Precollege Study Program 2019

Summer enrollments are processed on a first-come, first-served basis. The registration form and payment must be fully complete before enrollments are processed.

Please email if you have any questions.

Focus on Writing

Writing Course: Select One

  • ENGL259/WRCT228: The Art of the Personal Essay / Meg Weisberg

    The personal essay is short-form, first-person, narrative nonfiction that encompasses many genres: memoir, reflection, humor, familial and social history, and cultural criticism. Yet even these boundaries often blur within a single essay, and the personal essay can expand to include almost any topic. Writing personal essays--what author and critic Philip Lopate calls "the self-interrogative genre"--helps us find out what we think, often makes us change our minds, and, ideally, leads us to new insights. In class, we will discuss the assigned readings, participate in group responses to each others' writing (workshops), and write in response to prompts. We will study both traditional and unconventional techniques of nonfiction, focusing on the elements of craft: structure, voice, clarity, the use of descriptive detail, and revision.

  • ENGL292: Techniques of Nonfiction / Douglas Martin
    In this course, we will learn how to craft and revise short pieces of nonfiction writing that draw on our own life experiences and our observations of the world around us. To achieve this goal, we will constantly be creating and editing our own prose, and we will perform various writing exercises. Moreover, we will read our colleagues' nonfiction prose and offer them thoughtful, generous feedback. Finally, we will read various published nonfiction essays--memoirs, musings, reviews, and reportage--and we will analyze these pieces in order to understand how veteran authors narrate "real-life" stories in a way that is engaging, beautiful, and meaningful. Upon completing this course, you will have a deeper knowledge of how to construct resonant nonfiction from your own life in order to tell a story that reveals subtle but acute information about the larger world.
  • WRCTXXX/ANTHXXX: Ethnographies in Medicine / Tess Bird

    Biomedicine looks different in different places: biotechnologies change under new moral frameworks; the same pharmaceutical pill can offer freedom to some and evoke colonialism in others; and hunger is often more pressing than curing a specific disease. How do we go about challenging our biomedical assumptions and understand medicine in context? Medical anthropologists have relied on the art and science of ethnography to provide cross-cultural accounts of health and healing that are accessible, provocative, and timely. In this writing-intensive course, we will read exemplary ethnographies in medical anthropology to explore the intersection of medicine, culture, and narrative text. We will explore four themes that cover provocative discourses in the field: the challenges of participant observation during vulnerable encounters with sickness and disease; regimes of power; local-global encounters; and good, eating, and the gendered body.


    Students will read 2 full-length ethnographies (books) and other shorter ethnographic texts available on Moodle. Students will write four papers (one per week), including two literature responses, one book review, and an 'ethnographic' final project. There will be in-class writing assignments, small group activities, and debates.

    Key Texts:

    Fresh Fruit, Broken Bodies: Migrant Farmworkers in the United States, Seth Holmes

    The Vulnerable Observer, Ruth Behar

    Book from list, based on student interest

    Articles available on Moodle

Focus on Liberal Arts

Elective: Select One

  • ARHA/FIST 126: El Greco to Picasso / Melissa Katz
    This course examines the life and afterlife of the Spanish artists of the Golden Age, whose achievements reached unprecedented heights in the 17th century. Centuries later, their works took on new roles as artists of other times and cultures found their own inspiration in works of the past: Manet copied Velazquez, Picasso copied El Greco, and ( famously on "Project Runway") Christian Soriano copied Murillo. What allowed these complex works to resonate so strongly in another era? Is such influence automatically a sign of success? And why have the works of Francisco Goya inspired more filmmakers than any other artist? Students will be introduced to the reading of visual art for stylistic, historical, and political content and develop a critical understanding of art and society in Golden Age Spain, as well as insights into the role of art as a cultural currency.
  • ARST131: Drawing I / Kate Ten Eyck
    This introduction to drawing gives special attention to the articulation of line, shape, volume, light, gesture, and composition. A variety of media and subjects will be used, including the live model. This course is suitable for both beginners and students will some experience. Individual progress is an important factor in grading. The graded option is recommended. Full classroom attendance is expected.
  • ARST190: Digital Art / Christopher Chenier

    This experience will introduce students to the digital arts, an area of creative practice encompassing computer-based art from GIFS and graphics to cutting edge digital fabrication tools. While developing the critical and methodological tools to engage problems in our digital culture, students will acquire the practical skills necessary to create and communicate digitally. Sessions will emphasize the ways software is used for project development, prototyping, and experimentation. Most of our time will be spend in Adobe Creative Cloud. The core elements of CC will be covered through workshops in image editing, graphics, layout, and type. Translating digital files into physical objects, students will work with a laser cutter, large format inkjet printers, and a CNC mill.

  • GOVT155: International Politics / Giulio Gallarotti

    This introduction to international politics applies various theories of state behavior to selected historical cases. Topics include the balance of power, change in international systems, the causes of war and peace, and the role of international law, institutions, and morality in the relations among nations.

  • PSYC200: Statistics: An Activity-Based Approach / Chenmu (Julia) Xing

    This five-week course is an introductory-level statistics course for students interested in conducting psychological research and/or considering a psychology or neuroscience undergraduate major. The course will introduce the concepts and methods most commonly used in the analysis of quantitative data in psychological research such as behavioral experiments and life observations. Lectures will be provided to introduce the concepts and/or mathematical procedures of the core statistical topics and methods, including descriptive statistics, sampling distributions, t-tests, analysis of variance, correlation, simple regression and nonparametric tests such as chi-square tests. The course will emphasize activity-based learning by engaging students into practices of statistical methods and analysis procedure using statistical software for social sciences and task-based problem solving activities. The course will also include periodical reviews and unit tests to consolidate learning. Performance will be assessed using homework assignments, projects, and tests with objective problem items and objective scoring guides. To register, the prerequisite of other coursework (e.g. PSYC105) as a requirement for eligibility to enroll in my course section will be waived.

Focus on Leadership

Social Justice Leadership

Acclaimed for its proactive stance on issues of justice, diversity, and social progress, Wesleyan is an ideal place for students with interests in these areas to receive firsthand training. Professional staff from Wesleyan's Office of Residential Life have created a four-part social justice training program that will prepare you to manage interpersonal and social conflict. You will be better prepared for leadership roles, increasing your impact on your next college campus, and engaging with your community as a world citizen. Students who participate in all sessions will receive a certificate.