While not required, freshman seminars are an excellent introduction to academic life in the College and are highly recommended for first- or second-semester students. The primary goal of the freshman seminar program is to provide every freshman with the opportunity for a direct personal encounter with a faculty member in a small class setting devoted to a significant intellectual endeavor. Freshman seminars also fulfill College General Education Requirements.
Benjamin Franklin seminars are small, intensive classes that have fewer than 20 students. They are predicated on the idea that the students and faculty are jointly pursuing deeper discoveries through discussion and investigation. Approximately 50 seminars are offered each year, and while most are taught by faculty in the School of Arts and Sciences, seminars are also offered by faculty from the other schools, including Wharton, Medicine, Engineering and Law.
Students who are members of the Benjamin Franklin Scholars program have automatic access to these seminars; however, any undergraduate may enroll in a Benjamin Franklin seminar. While most are introductory, they may be taken at any time.
Students may count two Benjamin Franklin seminars or one Benjamin Franklin seminar and one freshman seminar toward the Sector Requirement.