First-Year Preceptorial

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More views from Precept students

Interviews about Precept experience collected by K. Carroll, class of 2015

E. G. ‘15

“I had a really great experience with Precept. My teacher was approachable and cared about the students. She didn’t make us do more work than we needed to and I still learned a lot in the class. The teacher allowed us to watch movies when it was relevant to the class, and we also had class discussions and debates. I found my Precept to be really interesting and I really looked forward to class every day. I was happy that my class was my orientation group because it made for a really nice group dynamic and class discussion.”

N. P. ‘15

“My Precept experience was a great introduction to Union College. It provided me with the opportunity to take a class taught by a professor in a discipline I otherwise would not have explored. I am currently following a pre-med track, weighing majors of Bioengineering and Biochemistry, but because my Precept professor incorporated his specialty, Latin American Studies, into the classroom, I am thinking about entering that field as second major or minor. The diversity of the class was great as we were exposed to the material through many mediums, tests, papers, and discussions, watched movies, and read books. Also, I'm not gonna lie, it was nice having a class without a lab!”

D. F., ‘15

“My Precept topic was media awareness. In my Precept I was forced to think about things I never thought of.  During discussions my professor asked questions that really made me think and got the discussions going.  My experience was enriched because of my teacher. This class opened a whole new world of college writing to me.”

O. O., ‘14

“My Precept class gave me a chance to do something I wouldn’t usually do. I was previously involved in music but not art, and I didn’t plan on doing art at Union. This class gave me a chance to see another building I wouldn’t normally and also learn from a professor I might never take a class from otherwise. In my class we didn’t do as much writing as I thought we would. I originally thought Precept would get me to the expected level of reading and writing for a college student. It wasn’t exactly what I expected; I thought it would be harder.”

A. C., ‘14

“My Precept was good because I was able to read a lot of interesting books and the books were pretty dynamic.  They focused on a central topic--the individual. For each book, we wrote a short paper, between 2 to 5 or 6 pages, and it really made you focus and made sure everyone was on the same level in terms of their college writing ability. It was nice seeing all the people in my orientation group again in the classroom and I got another chance to interact with them. There was another smaller community that was built within the classroom. Also teachers teach from all different disciplines like I had an electrical engineering professor teach my Precept. You get very dynamic faculty teaching the classes.”

C. L., ‘12

“Some may say precept is a waste but I don’t think so. I actually got a lot out of the class and learned what is expected out of college level writing. The only problem is that some people wrote longer papers in their classes, but my class didn’t and the readings also varied.”

E. M., ‘12

“I had my first-year Precept (Scholars) class the fall of my first year.  At first I was somewhat intimidated by the class because there were only ten other students in the class, and even though the other students in the group lived on my floor and were in my first-year orientation group, at first we didn't know each other very well. I was excited for the class though because writing a "college level paper" was also intimidating. It was nice to have a professor that got to know you well, knew your writing style and gave you constructive feedback. I had no previous background of the topic, Generation X, but I really liked the class. It had a fair amount of reading assignments but they were always interesting, and we also watched movies in the class which were sometimes more controversial and brought on interesting discussions. The final assignment for the class was interesting because each of us explored what Generation X was like for another country and presented on it. It was interesting to see that although people were all over the world, Generation X defined certain aspects of their identity. I had a great First-Year Precept seminar, and it definitely helped me prepare for writing assignments and discussions in other classes and for my Sophomore Research Seminar and sophomore project.”