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Course Requirements

MCSP welcomes students from all schools and colleges within the University of Michigan.  As part of the MCSP academic curriculum, students are required to enroll in and complete at least three MCSP course requirements during their first academic year: ALA 102, one Seminar Course, and one Civic Engagement Course.

ALA 102 is only offered during the Fall semester. The Seminar and Civic Engagement courses may be taken either semester. However, is is HIGHLY recommended to take the Seminar course during the Fall semester and the Civic Engagement the Winter semester due to the number of available seats in each class.

More about Applied Liberal Arts 102 (ALA 102)

Taught by MCSP’s Associate Director, ALA 102 is a staple for all MCSP students to help their transition to college and to shape their expectations and understanding of their role in a college atmosphere. Is is a 1 credit/no credit class that meets once a week for the first-half of the semester. Small break out sessions (called discussion sections) also meet once a week outside of the large lecture and are facilitated by MCSP Residential Advisors as a required portion of the class.  ALA 102 is required for ALL of our first-year students.

More About Our Seminar Course Requirement

The purpose of the Seminar Course is to afford the students an opportunity to participate in a small class setting with a professor. Too often students only take large classes with discussions taught by Graduate Student Instructors (GSIs), thus our seminar requirement has students interacting closely with a (often times) tenure or tenure-track professor. Approved seminars can be found in MCSP’s coursebook, distributed to students at Orientation (for fall semester) and in November (for winter semester).

Not all seminars offered by the University meet our requirement. We specifically ask our faculty to teach and allow them to choose the topic where enrollment is intended for our students, or have several seats reserved specifically for MCSP. Topics could include environmental sustainability, race & ethnicity, gender, and many others!

MCSP also offers limited  English classes that count towards the Seminar Requirement. These classes also meet the First-Year Writing Requirement set by the University. Two birds with one stone!

*Note: ALA 102 DOES NOT meet our Seminar Course Requirement 

More about our Civic Engagement course requirement

The Civic Engagement Course is designed to actively engage students in the community. Some courses do this by having students volunteer on a weekly basis at a site off campus, such as a local school, nursing home, or community center. Students discuss and debrief their experiences every week in a classroom setting. Other classes, however, have students explore their social identities in relation to one another and how it impacts their daily lives as well as the community around them.

Approved classes and descriptions can be found in the MCSP coursebook distributed at Orientation  and during November. 

For our Engineers

We strongly encourage you to enroll in an MCSP First-Year Seminar in the fall semester due to your schedule requirements. As for your Civic Engagement Course, there are several Intro Engineering classes that we have approved and meet both the Engineering requirements as well as MCSP. The exact courses can be found in the coursebook that will be distributed at Orientation.

Jeanne Murabito and Stacie Edington of the College of Engineering serves as your MCSP/Engineering liaisons.  Feel free to contact them at murabito@umich.edu / sjed@umich.edu, or the MCSP staff at mcsprogram@umich.edu if you have any questions or concerns regarding your schedule or requirements.

If there are exceptional circumstances that do not allow you to fulfill MCSP course expectations, you must see Wendy Woods or David Schoem to arrange alternate means to complete the requirements.  All students should check the LS&A Course Guide and Wolverine Access for official and updated information on course times, course descriptions, classroom locations, information on grading, credit hours, prerequisites, and graduation requirements.