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Skidmore College: Liberal Studies1
Fall 2004

Liberal Studies 1 Projects

The LS 1 Project is an opportunity for you to take ownership of your learning and your LS 1 experience. For the project, you will be responsible for formulating a topic and analyzing it in relation to the study of two of the three human dilemmas formally studied in the course, building upon the critical thinking skills developed throughout the semester, and drawing from the readings and presentations of the course. You will need to research your problem, but the LS 1 project is not a report that simply presents a collection of facts that you have gathered from your work in the library and on the web. Grounded in your research, the LS 1 project is your informed and critical analysis of your problem. The aim of the project is not problem solving but rather problem analysis; thus the dilemmas you choose must be complex problems without obvious answers.

You may choose to do your project as a paper (approximately seven pages) or as a creative project accompanied by a three page reflective essay describing and assessing how your project embodies ideas, materials, and objectives of LS 1. To view some of the creative projects from Fall 2003, click here. Regardless of the format of the projects, you will present your projects to your seminar during the last week of LS 1. Completed projects will be due by noon on Monday, December 17, 2004.

To engage immediately in the project, you will complete a series of informal activities related to your project throughout the semester:

Week of 9/8 Stage 1 Project Introduction
Week of 9/27 Stage 2 Generating Potential Dilemmas
Week of 10/25 Stage 3 Project Proposals
Week of 11/15 Stage 4 Project Format
Week of 12/1 Stage 5 Project Presenations

In addition, your LS 1 instructor may ask you to complete prompts such as

  • Individual conferences with the LS 1 seminar leader
  • Written discussion of how and why you selected the dilemma
  • Newspaper and/or web surfing to discover potential dilemma topics and then to explore how the dilemma presents
    itself in the world beyond the classroom
  • Journals recording your developing thoughts on the topic, especially in relation to LS 1 course work
  • Making connections between student topics and readings presented in the first third of the course
  • Holding meetings with students with similar topics to share ideas and perspectives
  • Making connectionsbetween student topics and readings presented in the remainder of the course
  • Critiques of presentations or drafts