Fall Term 2019 Only-Freshman Seminar Application
Please Note: The application period for spring term seminars will begin in December.
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VIDEOS: Get tips for applying from students & hear them discuss their experiences in Freshman Seminars!
APPLICATION FAQs: view a list of frequently-asked questions for guidance with applying (on the For Students page>Application FAQs)
Please contact us if you have any questions.
How to Apply: Instructions and Information
Because demand for a specific seminar often exceeds its number of seats, we recommend that you submit at least seven applications to help us match your top choices against your top offers. You may apply for as many seminars as you’d like, and rank them in order of preference until the deadline at 3pm on Wednesday, August 28. Instructors will review applications and rank their choices as well, and then we run an algorithm to match students with seminars. You will be notified of your assignment at 12N on Friday, August 30 and you must accept or decline your assignment before 12N on Saturday, August 31. We will then post all seminars that still have openings at 3pm.
How to Apply: Specifics
Access the online application module by clicking on the "Apply Here" button above.
Modify my personal data.
Please complete this section accurately to help us keep in touch with you about your applications.
Browse / Search for seminars to add.
Here you may sort seminar offerings by number or title, or, you may search by schedule (e.g.“Tuesday”) or by keyword (e.g. “science” or “art”).
Once you’ve decided to apply to a particular seminar, hit the “apply” button on the seminar description page in order to reach the essay section of the application. The essays are the most important means by which the instructor will learn about your interest in the seminar. All seminars require that you complete one short essay; some also require that you respond to an additional question. Please read the instructions carefully, and note that some seminars require interviews and/or mandatory field trips that will take place outside of regular meeting hours.
Please note that essays are limited to 250 words.
Rank / Manage Current Applications.
The algorithm will try to place you in the order of your preference, so please think carefully about your rankings. By default, your first choice for a seminar is the one to which you apply first, and your subsequent choices are those to which you apply in that sequence. We encourage 7 applications in order to increase your chances of getting a seat in one of your top-choice seminars. You may reorder, edit, add, or delete applications until the deadline. All applications received by this deadline will be treated equally. Please note that status confirms that your application has been successfully submitted.
Usually, instructors make admission decisions based on the essays. Occasionally, instructors will interview applicants, either individually or in groups. Any special requirement will be included in the application instructions to each seminar.
You will be notified whether or not you have been admitted to a seminar via email at 12:00 Noon on Friday, August 30. If you receive an assignment, you must accept or decline online before 12:00 Noon on Saturday, August 31 so that we may post open seats.
If you do not receive an assignment by algorithm – likely there were too many applications for the seminar(s) on your list – you may still join a seminar. Not all seminars fill to capacity and most have unexpected openings due to declined offers. We will post all seminars with open seats on our program website at 3pm on Saturday, August 31. We encourage you to browse the openings and to email the instructor for permission to join a seminar if you did not receive an assignment by algorithm. If you are invited to join a seminar, you must respond to the invitation within 24 hours and send a copy of your acceptance to email@example.com. Placement by permission of the instructor may continue until the Course Registration Deadline. Please notify the instructor and our office if you drop/change your seminar.
Course Registration Deadline - Monday, September 9
You must have the instructor's approval online in the My.Harvard.edu system to enroll in a freshman seminar.
We are glad to help in any way, so please let us know if you have any questions at any time. You may contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or (617) 495-1523. We look forward to hearing from you!