First-Year Seminar (FYS)

(3 credits)

All first-time, first-year students and students transferring with fewer than 15 credits will be enrolled in and must complete a First-Year Seminar. The first-year seminar is a three-credit course taught exclusively to first-year students in a small seminar format. First-year seminars are listed with the department prefix, followed by the number 193 (i.e., XX-193). Any make-up of the first-year seminar requirement must be successfully completed within the first 60 credits of study.

In first-year seminars:

1.  Students will explore and engage in university opportunities that support transition, academic growth, and cultivate a sense of belonging.
2.  Students will formulate solutions to solve problems and negotiate within the institution and the world around them.
3.  Students will formulate solutions to problems involving time management, organizational planning, conflict resolution,deliberation.
4.  Students will formulate solutions to problems involving academic skills including critical thinking, technological and information literacy, and effective written and oral communication.
5.  Students will explore faculty-driven, innovative topics chosen to specifically engage first-year students.

Each first year seminar will have four components:

Faculty-Driven Content (25%)
Faculty-driven, innovative topics chosen specifically to engage first year students.

Application/Assessment of Content (25%)
Faculty-driven assessment assignments designed to help students develop key skills (e.g., quantitative skills, how to write a research paper in this particular discipline, how to read an academic paper, how to evaluate a source, how to critique a film, and how to do a presentation).

Transition Topics (25%)
These are topics relevant to any student transitioning into college and will include some selection of study strategies, how to interact with faculty, executive functioning development, independent functioning, mental and physical well-being, health and wellness, career planning, financial literacy, self-advocacy, resilience/grit, goal-setting, life-long learning skills, diversity/equity/inclusion, and basic research skills.

WSU-Specific Topics (25%)
This aspect of a first-year seminar focuses on topics specific to Worcester State, including some selection of the following:  the Liberal Arts and Sciences (LASC) general education curriculum, advising, major and minor selection and changes, how to connect with professors and advisors, library skills, career resources, support services, IT information and basic computer skills assessment, navigating life at WSU as a commuter or residential student, engagement of WSU speaking events and other campus activities, volunteer opportunities and civic/community engagement, scholarships, research and travel fund opportunities, student leadership opportunities, the Presidential Student Ambassador program, study abroad options, mandatory on-board activities, fall faculty research day, WSU communication tools (email/Student Planning/Blackboard), and other support tools available to students (e.g., undergraduate catalog, Degree Audit, glossary of commonly used terms).