Other Opportunities

As you begin your academic career at Brandeis, there are other special opportunities you may wish to learn more about.

Four and Five Year BA/MA Programs
The four- and five-year bachelor's/master's programs are designed to enable exceptionally gifted undergraduates to earn two degrees simultaneously during their period of study at Brandeis.

Columbia University School of Engineering Combined Degree Program
Brandeis University and the Fu Foundation School of Engineering and Applied Science of Columbia University have established a dual degree program whereby students complete three years of course work at Brandeis, then spend two years at Columbia University to complete the requirements for an engineering degree.

Olin College Certificate in Engineering
Olin College offers a five-course certificate in engineering for students at Brandeis University as part of a special collaboration.

More information about these programs is available here.

First Year Academic Opportunities

students engaging in educational opportunities

There are many unique classroom opportunities for first-year students.

First Year Seminars (FYS)
One of the best things about a Brandeis education is the opportunity students have throughout their studies for interactive, intellectual engagement with faculty in small classes. First-year students who are enrolling in large introductory lecture courses in such fields as chemistry, economics, and psychology, and all others interested in experiencing a seminar environment, are strongly encouraged to enroll in an optional First Year Seminar (FYS). The seminar format offers a small, intimate setting in which the student becomes an active partner in dialogue, both with the professor and with other students.

See what First Year Seminars are being offered.

The First-Year Experience: Spirit, Mind, and Body (PE 44a)
Offered each semester, students develop and utilize their interpersonal skills through experiential and community engaged learning. They are exposed to core values including: citizenship, integrity, respect, civility, lifelong learning and embracing diversity. Topics covered in the course include: values clarification, health and safety, time and stress management, skills for academic success including approaching faculty. This course is only open to first-year students.

See when PE 44a is being offered.

University Writing Seminar (UWS)
UWS is a required course for graduation. The seminar focuses on strategies and techniques of college-level argument taught through the exploration of a subject. Course readings of 400–500 pages typically include books and articles as well as excerpts of longer works collected in source packets. In three papers of increasing complexity (twenty-five pages total), students learn to frame analytical questions, make original claims, structure complex ideas, integrate sources of various kinds, and revise for greater cogency and clarity. Each course assigns a close reading essay (a textual analysis of a text), a lens essay (looking at a text through a theoretical argument), and a research-based argument. Students prepare for each of the three major essays through short pre-draft assignments as well as drafts that the instructor comments on in writing and discusses with the student in individual conferences. Students examine their own writing in draft workshops and in small groups. The course also teaches the basic skills of research, from using the library to appropriate citation of sources.

See the UWS schedule.