THE TUTORIAL PROGRAM AT WILLIAMS
In the Fall of 1988 Williams introduced a Tutorial Program. Each department offers at least one tutorial during the academic year. Students are invited to examine the tutorial offerings carefully in order to understand fully the substantive content of each tutorial and its mode of operation. A list of the tutorials to be offered in 1997-98 is included in this section, and a complete description of each may be found in the relevant department's section of this catalogue. No student is required to take a tutorial, but any student who has the appropriate qualifications is invited to do so.
While the details of the functioning of tutorials will vary in order to accommodate the diverse subject matter of the various departments of the College, there are important common characteristics to which specific attention may be called.
Tutorials place a much greater weight on student participation than do regular courses or even small seminars. In general each tutorial will consist of two students meeting with the tutor for one hour or 75 minutes each week. At each meeting one student will make a prepared presentation-read a prepared essay, work a set of problems, report on laboratory exercises, examine a work of art, etc.-and the other student and the tutor will question, probe, push the student who is presenting her work about various aspects of the presentation. The student then must respond on the spot to these probings and questions. A tutorial is directly concerned with teaching students about arguments, about arriving at and defending a position, and about responding on the spot to suggestions and questions. This kind of exercise will help the student gain insight and understanding of what knowledge is and how it is accumulated and how there can be different interpretations and different understandings of the same phenomenon. The student presentation drives the tutorial, and the presentation by the student obviously means that student preparation and response are crucial to an effective tutorial. The presentation is based on assigned and suggested reading and other work (laboratory, art work, theatre, etc.) by the tutor.
In some tutorials both students will make a shorter presentation each week and both will react and comment on the other's presentation. In all cases the tutorial is built around presentations by students.
In most instances there will be no more than 10 students in a tutorial. In the first and last week of the semester, the whole group will meet together, and in the 10 weeks in between students will meet in pairs with their tutor. Students should therefore expect to make 5 presentations that occupy about an hour, or 10 that require one half hour. Assignments will be designed such that the student should, in general, be required to spend no more time over a week preparing for the tutorial than for a conventional course. It is likely however that as a student begins her first tutorial course, she will have to spend somewhat more time preparing for it than she does for her other courses. Once the routine becomes more established and familiar, the tutorial is expected to require about the same total time per week as does a regular course. The student should appreciate, however, that the weekly tutorials require exceptional regularity and on time performance.
Grading, testing, and similar details will be described by the tutor at the first meeting of the entire group.
Drops and Adds. Because of the particular arrangements of the tutorial it is necessary to limit adds to the first week of classes only. No adds can be made after that time. Spaces in tutorials are limited, and a late drop may unfairly deprive another student of an opportunity. Students are urged therefore to think very carefully about their initial decisions.
PLEASE NOTE: Tutorials cannot be taken on a pass/fail grading basis.
More Information. Students may obtain detailed information about a specific tutorial from the assigned tutor.
Tutorials Offered 1997-98
American Maritime Studies
AMS/ENGL 231T(F,S) Literature of the Sea Instructor: Bercaw Edwards, TBA
Anthropology and Sociology
SOC 308T(F) Property: A Social Analysis of Material Goods Instructor: Bacon
ARTS 343T(F) The Portrait Instructor: Glier
ARTS 364T(S) Artists' Books Instructor: Takenaga
ARTS 418T(S) Senior Tutorial Instructor: Podmore
ASTR 408T(S) The Solar Corona Instructor: Pasachoff
BIOL/ENVI 401T(F) Human Impacts on Succession Instructor: Art
BIOL 402T(S)/ENVI 404T(S) Current Issues in Ecology Instructor: Meyer
CHEM 312T(F) Heterocyclic Chemistry Instructor: Markgraf
CHEM 314T(S) A Theoretical Approach to Biological Phenomena Instructor: Peacock-López
CLGR 405T(F) The Greek Historians: Herodotus Instructor: Christensen
CSCI 338T(S) Parallel Processing Instructor: Bailey
ECON 201T(S)/ENVI 207T(S) Cities Instructor: R. Bolton
ENGL/LIT 391T(S) Anarchism, Modernism, and Form Instructor: Tifft
GEOS/ENVI 230T(S) The Ice Age Unmasked Instructor: Dethier
GEOS 251T(F) The Carbonate Factory Instructor: Cox
GEOS 304T(S) Paleoecology Instructor: M. Johnson
GERM 402T(S) Nationalism, Ethnicity and the State: Embattled Identities in the United States, Germany, and the Former Yugoslavia Instructor: Druxes
HIST 350T(S) History, Nostalgia, and the Politics of Collective Memory Instructor: Waters
HIST 370T(S) Western Political Thought in Transition Instructor: Oakley
HIST 374T(S) The Second World War: Origins, Course, Outcomes, and Meaning Instructor: Wood
MATH 330T(F) Numerical Methods Instructor: S. Johnson
MUS 203T(F), 204T(S) Composition Instructor: Kechley
PHIL 233T(F) Deviant Lives Instructor: Kamtekar
PHYS 405T(F) Electromagnetic Theory Instructor: Aalberts
PSCI 340T(F) Democracy in Theoretical and Comparative Perspective Instructor: MacDonald
PSYC 354T(F) Social Interaction and Psychopathology Instructor: Heatherington
REL 302T(S) Religion and Society Instructor: Darrow
RLSP 306T(S) Latino Writing: Literature by U.S. Hispanics Instructor: Bell-Villada
THEA 305T(S) Costume Design Instructor: Brothers