Course Directory

Our students choose any two courses from the following lists, one as a morning MAJOR course and one as an afternoon WORKSHOP. Major courses meet six mornings a week and, depending on the nature of the course, include in-class time for fieldwork, labs, workshops, guest speakers, group discussions, and one-on-one instruction. They also include homework and require some project and preparation time outside of class. Workshops meet three afternoons a week, with no homework and all work contained within the class session. A Workshop offers a sample of a different subject than the Major, and most students find their Workshop to be a welcome opportunity to try a new subject for the first time.

There is no final application deadline. We accept applications on a rolling basis until a program is full, but we do have Course Guarantee Dates. Students who apply to The College Experience in Boston on or before January 27, 2017 and are accepted to the program have their first choice of courses guaranteed, subject to enrollment minima. As we begin receiving applications in September, we recommend that students apply as soon as possible for courses that may fill early.


  • Using America’s oldest university and the revolutionary hotbed that was Boston as archives, students get to grips with the primary sources that map out the making of the world’s superpower. They study its triumphs – democracy, freedom, mass-immigration, assimilation, westward expansion, startling economic growth. At the same time they come to terms with its failures – the treatment of Native Americans, the enduring nightmare of slavery, and the violence of civil war.

Sciences & Social Sciences

  • HIV, malaria, and tuberculosis alone are thought to result in ten percent of all deaths every year. The ongoing search for new pathogens is being conducted against the backdrop of outbreaks of diseases such as Ebola, SARS, and Zika. This interdisciplinary course investigates the biology of disease. Topics of study include animal models of human disease; cancer; conventional therapy treatment strategies; the genetics of complex and simple traits; the interaction between environment and genetics; Karyotypic analysis; the molecular and cellular basis of genetic diseases; and the role of oncogenes in tumor initiation and treatment.

  • Students learn how to solve problems and design algorithms, and work on translating these algorithms into functional computer programs. Exploring this rapidly-evolving craft exposes them to the various careers in computing and how machines will shape the future. They work in teams to identify a need, develop a concept, work out user requirements, and create a design which they transfer to the screen. Lab fee of $150 US  for Major; $75 US  for Minor.

  • Mixing classwork and practice, students uncover the theories that govern economic thought. They are also introduced to the history of economics, the fundamentals of economic modeling, and game theory. They go on to test their knowledge against current issues.

  • How are governments created, and what happens when they collapse? How does the spread of democracy impact economic growth, security, and welfare? Are there alternatives to democracy besides tyranny? In their attempts to answer such questions, students consider everything from different political models to the role of individuals via spin-doctoring, party-politics, and the influence of mass media.

  • How does the law shape relationships between nations? And how does it govern relations between non-state actors? Students address Public and Private International Law, and consider how International Law affects business, Human Rights, the prosecution of international crimes, sovereignty, trade, and war. The course culminates in a moot war crimes trial.

  • This hands-on course introduces students to key aspects of medicine and modern medical practice. Combining specialist lectures with experiments and class discussions, students learn the principles of human anatomy and physiology, the pathology and significance of certain diseases, the main challenges that medical science faces today, and the variety of careers in medicine.

  • Using cognitive, experimental, and clinical approaches, students explore the structure and function of the brain as it relates to cognitive process and behavior. Students address the principles of neuroscience, neurology, and psychiatry; learn select diagnostic techniques; and study brain injuries and mental disorders. Classroom experiments are complemented by visits to laboratories.

Production & Workshop

  • In this Workshop, students hone their college application skills through classes on college essay writing, mock interviews, and seminars on what to consider when choosing a college. They profit from visits with admissions counselors who provide them with the dos and don’ts of college admissions, giving them an inside track to what is an ever-more competitive process. Workshop only.

  • In 21st-century working life, everyone will at some point be asked to deliver a presentation, regardless of their occupation. Students learn how to prepare and deliver compelling speeches to a large and critical audience. The syllabus covers the core principles of communication, the history and theory of rhetoric, and techniques for overcoming speech anxiety. Students learn how to structure and organize information, gain decision-making skills, and acquire knowledge of how to present their ideas effectively. Workshop only.