lone pine
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Sanborn library

If you are anything like me, you are already aware of how academics work at Dartmouth. As a prospective applicant, I would spend hours and hours in front of my computer going through course catalogues before even getting accepted. This anticipated anxiety, however, turned out not to be as useful as I thought it would be. 

Therefore, if you are not like me and just want to hear a bit about academics at the Big Green and the personal experience of an overthinking freshman, you came to the right place! 

For starters, I am a prospective Linguistics major - but, for my first term, I happen not to be taking any course in that department. Although I was very scared of falling behind, I received really useful advice from my pre-major advisor and upperclassmen. Without a doubt, the most important one: allow yourself to explore! 

Right now, I am taking SPAN 20 ("Writing and Reading: A Critical and Cultural Approach" with the incredible professor Beatriz Pastor), EDUC 01 ("Introduction to Education"), and ARAB 01. To be honest, I find myself really lucky. I see my friends and peers working through their course selections, bouncing back and forth between different departments and professors, but I genuinely could not have made a better choice. Every day my classes end at noon, meaning I have the rest of the day to enjoy clubs and wrap up any homework and readings I was assigned.

Although I did not initially intend to take any of those classes, I am really glad I did.

Because of the quarter system, Dartmouth students are expected to be enrolled in three courses per term. By the end of your fourth year, you should have completed 35 credits in total. Most majors will require you to have taken 10 courses in their department, while minors require a minimum of six. Although I am not an expert in academic planning, I figured out this leaves students a lot of room for exploration. And that's what I have decided to lean into for my freshman fall!

I am really excited to finally start working towards my major, but at the same time, I don't want to rush it. The college's liberal arts curriculum is designed for students to thrive - no matter if they came here knowing what they want to study, if they are considering a couple of different paths, or if they have no idea what they are interested in.

As I move forward exploring new classes and programs, I hope to see you here again next week!

Julie and Loane studying at First Floor Baker
Study session at the library!

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