Wheaton College Norton, Massachusetts
Wheaton College
Academic Planning Guide


Submitting Your FYS Choices

The first step in building your fall course schedule will be to enroll in a First-Year Seminar (FYS). This section describes the First-Year Seminar program and includes instructions for sending us your FYS preferences.

What is the First-Year Seminar?

The First-Year Seminar (FYS) at Wheaton College is a small discussion-centered class designed for students at the beginning of their college careers. It is a semester-long course intended to help you develop some of the fundamental skills required in college: strong reading, critical thinking, and discussion skills; debate and oral presentation skills; writing and research skills. Each First-Year Seminar section is dedicated to a topic that reflects the professor’s choice of a theme or an issue related to her/his area of expertise.

Your FYS professor is also your faculty advisor. S/he will help you with general transition issues and provide you with academic advising throughout your first year and/or until you declare you major, which you will do by the end of your sophomore year. Your FYS Preceptors will serve as crucial student advisors and peer mentors throughout your first year. Your Preceptors will provide you with insights about college life, advise you about balancing academics and extracurricular activities, and help you make the most of your Wheaton College experience.

The Fall 2014 FYS Offerings

FYS titles and course descriptions for the fall 2014 semester are available on Wheaton’s First-Year Seminar webpage. (FYS Offerings for fall 2015 will be posted here when they become available during the spring 2015 semester.)

Click on course numbers for course descriptions and, if available, a link to the faculty member’s webpage.

As you browse through FYS titles and course descriptions, be sure to note the class time each FYS is offered. You can check the course time by clicking on “View Course schedule” from the course description page. Most FYS sections are scheduled for late morning or early afternoon, but some take place later in the day. As you consider the FYS sections in which you are interested, be sure that those sections do not conflict with athletic, extracurricular, or other commitments.

Once you have read more about the available FYS sections, login to InsideWheaton and complete the FYS Preference Form. You will be asked to list 8 FYS sections that you would be interested in taking—with the understanding that you can be placed in any one of your 8 choices. Therefore, be thoughtful about your choices. Once you are placed in your First-Year Seminar  your placement cannot be changed.

Some tips for choosing FYS sections:

1.) Choose FYS sections that allow you to explore your interests and passions. Although it doesn’t need to do so, your FYS can help you explore a potential major. You can also simply choose FYS sections about topics that intrigue you.

2.) Don’t be afraid of topics that seem different from what you’ve studied in high school. College is different from high school, and your FYS provides an opportunity to explore new ideas, new topics, and new disciplines.

3.) Don’t be afraid that other students will know more about a particular topic. Each FYS is designed as an introductory course open to every student.

4.) Consider the other kinds of courses you will be taking alongside your FYS. How will the FYS complement those other courses?

5.) Choose 8 FYS options that do not conflict with athletic or any other commitments. Remember, you will not be able to change your FYS section.

FYS placements are available in early June prior to Wheaton CORE.  To find your assigned FYS placement, login to InsideWheaton and click on “WINDOW.” From WINDOW, open “Student and Financial Records,” then “Registration,” then “Concise Student Schedule.”

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