First Year Inquiry Program......for students who want more!

Academic Programs & Services of the
Division of Academic & Student Affairs [DASA]
North Carolina State University
Raleigh, North Carolina

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Course Info
Student Info
Faculty Info
Program Info

The First Year Inquiry Program offers General Education courses featuring
active learning opportunities exclusively to first-year students. Why take a mega-class when you can be one of 19 students in a special seminar? FYI students show
measurable academic improvement after taking a single FYI course.
What are you waiting for?

FYI Fall 2015 Courses [PDF]...

Please plan your schedule using the information above. You will not actually be able to register for FYI courses until your orientation session. We do this so that students with early registration privileges do not have unfair access to FYI classes. Also note restrictions in the lefthand column. Some sections are limited to certain student populations.

Hear what an NC State first-year student has to say about working on critical & creative thinking [1 min. video]

FYI Advantages for Students

  • small classes (size under 20) making discussions easy and productive.
  • close student-student & student-Instructor relationships & communication.
  • focused development of critical and creative thinking skills.
  • active participation through inquiry-guided learning [no boring instructor monologues--classes are interactive!]
  • support & assistance in making the transition from high-school to university-level thinking.
  • an instructor who knows you & your work well enough to write credible letters of recommendation.
  • students taking just 1 FYI course have statistically higher GPAs by junior year.

FYI offers many advantages to faculty and departments as well. See Faculty Info or
contact program director Rich Slatta for details.

Core Teaching Principles & Best Practices

  1. Inquiry-guided learning: Students work inductively, building up their own analysis and creating their own understandings, with our guidance.
  2. Active-learning classrooms: Most classroom time consists of students DOING, not just listening. If used at all, lectures are interactive.
  3. Uncovering concepts & nuances rather than simply covering a body of facts.
  4. Students are neophytes in our disciplines: Students do what professionals in our disciplines do, albeit at an appropriate level, rather than simply reading results from other researchers.
  5. Promote critical & creative thinking: Assignments require both these important cognitive practices.
  6. We measure student improvement: We do not assume our practices yield good learning. Well-conceived assessments measure both critical and creative thinking.
  7. We push assignments to Bloom's upper levels. We emphasize applying, analyzing, evaluating, and creating over simple remembering facts.
  8. Low- and higher-stakes [informal & formal] writing and speaking opportunities: Students need practice on these important skills; low-stakes options mean less grading for instructors and lower pressure for students.
  9. Promote developmental as well as cognitive outcomes: We teach the whole student. We're attentive and supportive of the major life transition students are making from high school to college.
  • Program Description: The First Year Inquiry Program (FYI) is designed specifically for first year students who will take general education courses during their first year at NC State. Each FYI course, which is designated with the “Q” suffix, fulfills a general education program (GEP) requirement. FYI faculty, for whom teaching and student success are priorities, engage FYI students through the use of “inquiry-guided” teaching methods. The three student-learning objectives to which the FYI program strives are sharpening of critical and creative thinking skills, enhancing development of intellectual maturity and increasing student responsibility for his or her own learning. Students further benefit from experiencing classes with a small faculty/student ratio that fosters a closer relationship among students and professor.

    Your first year is the time to begin developing skills to apply for and obtain fellowships. Start with the Fellowship Advising Office Website. It's also a good time to begin planning to study abroad. Check the Gilman Scholarship Website. Gilman Scholarships provide funding for students receiving a Pell Grant to study abroad for the semester, summer or academic year. For a summer program, the deadline is usually the first week of March. Programs must be at least 4 weeks in length to qualify. Average award for the summer is $3000. Maximum award is $5000. Tiffany L. Kershner, Ph.D., at the Fellowship Advising Office, can assist you with these and other fellowship opportunities.

    FYI operates under the auspices of NCSU's Division of Academic Programs & Services
    of the Division of Academic & Student Affairs [DASA]

    We Promote the Success of the Whole Student

    updated March 26, 2015 10:00 AM