In order to provide some consistent level of expectations for both faculty and students engaged in Directed Readings courses, the FIMS Undergraduate Affairs Committee has approved the following guidelines for such courses.
A Directed Readings course is a tailored readings course, negotiated between an instructor and a student to enable that student to explore, in-depth, a particular topic or area of knowledge with the guidance of the faculty member. Directed Readings courses shall not duplicate the content of regular courses. They may, of course, build on and extend explorations commenced in regular courses.
Setting Up Directed Readings Courses
A student interested in doing a Directed Readings course should approach a possible faculty supervisor at least one month prior to the commencement of the course. When approached by an interested student, a faculty member has no obligation to undertake a Directed Readings course, but may choose to do so if s/he wishes. A Directed Readings course normally would be open only to senior students in third or fourth year, and may involve one student or multiple students.
Half Course (MIT 3011F/G, 4011F/G)
The student should expect to communicate his/her progress and need for direction with the faculty member through a minimum of four face-to-face meetings spaced throughout the term, and also by interim e-mail.
Full Course (MIT 3010E, 4010E)
The student should expect to communicate his/her progress and need for direction with the faculty member through a minimum of eight face-to-face meetings spaced throughout the year, and also by interim e-mail.
Evaluation should depend on three components. Their weighting may be negotiated between faculty and student, but the final outcome should be approximately equivalent to:
- An annotated reading list. This reading list may be made up of books or articles but should be roughly equivalent to two or three substantial journal articles or book chapters per week.
- A short written assignment – for example a preliminary plan for the final paper – to be presented around the mid point of the term.
- A paper of approximately 30 pages (double spaced), or a project (web site, multimedia) or equivalent substance.
If you want to do a Directed Readings course, you must:
- complete the proposal form available on this website;
- develop a study proposal;
- get approval of the proposal from the supervising faculty member;
- get approval of the proposal from the Associate Dean or designate;
- submit the approved proposal form to Undergraduate Student Services in FNB 2001 one month before the start of term.
- Only regular FIMS faculty members can supervise Directed Readings courses and no faculty member will supervise more than two Directed Readings in any one term (whether graduate or undergraduate).
- A Directed Readings course is NOT a means by which a student can take a regular course that is not being offered during a particular term.
- While the content of a Directed Readings course may incorporate topics dealt with in other courses, it must differ significantly from any course currently listed in the Academic Calendar.
- The student should arrange to check in with the faculty member at pre-arranged times during the term to determine whether the work for the directed study is on track.
- Before the course can proceed, the proposal must also be approved by the Associate Dean or designate.