Placement Testing

Placement testing in math is required of all new students. In addition, foreign language placement tests are required of new students who have studied a language previously and are considering further study while at Wesleyan. Placement tests are available online through the e-portfolio. For additional information, click here.

Sign up for the Chinese and Japanese language placement exam by July 7.  The deadline to complete all online testing is September 2.

Feet to the Fire: H2O–Seeking Solutions

waterdropThis year’s Feet to the Fire program explores the challenges we face as a result of global climate change with a focus on the increasing scarcity of water and its impact on cultures and ecosystems around the world.   The program begins with a set of readings that explore the issue of water scarcity from a variety of disciplinary perspectives that students must complete over the summer.  These readings will serve as a shared frame of reference during the Feet to the Fire seminars and discussions that will take place during your first week on campus.   The readings can be accessed by logging in to the Weleyan Blackboard system and include:

  • R.F. Service, “Delta Blues, California Style,” Science 317, (July 27, 2007), 442-445.
  • A. Bach, “Is Water the Next Carbon?,” Urban Land (October 2007), 78-85.
  • R.L. France, ed., Thoreau on Water, Reflecting Heaven (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 2001).
  • J. Steinbeck, The Grapes of Wrath (New York: Viking, 1939).
  • “Beyond Scarcity: Power, Poverty and the Global Water Crisis,” United Nations Human Development Report (2006), 9-37.

Four seminars will be offered during orientation to discuss different aspects of the readings and these will be followed by smaller group discussions in the the residential halls. The entire class will come together for a “Common Moment” of drumming and performance that will cap off the week. More information about the seminars and Common Moment will follow throughout the summer.

Welcome from the Orientation Interns

As high school comes to an end for you, we know that you are excited about coming to Wes, nervous about meeting new friends, and anxious about all the thrills that college will bring. Rest assured, we know exactly what you are experiencing because we all went through the same phenomenon. For some it will be an easy transition and for others a challenge, but regardless, it will be one of the greatest changes in your life. We, the five Orientation Interns, will be busy this summer preparing your summer mailings, planning your arrival, and coordinating events for Orientation. It will be a stimulating seven day program where you will get the chance to meet your future classmates, to mingle with your advisor, to explore Wesleyan and Middletown – all of which will lead to your first day of class. So the next time you have a question about preparing for your first year of college and give us a call, know that there are faces behind the generic email address or the random numbers you are calling. To learn more about us, click on the link below. Lastly, have a wonderful summer and we are very excited to see you in the fall!

Johanne Lin ’10
Meherazade Sumariwalla ’12
Yinka Taiwo-Peters ’12
Zachary Nguyen ’12
Liz Ling ’11

Tim Shiner: Director of Student Activities and Leadership Development

Timothy Shiner joined the Wesleyan community in 2006 as Director of Student Activities and Leadership Development (SALD) and in 2007 also took on the coordination of New Student Orientation. Originally from southern Colorado, Tim graduated from Colorado State University with a degree in Psychology and a senior thesis entitled, “Teaching Emerging Leaders.” Following graduation, Tim attended the University of Vermont to pursue his Master’s Degree in Higher Education and Student Affairs Administration and worked at UVM for a total of five years in the Diversity and Equity Unit there. At Wesleyan, Tim and his office are responsible for advising all student groups in the planning and implementation of their programs. In 2008-2009, SALD helped students plan over 3000 events including concerts, speakers, art shows, affinity months, rehearsals, auditions and meetings. SALD also assists in the funding of students events and has numerous leadership opportunities for students. Tim’s favorite thing about Wesleyan is the passionate commitment of its students to making the world a better place. To learn more about the student activities office or the orientation program, go to or

General Education Expectations

Wesleyan does not have distribution requirements, but students are en­couraged to bring breadth to their programs of study through the GenEd Expectations. GenEd is divided into two stages. In the first stage, to be com­pleted by the end of the sophomore year, students are expected to earn at least 2.00 credits in each of three areas: Natural Sciences and Mathematics (NSM), Social and Behavioral Sciences (SBS), and Humanities and Arts (HA). Each of these credits must be earned in a different department. To complete the second stage, students are expected to earn 1.00 additional credit in any de­partment in each division.

Information about the GenEd area and department for every course in the Wesleyan curriculum can be found in WesMaps and the Course Supplement. Not all courses carry GenEd designations, and the GenEd designation of a crosslisted course is linked only to a single department. AP and IB test credit and transfer credit cannot be used to fulfill GenEd.

Students who do not satisfy GenEd are not eligible for University Honors or for election to Phi Beta Kappa. Also, some departments require fulfillment of GenEd for completion of the major or for eligibility for departmental honors. More information about this can be found on the honors Web site at

Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate, and other Pre-matriculant Credit

So now you have all these good scores from your Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate and A-level (and similar test) exams.  What can you do with them?

You can post up to 2.00 of these pre-matriculant credits to your Wesleyan transcript.  Make sure that you can provide official documentation of your scores or grades.  Some AP subjects, such as English and Biology are automatically posted while others require that you pass a departmentally-identified course with a minimum grade in order to be eligible to post the credit.  Complete information on how to post AP and IB credit to your transcript is maintained by the Registrar’s Office.

College courses taken on a college campus and taught by a college faculty member with other college students prior to your matriculation at Wesleyan also may be transferred to your Wesleyan transcript, if they were not used to complete requirements for your high school diploma.  You will need to ask the college to send a transcript directly to me at the Deans’ Office at Wesleyan (237 High St., 06459) in order to post this credit and if the credit is listed on your high school transcript, have your high school counselor confirm on school letterhead that it was not necessary for graduating high school.

You may post all your pre-matriculant credit, but only up to 2.00 credits total of any kind of pre-matriculant credit will count towards your graduation requirements.

Learning and Living Seminars

Students who are interested in living with other students from one of their classes this fall should definitely enroll in one of the four Learning and Living seminars. This cool program, in its second year at Wesleyan, allows students to more easily continue discussions outside the classroom and collaborate on course assignments.  It also means that you go into the classroom knowing the other students with whom you will be working.  Students will be housed in first-year appropriate housing, some of which are also home to sophomores.  The 2009-2010 Learning & Living Seminars are COL130 “Thinking Animals,”  PHIL218 “Personal Identity & Choice,” RELI381 “Religions Resist Modernity,” and THEA170 “American Playwright Performed.”

All the First Year Initiative seminars, with their small enrollments (no more than 19), offer the opportunity for intensive and in-depth discussions and interesting coursework for first-year students only.  The Learning and Living seminars offer students the additional benefit of being housed together.

Academic Skills Assessment Survey

The Academic Skills Assessment Survey is an opportunity for you to take stock of your study habits before hitting the books this fall at Wesleyan.  Not only does this survey ask you about your academic behavior, but, in many cases, it also gives you ideas of ways that you could, for example, better manage or track your time.  Done honestly and openly (you’ve already been accepted to Wes), your responses will enable us to refer you to particular workshops or make study suggestions that will facilitate and support your academic success at Wesleyan.  And hey, who doesn’t want academic success?

So among the other things you get to do this summer as you prepare for your arrival at Wes, login to your e-portfolio to make sure you complete the Academic Skills Assessment Survey.

Faculty and Student Advising Handbook

This summer, as you think about which courses you will be enrolling in after you arrive at Wesleyan in September, please take time to carefully review the Faculty and Student Advising Handbook. The Handbook is designed to help you achieve your educational goals by providing advice on how to get the most out of your relationship with your faculty advisor as you build your program of study over the course of your Wesleyan career. The Handbook also provides information about academic departments and programs, graduation requirements, study abroad, the major declaration process, academic support services for students, and the procedures of the Honor Board and the Student Judicial Board.

New Student Orientation

New Student Orientation introduces new students to the Wesleyan community and assists with the transition to university life. New Student Orientation for the Class of 2013 as well as new transfer, exchange, and visiting students will take place September 1-7. As you get ready to arrive at Wesleyan, look through the New Student Orientation website to find more information about Orientation week activities. The Orientation office is staffed with five Orientation Interns who are happy to answer questions. They can be reached at 860.685.6667 or at