Group Study Projects
Group Independent Studies (GISPs) are cooperative inquiries in which participating students bear major responsibility for both the planning and conduct of the work. GISPs carry regular course credit and provide an opportunity for academic pursuits which might not be available in regular courses.
Each GISP should be sponsored by an instructor holding a teaching appointment at Brown University who is prepared to assess the proposed study, to provide advice during the project, and to be responsible for the evaluation of each student's work. Normally this person will be a Brown faculty member. Under exceptional circumstances, a graduate student with appropriate expertise and teaching experience may be eligible to be a sponsor. In such cases, the proposal must be accompanied by a curriculum vitae for the graduate student and a statement of qualification and recommendation from the Chair of the graduate student's department. The Chair will assume ultimate responsibility for the academic quality of GISPs sponsored by graduate students.
Students and instructors interested in setting up a group study should consult the "GISP Handbook," which is available in the Curricular Resource Center, 308 J. Walter Wilson. Students planning a group study should consult with CRC staff or Dean Gaylin at the earliest stages of the planning process. At the end of each GISP, a joint student-faculty evaluation report of the accomplishments of the project must be submitted by the faculty sponsor to the CCC. The College does not offer remuneration for sponsors of GISPs.
Proposal forms for GISPs may be downloaded from the CRC website or picked up in the CRC (Campus Center room 228). Proposals are reviewed by the College Curriculum Council (CCC) to assure the academic quality of the proposed programs and to avoid undue duplication. Proposals for the fall semester are due in early April of the preceding spring semester; proposals for the spring semester are due in early November. Check the University calendar on the Registrar’s website for specific dates.
Samples of past proposals can be reviewed at the CRC. GISPs approved in recent years include The Chemistry of Photography; Russia Watching: Understanding Contemporary Russian Politics and Media; Native American Sacred Places; Comparative Study of Korean and Korean-American Literature; The Art of Argumentation; US/Canadian Literature since 1965; Critical Pedagogy: Theory and Praxis; Appalachia: Economic and Social Change Since 1930; and Tagore-Ray and Bengal.