Monday, July 17, 2017

Even more info on FY Writing, FY Writing Workshop, and FY Seminar


If you're considering taking First-Year Writing or First-Year Writing Workshop this fall -- or if you're feeling uncertain about how prepared you are for college-level writing at Barnard -- this post is for you! 

ENGL-BC1204 First-Year Writing Workshop is a course designed for students who feel underprepared for the critical reading and writing that they will do at Barnard. Workshop meets three times a week as opposed to two and has slightly smaller classes. Students who are interested in one of the limited number of spaces in Workshop should inform the First-Year Class Dean by email (first-year@barnard.edu) if you have not already done so, but please be aware that placement cannot be guaranteed.

By the end of the day this Friday, July 21, you should experience one of three possible scenarios:

1.  You may receive an email informing you that you have been placed in FY Writing Workshop.  If you receive this email, you must register for one of the available sections of ENGL-BC1204 First-Year Writing Workshop (see http://www.columbia.edu/cu/bulletin/uwb/sel/ENGB_Fall2017.html).  Only students who receive this placement email will be able to register for ENGL BC1204.  

Workshop Schedule-Planning Directions:  
If you are planning on or considering taking General Chemistry (CHEM-BC2001) this fall, please register for section 004 of Workshop to avoid scheduling conflicts.  
If you are not planning on taking General Chemistry (CHEM-BC2001) this fall, we ask that you not register for section 004 of Workshop if possible -- this will save space for those students who need this section due to scheduling conflicts with other sections.

2.  You may receive an email directing you to register for FY Writing in the fall (as opposed to FY Seminar).  If you receive this email, you must register for one of the available sections of any of the three FY Writing courses listed below.  You may also register for these if you have not received such an email and just want to take FY Writing in the fall for any reason.  FY Writing options are:
ENGL-BC1210 FY WRITING: WOMEN&CULTURE
ENGL-BC1211 FY WRITING: LEGACY OF MED
ENGL-BC1212  FY WRITING: THE AMERICAS

3.  You may not receive an email this week about FY Writing placement.
If you don't receive a FY Writing placement email but think you should have, you may contact first-year@barnard.edu.  Otherwise, you are free to register for any available section of FY Writing listed in #2 above or any available FY Seminar (see http://www.columbia.edu/cu/bulletin/uwb/sel/FYSB_Fall2017.html). 

If you're feeling uncertain about your preparation for college-level writing at Barnard and weren't placed in Workshop, we encourage you to register for FY Writing this fall.

Questions?
Don't hesitate to email first-year@barnard.edu!

Repost: Group Advising Chats week of July 17

Got questions in advance of the July 24-28 preregistration period?

We will host several group-advising, gBear Hangout Q & A sessions this week.  These will be online text-only "chat" opportunities to ask questions in a friendly, judgment-free forum.  Questions and answers will be archived into Frequently Asked Questions (with names removed!) and posted online for students who can't attend and/or want to review afterwards.  We have room for up to 50 students per chat, and you may attend more than one chat if space is available.

Please RSVP (directions below) if you want to participate in one or more of the following:




Pre-Med Monday
July 17, 12-1 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time
With Melinda Cohen, Dean for Health Professions Advising
- for entering first-year students with questions about pre-health course selection








What's-Next Wednesday
July 19, 12-1 p.m., Eastern Daylight Time
With Nikki Youngblood Giles, Dean for Preprofessional Advising
for entering first-year students with questions about:
- the Combined Plan Program with Columbia's Fu School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS),
- pre-law,
- or preparing for another non-health-related graduate program







Foundations Friday
July 21, 12-1 p.m., Eastern Daylight Time
With Rebecca Grabiner, First-Year Class Dean
AND Christina Kuan Tsu, Sophomore Class Dean
- for entering first-year students with general questions about requirements, course selection, scheduling, etc.





To RSVP:
1. Log into myBarnard
2. Click on this link to access the RSVP form: https://goo.gl/forms/Olp9MXbN6JpSzJhP2
3. Complete the form and click "submit"


To Participate in your chosen Hangout:
A few minutes before its scheduled start time, either:
1. Log into Google Hangouts app using your Barnard credentials
     or
1. Log onto your gBear email and make sure you have enabled Hangouts (not just gChat).
2. If you have RSVPed, you should see your Hangout as an option -- if not, please email first-year@barnard.edu and ask for a link to join.

Friday, July 14, 2017

Registration Videos!! (and written guide)

IT’S HERE. IT’S FINALLY HERE. WE GIVE TO YOU THE REGISTRATION STEP-BY-STEP GUIDE AND TUTORIALS OF HOW TO FIND COURSES, ADD THEM TO YOUR SCHEDULE, AND REGISTER FOR COURSES.

you’re welcome.

For all you bookworms and learners geared towards reading, here’s the written guide.
For those of you who are more auditory and visual learners, here are video tutorials. Each video corresponds to a section of the guide, so if you read the guide and you’re confused, you can watch the video for the section and vice versa.

How to Access Student Planning:


How to View Registration Appointments:


How to Find Courses in Student Planning:


How to Add Courses to Your Schedule in Student Planning:



How to Register for Courses During the Preregistration Period in Student Planning:


How to Drop a Course in Student Planning:


Thursday, July 13, 2017

Update: Student Planning is back! Log in at will


Thank you to those of you who alerted us to the error message you were getting when trying to access Student Planning.

This problem has been fixed, and you should now be able to log into myBarnard and access Student Planning as needed.  

The Student Side: Questions about Registration

Welcome back to Rowan’s and Paige’s Registration Guide! Today we’ll be tackling your most asked questions about registration.

Registration might make you feel one of two ways.

Either you’re super calm and you know what’s happening.




Or you’re freaking out because you don’t know what’s going on and you have no idea what classes you’re gonna take andyou’rejustlikereallyconfusedandfeellike-




Don’t worry! Registration can be confusing and daunting, but we’re here to clear it up for you!

What is registration?
Registration is the process of selecting and registering for classes.


What is the difference between planning, preregistration, and registration?
You might have seen these words thrown around in different conversations and discussions. All three of these words are related to each other but refer to different actions/processes that involve picking and enrolling in classes.


Planning is the process of choosing courses and adding them to your schedule in Student Planning on myBarnard. Planning is important because before you can register for a class, it must be on your schedule in Student Planning. You don’t want to waste time when your registration appointment comes around looking for and adding classes. It’s always a good idea to plan and add more classes to your schedule than necessary before you actually register for classes. Courses in the "planned" stage will be yellow on your schedule and will have a blue button that says "register" (which you can only use during your registration times). Confusingly, once you are able to add yourself to waiting lists in September, waitlisted courses will also be yellow on your schedule, but they will not have a register button, but will instead have a "leave waitlist" button.
Preregistration refers to the two periods in July and August where you can register for only First Year Seminar, First Year Writing Writing, and P.E. courses.
Registration is the process of enrolling in all other classes that aren't FYS/FYW/P.E. Registration will start on September 1st, 2017 after you meet with an adviser during NSOP.

Preregistration and registration have set start and end times where you can add and drop classes. During both pre-registration and registration, you'll receive an appointment time that says at what time you'll be allowed to begin adding and dropping classes. All appointment times are randomly assigned.


When is preregistration? What should I expect? What if I won’t have Internet during this time period?
The first week of preregistration will be from July 24th to July 28th. During this week you will only be able to register for First-Year Writing, First-Year Seminar, and Barnard P.E. courses. This is a fixed time so we can unfortunately not offer students alternative slots for registration. If there is a possibility that you will have access to intermittent wifi, you can pre-plan your courses and add multiple First-Year Writing and Seminar courses in Student Planning on myBarnard. Then when it is your registration appointment, the only thing you will have to do is click the "Register" button to register for courses. You can also check Student Planning in myBarnard to check when your registration appointments will be and see if any correspond to a time you could have wifi access.


There will also be another preregistration period in August for FYW and FYS, but some courses may be filled up by then, so we highly encourage you to register during the July period.

Are we also signing up for Spring courses?
You will register for Spring courses during Spring registration which will happen some time in November. Barnard is on a semester calendar so you only take courses for 16 weeks at a time and do not register for courses more than one semester in advance.


Can I (and should I) put down multiple options for the same class? Can you pre-register for multiple FYSs or FYWs and then later drop one? How many should I sign up for? Do we list alternates in case we don’t get our first choice?
Have several backups for whichever course you plan to take. For example, if you know you want to take a First-Year Writing course in the Fall, have a list of your first five choices, as some of them might be full by the time you sign up. You can only take either a FYS or FYW course at a time, you cannot take both in the same semester. During the preregistration period, if you register for a FYW/FYS course and it turns green on your calendar then you’re good to go and don’t need to worry about adding any other sections to your schedule.


Once you’ve enrolled in one of the FYS or FYW courses DO NOT sign up for another. If you want to register for more than one to see which courses still have open spots make sure that you immediately drop any excess courses so other students can get into the one(s) you won’t be attending. If after a registration period you are registered for multiple FYS/FYW, you will be dropped from all but one of them. FYS/FYW courses do not have waitlists and are capped at around 15 students each. There won't be enough space in the FYS/FYW courses for all first-years if you're registered for multiple courses. Remember that this is the one course that you can’t drop/change after the semester begins, so keep in mind the times of other courses you may want to take so they don’t conflict!!


Is each student given a time of the day to register for courses or can you register at anytime on the 24th? What’s the earliest time I can start registering? If I register later in the day will all the classes be full?
Yes! You can check your registration time under Student Planning on myBarnard. These times are decided based on a random lottery system. Registering later in the day means that other first-years may have signed up for classes before you, but there should still be slots open for a large portion of FYS and FYW courses depending on how late during the registration period you’re able to sign up. Remember, it is only these classes and your P.E. class which you’ll be able to sign up for during this period.


How the heck does the waitlist work! When do I get put on a waitlist? Why are classes already almost or all the way filled? Can I still sign up for them? Is it worth putting myself on the waitlist?
You'll be added to waitlists during the registration period in September when you register for other courses besides FYW/FYS. Sophomores, Juniors, and Seniors have already registered for classes, so if it says on the Columbia Directory that 11/12 spots are filled it’s most likely because upperclassmen already signed up for them. Don’t panic! Many intro classes will have spots saved for first-years so you might still be able to get into them.


There is also no limit as to how many classes students can register for so, as described above, many students will sign up for way more classes than they’ll actually enroll in or even sign up for as back-ups in case their first choices fall through. This means that in the weeks of shopping period, a lot of spots will open up in classes as students start to nail down which ones they actually plan to enroll in. Absolutely sign up for the waitlist because there’s a good chance you’ll get into many of those classes as upperclassmen drop out. However, you'll only be able to sign up for 3 waitlists during registration.


Do note that as first-years, many professors will give seniority to upperclassmen and ask that first-years try again the next semester if it continues to be over-enrolled. The good news is that you’ve got plenty of time to take that class if that does end up happening, so don’t be disheartened! It’s happened to all of us. Also, keep in mind that the Columbia Directory of Classes is not updated in real-time, only at night. The registration numbers for a class may be accurate first thing in the morning, but not in the afternoon. Go by what myBarnard says when you register for your class. If it says it’s full and has a waitlist and asks you to join the waitlist, do so. For some classes, you'll be able to view your position on the waitlist on ssol.columbia.edu. This is not available for all courses, so don't worry if you can't see your position on the waitlist.

If you get off the waitlist you’ll receive an email from the Columbia Registrar saying as much, and that you’re enrolled in the class. It will then ask you to resolve any outstanding time conflicts, for example, if you’re registered for a backup class that you signed up for in case you didn’t get off the waitlist for the other, you would need to drop the backup class to make room for your waitlist class. It's also a good idea to double-check myBarnard when you get this email to make sure the formerly-waitlisted class is now green on your schedule -- if it's not, you should contact the Barnard Registrar for help.

If you’re waitlisted for a class that’s required for your major or you’re really passionate about, feel free to reach out to the professor before the first class or go up and speak to them directly afterwards to communicate your interest. They sometimes will take that into consideration when deciding on the roster for the semester.

Stay tuned for tomorrow's posts where we'll be answering your miscellaneous questions and post registration tutorials!

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Classes saving spots for entering first-year students


As you peruse the Directory of Classes, you may be seeing many courses that appear to be full.  In some cases, this may be accurate.  BUT the good news is that many popular introductory courses are artificially small now because they are saving spots for you, entering first-year Barnard students. Classes saving spots for entering first-year Barnard students include:

ASTR-UN1903 Astronomy Lab I (the lab that goes with ASTR-BC1753 Life in the Universe)


BIOL-BC1500 Intro to Organismal and Evolutionary Bio, and its recitation (BIOL-BC1511) and lab (BIOL-BC1501)

CHEM-BC2001 General Chemistry I and its recitation (CHEM-BC2011) and lab (CHEM-BC2012)

DNCE-BC2570 Dance in New York City

ECON-BC1003 Introduction to Economic Reasoning

EESC-BC1011 Environmental Science Lab (the lab that goes with EESC-BC1001 Environmental Science I)

FREN-BC1001 Elementary French I

PSYC-BC1001 Introduction to Psychology section 01 and 03

all Barnard-taught sections of:
SPAN-UN1101 Elementary Spanish I
SPAN-UN1102 Elementary Spanish II
SPAN-UN2101 Intermediate Spanish I
SPAN-UN2102 Intermediate Spanish II
SPAN-UN2108 Spanish for Heritage Speakers

If one of these is a course that you need or are excited about, feel free to plan it at this stage -- and to select FY Writing or FY Seminar courses that don't conflict with it -- and stay tuned for more info later in the summer about how to register for these classes during NSOP.  These classes will still be capped, so you are not guaranteed a spot, but there is room for many of you!

More about lab science & how to register correctly for it



Many of you have been asking questions about fulfilling the Foundations science requirement.  Here is some more information.

As a reminder, all members of the class of 2021 must take two semesters of science:
  • One semester of a science with a lab
  • One semester of a science course that need not be accompanied by lab*
*Note: These two classes do not need to be taken in sequence or even in the same department. However, be sure you have fulfilled necessary prerequisites (check course descriptions) and, if you are considering a science major or a pre-health track, you should follow advice from the relevant departments, deans, and advisers.

If you are trying to fulfill the science-with-a-lab portion of this requirement this fall, some common ways of doing this (and how to make sure you're properly registered for all parts of the course) are listed after the break:


Opportunity: Apply for Fiction-Writing Workshop for First-Years



The English department is delighted to offer a special, first-year-only section of the creative writing course "Fiction and Personal Narrative."
English BC3105 section 002
2:10pm-4:00pm
3 credits
Instructor: Mary E Keane

BC FIRSTYEARS ONLY; WRITING SAMPLE DUE August 21, 2017
Course Description/Prerequisites: This section is only open to Barnard First-Year students. Writing sample required to apply: required cover sheet and instructions are available here: http://english.barnard.edu/forms-procedures/forms. Students cannot add this course to their schedules until after they are admitted. Short stories and other imaginative and personal writing.

If you're interested in this course, please follow the instructions below, which can also be found on the Barnard English Department website.
Deadline: 11:59 p.m. a week before NSOP begins (August 21, 2017 for the fall 2017 semester)

To apply for a Creative Writing Course:

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

The Student Side: Questions about Course Selection

Welcome to Rowan’s and Paige’s Registration Guide! We’ve collected your questions, done the research, and are here to impart wisdom from our knowledge of our collective 10-time registration experiences. Let’s go.

Before you register for classes, you need to know which classes you want to take. And guess who decides what classes you take? YOU.


Let’s go over some of your most asked questions about selecting courses.


Where can I find courses?
A seemingly basic, but very important question. There’s many different places to find courses. Hit up the Columbia Directory of Classes. Surf through the Barnard Course Catalog. Department websites are another great place if you’re interested in a specific major.

I feel like I have no idea what I'm doing; do you have any recommendations as far as what classes to take first semester?
Besides FYW, FYS, and PE, all other classes you take are up to you. When it comes to taking classes, you have a TON of options, which can be both exciting and a little overwhelming. If you’re interested in a certain major, take an intro class to see if you like it. Take a class just because it sounds really interesting. Start on that language requirement if you know you want to do a really immersive study abroad program.

What I (Paige) did my first semester was I chose classes that both sounded interesting and fulfilled Foundations requirements. I came into Barnard undecided with no clue about what I wanted to study. Thinking about majors stressed me out a little, so I focused on classes that I would be excited to go to. This enabled me to take classes that I was genuinely interested in and still feel productive because I was fulfilling Foundations requirements. You can take classes in any department that you want! Find courses that excite you and maybe fulfill some requirements along the way and go from there.

How many classes should I take my first semester?
It’s not really about how many classes you take your first semester, but how many credits you take. Most classes are about 3-4 credits. Many science lab and lecture classes are 4.5 credits. It’s recommended that for your first semester, you aim to take about 15 credits. The minimum number of credits you need to be enrolled in is 12, the maximum is 18 credits. To take more than 18 credits, you’ll need special approval from a Dean. You shouldn’t overwhelm yourself with classes your first semester; college can be a bit of an adjustment so cut yourself some slack.

How many classes would you recommend taking per day? And do you have classes every day?
That’s totally up to you! Having more more than three to four classes in a day might be overwhelming to some people, especially during your first year. There have been semesters where I (Rowan) have only had classes on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday and some where I’ve had classes all five weekdays. It depends on what’s being offered. If you know you don’t work well at certain times of day you can make the decision to limit the classes you take at that time! If it’s really important to you to not have Friday classes then you can make that happen. Just be cautious of manipulating your schedule too much that you miss out on good classes because they don’t meet at a time you might want them to.

I took one language all throughout high school, but now I want to study a different language. Can I do this?
Of course! You aren’t obligated to continue with any course you took in high school. I (Paige) took Spanish all four years of high school and now I’m studying Hebrew. Elementary Language I classes are designed for people who have little to no exposure to a language. If you do want to continue with a language you began in high school, make sure you take the proper language placement so you can be placed into an appropriate level. Feel free to start as early as first-semester with your language requirement, especially if you’re planning to study abroad!

Is it better to take a math or science class in the first semester when the material from high school is fresh in your mind? Does this make a big difference?
It’s totally your call. If you’re taking an intro class they won’t assume you have any background knowledge in the course and will really take you through step by step. If it’s a more advanced class that requires background knowledge, especially if you’ll need that course for you planned major, it might be wise to start early and continue with your momentum from high school. But again. It’s ultimately entire up to you and there is really no wrong answer.

How do I know if I can take a course as a first-year?
If a course has a 1000 number in its code and has no pre-requisites, chances are you’re good to take that course. Depending on your background in a subject and AP/IB scores, you could be able to take higher level courses. Each department should have a list of appropriate courses for first-years on their website, but we’ve got you covered just in case. We’ve compiled a list of all courses being offered next semester that are appropriate for first-years. If you thought you couldn’t find an intro level course for a Barnard department, check again.

How do I know what course level is appropriate for me?
If you took AP/IB tests, those scores can help to indicate what level in a certain subject would be appropriate for you. However, AP/IB scores aren’t the definite indicator of placement. Most languages will have placement tests available prior to and during NSOP. Some departments, such as the Mathematics Department, will have open houses during NSOP where you can go and speak with professors about placement. During NSOP, you’ll also have the chance to meet with an advisor and they can help you decide on placement.

How are you supposed to choose classes to fulfill all of the Modes of Thinking requirements? Is there some way to find a list of classes that satisfy each requirement?
There IS a list of current courses satisfying general requirements. Keep in mind that not all courses listed will be offered every semester but this is a good overview of what you can expect.

There’s a course listed on a department website with a description, but it shows no instructor or time for this upcoming semester. What does that mean?
Most likely it means that the class isn’t being taught in the fall. This is often the case with many First Year Seminars because most are only taught one semester. If you find a class like this, check back later when Spring courses are posted. It might be offered then!

There’s a FYW course listed that has a time but no professor. What does this mean?
Professors for FYW won’t be listed prior to registration. When you register for FYW, you’ll be registering for a class without knowing who the professor is. When FYW professors are posted, it'll be after the registration for FYW has closed so you'll be unable to change courses. Don't worry too much about this though! All the FYW professors really try their best to help you and your writing skills. Choose your course based on the topic and time that it meets and whether that conflicts with other courses you’re hoping to take.

What if the professor listed for the course I want to take has bad reviews?
Don’t take everything in online reviews to heart; not all reviews are accurate and not all students have the same experiences with a professor. Remember, people who had a bad experience with a professor are more likely to post a review than people who had an average or great experience. Also, keep in mind that people learn differently and expect different things from a professor. A professor that's a bad match for someone else might be a good match for you and vice versa. If you still are wary, you have the option of registering for a different section of the course (if available) or dropping a course during shopping period.

How do you tell if a course is offered second semester? On course planning in my Barnard and the Columbia Directory it isn't clear.
When on the course directory you can select the semester you’re looking for, in this case, Spring 2018. Many of them have not been released, however, as departments will fluctuate and add/change the Spring courses they’re offering between now and the registration period. Don’t worry too much about your Spring plans for now as you’ll have ample time to meet with your advisor and plan things out accordingly.

What is the P.E. requirement? Where can I find P.E. classes? What classes fulfill the P.E. requirement?
All first-years need to take a P.E. class within their first year at Barnard (unless you’re a JTS/Barnard Double Degree student; then you have until the end of junior year). As aforementioned, while P.E. counts as a course, it is usually only 1 credit, so don’t worry too much about course total as opposed to credit total and try to stay somewhere between 12-18 credits for each semester. If you go to the Columbia Directory of Classes and select Physical Education @ Barnard under "Department", you can see all the courses that both the Barnard P.E. Department offers. 

You can take either a Barnard P.E. course, a dance class, or play a varsity sport to fulfill the P.E. requirement. During the summer registration process, you'll only be able to register for a Barnard P.E. course. If you would like to register for a dance class or a varsity sport, you'll be able to do so during the NSOP registration period. A limited number of spaces are available in Columbia P.E. courses for Barnard students. If you would like to take a Columbia P.E. course, you’ll have to go to the Columbia P.E. Department in person and request special permission to registered for a Columbia P.E. course. You cannot register for a Columbia P.E. course through the normal registration process on myBarnard.

Friday, July 7, 2017

The Student Side: Food Options on Campus

This week’s post is going to be about something I’m sure is on all of your minds…



FOOD! As some of you may know, there are four main dining halls on campus. One at Barnard --Hewitt -- and three at Columbia: Ferris Booth, John Jay’s, and JJ’s Place. We’re going to break down for you some info about those dining halls, other cafes on campus, and dietary restrictions. LET’S GET STARTED.

Monday, July 3, 2017

Opportunity: audition for an acting class or mainstage show in the Theatre Department


The Barnard Theatre Department offers several acting courses and mainstage performance opportunities every semester.

Both require auditions, which are held the first two days of classes each semester. (In fall 2017, that's Tuesday 9/5 and Wednesday 9/6 — see below for details.)

Auditions are open to all Barnard and Columbia undergraduates. First-Year students are eligible and encouraged to participate. (Yes, First-Years do get cast in shows!) All levels of experience are welcome, and you do not need to be a Theatre major to try out; no preference in class placement or casting is given to majors.

Fall 2017 Opportunities

Friday, June 30, 2017

A Student Perspective on Foundations


As you’re planning courses and trying to figure out what classes to take, it’s good to keep in mind Barnard’s core curriculum, or Foundations. Foundations is a relatively new curriculum and began for students entering the Fall of 2016 or later. Often, you’ll hear that Foundations is designed to give both breadth and depth to the subjects, in addition to helping students explore new areas of study. There’s three main components of Foundations: First Year Experience, Distributional Requirements, and Modes of Thinking.

First Year Experience (FYE):
We’ve talked about your FYE A LOT already, but we’ll briefly go through it again really quick. FYE is made up of three course: P.E., First Year Writing, and First Year Seminar. All these courses must be taken during your first year at Barnard. For more info on First Year Seminar and First Year Writing, check out the blog post here.

Distributional Requirements:
Distributional Requirements are the different areas of study you have to take classes in at Barnard. They’re pretty general and cover a wide variety of subjects, so there’s a lot of classes you can take to fulfill them. There’s 4 areas of Distributional Requirements: Language, Arts/Humanities, Social Sciences, and Science. You need to take at least 2 classes that fall under each of these categories, so 2 semesters of the same language, 2 arts/humanities, 2 social sciences, and 2 science courses (with a lab science).

In my opinion, it should really say that you need 3 science courses, because you take 2 lecture courses and 1 lab course. The lab and lecture usually go together, that is, one of the lecture courses you take must have a lab component. This probably sounds a little confusing so I’ll give you an example of courses you could take to fulfill the science Distributional Requirement. Let’s say fall semester of your first-year you take Introduction to Psychology. Great, you have one lecture done. Then fall semester of your sophomore year you take Biology 1500 - Introduction to Organismal and Evolutionary Biology Lecture and Biology 1501- Introductory Lab to Organismal and Evolutionary Biology. You’ve completed a second science lecture and one science lab. With two science lectures and one science lab under your belt, you’re done with the Science Distributional Requirement. Keep in mind that if you’re majoring in a subject like biology or psychology or on the pre-medical track, you’ll need to complete additional science labs and lectures.

Modes of Thinking:
Modes of Thinking are the lenses through which you view a course’s material. There’s 6 Modes of Thinking: Thinking Locally about New York City, Thinking with Historical Perspective, Thinking through Global Inquiry, Thinking about Social Difference, Thinking Quantitatively and Empirically, and Thinking Technologically and Digitally. You know how your English teacher said something like “a book can have many different interpretations”? That’s how I understand the intention behind the Modes of Thinking. Course materials and reading can be viewed in many different ways, and a Mode of Thinking focuses on material using a specific viewpoint. Often you’ll find that a class will encompass a few Modes of Thinking, but you can only use a class to fulfill one Mode of Thinking, not two.

Speaking of how you use classes to fulfill requirements, let’s talk about double dipping. To graduate from Barnard you need to complete at least 122 credits. Within those 122 credits, you have your FYF, Distributional Requirements, Modes of Thinking, major requirements, and minor/elective credits. That sounds like a lot, but here’s the thing, you can double dip your courses. That means you can take a course and have it count for 2 of the previously listed categories, with the exception of FYF. Did you take European History since 1789? Cool, you can count it for both the Thinking with Historical Perspective Mode of Thinking and a Social Science Distribution Requirement. Are you mathematics major? Feel free to use a calculus course to count for the Thinking Quantitatively and Empirically Mode of Thinking and your major.

Want to see if a class you’re interested in counts for a Foundations Requirement? Use this handy list.


Foundations can seem daunting, but I promise you that it’s actually very manageable and easy to complete. In fact, you’ll fulfill a lot of the requirements naturally just by taking classes to figure out what you want to major in or even from your major itself. Also keep in mind that you don’t need to fulfill all your Foundations requirements before you can begin to take major classes. There’s also no need to complete Foundations all within your first year. Besides the fact that that’s pretty much impossible, you have time to fulfill requirements. My advice is to take classes not just because they fulfill requirements, but because they also genuinely interest you.