The term "Independent Study" is applied at Dominican College to a study undertaken by a student or group of students in which the major responsibility for the focus and for the plan of study and demonstration of learning outcomes is assumed by the student(s). In order for Independent Study to be accepted for credit at the College, a member of the faculty must accept the responsibility for approving the student's plan and evaluating the effectiveness of the achievement of the study objectives specified.
While the initiation of Independent Study is largely the responsibility of the student, the outline of study or contract may be developed in consultation with the faculty member who accepts the sponsorship of the study. The contract bearing the written consent of the faculty sponsor is approved by the Division Director prior to registration so that the necessary authorization may be presented to the Registrar. A copy of the contract is filed in the Office of the Academic Dean. It is important, therefore, that the student who wishes to pursue Independent Study plan sufficiently in advance so that the required consultation and approval may be procured prior to Registration.
In certain circumstances, because of scheduling constraints or other circumstances of a compelling nature, students may find it difficult to complete a course that is among those regularly offered. If no alternative courses are available and if a faculty member accepts the responsibility for directing and evaluating the student's work, the course may be undertaken on an independent basis. Such arrangements are designated as "Independent Coverage of Course Work" and the transcript bears the name and number of the course offering with the suffix "IS." As in the case of Independent Study described above, the outline of study or contract must be endorsed by the faculty sponsor and approved by the Division Director prior to registration. A copy of the outline is filed in the Office of the Academic Dean.
An alternative to the forms of Independent Study described above is the validation of learning by means of examination. Study outlines and bibliographies are made available by the various programs which administer college - level examinations. For additional information, see section below.
Students may obtain liberal arts or professional area credits by participating in the Elective Internship program of the College. By providing opportunities for internships off campus, Dominican College encourages students to broaden their collegiate learning experience and to explore career options in business, government, the arts, and private agencies. All experiences are related to an academic area, and a faculty sponsor must approve the internship proposal.
Positions have been available with public accounting firms, local and national corporations, financial institutions, broadcast stations, and other significant organizations. Internships are also encouraged in non-profit organizations and in endeavors that provide services to the community.
To be considered for participation, a student must normally have completed 60 academic credits (including a minimum of 15 credits taken at Dominican College) and have a G.P.A. of 2.3. or above. Interested students must submit an application and resume by appropriate deadlines. All inquiries regarding internships should be directed to the Office of Career Planning and Placement in Casey Hall.
Credit by Examination
Students who have gained college-level mastery in areas of knowledge for which no college credit has been earned may validate their achievement by means of an examination. The College will award credit for successful achievement on certain external examinations when accompanied by successful performance on a College-administered essay in the examination subject area. The College recognizes Regents College Examinations and also the College Level Examination Program of the College Entrance Examination Board.
Examinations completed before admission to the College are evaluated as part of the admissions process. After admission to the College, the student consults with his/her advisor in order to determine which examinations may be appropriate to degree plans and receives authorization from the Office of the Academic Dean prior to taking any examination. Since duplicate credit will not be awarded, the C.L.E.P. General Examinations should be completed within the first year of study at the College, preferably during the first semester.
Separately published materials available at the Office of the Academic Dean provide more information regarding policies and procedures, including minimum performance standards and criteria for retesting.
Prior learning acquired through work experience, community involvement, volunteer activities, or independent study may be assessed through a process of portfolio preparation. The process requires the identification, explanation, and documentation of learning that is comparable to what is studied in college courses but that is not readily tested through available examinations. Completed portfolios are evaluated by faculty or consultants, and credit is awarded as appropriate. A maximum of eighteen undergraduate credits may be earned in this way. (Twelve credits are the maximum allowable for portfolios on subjects in the area of Business Administration, five credits in the area of Student Teaching.) Information and guidance are available through the Director of Special Sessions.
Non-Collegiate Sponsored Instruction
Students or prospective students may have completed college-level courses offered by the military, business, industry, government, labor unions or police academies for which no college credit has been earned. The College will recognize and grant credit as appropriate for courses which have been evaluated by the American Council on Education, Office of Educational Credit, or the New York State Education Department's Office on Non-Collegiate Sponsored Instruction. Prior to enrolling in the College, information and consultation regarding the applicability of such courses to the degree programs offered are provided by the Office of Admissions. Subsequent to admission, the student may seek additional information at the Office of Special Programs.
The College allows up to a total of 60 credits earned by means of examination, portfolio preparation, and/or special evaluation combined. Such credits do not satisfy the thirty credit residency requirement for earning a baccalaureate degree from Dominican College.