Independent studies are available to qualified students wishing to explore course work that is not offered at the Five Colleges. A maximum of 16 credits of such work can be completed at Mount Holyoke, but none of these credits may count toward the 300-level requirement for the major, although two of them may be used to satisfy the overall requirements for the major. A FMT 395 project, for which a 3.5 GPA in FMT is required, is equivalent to one of the department's advanced seminars and requires significant research and a lengthy term project. A FMT 395 project must be preceded by or take place at the same time as a 300-level seminar in FMT. A FMT 295 project is equivalent to a 200-level FMT course.
To initiate an Independent Study, you must contact the faculty member with whom you wish to work during the advising/preregistration period of the semester before the intended independent study. You will need to secure a faculty member's permission to proceed, based on the project and your qualifications for doing the project. After receiving permission to move forward, you must submit a 500-word prospectus or an equivalent document agreed upon with the faculty member with whom you are working before the end of the semester preceding the proposed independent study. The prospectus must include a working title, a description of the project, the questions that will be addressed, and an annotated bibliography/filmography. A transcript should be attached. The prospectus will be circulated among the department faculty for final approval.
If the project has been approved, you will meet with your supervisor once a week for the duration of the Independent Study. You and your supervisor will refine your prospectus and create a timetable for research. For those terminating their Independent Study project at the end of the semester, the final project must be turned in to the supervising faculty member during the examination period.