2021-2022 Undergraduate Catalog 
  
    Nov 29, 2021  
2021-2022 Undergraduate Catalog

Compass Curriculum



Director: David Yates

Compass Curriculum

All Millsaps students must complete the Compass Curriculum specifically designed to develop the general abilities of a liberally educated person.

  • Foundations
  • Connections
  • Ventures
  • Explorations:
    • Humanities
      • Our Human Heritage Parts 1 & 2
    • Business Knowledge
    • Fine Arts
    • Mathematics
    • Non-Native Language
    • STEM Experience
    • Understanding the Natural World
    • Understanding the Social World
      • Major Experience
      • Writing Proficiency
      • Writing Reflection on the Value of the Millsaps Experience

Foundations

Description

The purpose of the Foundations program is to promote the acclimation of first-year students into the Millsaps College community. The Foundations course fosters an environment that encourages student development and success by providing opportunities for values exploration, cultural under­standing, and skill development. Foundations meetings are held once a week and are led by two upperclassmen leaders. The course is a gradua­tion requirement for all freshmen admitted during a fall semester.

Specific Method for Fulfilling the Requirement

Students must complete FOUN 1000  their freshman year.

Connections

Description

The purpose of Connections is to develop the skills of thinking and rea­soning as well as written and oral communication through the study of a specific topic situated within a single humanities discipline and in the top­ic’s historical context. Students will create formal and informal communi­cation products that demonstrate critical listening, reading, and, where appropriate, aural and visual comprehension of course material.

Student Learning Goals

Students will:

  • Effectively interpret, analyze, and synthesize relevant materials through sustained inquiry in and research on an appropriately focused topic in the humanities. Students will challenge assumptions and draw defensible conclusions relevant to the topic.
  • Create effective oral presentations, written texts, and, where appropri­ate, audiovisual texts that clearly convey understanding in accordance with the demands of rhetorical context (including audience, context, purpose, genre, evidence, documentation, mechanics of communication, and argument).
  • Generate, frame, and explore an individual research question relevant to the course topic. Students will explore possible answers to the question through written, oral, and (when appropriate) other modes of communi­cation, including a research paper on the topic.
  • Demonstrate appropriate use of and documentation of the work of others while attaining proficiency in the use of one or more formal styles of source citations suited to the communication product.

Specific Methods for Fulfilling the Requirement

Student must complete FYCS 1110 /FYCSFA 1110  Connections for 4 credits.

Ventures

Description

The Ventures courses explore a problem or tightly focused set of prob­lems. Students investigate relevant issues from multiple perspectives and propose possibilities for resolution. The students engage in project-based work, collaborative learning, creative risk taking, and adaptive strategies for problem solving. Course topics will be diverse and from a variety of disciplines.

Student Learning Goals

Students will:

  • Use discipline-based problem-solving tools to identify, define, and analyze a problem, and develop creative strategies for solving or coping with it.
  • Gather information from a variety of sources and consider multiple perspectives to identify criteria, analyze problems, and evaluate potential solutions or improvement strategies.
  • Reflect on the viability of proposed solutions or responses to problems, revising strategies and conclusions as new information is gathered and analyzed.
  • Collaborate with others to achieve a common goal related to the prob­lem they are studying.

Specific Methods for Fulfilling the Requirement

Student must complete FYCS 1120 /FYCSFA 1120 /FYCSOC 1120 /FYCSTEM 1120  

Ventures for 4 credits.

Transfer Students

A transfer student is typically defined as a student who has matriculated to an institution of higher learning following the summer after their grad­uation from high school.

Ordinarily, transfer students must complete Connections (FYCS 1110 ) unless

  1. they have completed the second semester of English Composition (or equivalency) at an institution of higher learning (C or above grade), OR
  2. they have earned 30 or more hours (C or above grade) of college credit (excluding credit hours earned through placement tests or dual enrollment) and can show proficiency in written communication to the Writing Council.

Ordinarily, transfer students must complete Ventures (FYCS 1120 ) unless they have earned 30 or more hours (C or above grade) of college credit (excluding credit hours earned through placement tests or dual enroll­ment).

Transfer students must complete Transfer Foundations (FOUN 1050 ) in their first semester at Millsaps College.

Exploration in the Humanities

Description

In Exploration of the Humanities, students explore the human experi­ence and world cultures throughout history and consider intellectual development, artistic expression, and social and cultural evolution. This requirement will develop skills for seeking, understanding, and interpret­ing cultural phenomena across numerous human contexts.

Student Learning Goals

Students will:

  • Explore some of the key creative works, generative ideas, pivotal events, and problems that have shaped human experience.
  • Develop a historical consciousness for understanding human and cultural evolution.
  • Explore global, geographic, and historical diversity through multiple fields of the arts and humanities.
  • Explore connection between fields of study within the arts and hu­manities and encourage interdisciplinary connections outside the arts and humanities.
  • Develop skills of being a thoughtful and discerning interpreter of cultures.
  • Develop reading and writing skills for engaging primary sources.

Specific Methods for Fulfilling the Requirement

Student must either

  1. complete FYHH 1010 - Our Human Heritage Part 1  and FYHH 1020 - Our Human Heritage Part 2  (8 hours, 2 semesters) OR
  2. complete two introductory-level courses taken from two different departments in the humanities or allied fields (Archaeology, Art History, Communication Studies, English, Greek and Roman Studies, Government and Politics, History, Music History, Philosophy, and Religious Studies) that has been approved by Compass Council. At least one of these classes must be taken in the first year and the other by the end of the second year.

Explorations in Business

Description
In the Exploration of Business, students will engage with a fundamental aspect of business knowledge and skills to understand the logic of the marketplace and the capacities of organizations and organizational leaders to affect human life across the street and around the globe.

Student Learning Goals

Students will:

  • Develop decision-making abilities for real-world business problems
  • Meet at least one of the following three objectives:
    • Interpret and use financial data to make informed decisions.
    • Explain factors that affect contemporary markets and describe the impact of those markets on organizations and society.
    • Identify and develop key leadership skills necessary for good management in organizations and citizenship in society.

Specific Methods for Fulfilling the Requirement

A business course, at the 1000 or 2000-level, that has been approved by Compass Council. Such courses include ACCT 2000 , ECON 1000 , or MGMT 2000  (4 semester hours).

Explorations in Fine Arts

Description

In the Exploration of Fine Arts, students will be equipped with tools that help them explore the aesthetic dimension of human life, through 4-credit hours of coursework or approved experience. This requirement will intro­duce students to the rich artistic realms associated with images, sounds, objects, movement, and/or language. Students will gain the ability to evaluate and critique artistic works, while actively participating within artistic communities. Students will also develop their powers of artistic expression, performance, and/or discernment.

Student Learning Goals

Students will:

  • Demonstrate knowledge of artistic practice through producing and/ or analyzing work in a specific discipline (creative writing, music, theatre, or the visual arts).
  • Identify and/or apply strategies that enable artistic decision-making as associated with individual artists, periods, and/or cultures.
  • Evaluate the function of artistic expression by reflecting the ways art may affirm, challenge, or alter audience perspective.

Specific Methods for Fulfilling the Requirement

The Fine Arts requirement may be fulfilled by a 4-credit hour course or approved experiences equivalent to 4-credit hours in one area that have been approved by Compass Council. Four credit hours of any combina­tion of approved music ensembles and/or lessons (including voice) shall meet this requirement. Approved courses will be posted on the Millsaps website. An approved Ventures (FYCSFA 1120 ) or Connections (FYCSFA 1110 ) course may also apply.

Explorations in Mathematics

Description

In the Exploration of Mathematics, students will study and solve pure and applied mathematical problems from both visual and analytic perspec­tives, through 4-credit hours of course work or equivalent proficiency. The courses that satisfy this requirement will develop the student’s ability to convert conceptual information into problems that can be solved using standard mathematical and geometrical tools, solve the problems, and interpret the results.

Student Learning Goals

Students will:

  • Accurately interpret and explain information presented mathematically and graphically.
  • Quantify problems, apply abstract symbolic manipulation or reasoning, and interpret the results.
  • Understand how the computational skills taught apply in contexts both within and outside mathematics.
  • Explicitly describe assumptions in estimation, modeling, or data analysis, and make appropriate inferences with critical thinking.
  • Develop and interpret mathematical models of raw data, or physical or social phenomena.

Specific Methods for Fulfilling the Requirement

  • an ACT math subscore of 28 or higher
  • an SAT math subscore of 630 or higher
  • college mathematics transfer credit the equivalent of College Algebra or higher
  • any Millsaps mathematics course approved by the Compass Council

Explorations in Non-Native Language

Description

In the Exploration of Non-Native Language, students will demonstrate proficiency in a non-native language through 8-credit hours of course­work, equivalent experience, or proficiency. This requirement empha­sizes language study as a vital means to understanding other cultures, literatures, historical perspectives, and human experiences. Students will become more aware of their own native language and culture, and they will enhance their communication, reasoning, and thinking skills. Courses fulfilling this requirement must maintain at least 3 contact points per week.

Student Learning Goals

Students will:

  • Attain a basic, working knowledge of a linguistic system different from their own.
  • Demonstrate the ability to read, write, and communicate orally at the foundational, introductory level in the non-native language.
  • Become aware of the differences between their own language and non-native language, thus learning more about their own first language.
  • Understand the history of the language they study.

Specific Methods for Fulfilling the Requirement

Students must demonstrate proficiency equivalent of two semesters of college level coursework. The non-native language requirement may be fulfilled in one of the following ways:

  • Two semesters of non-native language coursework in the same language at Millsaps.
  • An appropriate score on a college-administered placement exam in a language taught at Millsaps.
  • Study-abroad or other formal language training at another insti­tution, provided that the student supplies to the Office of Records supporting documentation including relevant transcript(s), syllabi, certificate, and/or diploma for transferring credits.
  • AP, IB, or CLEP Exam Scores: 4 or higher on an Advanced Placement (AP) exam, a grade of 5 or higher on an IB exam, or appropriate score on CLEP exam. In some cases, these scores may grant the student credit hours towards graduation. Note: Higher scores on AP and IB exams are required for the foreign language requirement for the B.A. degree.
  • Demonstrated proficiency via examination in a language not offered at Millsaps. The student must find a reputable exam administered by an independent third party. The relevant chair will determine the quality of the exam and consult with other experts if necessary.
  • For international students whose first language is not English, this requirement will ordinarily be satisfied by proficiency in English evi­denced by an official minimum TOEFL score of 80 on the IBT TOEFL, 220 on the computer-based TOEFL, or 550 on the paper-based TOEFL. In lieu of the TOEFL exam, students may submit IELTS scores of band 6.5 or higher. In instances where international students do not have required test scores, a plan will be developed in consultation with the ESL specialist. Coursework will be determined in consulta­tion with the ESL specialist. Note: For academic purposes, a student is considered a native speaker of a language other than English if the student was raised in a non-English speaking country and was formally educated through all or most of high school in a language other than English.

Explorations in The Stem Experience

Description

In the Exploration of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM), students will learn to value innovation and the acquisition of new knowledge, by focusing on assessing and applying this knowledge to new contexts, through 4-credit hours of coursework (normally introductory level course). This requirement prepares students to approach problems not previously encountered; to evaluate new situations, new phenomena, and new data; and to make sense of the world using rapidly changing information and technology.

Student Learning Goals

Students will:

  • Explore interconnections among science, technology, engineering, and/or mathematics, and see how they are practiced in applied contexts.
  • Understand and accurately explain scientific problems and informa­tion presented quantitatively.
  • Apply STEM content.
  • Formulate research questions and draw conclusions.

Specific Methods for Fulfilling the Requirement

Pending approval by Compass Council, courses that may be appropriate for this domain include the following:

  • An approved natural science course (with or without lab).
  • An approved mathematics course.
  • An approved computer science course with programming language.
  • An approved research methods or applied statistics course in the social sciences or business.
  • An approved Ventures (FYCSTEM 1120 ) course with a strong science literacy component.

Explorations in Understanding the Natural World

Description

In the Exploration of the Natural World, students will learn, use, and interpret scientific knowledge of the natural world through experimen­tation with and observation of its processes and relationships, through 4-credit hours of lab or field coursework (normally introductory level) in the natural sciences. Students will experience scientific methods through formation, testing, and refinement of hypotheses, models, and theories.

Student Learning Goals

Students will:

  • Understand how scientific inquiry is based on investigation of evidence from the natural world, and how scientific knowledge and understanding evolves based on new evidence.
  • Recognize the scope and limits of scientific inquiry.
  • Participate in scientific inquiry and communicate the elements of the process, by making careful and systematic observations, developing and testing a hypothesis, analyzing evidence, and interpreting results.

Specific Method for Fulfilling the Requirement

A lab or field course in the natural sciences that has been approved by the Compass Council.

Explorations in Understanding the Social World

Description

In the Exploration of the Social World, students will develop an academic and intellectual foundation for understanding and/or engaging in diverse social settings and for reflecting critically on social and cultural phenom­ena, through a 4-credit hour social science or behavioral science course. This requirement fosters opportunities for engaged citizens to understand a multi-faceted social world and act within it.

Student Learning Goals

Students will:

  • Use social science methodologies and theories to understand and compare social behavior, patterns, and/or systems.
  • Demonstrate a working knowledge of diverse social systems and contexts.
  • Critically examine and analyze issues of power and difference as they manifest themselves (explicitly and/or implicitly) in the societies of which we are a part.
  • Connect academic studies with day-to-day social experiences.

Specific Methods for Fulfilling the Requirement:

A social science or behavioral science course which has been approved by the Compass Council or an approved Ventures (FYCSOC 1120 ) course.

Major Experience

Description

The Major Experience is an experiential learning graduation requirement that ensures every Millsaps student directly connects with our vision of producing transformative leaders who will have positive impacts across the street and around the globe. With this requirement, students can claim an experience in transformative learning and leadership on campus or the application of their Millsaps education to an experience that extends beyond the Millsaps campus. The Major Experience requirement can be satisfied with an approved 4-hour course or approved experiential equivalent.

Student Learning Goals

Students will:

  • Integrate and apply academic skills to understanding practical expe­riences and problems found beyond the traditional classroom.
  • Develop a foundation for lifelong engaged learning as a Millsaps graduate.
  • Analyze the experience critically to integrate knowledge and experi­ence and to achieve new understandings.

Specific Method for Fulfilling the Requirement

Every course fulfilling the Major Experience requirement must satisfy the student learning goals. The Major Experience must be completed while the student is enrolled at Millsaps and normally after the freshman year. Wellspring and exclusively freshman courses (Ventures, Our Human Heri­tage, and Connections) are not acceptable for Major Experience credit.

Courses and experiences (4-hour course/combination of courses, or experiential equivalents) that will satisfy this requirement include the following:

  • Study abroad: A 4-hour study abroad course offered by Millsaps College will satisfy the Major Experience requirement.
  • Field-based course: An approved 4-hour domestic field-course (where at least 75% of the course takes place in the field, during which students are actively engaged in an applied learning experience) offered by Millsaps College will satisfy the Major Experience require­ment.
  • Community-engaged (CEL) coursework: Each CEL course will satisfy one-half of the Major Experience requirement. Approved CEL courses require at least ten (10) hours of engagement with a community partner, in collaboration with classmates, and toward completion of a project. The requirement for CEL designation is documented through a CEL application and a section in the syllabus that details the CEL component of the class.
  • Undergraduate research experience: Undergraduate research experiences that total 4 hours of earned credit or the experiential equivalent (e.g., non-credit summer research experiences) will satisfy the Major Experience requirement. Research experiences must be approved by a Millsaps faculty/staff member.
  • Honors project: Successful completion of an Honors project will satisfy the Major Experience requirement.
  • Ford Fellowship: Successful completion of a Ford Teaching Fellowship collaboration (regardless of credit hours earned) will satisfy the Major Experience requirement.
  • Internship/student teaching: Internship experiences that total 4 hours of earned credit or the experiential equivalent will satisfy the Major Experience requirement. Internships must be approved by a Millsaps faculty/staff member.
  • Petition-approved experience: In some cases, the Major Experience requirement may be satisfied in non-traditional ways (i.e., not-for-credit internships, summer research experiences, self-designed proj­ects with faculty oversight, etc.). In such cases, an approved petition is required before the experience is undertaken. To obtain a petition, contact the Director of the Major Experience in the Center for Career Education.
  • Combined experience: A student may assemble any combination of approved courses or experiences that total the equivalent of 4 credit hours in order to satisfy the Major Experience requirement.

Writing Proficiency Portfolio

Demonstration of writing proficiency through the Millsaps Writing Proficiency Portfolio is a graduation requirement. All students, traditional or transfer, should fulfill this requirement no later than the end of their second year at Millsaps; transfer students entering as juniors or seniors will need to complete the requirement no later than the term prior to their anticipated graduation date. The Writing Center will provide appropriate out of class support for writers through workshops and one-on-one ses­sions; for information about available support opportunities, please visit the Writing Center webpage. For more information about the contents of the portfolio and instructions for submission, please visit the Writing Program website.

To submit their portfolios for review by faculty committee, students must do the following:

  1. First year: Attend two mandatory Writing Program workshops.
    1. Introduction to the Millsaps Writing Program:
      During the first two weeks of their first semester, each student must attend a Writing Program workshop introducing the writing proficiency requirement and instructing students in the use of the required campus writing reference text. Copies of the text will be available for purchase at the campus bookstore.

      The workshop schedule will be distributed via email to all first-se­mester students; it will also be posted on the Writing Program’s website. Note: Completion of this workshop is required; students will not be able to access their online Writing Proficiency Portfolio space until they have completed this requirement.
    2. Introduction to Reflective Writing:
      During the second semester (spring term for most but offered in the fall for transfer students), each student must attend a Writing Program workshop on reflective writing to help them prepare for submission of their portfolio in their second year.

      The workshop schedule will be distributed via email to all first-se­mester students; it will also be posted on the Writing Program’s website.
  2. Second Year: By the end the spring semester of their second year, each student must submit the following documents to their online writing portfolio space. Specific instructions will be distributed to students via email; they will also be posted on the Writing Program website. Note: Failure to complete this requirement on time will result in registration delays in subsequent semesters and may prohibit you from taking your comprehensive examinations.
    1. Required Portfolio Documents:
      1. A brief (2-4 pages) reflective introduction to the portfolio. Writ­ten outside the context of a specific course, this document serves as the student’s thesis about their writing development at Millsaps. Subsequent items provide the evidence referenced in this reflective introduction. The Writing Center will offer workshops to help students with this document; for more information, see the Writing Center’s website.
      2. Four (4) papers from classes taken at Millsaps College, taken from at least two (2) of the three divisions below. Course catego­ries:
        1. Arts & Humanities
        2. Business
        3. Sciences

These papers will normally be sourced from courses taken to fulfill elements of the Compass Curriculum. Of these 4 papers, at least two (2) must demonstrate use of multiple secondary research and proper application of a clearly identified/identifiable documentation system. The total number of pages expected for this section of the portfolio is 25-30 (assuming an average page length of 250 words); while we will accept page counts slightly under or over the expected norm, excessive deviation may affect the assessor’s ability to evaluate the work, and the student may be asked to submit more appropriate alternatives.

  1. One (1) “wild card” document reflecting an element of the student’s communication development. This document can be written, oral (recording/video), or visual in nature; the only requirement is that it be able to be shared in digital form. While the length of the wild card item is not prescribed, we encourage students to remember that readers will be assessing a large number of portfolios.

Special note for Transfer students: The categories for essay submission may vary according to the student’s academic record prior to attending Millsaps College. Students transferring in at the junior or senior level are allowed to substitute one (1) paper written for a course at a previous college or university as one of their four essays. Transfer students with questions about the portfolio should speak with the Director of Writing & Teaching to ascertain what papers to submit.

For more information, consult the Writing Program webpage or visit the Writing Program office in John Stone Hall.

Writing Reflection on The Value of The Millsaps Experience

A critical reflective paper must be completed during the senior year on the value of the Millsaps Experience in conjunction with either the depart­ment’s senior seminar or another major course.

Academic Policies Specific to The Compass Curriculum

Double Counting in The Compass Curriculum

Students must complete all requirements of the Compass Curriculum. In the following cases, one course may be used to satisfy multiple Compass Curriculum requirements:

  • The Ventures courses that are approved to satisfy the “Fine Arts” (FYCSFA 1120 ), “STEM” (FYCSTEM 1120 ), or “Understanding the Social World” (FYCSOC 1120 ) explorations may satisfy both the first year Ventures requirement and the applicable exploration require­ment.
  • The Connections courses that are approved to satisfy the “Fine Arts” (FYCSFA 1110 ) exploration may satisfy both the first year Connections requirement and the “Fine Arts” exploration requirement.
  • Students can satisfy the “Major Experience” requirement through approved coursework used to complete their other Compass Curric­ulum, degree, major, minor, or concentration requirements. Usually students do not need to take an additional course to complete this requirement.

Departments may further restrict or allow the number of Compass Cur­riculum courses that will count toward the major, minor, and/or concen­tration. FYHH 1010  and FYHH 1020  Our Human Heritage may not count toward majors, minors, and/or concentrations. Students should confirm further eligibility of double counting with the chair of the department.

Compass Curriculum Exemptions for Transfer Students

A transfer student may use historically oriented courses in the Humanities (or allied fields) to fulfill the Exploration of the Humanities requirement, provided that the student has placed out of Connections (see section on Transfer Students above). These courses must be from different disciplines if the student intends to satisfy the entire requirement.

Likewise, a student who completes a course in the natural sciences, math­ematics, or social/behavioral sciences, fine arts, language, or business that presumes the skill and knowledge of a Compass Curriculum course may be exempt from that particular Compass Curriculum requirement. Contact the Office of Records for more information. Once a student has enrolled at Millsaps College, he or she will not ordinarily be permitted to use transfer credits to meet Compass requirements. Coursework that does not apply toward the Compass Curriculum but is found to be transferra­ble to Millsaps College may count as an elective (TRAN). Once a student has declared his or her major/ minor/concentration, those electives may or may not apply to his or her specific program of study; these decisions are made in conjunction with the Office of Records and the applicable Department Chair.