This page contains information for faculty considering teaching an FYEC. It provides the basic requirements of an FYEC, the incentives available for FYEC faculty and their departments, suggestions for deciding if teaching an FYEC is right for you, procedures for planning an FYEC in detail, and information about the speaking components.
The administrative requirements for an FYEC
Each FYEC must:
The incentives for faculty and departments
The incentives available for teaching an FYEC are:
Deciding if you want to teach an FYEC
You can begin to explore the possibility of teaching an FYEC without making a firm commitment to do so. Good FYECs require several pieces to fall into place, and the first is for you to simply express an interest. You should start with your chair because he or she will know if your department can support an FYEC in the upcoming year.
Once your chair is aware of your interest, the next step is to think about potential partners. The best way to find a partner is to simply start a conversation with another faculty (or possibly a staff) member who might be a good match. Think about the kinds of topics you would like your FYEC to include, and then identify other faculty members who might enjoy working on the same subjects. You do not need to have very many specifics in mind because the most enjoyable part of the process is working with a prospective partner to develop ideas you are both excited about.
The First-Year Advisory Board (FAB) can also assist you in finding a partner. Even if you are not certain you want to teach an FYEC in a particular year, contact a member of the FAB to express your potential interest. There is no obligation.
Planning an FYEC in detail
Planning an FYEC in detail starts after you and your partner have committed to teaching an FYEC. The commitment is usually made late in the fall semester (or early in spring) the year before the FYEC is to start. Most pairs find it difficult to find the time to plan the FYEC in detail during the regular school year, and the Curriculum Committee recognizes this. So, the course proposal form for an FYEC is very short and is not due until about the middle of the spring semester. Everyone involves recognizes that most of the detailed planning will take place during the summer before the FYEC starts.
To facilitate the planning process, the FAB holds a two-day workshop during the week between final exams and graduation. The workshop includes advice for how to incorporate writing and speaking into your FYEC (more details on the speaking component are provided below), how to develop a successful interdisciplinary project, how to use active learning pedagogy, and how to be an effective freshman advisor. The afternoons of both days are left open so that you and your partner can really get to work putting your syllabi together. By the end of the workshop, you should be well on your way to having a complete FYEC in place.
The speaking component of FYEC
Incorporating speaking into your FYEC is important, and doing so successfully requires careful planning. Over the course of the year, each student must receive instruction in three areas of communication skills: Listening/Interpersonal (this can include interviewing, if appropriate for your FYEC); Group (spanning a range from discussion groups to task groups depending on the needs of the FYEC instructors); and Presentational. For each skill area, there must be: