First Year Seminar (FYS) Faculty Institute

Background: FYS 100 is an interdisciplinary seminar designed to provide first-year students with a shared core experience early in their careers at Marshall. Taken by all non-transfer freshmen in their first or second semester, FYS 100 serves as a foundation not only for the Core Curriculum but also for work in the major, leading up to the capstone. The course emphasizes inquiry, intercultural thinking, information literacy, life-long learning skills (metacognition) and integrative thinking. Limited to an enrollment of 22 students, FYS courses are active, energetic, hands on. They involve debate, asking essential questions, experimentation, writing to learn, the leveraging of failure, and adaptation.

Because the course is interdisciplinary, full-time faculty members from across the university are eligible to teach the course, with chair and dean approval. A commitment to join the FYS Faculty requires teaching at least four sections within a two-year time period during fall and/or spring semesters.

The Institute: Every fall and spring semester, the Coordinator of FYS (Jennifer Sias) will issue a call for interested faculty to complete an Intent to Teach FYS form. Faculty who commit to teaching FYS for the first time must complete the FYS Faculty Institute to be offered the prior semester. The FYS Faculty Institute is co-facilitated by the Center for Teaching & Learning and the Office of First Year Seminar. The goal is to assist future FYS instructors in developing an effective interdisciplinary course design and in teaching the course for the first time. The Institute occurs over the course of eight weeks. It begins with a half-day Saturday morning retreat at the end of the 3rd week of the semester, followed by six online modules and one additional face-to-face Friday afternoon meeting. Participants should expect to walk away with a complete syllabus and course design plan by the conclusion of the Institute. Faculty should not enroll in a particular Institute session unless they plan to begin teaching FYS the following semester. Faculty will receive $1800 in compensation when all work for the Institute is completed.

For additional information, please visit:

[Click here to download the Intent to Teach FYS form from the Academic Affairs web page. Completing and forwarding this form automatically enrolls a faculty member in the appropriate FYS Faculty Institute.]