Academic Programs Catalog

General Information, Policies, Procedures and Regulations

General Procedures and Regulations

Independent Study


At Michigan State University, Independent Study is planned study, highly individualized, not addressable through any other course format, proposed in writing by the student on a standard form, accepted for supervision by a faculty member, and approved by the student's academic advisor and the teaching unit at the beginning of the semester.


Independent Study should:

  1. Consist of work not described in the university catalog in any other format;
  2. Be taken under a course number commensurate with the student's class level, major field, and experience;
  3. Relate to a subject for which the student has adequate preparation;
  4. Be directed by a faculty member with whom there is periodic contact and consultation throughout the study;
  5. Not exceed 8 semester hours of credit in a single semester or summer session;
  6. Not exceed 10 percent of the credits earned in a bachelor's program;
  7. Be applied for on the form provided by the department or school or college;
  8. Be approved on this form before the student enrolls for the course; registration should be completed by the end of the period for adding courses.