Independent Study

Independent Study offers students an opportunity to expand, enrich, or deepen their understanding of some aspect of Black World Studies. An independent study can be undertaken as:

  • a rigorous extension of classroom work
  • a course of intensive guided reading on a topic not covered in a regular course, or
  • a chance to do research

An independent study is undertaken in cooperation with a faculty mentor, who will assist in shaping and refining the proposal and supervise the actual project. It is the student's responsibility to find an instructor willing to mentor an independent study. Independent study courses are not intended to substitute for regular coursework and the proposed study must not duplicate any course available to the student.


Independent Study/Readings: BWS 177, 277, 377, and 477 (1-5 credits)

These courses are independent study or readings courses available to undergraduates. Registration for the various numbers is in accordance with the level of instruction. Registration for such courses may not exceed 5 credit hours per semester or 10 credit hours per year, including summer and winter. Independent study projects must be approved by an instructor in Black World Studies and the Director.

Additional Requirements for Independent Study

  • No more than 6 semester hours of Independent Study and/or 390 courses may count towards the minimum of 36 hours required for the major.
  • Students must be majors or minors in BWS, they must have accumulated no less than 7 hours in the major.
  • Independent Study courses are permitted only for students with at least an average of 2.5 in BWS courses.
  • An Independent Study course is not permitted in place of an existing course. (Only in the most exceptional cases may this requirement be waived with permission of the Director of BWS).
  • The student must have already completed basic work in the area.
  • The student must submit a written statement detailing the proposed area of investigation. This statement must include number of hours undertaken, reading list, plan of study, outcomes and learning objectives.
  • No faculty may supervise more than one student for Independent Study at one time.
  • Permission of the Instructor is required.
  • Permission of the Director is required.

A student wishing to take an Independent Study course should consult with their instructor and complete the required forms which are available from the Programs Office in 120 MacMillan Hall.