Graduate Student-at-Large (GSAL) students enroll in regular graduate and undergraduate courses (with adequate pre-requisites) at the University of Chicago College, in the Graduate Divisions of the Biological Sciences, Physical Sciences, Social Sciences, and Humanities, and at the graduate schools in Divinity, Public Policy, Social Work, Business, and Law.
GSAL students can request to take any graduate course they are qualified for/have prerequisites to take. Students must follow a particular department’s registration policy, and have obtained approval from the department. Students are not able to take courses in the medical school. The GSAL program can serve as a bridge to take students from their post-undergraduate studies to graduate and professional degree programs, helping them explore fields of academic study and determine which program or school would be a good fit for them.
As a tangible outcome of the University of Chicago’s commitment to lifelong learning, some variant of the Graduate Student-at-Large (GSAL) program has been available to students since the inception of the university in 1898. Students come from different learning backgrounds such other academic institutions, some are alumni from various divisions of the University of Chicago, who continue their research interests through GSAL; while, for many others, admission to the GSAL program serves as their first entry to the University of Chicago community.
GSAL students have the opportunity to engage with the University of Chicago faculty and other graduate students, continue learning through participating in the workshop tradition. Students not only have the opportunity to take advantage of extensive University resources including career advising, but also have access to the professional advising staff within the Graham School, receiving intensive individual guidance on curriculum choices, faculty, and their ongoing graduate plans.
"Today, there are high expectations across many industries to bolster the analytical rigor behind must-win company initiatives, but that frequently ends up being a little aspirational without the proper rigor…For me, learning more about the MScA program while I was taking classes through the GSAL program was an invaluable experience…I’m truly grateful for the GSAL program, as it played a critical role in ultimately deciding to pursue my MScA."
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