commonalities and diversity within the region through an interdisciplinary study of its civilizations, cultures, and societies. Check the program website — lacs.wlu.edu — for appropriate courses offered each term, many of which serve as FDRs or meet other major requirements. You may also search by TYPE on the Course Offerings each term to see which LACS courses will be offered.
Advice for first-years:
- Students should plan to take LACS 101 (Fall only) as early in their career as possible.
- If students are unable to enroll in LACS 101 in their first term, take an FDR course in one of the distribution areas (Literature, Arts/Humanities, Social Sciences) related to LACS.
- First-year students should continue their language study at the appropriate level and must complete the FDR in French, Portuguese, or Spanish. LACS students are highly encouraged to pursue advanced language courses in one or more of these languages.
- LACS also offers individual summer fieldwork courses in Costa Rica and Argentina that count as "EXP" credit.
- Finally, students should begin to seek advice early on about the many spring term and independent study abroad opportunities available to Program members.
- Interested students should contact the LACS Program Head, Prof. Barnett at the Academic Fair.
Legal Studies: individual courses
The following courses are appropriate for first-year students:
- LEGL 241: Introduction to Jury Advocacy (offered fall term)
- LEGL 220: The Legal Profession (offered spring term)
Mathematics: majors / minor / individual courses
Who should take the Placement Test? The mathematics placement test should only be taken by students who satisfy all the following four criteria:
- had at least a half-year of calculus (not necessarily an AP course), AND
- have not taken either of the Advanced Placement calculus exams (if you took the exams and know your score, then we know what course you should take), AND
- do not have calculus transfer credit or IB credit (higher level with a 5, 6, or 7 should receive credit), AND
- wish to take second-term calculus (MATH 102) at W&L. Under our Advanced Standing policy, if a student is placed in MATH 102 and successfully completes that course with a grade of C or better, full credit will be awarded for MATH 101 as well; this option is available only in Fall term of the student's first year.
And now the course recommendations.
For students taking mathematics courses to satisfy foundation and distribution requirements:
- If interested in calculus, MATH 101 (see guidelines for which section to take below), followed by either MATH 102 or 118 or 195; OR
- if not interested in calculus, MATH 121, followed by either MATH 122 (a good choice for Williams School majors) or 195.
While there are definite advantages to taking the first mathematics course during the Fall term, it should be noted that both MATH 101 and MATH 121 will be offered in Winter term. (Students not interested in any math course can satisfy their FDR: FM requirement with a computer science course, and their FDR: SC with a wide variety of science courses.)
For those awarded advanced standing or advanced placement credit by the math department (by way of transfer, AP scores, IB scores, or W&L math placement test), the Fall term course will be determined by your placement recommendation. Here are the standard sequences for the first year:
- MATH 102 in the Fall, followed by MATH 221 or 118 or 195 in the Winter, OR
- MATH 221A in the Fall, followed by MATH 222 or 118 or 195 in the Winter.
For prospective mathematics majors in their first year, the Fall term course is determined by placement (as seen in the preceding paragraph). Here are the recommended sequences for math majors:
- MATH 101 in the Fall, followed by MATH 102 in the Winter, OR
- MATH 102 in the Fall, followed by MATH 221 in the Winter, OR
- MATH 221A in the Fall, followed by MATH 222 in the Winter.
A prospective major should plan to complete MATH 301 (offered during the four-week Spring term) by the end of the sophomore year.
Note that the only difference between MATH 221 and MATH 221A is that 221A is reserved for first-year students.
Which MATH 101 section to take?
- Students who have not taken Calculus and who wish to take a beginning calculus course at W&L really should enroll in 101B (B is for a beginner in calculus).
- Students who have taken Calculus before, yet who wish to take an introductory calculus course at W&L must enroll in MATH 101 instead of MATH 101B.
- Students who have taken high school biology, are planning on taking a lab science in the fall, and who would like a biology-focused calculus course should sign up for MATH 101E.
- MATH 101B, 101E, and all sections of MATH 101 are introductory calculus courses and all prepare students to take MATH 102. Nonetheless, to guarantee the best possible experience, it is imperative that students with no previous calculus experience enroll in 101B. Students having previous calculus experience are not permitted to enroll in MATH 101B.
Medieval and Renaissance Studies: major / minor / individual courses
- Students in either their first or sophomores year can take any one of the following to fulfill the beginning course requirement for the MRST major or minor: MRST 110, 110A, or one of the following courses: ARTH 101, 102; CLAS 201, 205, 208, 210, 224; ENGL 240, 242, 250, 252; FILM 255; GERM 318; HIST 100, 101, 170; LIT 203, 218, 219; MUS 201; REL 101, 102, 105, 106, 108, 131, 132; SPAN 210; THTR 210; or, when appropriate, ARTH 180; CLAS 180; ENGL 299; FILM 195, 196; FREN 281, 283, 285; HIST 180, 195; LIT 180, 295; REL 180; SPAN 211, 220; THTR 121, 180; WRIT 100.
- For Fall term, FY students interested in Medieval and Renaissance Studies should consider MRST 110 or MRST 252.
- Because of the nature of the interdisciplinary major, students are encouraged to take relevant 200-level courses at their own discretion. For a listing of courses included in the Medieval and Renaissance Studies program, see the current Course Catalog.
- For further information contact the Program Chair, Holly Pickett, Associate Professor of English, Payne Hall 304 (540.458.8078) or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Middle East and South Asia (MESA) Studies program offers two minors, with courses offered by several departments, as described here. The minors are described here.
First-years interested in fulfilling distribution requirements or in pursuing a minor are welcome in all 100-level courses and in many 200-level courses. Language instruction in Arabic or Sanskrit is offered (but not required). Contact Professor Lubin if interested in taking Sanskrit, or for more information about the MESA Studies program.
Music: majors / minor / individual courses
The following courses are recommended for prospective music majors in their first year:
- All music majors must take at least four (4) credits of applied music in a single performance area, beyond any piano study required to complete the piano proficiency requirement. The Department strongly urges all potential music majors to enroll in applied music study during their first year.
- A student considering a major in music with an emphasis in performance should see the Department Head as soon as possible. Any student wanting to concentrate in performance must perform before a faculty jury before the end of the sophomore year. Therefore, the Department strongly urges any potential performance students to take applied music (MUS 141) as soon as they enter the University.
- MUS 121 should be taken as soon as possible and no later than the sophomore year. MUS 161/163 and 162/164, the first-year music theory and aural skills courses are designed for music majors; they must be taken no later than the sophomore year. If possible they should be taken in the first year.
- Music majors should complete the piano proficiency requirement by the end of the sophomore year. Potential music majors should consult with the piano proficiency coordinator, Prof. Watanabe, as soon as they enter the University.
The following courses in music are recommended for first-year students who are seeking a music course to fulfill a humanities distribution (HA) requirement:
- MUS 120 (offered Fall-Winter) is recommended for first-year students and meets a distribution (HA) requirement. MUS 121, 205, 220, 221, 231 and 232 meet distribution requirements and may be taken with the permission of the instructor.
- MUS 108, 109, 110, 112, 113, 114, 115 and applied music (141) are open to first-years with permission from the instructor, but do not meet foundation or distribution requirements.
Neuroscience: major / individual courses
Neuroscience is the interdisciplinary understanding of the cells of the brain and how they interact to produce behavior. Neuroscience draws from biology, chemistry, psychology, mathematics and the computational sciences.
For prospective biology and neuroscience majors in their first year, a desirable schedule is:
- BIOL 111/113 (fall or winter) and/or CHEM 110
- Mathematics (through MATH 102)
- Writing (complete the writing foundation)
- Foreign Language foundation
- First-years interested in Neuroscience should consider taking courses in any of those foundational areas. Introductory courses that specifically include neuroscience material include: BIOL 111/113, PSYC 111, or CHEM 110 or NEUR 120.
Philosophy: major / minor / individual courses
First-year students are recommended to take the following philosophy courses:
- PHIL 110 (3) Ancient Philosophy
- PHIL 104 (3) Introduction to Moral and Political Philosophy
- PHIL 105 (3) Introduction to Theories of Knowledge and Reality
- PHIL 120 (3) Modern European Philosophy
- PHIL 130 (3) Chinese Philosophy
- PHIL 145 (3) Contemporary Moral Problems
- PHIL 150 (3) Ethics and the Environment
- PHIL 195-198 (3) First-Year Seminars
Students who are especially interested in philosophy (including prospective majors and minors) may also take the following course, when offered:
- PHIL 170 (3) Introduction to Logic
Many 200-level and some 300-level courses are open to first-year students. Consult with the department head or individual instructor if you have not yet completed a 100-level course.
For more information about all courses in philosophy, see the Philosophy Department website.
Physical Education: individual courses
Students must successfully complete four (4) 100- or 200-level courses in order to earn the four credits in physical education and pass a mandatory swimming test required for graduation. The physical education department strongly encourages first-year students to begin taking PE courses during the fall term with the goal of completing the requirement by the end of the sophomore year. All PE registration (including registration for intercollegiate sports) is done as a part of the Registration process, just like any other course.
The swim test is administered on the Wednesday of orientation week. First year students are in alphabetized groups and First-Years should adhere to that schedule unless they have a conflict with class registration. Attendance at these meetings is required. If a student already knows that they cannot swim they should contact Neil Cunningham in the PE office to make alternative arrangements.
Physics and Engineering: majors / individual courses
Courses for prospective physics and/or engineering majors in their first year should include:
- PHYS 111A lecture & 113 lab (3+1 credits, fall, SL or SC) and PHYS 112A lecture & 114 lab (3+1 credits, winter, SL or SC) calculus-based introductory physics sequence with laboratory. PHYS 111-114 are prerequisites for advanced courses and are required for physics and engineering majors. PHYS 111A and 112A are special first-year-only sections. If you do not get into PHYS 111A during fall registration, you should register instead for PHYS 111 or consult with the chair of the department.
- MATH 101 (FM or SC), 102 (SC) (or higher) students should enter the calculus sequence at the level suggested by the mathematics department.
- Students considering an engineering major should also plan on taking ENGN 178: Introduction to Engineering during the winter of their first year. This is a project-based course which includes computer-aided drafting, 3D printing, design criteria, and computer programming.
- PHYS 111/113 and 112/114 also meet a distribution requirement, but they are intended for students considering a science-oriented, math or health professions career. This course is accessible to those who have had a comfortable experience with junior and senior science and mathematics in high school. They count for the science distribution requirement, or when taken with PHYS 113 and/or PHYS 114 they will count for the laboratory science distribution credit. (PHYS 111A and 112A simply designate first-year sections of the same class).
Politics: major / individual courses
First year students interested in the politics major should take any of the 100-level courses:
- POL 100 American National Government
- POL 105 Global Politics
- POL 111 Introduction to Political Philosophy
These courses introduce you to the discipline and also count towards your FDR. They may be taken in any order. Also, prospective majors might also take ECON 100, which counts towards the major as well as the FDR.
Students who have fulfilled the prerequisite of POL 100 may also take the following courses in Fall 2018:
- POL 236 (3) American Supreme Court and Constitutional Law
- POL 232 (3) Public Policy
Since the Politics major requires two courses in related disciplines, prospective majors should also consider introductory courses in Philosophy, Sociology, Anthropology, History, or Religion. These count towards the Politics major and also fulfill part of your FDR.
Politics majors should plan to take INTR 201: Information Technology Literacy and INTR 202: Applied Statistics, along with Politics electives, no later than the sophomore year. If you plan to study abroad, be sure to discuss this with your first-year adviser.
Portuguese: (see Romance Languages)
Poverty and Human Capability (Shepherd Program): minor / individual courses
The Shepherd Program for the Interdisciplinary Study of Poverty and Human Capability offers five interdisciplinary courses.
- POV 101: Gateway course (3 credits). Recommended for first-year students with an interest in Shepherd Program involvement; meets an FDR humanities requirement. Can be taken in any year.
- POV 102: Field work course (1-credit). Can be taken concurrently with or soon after POV 101.
- POV 103: Spring course (4- credits). Incorporates POV 101 and 102 in a single course that includes fieldwork. Also meets FDR requirement.
- POV 453: Summer internship (3 credits).Interns work full-time for eight-weeks with peers from other colleges in multiple fields: the arts, business, community organizing, education, healthcare, law, ministry, and social services. Interns work directly with impoverished persons and communities in urban and rural settings in the U.S. or internationally, mostly in the developing world. This course may be taken following a student's first, sophomore, or junior year. Required for the program minor and for enrollment in the capstone seminar. Financial assistance is available proportional to need. Students who successfully complete all aspects of this internship receive three credits on a pass/fail basis.
- POV 423: Research seminar (3 credits). For juniors, seniors, and second- and third-year law students following completion of POV 453. Non-minors are welcome.
- Students minoring in this program will also select from discipline-based courses that fit their scholarly and future professional interests. Courses are listed on the program website.
- Because its purpose is to enrich the education of graduates in all majors and professional trajectories, the Shepherd Program offers a minor rather than a major. The coursework required for the minor prepares professionals in all fields to address the poverty problem as it affects us domestically and internationally.
Additional offerings may be integrated into students' academic studies. The Shepherd Program offers lectures and seminars by visitors to Washington and Lee. The Shepherd community-based learning staff oversees numerous educational and leadership activities: the Nabors Service League; Alternative Break Projects; the Bonner Program (a competitive program offering financial assistance to concentrate on service and leadership); Volunteer Venture, a Leading Edge pre-orientation program for first-years and student leaders; service-learning courses in various departments; community-based research projects; the Campus Kitchen at Washington and Lee and a post-graduate Elrod Fellowship Program. For more information, the Shepherd Program Director or staff (458-8784).
Pre-Law: individual courses
The most popular major for students entering law school is Political Science (18%), but no particular majors are required to apply, be accepted or succeed in law school. Students should pursue subjects that interest them and select courses to develop research, problem solving and strong communication skills.
Students interested in pre-law should register their preferences here, http://eepurl.com/1zUmv, to receive information about pre-law programs, events, and deadlines. Follow directions carefully after you hit “submit.”
Visit the pre-law advising page, www.wlu.edu/career-and-professional-development/graduate-school/pre-law-advising for more information.
Students may schedule an appointment with Pre-Law Advising Coordinator Lorri Olan, email@example.com, to discuss courses, internships and law school applications.
Pre-Medical or Pre-Dental: (see Health Professions)
Psychology: majors / individual courses
For first-year students taking psychology courses for distribution requirements (can be taken in any order):
- PSYC 110 (Brain and Behavior with lab: SL)
or PSYC 111 (Brain and Behavior; SC)
- PSYC 112 or 150 (both SC)
- PSYC 113, 114, 180, 213, 214, or 215 (all SS).
Recommended for prospective psychology majors in their first year:
- PSYC 110 or 111, PSYC 112, 113 and/or 114, in any order
- PSYC 110 (Brain and Behavior Lab) (SL)
Recommended for prospective majors:
- Biology or chemistry for their natural science
- Mathematics and computer science
Religion: major / individual courses
Recommended for first-year students taking religion courses for distribution requirements and for prospective religion majors in their first year:
- REL 100, 101, 102, 103, 104, 105, 106, 108, 130, 131, 132, 151, 152, 153, 180, 195, 201, 203, 205, 207, 209, 210, 213, 214, 215, 216, 218, 220, 222, 225, 231, 260, 273, 275, 281, 283, 284; course numbers refer to topic areas, not level of difficulty or advanced study. First-years are welcome in any of these courses.
- Other 200-level courses may be appropriate for well-prepared first-year students interested in the subject matter. Talk with any Religion faculty member for more information.
Romance Languages: minor / majors / individual courses
Students may fulfill the Foreign Language FDR in French (FREN 162 & 164), Italian (ITAL 163), Spanish (SPAN 162 & 164), and Portuguese (PORT 163). Spring abroad (SPAN 172 & FREN 172) and study abroad options are also available that allow for completion of the foreign language FDR in countries where Romance languages are spoken.
Please see the flowchart with registration recommendations for students who wish to complete their language FDR with French, Italian, Portuguese, or Spanish at https://intranet.wlu.edu/registrar/FDR/ROML_LANGUAGE_PLACEMENTS.pdf.
Who should take the placement test? See the flowchart referenced above. All incoming students who studied French or Spanish in high school and wish to study any Romance language must take the placement test. Those who studied Italian or Portuguese in high school should speak with Romance Languages about placement. Placement test scores are valid for one term only. Students who perform poorly on the placement test risk being excluded from enrolling in the language tested.
First-year students with no prior preparation in French who wish to complete the Foreign Language FDR in French:
- should enroll in FREN 111, offered fall term only, followed by FREN 112, 161 & 162.
- Enrollment in FREN 111 is limited and preference is given to students with no prior preparation in French.
Students who do not place into the intermediate level as a result of the W&L French placement test are recommended to NOT continue in that language. These students may enroll in beginning Spanish or in a language outside of Romance Languages. For students who insist on continuing in the language they tested poorly in, register them for another language and send them to Romance Languages (John Lambeth) for a follow-up evaluation of their language skills.
First-year students who take the W&L placement exam in French and are placed into 161 or 164:
- should register for the course immediately rather than postponing registration another year.
First-year students who take the W&L placement exam in French and place into the 200-level French courses:
- may choose from a variety of courses that fulfill distribution (HU or HL) and French major and French minor requirements.
- Consult French faculty for best options for continued study in French and for study abroad.
- First-year students who have placed into SPAN 161, SPAN 164, FREN 161, FREN 164 or higher through the W&L Spanish or French placement exams may enroll in ITAL 113. Other interested students should consult the department head for placement assistance. Completion of ITAL 113 and 163 fulfills the Foreign Language FDR.
- First-year students who have prior preparation in Italian should consult the department head for placement assistance.
- First-year students who have placed into SPAN 161, SPAN 164, FREN 161, FREN 164 or higher through the W&L Spanish or French placement exams may enroll in PORT 113. Other interested students should consult the department head for placement assistance. Completion of PORT 113 and 163 fulfills the Foreign Language FDR.
- First-year students who have prior preparation in Portuguese should consult the department head for placement assistance.
First-year students with no prior preparation in Spanish who wish to complete the Foreign Language FDR in Spanish:
- should enroll in SPAN 111, offered fall term only, followed by SPAN 112 and SPAN 164.
- Enrollment in SPAN 111 is limited and preference is given to students with no prior preparation in Spanish.
First-year students who take the W&L placement exam in Spanish and are placed into SPAN 161 or 164:
- should register for the course immediately, due to limited spaces and the inevitable diminishing of language skills.
- Limited spaces and registration preference for first-year students make it unlikely that you will be able to register for these courses in subsequent years.
First-year students who take the W&L placement exam in Spanish and place into the 200-level Spanish courses:
- may choose from a variety of courses that fulfill distribution (HU or HL) and Spanish major requirements.
- Consult Spanish faculty for best options for continued study in Spanish and for study abroad.
Students who do not place into the intermediate level as a result of the W&L Spanish placement test are recommended to NOT continue in that language. These students may enroll in beginning French or in a language outside of Romance Languages. For students who insist on continuing in the language they tested poorly in, register them for another language and send them to Romance Languages (John Lambeth) for a follow-up evaluation of their language skills.
ROTC: individual courses
Washington and Lee offers students the opportunity to enroll in an Army ROTC program through an agreement with the established ROTC unit at neighboring Virginia Military Institute.
- The program is voluntary and open to all students who meet the character, citizenship, age, medical and physical fitness requirements for military service.
- Washington and Lee grants up to 12 transfer credit hours toward graduation for successful completion of the courses offered at VMI.
- All instruction takes place at VMI, in accordance with the VMI class schedule, and is provided at no expense to Washington and Lee students.
- The program also offers competitive campus-based four-, three- and two-year full scholarships.
- Army ROTC is divided into a two-year basic course, designed for first-years and sophomores, and a two-year Advanced Course, designed for juniors and seniors. Enrollment in the Advanced Course requires the completion of the Basic Course during the student's first and sophomore years or successful completion of the Cadet Initial Entry Training (CIET) (usually between the sophomore and junior year for those that missed the first-year and sophomore classes). The Advanced Course student must agree to complete the Military Science curriculum, which includes attendance at the five-week Cadet Leadership Course (CDC) at Fort Knox, Kentucky. The Advanced Course graduate must accept a commission as a second lieutenant in the active Army, Army Reserves or National Guard.
- Contact the department at VMI, 540.464.7351; 464.7680.
Russian Language and Area Studies: major / minor / individual courses
Who should take the placement test in Russian? Any student who intends to study Russian.
- First-year students interested in pursuing the interdisciplinary major in Russian Area Studies should begin their study of Russian language at the elementary level or continue it at the appropriate higher level after taking the placement test. Three years of Russian language are required for the major.
Sanskrit: individual courses
Sociology and Anthropology: major / individual courses
Recommended for prospective majors in their first year:
- SOAN 101: Introduction to Anthropology
- SOAN 102: Introduction to Sociology
- Any 200-level elective
Spanish: (see Romance Languages)
Theater: major / minor/ individual courses
First-years can take any 100-level Theater course. Most of the 100-level Theater courses fulfill the HA FDR requirement. First-years can also take some of the 200-level Theater courses. No prior theater experience required for 100-level or 200-level theater courses. Students should contact the 200-level course instructor to discuss joining a 200-level course.
For first-year students wanting to take theater courses
• THTR 100: Introduction to Theater (HA), offers an introduction to theater practices, a survey of dramatic literature, and a brief introduction to theater history.
• THTR 121: Script Analysis for Stage and Screen studies selected plays and screenplays from the standpoint of the theatre and screen artists.
• THTR 131/132: Fundamentals of Theater Art and Laboratory (HA) is a four-credit course that has been popular with first-year students because of its hands-on approach emphasizing creative problem solving in a backstage environment. This course provides an introduction to all the technical elements of theater and opportunity to work on the University productions.
• THTR 141: Acting I (HA) In this hands-on class, students learn and develop physical and vocal techniques for text-based and improvisational performance, focusing on relationships, objectives, and actions.
• 200-Level courses to consider include THTR-209 Stage Management(HA); THTR-211 Western Theater History(HL); THTR 251: Intro to Performance Design(HA).
Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies: minor / individual courses
Students interested in women's, gender, and sexuality issues may choose to complete the minor in women's, gender, and sexuality studies in addition to a traditional major. Many of the courses may also satisfy FDR or major requirements. Check the program website for appropriate courses offered each term. Students who wish to minor in WGSS are encouraged to take WGSS 120: Introduction to Women's and Gender Studies and Feminist Theory (typically offered each Winter term) in their first two years at Washington and Lee.
Writing: individual courses
All students must complete the Foundation and Distribution Writing (FW) requirement. This can be fulfilled in one of the following ways:
- Students who have received credit from W&L through Advanced Placement examination results in English by scoring a 5 on the English Comp/Lit or English Lang/Lit exam are exempt from the writing requirement and earn 3 credits of WRIT 100.
- Students who have received credit from W&L through International Baccalaureate by scoring a 6 or 7 on either of the two group 1 English Language A exams, English Language, or English Language and Literature, are exempt from the writing requirement and earn 3 credits of WRIT 100.
- Students who are not exempt must take WRIT 100: Writing Seminar for First-Years during the fall or winter term of their first year. See the WRIT 100 sections on course offerings list.
- International students for whom English is a non-native language are encouraged to take WRIT 100: Writing Seminar for First-Years from Professors Kao, Ruiz or Smout, who have ESOL expertise.
- See also the Writing Program website.