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Connections at F&M

Overview of the Connections Curriculum 

This webpage houses information about the first portion of F&M’s new Connections Curriculum (to be implemented in the Fall of 2014 with the Class of 2018).  

The Connections Curriculum begins with two seminars – Connections 1 and Connections 2.  These seminars have enrollments capped at 16, are not lecture courses, disciplinary introduction courses with heavy content requirements, or advanced courses in a discipline. Connections courses at both levels encourage students to make connections: connections across disciplines; connections between theory and practice; and connections between their liberal arts education, their experiences, and diverse aspects of our common world. Connections 1 Seminars stress writing, close reading, and the art of effective classroom discussion. The Connections 2 Seminar builds on each of these skills in a subsequent semester while introducing students to different disciplinary perspectives and the connections between them, as well as to the process of research at the college level. The sequenced Connections Seminars provide F&M students with an introduction to the aims and standards of intellectual discourse and the communities that sustain it.

Planning and Process

Summer 2013 CPC Working Group

During the summer of 2013, a Connections Program Working Group was appointed by EPC. The CPC was charged with ‘fleshing out’ the Connections curriculum, particularly with respect to its pedagogical aims and learning goals.   The CPC prepared several documents that were discussed at the August 2013 Curricular Symposium (including the sample syllabi). Here you will find the overview of Connections prepared by the CPC.  

Aims and Skills for Connections Courses

This document sets forth the key aims and critical skills we hope to achieve in Connections courses; it was prepared by CPC and EPC, and discussed by the faculty on October 7, 2013.

Transitioning and Creating Connections Courses

This document, prepared by CPC for the August 2013 Currricular Symposium, includes some suggestions for transitioning existing FND or FYS courses to either CNX1 or CNX2, as well as strategies for creating new courses.   

Foundational Documents

Executive Summary: An executive summary of the key features of the Connections curriculum. 

Narrative: A description of the review process that led to Connections, and a full description of the Connections curriculum as it was then envisioned. 

Motion: The motion that was approved by the faculty.