Welcome Back, Class of 2013

I hope you had a good break and are ready to undertake the last two weeks of classes, which end on Monday, December 14.  The Final Exam Period begins the next day with two reading days, followed by two exam days on December 17 and 18, with two more reading days followed by the last two exam days on December 21 and 22.  If you are unsure of the exam schedule, talk with your instructors and check out http://www.wesleyan.edu/registrar/exam.htt.

thumbnailCA7HWN7RNow is a good time to plan out your coursework and study schedule for the next four weeks so that you can work at a good pace (i.e., not cram) to stay on top of course material, finish up papers and projects, and prepare for exams.  It also is a good time to review past exams with instructors and TAs, get a tutor, review class notes on a consistent basis, and head to the various academic skills sessions and Writing and Math Workshops. Check out the Peer Advisors’ blog at http://peeradvisor.blogs.wesleyan.edu/ for further tips and information.

We want you to be successful and to perform at your highest level!

Any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact me.  Again welcome back!  Best, Dean Brown

Academic Regulations: Academic Standing

thumbnailCA2KQXR2It is important that you are familiar with Wesleyan’s academic regulations.  Among the many things that these regulations address is that of academic standing.  They tell you what level of academic probation a student will be on if an unsatisfactory grade is earned or if not enough credit is earned per semester or cumulatively. 

To review the regulations on academic standing, click on http://www.wesleyan.edu/registrar/ARNew.html#ACADEMIC%20STANDING.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact Dean Brown by e-mail  (lsbrown@wesleyan.edu) or by coming into the office for drop-in hours.

Pre-registration begins today

thumbnailCA66YGAZAmazing that it is already time to be thinking of courses for next semester!  The planning period begins tomorrow and runs through Mon., Nov. 16 at 5 p.m.  Scheduling is the next day and the adjustment period starts on Wed., Nov. 18 at 8 a.m. through Tues., Dec. 1 at 5 p.m. 

As you think of your program of study, keep in mind the importance of exploring new areas of the curriculum and choosing courses that will stretch your mind, get you thinking and engaged in your work.  At the same time, keep an eye on gateway courses needed for possible majors, GenEd courses, and courses that emphasize Essential Capabilities you would like to strengthen. 

Take advantage of WesMaps’ categories to help you navigate the curriculum in anything from FYIs to  intellectual clusters to departmental descriptions to anything in the above paragraph.

Remember to spread your courses throughout the week and the day, and seek variety in the kind of coursework you will be doing. 

Any questions?  Talk with your professors, your faculty advisor, me as your class dean, Dean Lazare, and any other person with curricular expertise who you think will be helpful in your decision-making process.

Not Happy with Mid-terms…?

Not Happy with Mid-term Grades…

Many of you will be getting your mid-term exam, papers, and projects back soon, if you haven’t already.  While I hope you will be pleased with how you did, if you are not, it can be quite an eye-opener and rattle your confidence a bit. 

thumbnailCA0I6DB4Suggestions for next steps:   Review the exam with your professor and/or your TA and talk with them about study strategies specific to the discipline; meet with your faculty advisor and with me for study suggestions and time management tips; talk to a peer advisor and strengthen areas that you’ve identified as trouble-spots by going to an academic skills workshop (keep your eye out for exam prep and exam taking workshops for the next round of “mid-terms;” check out the SARN resources through the class blog, below; seek out some support at OBH or the chaplains; and come see me with any other questions or concerns. 

Always remember that you never would have been admitted if you didn’t have the chops!  We all run into times that are difficult or seem overwhelming.  It’s how you deal with them that makes a difference.

First Day of Class: Attendance & Course Level

If you are enrolled in a course, you must attend the first class or else the instructor can give your seat to another student.  You must either confirm through your portfolio that the instructor has dropped you from the course or go through the process of dropping it from your schedule yourself through your portfolio.  This is good information for you to know, especially if you want to check out another course that meets at the same time.  You risk losing the seat that you do have.

thumbnailCAG0PBU6If you are unsure about which level of course to attend, check out the course textbooks at Broadstreets Bookstore.  That, in conjunction with reviewing the course syllabus, talking with the instructor when the course meets, and consulting again with your faculty advisor should help you make a decision.

Check Wes e-mail & class blog daily!

thumbnailca0j9pac1Make it a habit to check your Wesleyan e-mail on a daily basis, especially once you arrive on campus, but even now.  E-mail is a medium for official University communications through which you will receive important messages from offices, such as the Registrar, Student Accounts, and Financial Aid, from class deans and administrators (& the President too!), and from your faculty advisor and instructors.   As the Student Handbook states, “[T]he University’s primary means of communicating with students is through their Wesleyan e-mail accounts. Students are responsible for reading and responding to e-mail from University officials.” (P. 21) 

Also get in the habit of checking out this class blog on a daily basis.  It too will serve as an important source of information for you not only this summer, but also throughout your four years here.  Check out as well President Roth’s blog at http://roth.blogs.wesleyan.edu for his thoughts and insights about issues on campus, nationally, and around the world. 

Checking your e-mail and class blog on a daily basis is a good habit to acquire!

Congrats, Grads! Moving on….


Congratulations to all those who had late high school graduations in the past couple of weeks!  Congrats too to those whose graduations were much earlier and have been “alums” for the last month or so! It’s a big deal finishing up 13 years (more or less) of schooling and you all accomplished much during that time.  I’m sure you are taking the summer to work or volunteer, to hang out with friends and family, and are making the most of this time as you gear up for your move to Wesleyan.  We are thrilled that you have chosen Wesleyan as the place to spend your next four years, but we also recognize that thinking about leaving the familiar for something new can bring on a mix of feelings.   


As exciting as it is to think about the new people you’ll meet, the new material you’ll be learning, the new activities in which you’ll be engaged, the new opportunities available to you, you also may find this “newness” (or the thought of it) to be a little overwhelming.  At such a time, it can be helpful to think about balance—finding the balance that’s right for you between nurturing your relationships with family and friends from home and cultivating new friendships at Wes; taking a course in a subject you love at the same time that you are exploring a new area of inquiry; continuing your involvement in an activity you really care about while trying out a new one.  Wesleyan too will soon become a familiar place as you begin to make it your own and build a life for yourself on campus.    


Again, congratulations to all you graduates as you turn to become Wesleyan’s Class of 2013.