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HARVARD COLLEGE

Office of Special Concentrations

2 Arrow Street

Cambridge, MA 02138



Tessa Lowinske Desmond

Director of Studies




(617) 495-4048



E-mail Tessa_Desmond@harvard.edu

(617) 495-2109



Fax: (617) 496-3299

E-mail: j_wolcowitz@harvard.edu



CHECKLIST FOR SPECIAL CONCENTRATION
Your application should include:

1. General Information sheet which should be the first page of the application


2. Statement of Purpose*
3. Proposed Course Plan (Part 1)*

4. Proposed Course Plan (Part 2)*


5. Alternative Departmental Plan in case the Special Concentration is denied.
6. Summary of Course Differences Between Proposed Plan of Study and Alternative Plan of Study.

7. Statement of Resident Dean or Designee, or Freshman Adviser.


8. Statement of Prospective Faculty Adviser. (Must be a voting member of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences.)

9. Statement of Department(s) Most Closely Related to Proposed Special Concentration.


10. Statement of Prospective Tutor, if applicable.
11. Most Recent Grade Report

*Please give copies of these statements to prospective Faculty Advisers and Tutors, Allston Burr Resident Dean, and appropriate Head Tutor(s) well in advance of the application deadline so that they may consider them carefully and discuss them with you.

page one
APPLICATION FOR A SPECIAL CONCENTRATION
The application must reproduce legibly (a black pen or, if printed, a fresh cartridge on your printer.)

Date of Application ___________________
Student Name: ID #:
House (Mailing) Address:
E-mail Address Phone Number: _____________________
Title of Special Concentration (limit of 30 characters) :

Freshman Sophomore Junior Senior (Please circle one.)

Honors (please circle) YES NO Expected Date of Graduation:
Present Field of Concentration:
Resident Dean, Freshman Adviser or Designee
Name:
Closest Department To Special Concentration

Name of Department Representative Writing Statement:

Faculty Adviser(s) For Special Concentration
Name:
Department:
Departmental Title:
Tutor(s) for Special Concentration
Name:
Department:

Departmental Title or Year in Graduate School:

page two


Student Name:_____________________________________

Date:
STATEMENT OF PURPOSE
What do you propose to study and why do you want to approach it in this way?

Please justify, in as much detail as you judge necessary, your proposal as to:

1) its coherence and depth as a concentration, and

2) its adequacy as part of an undergraduate education in liberal arts.



Attach additional pages to this sheet. Statement should be limited to 2-3 pages (500-750 words).

Please attach as part of Special Concentrations Application. Return to Candice Wesson, Office of Undergraduate Education, First Floor North, University Hall. In addition, please give copies to prospective Faculty Advisers and Tutors, Allston Burr Resident Dean, and appropriate Head Tutor(s).

page three
Student Name:_______________________
Date: ______________________________
PROPOSED course PLAN FOR SPECIAL CONCENTRATION (Part 1)
List all courses you plan to take in each semester. Also include all courses that you have already taken. Please distinguish unambiguously (e.g. underline, capitalize, or star) between courses you propose to count for Special Concentrations (including tutorials) and Core or elective courses.

Use descriptive as well as departmental titles ("Buddhist Hybrid Sanskrit" not just Sanskrit 110"); indicate whether the course is half or full credit, and consider prerequisites and limited enrollment.



Please feel free to attach additional pages to this sheet.

Please attach as part of Special Concentrations Application. Return to Candice Wesson, Office of Undergraduate Education, First Floor North, University Hall. In addition, please give copies to prospective Faculty Advisers, Allston Burr Resident Dean, and appropriate Head Tutor(s).

page four
Student Name:______________________
Date: ______________________________
PROPOSED PLAN FOR SPECIAL CONCENTRATION (Part 2)
Please provide a description of how the courses you propose cohere to form a unified whole. Imagine that you have been asked to provide an outline of your concentration for Fields of Concentration.
E.g. for a concentration in Cultural Studies & Politics:

4 half-courses in Critical Theory - courses will provide a base of knowledge in Cultural Studies, Postmodernism etc.

4 half-courses in representation - courses will provide background and knowledge of the representation of a number of different cultural identities.

3 half-courses analyzing the issues of race, class, and gender through the traditional lenses of the social sciences.

2 half-courses exploring the notion of praxis and political action - courses will provide theoretical and historical perspectives on the relationship between theory and practice.

4 half-courses in Special Concentrations tutorial - SC 98a and 98b, SC 99a and 99b.



Please feel free to attach additional pages to this sheet.

Please attach as part of Special Concentrations Application. Return to Candice Wesson, Office of Undergraduate Education, First Floor North, University Hall. In addition, please give copies to prospective Faculty Advisers, Allston Burr Resident Dean, and appropriate Head Tutor(s).


page five
Student Name:______________________
Date: ______________________________

ALTERNATIVE DEPARTMENTAL PLAN
List all the courses you would take to fulfill a departmental requirement if Special Concentration is denied. Realism and ingenuity are essential here: show how you could make the best use of an existing program. Please indicate which courses would be required for concentration and which you would choose to count for concentration. (Mark them RC, CC respectively)

Use descriptive as well as departmental titles ("Buddhist Hybrid Sanskrit" not just Sanskrit 110"); indicate whether the course is half or full credit, and consider prerequisites and limited enrollment.



Please feel free to attach additional pages to this sheet.

page six


Student Name:_______________________
Date:_______________________________

COMPARISON OF PROPOSED AND ALTERNATIVE PLAN
Summarize the differences between your proposed Special Concentration program and your departmental alternative. Please also list 1) Special Concentration courses you would have to forego if your petition were denied and 2) department courses you would not take if it were granted.

Please feel free to attach additional pages to this sheet.

page seven


Please Circle: I do I do not waive any right of access I may have to this reference form.
Student signature:________________________________________________________ Date:_____________________
Student Name: ­­­­­­­­­­­­­­__________________________________________________________
STATEMENT OF RESIDENT DEAN, FRESHMAN ADVISER OR DESIGNEE
The Committee on Special Concentrations recognizes that no Resident Dean can comment authoritatively on every student's academic specialty. We do rely, however, upon your understanding of the students themselves. How would you assess the applicant's maturity, initiative, discipline, and perseverance? Can he or she dispense with the collegiality, advice and support a departmental concentration provides?

If you do not know the student well, would you suggest someone better able to comment on him/her.



Please feel free to attach additional pages to this sheet.

Signature: Date:_________________
Name and House: (Please print) ___________________________________________________

(The Committee on Special Concentrations appreciates the care and candor with which you will reply.)

Return to Candice Wesson, Office of Undergraduate Education, First Floor North, University Hall.

page eight



Please Circle: I do I do not waive any right of access I may have to this reference form.
Student signature:________________________________________________________ Date:__________________
Student Name: ­­­­­­­­­­­­­­__________________________________________________________

STATEMENT OF PROSPECTIVE FACULTY ADVISER
As prospective Faculty Adviser, your support is, apart from the student's own commitment, the most crucial factor in the success of a Special Concentration. Students who elect Special Concentrations forego the support as well as the constraints of a department; you therefore will bear substantial responsibility for their education.

1) Do you support the proposal as described in the Statement of Purpose and Plan of Study the student has submitted to you? Will the student's undergraduate education be as (or more) coherent, balanced, and thorough as a departmental concentration? Why do you particularly recommend it? Have you any misgivings?

2) Are you willing to assume quasi-departmental responsibility for advising the student: tutoring him/her yourself or finding a colleague willing to tutor him/her; discussing course selections and signing his/her study card each term; approving changes in his/her Plan of Study; arranging for thesis readings; setting and grading a general examination; writing letters of recommendation?

Please feel free to attach additional pages to this sheet.


Signature:_______________________________________________________________Date:_________________
Name: (Please print)____________________________________________________________________________
Dept. & Dept. Title: ____________________________________________________________________________

(The Committee on Special Concentrations appreciates the care and candor with which you will reply.)

Return to Candice Wesson, Office of Undergraduate Education, First Floor North, University Hall.

page nine



Please Circle: I do I do not waive any right of access I may have to this reference form.
Student signature:________________________________________________________ Date:__________________
Student Name: ­­­­­­­­­­­­­­__________________________________________________________

DEPARTMENT MOST CLOSELY RELATED TO PROPOSED

SPECIAL CONCENTRATION
The Faculty legislation authorizing Special Concentrations stipulates that a Special Concentration should not be granted if the student's Plan of Study can be pursued within an existing concentration. As the Head Tutor of the Department or degree-granting committee that best approximates this student's interests, would you evaluate the proposal and the Plan of Study he/she has submitted to you?

1) Is it thorough and coherent as an undergraduate program?

2) If you believe the proposal is sound, is it or is it not possible to accomplish its aims while fulfilling your concentration's requirements?

Please feel free to attach additional pages to this sheet.


Signature:________________________________________________________Date:_________________
Name: (Please print) ____________________________________________________________________
Dept. & Dept. Title: _____________________________________________________________________
(The Committee on Special Concentrations appreciates the care and candor with which you will reply.)

Return to Candice Wesson, Office of Undergraduate Education, First Floor North, University Hall.

page ten

Please Circle: I do I do not waive any right of access I may have to this reference form.
Student signature:________________________________________________________ Date:___________________
Student Name: ­­­­­­­­­­­­­­__________________________________________________________

Term for which tutorial is Proposed: _____________

STATEMENT OF PROSPECTIVE TUTOR
Tutorial is an integral part of a Special Concentration. Students undertaking interdisciplinary studies need attentive and challenging tutors; they frequently have difficulty finding them.

1) Are you willing to serve as this student's tutor for the academic term indicated above?

2) Would you explain how the syllabus or your tutorial contributes to the student's Special Concentration as described in the proposal and Plan of Study he/she has submitted to you?

Please feel free to attach additional pages to this sheet.


Signature:_______________________________________________________________Date:_________________
Name: (Please print)____________________________________________________________________________
Dept. & Dept. Title:____________________________________________________________________________

(The Committee on Special Concentrations appreciates the care and candor with which you will reply.)



Return to Candice Wesson, Office of Undergraduate Education, First Floor North, University Hall.


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