First-Year and Second-Year Courses

First-year students are required to complete an Earlham Seminar I and II. In addition, all students must complete a designated Writing Intensive course prior to the completion of their second year.

Earlham Seminar (ES) courses teach first-year students general methods of interpretation in reading, writing and classroom discussion that provide a basis for skills they will continue to develop throughout their college career at Earlham and throughout their lives. The Earlham Seminar will also engage first-year students in exploring a topic of interest in an intimate, challenging and collaborative learning environment. These seminars introduce students to successful participation in a learning community and encourage new ways to engage and understand the world. Earlham Seminars share many of these distinctive characteristics:

  • Investigation of a topic and a set of related questions, using multiple ways of knowing, in order to exam intentionally how knowledge is constructed.
  • Grounding in an academic discipline while examining issues with an interdisciplinary scope.
  • Readings that engage a range of perspectives, discourses and values.
  • Emphasis on reading, reflection, writing and oral communication skills, and providing opportunities for students to critique and analyze information, construct arguments, listen interpretively and demonstrate and understand of various perspectives.
  • Encouragement of personal creativity and confidence in ideas and the development of cooperative learning and research skills.
  • Sharpen interpretive reading skills for analyzing and interpreting different kinds of texts.
  • Strengthen general skills required for coherence and clarity in written expression.
  • Communicate intelligently and effectively both in writing and through participation in group discussion.
  • Become better, more constructive and more open-minded listeners.
  • Develop skills that support and enhance life-long learning and engaged, committed citizenship.

Writing Intensive (WI) courses may be disciplinary or interdisciplinary. They examine a diverse range of texts arranged around a particular question, theme or historical period. Texts may include films, musical scores or works of art. The purpose is to foreground texts for the study of a subject and to compare texts while approaching them from a variety of disciplinary perspectives and in several contexts. These courses:

  • Provide a writing- and reading-intensive experience that develops further the skills acquired in Earlham Seminar courses.
  • Study an array of challenging texts arranged around a particular question, theme or historical period.
  • Investigate primary and secondary texts in studying an issue or era.
  • Compare texts in several contexts — historical, social, political — and put them in dialog with one another.

Earlham Scholars is an enhanced academic program for first-year students ready to dive deep into a field of study. This unique experience can give you a head start on your college career. Confirmed students may sign-up for Earlham Scholars through June 30. Choose among these extraordinary experiences:

  • Super Languages (Spanish)
  • East Asia and the Pacific Northwest: Managing the Risk of Earthquakes and Tsunami
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Earlham College, an independent, residential college, aspires to provide the highest-quality undergraduate education in the liberal arts, including the sciences, shaped by the distinctive perspectives of the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers).

Earlham College
801 National Road West
Richmond, Indiana
1-765-983-1200 — Main Switchboard
1-800-EARLHAM (327-5426) — Admissions