First-Year Seminars

First Year Seminar Program

Visit Program Website

3010 Steele Building, CB #3504

(919) 843-7773

Li-ling Hsiao, Associate Dean and Director

The First-Year Seminars program at UNC–Chapel Hill builds and sustains a vibrant campus-based educational community committed to promoting the success of first-year college students by coordinating a varied offering of seminar-format courses that allow students to work closely with our best faculty on intriguing topics.

First-year seminars (FYS) introduce students to the intellectual life of the University. They are taught by faculty who are active scholars and accomplished teachers, and have a limited enrollment of only 24 students who are in the first two semesters of their undergraduate experience. The seminars address a range of topics across disciplines, often including the most pressing issues of the day. First-year seminars share a common focus on how scholars pose problems, discover solutions, resolve controversies, and evaluate knowledge. They also provide students with a comfortable and engaging social network.

Students in first-year seminars are active participants in the learning process. The seminars encourage self-directed inquiry by using a variety of activities inside and outside the classroom, including field work, case studies, performances, computer projects, laboratory explorations, archival research, and group presentations.

Eligibility and Enrollment

Enrollment in FYS is restricted to full-time students in their first two semesters of their first year of college and the summer after. Students are limited to a maximum of two FYS in any one semester, and a maximum of two FYS across the first two semesters at Carolina. Enrollment in a third FYS can only occur with an approved petition from the associate dean of first year curricula, and will not be approved for a third seminar in a single semester.