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Undergraduate Curriculum Support

Main Contact Info

Office of the Associate Dean for Undergraduate Education

2242 LSA
500 S. State St.
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1382
Phone: 734.615.9653

Applied Liberal Arts

Applied Liberal Arts (ALA) courses provide essential skills for college success and other curricular and co-curricular opportunities for first- and second-year students as they explore majors, minors, internships, and other options for education, leadership, and personal growth. This part of the LSA curriculum is still "under construction." In the semesters to come, it will also serve as a transdepartmental space for integrative, multidisciplinary, and experimental teaching and learning, including the “22 Ways” courses, specialized Sophomore Seminars, and Critical Issues courses that explore modes of problem-based education. Finally, ALA is a laboratory for new directions in the LSA undergraduate curriculum, especially those that highlight student-led and student-designed initiatives. It will host liberal arts courses that are part of the cross-campus undergraduate minor in entrepreneurship and the Social Innovation Challenge sponsored by optiMize.

University Courses Division

The University Courses Division is a small academic unit that is administered by the LSA Dean's Office and used to house undergraduate courses that do not readily fit under any specific departmental banner. Sponsored by the college rather than by individual departments or programs, these courses may be taught by members of the faculty in any academic unit on the Ann Arbor campus, including colleges outside of LSA. A number of non-LSA course offerings have been approved by the LSA Curriculum Committee for cross-listing in the UC Division, thus allowing LSA students completing those courses to earn LSA credits toward their degree.


The University Courses Division is also the home of courses for Michigan Learning Communities, the Undergraduate Research Opportunity Program, and other special initiatives in undergraduate education. In addition, the UC Division has been a place where experimental and interdisciplinary courses are developed. After a course has been offered successfully for a few terms, a home is ordinarily found in a traditional academic unit, and the UC listing is dropped.


First-Year Seminars

These unique, low-enrollment classes (maximum of 20 students) are open to all first-year students. They are intended to facilitate deeper learning through more active participation and increased opportunities for interaction between student and teacher, as well as dialogue among students. Students not only experience a stimulating introduction to the intellectual life of the University through engaging subject matter, but some may also discover a subject they wish to pursue in further courses. We hope that students who take a seminar will find in it a sense of intellectual and social community that will ease the transition to a large university.

All First-Year Seminars can be used to complete part of the College's Area Distribution requirements: Humanities (UC 150); Social Sciences (UC 151); Natural Sciences (UC 152); and Interdisciplinary (UC 154).