All students choose to take one course: Biology, Chemistry, History, Mathematics, Surveying, or Writing & Rhetoric. Each course (except Biology, Chemistry, and Surveying, which has a daily three-hour lab) meets four and one-half hours each day, to include two and one-half hours in a traditional classroom format and two hours in a tutorial session.
Afternoon tutorial sessions are designed to offer students alternative educational approaches to reinforce concepts and skills covered in the morning sessions. They afford instructors the opportunity to use active learning techniques, time to work with students individually or in small groups, and the ability to take students on field trips. Rather than be passive recipients of information, students will be expected to participate enthusiastically in their education.
Students cannot be guaranteed their first choice, but efforts will be made to place students in the course they select. Students will be placed in courses on a first-come first-serve basis.
The following courses will be offered during STP:
BI-101: General Biology I (4 credit hours) Lecture material will be derived from the concepts presented in the text. BI-101 will focus upon basic biochemistry and the structure and function of the principle biomolecules; cell structure and function, membrane characteristics and the transport of material across the cell membrane; cell division including the process of fission, mitosis, and meiosis; the structure of DNA and the process of protein synthesis; basic Mendelian and non-Mendelian genetics.
Laboratory topics will complement lecture material as well as include use of the scientific method activities as a means of reinforcing lecture material and preparing for an original research project to be conducted at the end of BI-102. (This course is not open to those intending to major in Biology).
CH-137: Introductory to College Chemistry I (3 credit hours) A study of the fundamental principles of chemistry and their applications, designed for science, math, and engineering majors. Topics include atmoic and molecular structure, chemical bonding, gases, thermochemistry, stoichiometry, physical and chemical properties. Co-requisite: CH-117
CH-117: Laboratory for CH-137 (1 credit hour) Experiments designed to demonstrate the basic principles of chemistry with respect to observations, measurements, and calculations.
CE-121: Surveying (3 credit hours) An introductory course to learn about surveying instruments, measurements of horizontal and vertical distances and direction, traverse computations, topographic mapping, and construction surveys. This course is usually taken by Civil Engineering students during their first semester at VMI.
HI-103: World History I (3 credit hours) A study of the world’s major civilizations prior to 1500, concentrating on their primary values and institutions, and their cultural contacts. Particular attention devoted to the Middle East, China, India, the Mediterranean world, and Western Europe. HI-103 is appropriate for students in all majors.
MA-101: Math That Matters I (3 credit hours) In MA-101, cadets will learn mathematical concepts from statistics, including data analysis, regression, probability, sampling, statistical significance, and hypothetical testing. The following majors require MA-101: Biology, Computer Science (CS majors may take MA-101 or MA-123), Economics & Business, English, History, International Studies, Modern Languages, and Psychology.
MA-114: Pre-Calculus Mathematics (3 credit hours) This course is pass/fail only. MA-114 does not fulfill a mathematics requirement and cannot be used as elective credit. Equations and inequalities; functions and their graphs; polynomial and rational functions; exponential and logarithmic functions; trigonometric functions.
MA-123: Calculus and Analytical Geometry I (3 credit hours) A study of plane analytic geometry with single variable differential calculus. Limits, derivatives, applications of derivatives, and derivatives of transcendental functions. Pre-requisite: MA-114, or scored sufficiently high on the Math placement test, or have permission from the Department Head of the Applied Mathematics Department. The following majors require MA-123: Chemistry, Civil Engineering, Computer and Information Sciences (CS majors may take MA-101 or MA-123), Electrical Engineering, Applied Mathematics, Mechanical Engineering, and Physics.
English, Writing & Rhetoric
ERH-101: Writing & Rhetoric I (3 credit hours) This course introduces the essential principles of rhetoric, develops cadets' ability to analyze complex texts rhetorically, and refines their writing strategies, paying special attention to their critical reflection on their writing processes. Such essential practices as invention, arrangement, and revision will be emphasized in their writing of expository essays. Minimum grade of C required. Cadets cannot take this course if they have already taken EN-101 or WR-101. ERH-101 is appropriate for students in all majors.
All courses taken by a cadet and grades earned in the VMI Summer Session and the VMI Summer Transition Program will be recorded on a cadet’s transcript. Only grades of D or better will be included in a cadet’s cumulative GPA. A grade of F is never counted in the GPA earned from the summer programs. A cadet may request that a D grade earned in the Summer Session or the VMI Summer Transition Program not be counted toward graduation and for that reason not be included in his or her GPA. This request will be approved only if it is received by the Registrar’s Office before the end of the drop/add period of the semester following that Summer Session or Summer Transition Program.