Undergraduate Catalog 14-16

Academic Programs & Degrees

Academic Programs & Degrees

A Western Education

A Western Connecticut State University education gives students a strong liberal arts foundation; depth of knowledge in a chosen field; effective intellectual, interpersonal and technological skills; and the ability to learn and continue learning. Degree programs are designed to meet these primary objectives of the university mission. Western strives to give its graduates the knowledge, skills and experience needed to reach their personal and professional goals.

Bachelor’s degree programs at the university begin with general education, in which students learn ways of knowing the world through the arts and humanities; the social and behavioral sciences; the natural sciences, mathematics, and computer science; and health and exercise sciences. The development of foundation skills in writing and computation, essential for work at an advanced level, is ensured as part of general education.

Students take a second significant step by choosing a major, a program in a particular field of study leading to a degree. Some students also decide to complete a minor, a lesser concentration, and most students include elective courses as their program allows. This catalog shows the many choices available, including innovative majors, learning through experience and the opportunity to design your own program leading to a degree. At every stage Western faculty serves as guides and advisers.

As stated in the mission, the high quality of a Western education means that the university serves Connecticut as “an accessible, responsible and creative resource.” Western graduates have gone on to distinguished public service, as well as distinction in many fields of business and profession. The university welcomes students from many backgrounds and is committed to their success.

Degree Requirements for Undergraduates

Western Connecticut State University awards the degrees of Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Science, Bachelor of Business Administration, Bachelor of Music, and Associate in Science to students who have successfully completed the prescribed courses of study. Students are required to attain a minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.0 (a “C” average) for graduation in most degree programs. However, some degree programs require a higher grade point average for graduation (see program sheet).

The university’s requirements for graduation as stated in the undergraduate catalog at the time students are matriculated (admitted to a degree program) will be honored at the time of graduation. If a student changes majors, graduation requirements will be those listed in the catalog at the time of the approved change.

If matriculation is interrupted (if a student withdraws from the university and is readmitted), the requirements for graduation will be those stated in the catalog at the time of readmission.

Awarding of Credit

Credit Hour:  A semester hour of credit is an amount of work represented in intended learning outcomes and verified by evidence of student achievement that is an institutionally established equivalency that reasonably approximates not less than:

  1. One hour of classroom or direct faculty instruction and a minimum of two hours of out-of-class student work each week for approximately fifteen weeks;
  2. or the equivalent amount of work over a different amount of time;
  3. or at least an equivalent amount of work as required in paragraph 1 of this definition for other academic activities as established by the institution including laboratory work, internships, practica, studio work and other engaged academic time leading toward the award of credit hours.

To be awarded a degree from Western Connecticut State University:

  1. A minimum of 30 semester hours must be earned in courses at Western;
  2. At least half of the credits in a major and nine credits in a minor must be earned at Western;
  3. Sixty is the maximum number of credits that can be earned through examination that may be applied to a bachelor’s degree; 30 is the maximum number of credits that can be earned through examination that may be applied to an associate degree.

Credits towards an undergraduate degree at Western can be earned in these ways:

  1. Take courses at Western and pass them with acceptable grades;
  2. Transfer credits from approved academic institutions or as recognized by credit-recommending agencies (ACE, etc.);
  3. By examination including CLEP, ACT/PEP, NLN, advanced placement, department examinations;
  4. USAFI and DANTES credits;
  5. Have a portfolio review of non-traditional educational experiences done by Charter Oak State College, 66 Cedar St., Newington, CT 06111-2646; call (860) 666-4595.


Matriculated Student (Degree Seeking) – Someone who has been formally accepted by Western Connecticut State University to pursue a degree.  Matriculated students may attend full time or part time.

Non-matriculated Student (Non-Degree Seeking)  – Someone who has not been accepted by Western Connecticut State University to pursue a degree.

Curriculum Waiver

Waivers may be granted for curriculum requirements. All waivers (except those for the exercise science requirement which is based on physical disability or veteran status) require replacement with approved courses to match the total number of semester hours waived.

Foreign Language Requirement

All students enrolled in B.A. programs and secondary education majors must fulfill the foreign language requirement in one of the following ways:

1. Complete three years of one foreign language in high school with an overall “C” average.

2. Study a total of four years of two foreign languages in high school with an overall “B” average.

3. Successfully complete a foreign language proficiency examination or provide the necessary documentation outlined in the language waiver policy in this catalog. 

4. Successfully complete a language immersion experience of one semester abroad. Consult the Department of World Languages and Literature or Western’s International Center.

5. Successfully complete the specified language courses at WCSU. Students may fulfill the foreign language requirement by successfully completing an Introductory II second-semester course in languages offered in the Department of World Languages and Literature, or any one semester of a language course at the intermediate level or above that is taught in the target language, not in English.

Foreign Language Requirement Waiver

For students whose native language is other than English:

1. Western does not require students to take a foreign language if they hold a bona fide high school diploma from another country whose language of instruction is other than English. However, the high school diploma must be translated and certified by the consulate or cultural attaché of the U.S. in the country where it was earned.

2. Students claim to possess knowledge of a foreign language, they will be tested. Please call the Department of World Languages and Literatures to arrange a time for the test.

3. If students do not meet the first condition (#1 above) or the second (#2 above, i.e., do not do sufficiently well on such a test), they will be expected to satisfy the requirement by doing some course work in one of the languages taught at Western.

Health Promotion & Exercise Sciences Requirement/Waiver

All students for bachelor and associate degree programs must take two semester hours of exercise science lecture and activity courses or HPX 177, Fitness For Life, unless the requirement is waived by veteran’s exemption. Up to one semester hour of credit earned for varsity athletic participation may be used in meeting the activity portion of this requirement.  The activity portion of HPX 177 may be waived for medical reasons.

Earning a Second Bachelor’s Degree

Graduates who have earned one bachelor’s degree from Western Connecticut State University may be eligible to pursue a second bachelor’s degree at Western. The second major must be different from the first, although the degree may be the same, e.g., B.A. in psychology and B.A. in English.

After earning the first degree, students must apply to the Admissions Office for acceptance as a candidate for the new degree program. (Acceptance will depend on program requirements).

A minimum of 30 unduplicated semester-hour credits (classroom credits, excluding CLEP and other alternates) including all requirements specific to the new degree, such as a foreign language requirement, must be completed.

General Education

The general education requirements at Western Connecticut State University are designed to expose students to the broad spectrum of human knowledge in the areas of writing and communication skills, humanities, social and behavioral sciences, natural and computational sciences, and health promotion and exercise sciences. Students matriculated for all degrees are required to complete courses in these five broad areas.

Students are advised to complete required courses in writing and communication skills as soon as possible, since these areas significantly improve the ability to handle further course work; other general education requirements may be fulfilled throughout the undergraduate program.

Course numbering is designed to guide students to the appropriate level:

100 — Introductory college courses. Open to freshmen.

200 — Courses which have specific prerequisites or require particular class standing in a given major.

300 — Advanced courses in major fields. Generally open only to junior or senior majors.

400 — Advanced courses in major fields. Generally open to senior undergraduates. Also acceptable, with approval, for graduate credit.

500 — Courses designed for master’s degree candidates. Open to seniors by special permission.

600 — Courses designed for sixth-year certificate candidates. Open to master’s degree candidates by special permission.


Many departments prescribe some specific general education courses in addition to required major courses. Students selecting courses to fulfill general education requirements in a program should carefully read the requirements of their chosen major (in the department section of this catalog and the official program sheet for the major) to determine which general education courses must be taken. Students should consult their adviser regularly.

You are advised to keep a record (preferably using a department’s official program sheet) of general education requirements completed. Overall requirements are as follows:

1. Writing and Communication Skills (6 Semester Hours)

Courses to be selected must include:

  • At least one writing-intensive course
  • One course in communication skills

Writing Intensive Courses (3 Semester Hours)

A number of courses fulfill the general education intensive writing requirement. These courses are marked in the semester brochure with a “W.” All these courses have as their minimum prerequisite WRT 101 or equivalent or appropriate placement. Criteria for a course carrying the “WRT” or writing intensive label:

  1. The course involves research that includes the gathering and written analysis of information, data, perceptions, evidence, background, observations or arguments as are appropriate to the subject or genre of the course.
  2. The course involves the student in a writing process that may take the form of exercises, discussions, logs, reactions to readings, role playing, personal reflection, group work, critical thinking, multiple drafts, freewriting or other activities that integrate the research with the author’s objectives and evolve toward clear and effective writing for a purpose and an audience. As it unfolds, the writing process of the course exposes students to some of the essential issues that writers face – for example, organization, tone, voice, accuracy of expression, dramatic effort, authenticity and level of diction.
  3. In a writing-intensive course students produce at least one substantial piece of polished or finished writing that has gone through a full cycle of writing process from initial idea to final polish and presentation.
  4. Students in a writing-intensive course will be required to generate documentation displaying, as an average, at least one “page” of student writing for every 50 minutes of class time. This documentation may take several forms; for example, a comprehensive portfolio may include research notes, responses to assignments and readings, freewritings, logs, drafts, web text or any number of other types of writing appropriate to the subject or writing genre of the course.

Communication Skills (3 Semester Hours)

One course from the list following:
COM 160 Public Speaking
COM 161 Decision Making in Groups
COM 162 Interpersonal Communication
COM 163 Introduction to Communication Skills

2. Humanities (15 Semester Hours)

Courses to be selected must include at least three of the following fields:

  • Communication
  • Fine and Applied Arts (only one studio Fine Arts may be used)
  • World Language and Literature
  • Humanistic Studies
  • Literature
  • Philosophy
  • History


The following courses fulfill this requirement:

COM/ANT 208, COM 110, 170, 190, COM/WS 211, COM 212, 215, 219, 235, 242, 243, 263, 264, 266, 267, COM 268, 270, 271, 272, COM/PS 273, COM 290, 310, 335, 336, 362, 371, COM/ENG 372, COM 408, 476, 480,  COM/PS 441, SPA 203, WRT 102W, 132W, 171W, 172W, 210W, 273W, 274W

Fine and Applied Arts

The following courses are Fine Arts non-studio courses, which fulfill this requirement:

ART 100, 101, 145, THR 125, COM 230, COM/THR 252, MUS 100, 101, 103, 105, 106, THR 163, 180, 201, 260, 279, 346, 363

The following are Fine Arts studio courses, only one of which may be used to fulfill this requirement:

ART 108, 109, 111, 112, 115, 140, 152, 209, 211, 212, 213, 214, 217, 218, 219, 220, 221, 222, ART 225, 252, 265, 275, 302, 311, 312, 313, 314, 322, 323, 325, 328, 340, 346, 348, 368, 370, COM 246, HPX 150, THR 150, 181, 182, 202, 252, 255, 281, 283, 284, 285, 289, 387, 388

World Languages and Literature

The following courses fulfill this requirement:

ARB 101 (only if ARB 102 is also completed), ARB 102, CHI 162 (only if CHI 164 is also completed), CHI 164, FR 162 (only if FR 164 is also completed), FR 164, GER 162 (only if GER 164 is also completed), GER 164, IT 162 (only if IT 164 is also completed), IT 164, POR 162 (only if POR 164 is also completed), POR 164,  SPA 162 (only if SPA 164 is also completed), SPA 164, 170, 196, 197,203, 204, 207, 208, 211, 221, 222, 224, 225, 226, 320, 330, 331, 336, 337, 361, 365, 367, 370, 371, 375, 411

Humanistic Studies

The following courses fulfill this requirement:

 All HUM courses fulfill this requirementENG 213, 274, 275, SPA 365


The following courses fulfill this requirement:

ENG 104, 105, 105W, 106, 106W, 107, 107W, 130W, 131, 131W,  207, 209, 210, 211, 212, 213, 227, 274, 275, 206, 306, 307W, 308W, ENG/WS 334, ENG/COM  372,  ENG 376, SPA 204, 207, 208, 320, 330, 331, 337, 360, 361, 365, 367, 370, 371, 375


The following courses fulfill this requirement:

All PHI courses fulfill this requirement.


The following courses fulfill this requirement:

HIS 101, HIS/ NWC 115, HIS 148, 149, 186, 187, 200, 206, 210, 212, 213, 216, 217, HIS/AAS 219, HIS 245, 246, 250, 251, 266, 270, 271, 277, 281, 287, 288, 289, 290, 291, 292, 293, 302, 303, 304, HIS/PS 382, SPA 221, 222, 224, 225, 367

3. Social and Behavioral Sciences (12 Semester Hours)

Courses to be selected must include at least two of the following fields:

Non-Western Cultures
Social Sciences (ANT, ECO, GEO, PS, SS and SOC)

Non-Western Cultures

The following courses fulfill this requirement:

NWC 103, 104, 105, 107, NWC/AAS 109, NWC 110, 112, NWC/AAS 113, NWC/HIS 115, ENG 376, SPA 110, 211, 222, 361, 365, 367, 371, 411


The following courses fulfill this requirement:

PSY 100, 201, 202, 203, 204, 205, 206, 208, 210, 211, 215, PSY/WS 217, PSY 218, 219, 220, 222, 230, 236, 245, 251, 260, 262 (300 and 400 level courses may also fulfill this requirement – see course descriptions)

Social Sciences

ANT 110, 100W, 110, ANT/SOC 204, ANT/COM 208, ANT/AAS/SOC 212, ANT/SOC 216, ANT 222, 225, 229, ANT/SOC 232, ANT 234, ANT/WS 236, ANT/SOC 242, ANT/SOC/WS 251, ANT/WS 321, ANT 322, ANT/SOC 330, ANT 341, ANT/SOC 350, ANT 400, ECO 100, 101, 201, 202, 204, 205, 206, 207, 208, 209, ECO/ANT/SOC 234, ECO/FIN 360, 488, GEO 100, GEO/PS 290, GEO/ENV 150, GEO 215, 270, PS 100, 102, 104, PS/ECO 110, PS 200, 201, 212, 213, 216, 217, 218, PS/HIS 262, PS/COM 273, PS/GEO 290, PS 305, 306, PS/SOC 310, PS/JLA 322, PS/HIS 382, PS 400, 401, 402, 403, PS/COM 441, SOC 100, 101, 200, SOC/ANT 322, SOC/JLA 201, SOC 202, SOC/JLA 205, SOC 210, 211, SOC/ANT 322, SOC/JLA 334, 336, SOC/ANT 340

4. Natural Sciences, Mathematics and Computer Science (10 Semester Hours)

Courses to be selected must include both a laboratory course in the natural sciences and a course in mathematics or computer science.

Natural Science Laboratory Courses

In year-long courses, both semesters must be successfully completed to meet the requirement.
All AST laboratory courses meet this requirement.
All 100-level BIO courses except BIO 105 and BIO 106
CHE 102 Everyday Chemistry
CHE 110, 111 General Chemistry I & II *
CHE 120, 121 Survey of Chemistry I & II *
All ES laboratory courses meet this requirement
All MTR laboratory courses meet this requirement
All PHY laboratory courses meet this requirement
* In year-long courses, the first semester meets this requirement only if you successfully complete the second semester.


MAT 105 and 106 (both must be successfully completed), MAT 110, 113, 115, 118, 120, 127, 133, MAT/CS 165, MAT 170, 171, 181, 182, 220, 242, 251, 251, 272, 281, 282

Computer Science

The following courses fulfill this requirement:

CS 110, 135, 140, 143, CS/MAT 165, CS 166, 200

5. Health Promotion and Exercise Science (2 Semester Hours)

HPX 177  Fitness for Life Lecture and Activity


The Major

Selecting a Major

Students may select a major at the time of admission or may request admission as undeclared.

To declare a major at the time of admission, students should consult the section of this catalog on the selected major to check for any special admission or retention standards. A department may request an interview with prospective students.

If undeclared, students should discuss course selection with an adviser in the Academic Advisement Center (203) 837-8397.

Continuing students must declare a major once they have completed 60 credits at the university.  Transfer and readmitted students entering or returning with 60 credit hours or more must declare a major by the end of their first Fall or Spring semester at WCSU.  Failure to declare a major as outlined above will result in the student being required to meet with an adviser in the Academic Advisement Center prior to registering for courses in a succeeding Fall or Spring semester.

Program Sheets

Each major program leads to a degree, and students should obtain and study the program sheet for their major. Program sheets may be obtained from the department, the office of the school dean, the Admissions Office or online at www.wcsu.edu/academics/programsheets. Program sheets list the degree requirements for each major. As students consult with their faculty adviser in the major, the program sheet will guide selection of courses to meet general education and major requirements.

Continuation in Major

Certain major programs have specific retention standards. See the appropriate catalog section where the major is described.

Declaring or Changing of Major

To change or declare a major, students will need to:

  1. Obtain  an “Application for Declaration of Major/Change of Major/Double Major/Change of Option” form from the Registrar’s Office or the Registrar’s website.
  2. Meet with the chair of the department to which the student is seeking admission and discuss the major and its requirements. If there is no problem with entering the new major, the department chair will sign a change of major form and assign a new adviser.
  3. File the change of major form with the Registrar’s Office.

Double Major

Any WCSU student who wishes to fulfill the requirements for more than one academic major may do so.  Students must satisfy the requirements for both majors, and courses required for one major may not be used to complete requirements for a second major.  To complete a double major in the Ancell School of Business within the five (5) business administration departments, students must complete the BBA Core and the courses in both majors with no duplication of courses in the two majors.  Both majors will be listed on the student’s transcript; however, only one degree will be awarded.

If a student qualifies for more than one degree, e.g., both a Bachelor of Arts and a Bachelor of Science, the student must notify the Registrar’s Office as to which degree to receive at commencement.

Students are advised to exercise caution in selecting more than one major because the requirements to meet two majors will limit the ability to take elective courses.

Students are responsible for fulfilling the requirements of both majors as well as any special general education requirements in the majors.

Contract Major

A contract major is a coherent program of studies leading to a B.A. or B.S. degree, proposed by a student in consultation with a faculty adviser. The program must fulfill general education and other university-wide degree requirements including a major comprising a minimum of 36 credits related to a specialized topic, theme or area of concentration. Credits in the major may be drawn from the course offerings of one or more academic departments and at least half of them must be taken at Western. The contract must be approved by the chairs of the departments from which nine or more credits are taken, by the Committee on Undergraduate Curriculum and Academic Standards, and by the Provost.  Following these approvals the student files a Change of Major request with the Registrar.

Proposals are normally presented before the completion of 75 credits. They must exhibit academic integrity and rigor. Therefore, students are cautioned that the later a proposal is presented, the greater the chance that more than the minimum number of credits for the bachelor’s degree will be required to complete the contract major. The student applicant must have a cumulative GPA of at least 2.5 and must have completed the general education requirements in writing and communication skills and mathematics. At least two-thirds of the credits in the major must be taken at the 200 level or above. Inclusion of a senior thesis or project is strongly advised.

The intent of the contract major is to allow students whose academic interests extend beyond existing majors sufficient flexibility to design a program of studies appropriate to their academic goals.

Departments and faculty advisers in fields related to the student’s interests may provide guidance on developing the proposal. 

The Minor:

A minor is available to a matriculated student currently pursuing a baccalaureate degree. While not required for graduation, a minor provides an option for the student who wants an academic focus in addition to a major. Details on required courses are specified for each minor by the academic department; please reference the specific department information in the catalog.  A student may not declare a minor that is the same as his/her major (e.g., a student majoring in History may not also declare a History minor).  Courses in the minor are not necessarily additional degree credits; general education, major and free elective credits may be applied unless the catalog states otherwise. Students must complete nine credits at WCSU to meet the residency requirement in the minor.

Students must submit an Application for Declaration or Change of Minor to the Registrar’s Office of their intention to pursue a minor, change a minor or remove a minor so that their academic record may be updated. Certain programs require application to the department and approval before granted acceptance into the minor. Students should plan their minor program completion with the assistance of their advisor.

The minor is recorded on the student’s final transcript; students must indicate their minor on their graduation application.


Honors Interdisciplinary Bachelor’s Degree (HIBDP)

The HIBDP is a special kind of honors contract major. Recognizing that the traditional division of knowledge into subject areas or disciplines is, to some degree, artificial, the university makes it possible for the highly motivated student to pursue a specialized course of study that examines, in depth, a single theme or idea from the perspective of two or more disciplines. A student might, for example, wish to pursue a course of study focusing on the Middle Ages, combining the disciplines of history, literature, philosophy, art history, music history and Latin. The student who chooses this option works closely with a faculty adviser and thesis director. The specific procedures for establishing an honors interdisciplinary bachelor’s degree program are listed below:

  1. The student should formulate the name and content of the HIBDP in consultation with at least one adviser from each of the departments where nine or more credit hours will be drawn. These advisers will also normally serve as members of the honors thesis committee (described below). The Honors Council recommends that the proposal for a HIBDP receive final approval prior to the senior year. Students must maintain a 3.2 GPA or higher in order to be eligible for a HIBDP.
  2. The student should write a proposal for the HIBDP containing a description and rationale for the major. Also, the student should fill in a program sheet, which is available from the dean of the School of Arts & Sciences and the Registrar’s Office. All programs should contain between 39-50 credit hours including 3-6 hours of thesis credit taken as a Student Developed Study (SDS). At least two-thirds of the credit hours must be from courses 200 level or higher (with at least six credits hours drawn from courses 300 level or higher). At least one-half of the course credits must be drawn from courses taken at Western. Under unusual circumstances a student may petition the Honors Council for an alteration to these credit hour requirements.
  3. The student should obtain approval for the HIBDP from chairs of departments where nine or more credit hours are drawn.
  4. The student should submit the proposal with chairs’ signatures to the University Honors Council for review via the dean of Arts and Sciences Office, Warner Hall 300.
  5. If approved by the Honors Council, the student should submit the proposal, program sheet and approval page to the chair of the Committee on Undergraduate Curriculum and Academic Standards (CUCAS) and the Provost.
  6. If approved by CUCAS and the Provost, the student should submit a change of major form to the Registrar’s Office.
  7. Before the final year the student should form a thesis committee consisting of at least one member of each of the departments where nine or more credit hours are drawn. This committee, along with the Honors Council, will be responsible for approving the honors thesis.
  8. The student should present the thesis orally to the Honors Council and the thesis committee. If approved by both, credit will be given for the thesis (SDS). For more information on the HIBDP contact, Dr. Chris Kukk at (203) 837-8247 or e-mail him at kukkc@wcsu.edu.

Special Study Opportunities

University Honors Program

The University Honors Program was founded in 1987 to foster and nurture academic excellence among outstanding students in all of the four schools of the university.

The Honors Program has four primary goals:

  1. To provide an opportunity for academically gifted and motivated students to excel in response to the challenge of an honors enrichment curriculum;
  2. To expose students to some of the central modes of inquiry used by fields to understand problems and find solutions;
  3. To provide opportunities for students to become part of an active and dynamic honors community; and
  4. To emphasize the importance of bringing a multidisciplinary awareness to understanding the world around us.

The program has two paths: the full three-year program open to first-year students and first-semester sophomores, and an associate option open to juniors, seniors and transfer students.

The full honors program requires that students take a one-credit course, HON 100 The Nature of Inquiry, complete three honors activities, take one honors course in each of the four “modes of inquiry” and complete the interdisciplinary capstone seminar, HON 400.

If they choose, students also may perform honors enhancements in courses in their major or minor areas of study and/or participate in Honors Research and Teaching Practicums, HON 487 and 497. Students wishing to participate in the one-year or associate version of the honors program must complete two honors activities, two honors courses and the capstone seminar, HON 400.

With the exception of Honors 100, all required core honors courses may go toward fulfilling general education credit in the area where the course or seminar is offered.

More information on the program, including program benefits and admission requirements, is available at www.wcsu.edu/honors or students may contact the University Honors Program Director Dr. Chris Kukk at (203) 837-9501 or e-mail him at kukkc@wcsu.edu.

Faculty Developed Course (1 to 4 Semester Hours)

Occasionally, an academic department may offer an experimental course, labeled X98, to determine its value to the total departmental program or in response to a particular request from a group of students.

Student Independent Study (1 to 6 Semester Hours)

Opportunities to develop an individualized area of study are available to all matriculated students under all department auspices. The following course description applies university-wide and describes the process by which a student may be registered for credits through a course of his/her own design. The course number is determined by the academic level of the project. A student may earn one to six semester hours of credit through a Student Independent Study; however, there is no limit to the number of credits a senior may earn.

This vehicle is designed to provide students with an opportunity to develop their own learning experiences. Students will design a project, labeled X99, and secure a faculty sponsor to work with. A Student Independent Study may be utilized more than one time. Open to all students. Prerequisite: Permission of faculty sponsor and department.

Cooperative Education Internship Program

Director of Cooperative Education: Dr. Anthony Ciarleglio
Career Development Center, Student Center 227
(203) 837-8265

Director of Career Development Center: Ms. Maureen Gernert                                                            
Student Center 227                                                                                                                    
(203) 837-8266

Cooperative Education is an additional component of the undergraduate program at Western. Combining formal classroom work with meaningful on-the-job experience in cooperation with business, industry, governmental agencies and other employers provides professional development, academic achievement and personal growth. Students interested in cooperative education may register for CED 297 as a free elective or through an individual department where direct approval of the student’s major academic adviser and/or department chairperson is also required.

CED 297 Cooperative Education Option I
(1-12 Semester Hours)

With prior approval from the Office of Cooperative Education, students may register for co-op credit according to the following procedures:

  1. CED 297 credit may be applied as free elective credits taken on a Pass/Fail basis.
  2. One academic credit shall be awarded for every 50 hours of work experience.
  3. The maximum number of CED 297 credits a student may earn will be 18 semester hours, including any transfer of credit. Students may register for no more than 12 semester hours of CED 297 credit during a given semester. A maximum 18 semester hours may be taken during a student’s undergraduate academic program.
  4. Students registering for CED 297 will be charged standard tuition fees for this credit.
  5. Co-op work experiences must comply with established registration procedures for nontraditional courses.
  6. Students must have at least 45 semester hours in good standing and have attained upper sophomore status at the time they register for CED 297.
  7. Students are required to attend the CED 297 seminars, maintain a log, submit a final synthesis paper and complete employer and student evaluations.

(Any Label) 297 Cooperative Education/ Option II
(1-12 Semester Hours)

Upon request, a student may register for co-op education credit and receive a letter grade, which is awarded through an academic department. Students will need to obtain permission to earn a letter grade for this option from both the Co-op Office and the department chair before registration for co-op. The supervision and evaluation of students working under this option will be coordinated by either teaching faculty co-op coordinators and/or the co-op staff.

The following procedures apply to registration through departmental 297:

  1. Students requesting a letter grade for departmental 297 credit must receive approval from the department chair and the director of the co-op program.
  2. One academic credit shall be awarded for every 50 hours of work experience.
  3. The maximum number of departmental 297 credits a student may earn, including any transfer, will be 18 semester hour department credits. Students may register for no more than 12 semester hour 297 credits during a given semester. Individual academic departments may limit the total number of departmental 297 credits taken by a student.
  4. Students registering for departmental 297 will be charged standard fees for this credit.
  5. Co-op work experience must comply with established registration procedures for nontraditional courses.
  6. Students must have at least 45 semester hours in good standing and have obtained departmental approval for registration in departmental 297 co-op.
  7. Students are required to attend the CED 297 seminars or an appropriate departmental 297 seminar, maintain a process log, submit a final synthesis paper and obtain an employer evaluation. For departmental 297, these requirements may be modified.

Study Abroad (ISEP)

Western works with the International Student Exchange Program (ISEP) to make study abroad available and affordable for all students. The ISEP network, made up of 320 higher education institutions in the U.S. and around the world, makes it possible for Western students to pay the WCSU tuition, room, and board costs in order to study at universities in Europe, Africa, the Middle East, Asia, as well as Central and South America.

There are two programs from which students may choose: ISEP Exchange and ISEP-Direct. The ISEP Exchange Program is a one-for-one exchange: for every student that Western sends abroad, the university accepts one incoming international student. The ISEP-Direct Program facilitates direct admission to those international universities in the ISEP network that are in high demand, and yet have a limited number of ISEP Exchange places. Under the ISEP-Direct Program, the student pays the fees of the host university. However with both programs – Exchange and Direct – any financial aid the student is receiving will be applied to their ISEP semester.

You need not speak another language to study abroad, since many of the ISEP university programs accommodate English speaking students. Courses taken as an ISEP student are transferrable to Western.

International study, providing a maturing educational experience, also adds an attractive qualification to any student’s subsequent professional employment. Firming up world language competencies is a definite advantage for any future career path.

In order to foster such a background among its students, Western also annually offers courses taught overseas through various departments. This permits grading for work accomplished according to the same academic standards and requirements as expected on campus.

For application forms and information on either the ISEP or WCSU programs, call Dr. Robert Whittemore, Coordinator of Western’s International Center at (203) 837-8461, Social Sciences Department, Warner Hall 204, or the International Services Coordinator at (203) 837-3270, Old Main 306.