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Experiential Learning

BIS 495 IAS Internship Course

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The IAS Internship course (BIS 495) is a credit/no-credit course designed for students interested in linking their classroom education to practice-based learning in local for-profit, not-for-profit, and governmental organizations. It satisfies the Interdisciplinary Practice and Reflection graduation requirement.

The course allows students to apply the knowledge and skills gained in the School of Interdisciplinary Arts & Sciences (creative problem solving, collaboration, critical analysis and thinking, interdisciplinary research) to a variety of work environments. Students are encouraged to use the internship experience to analyze and assess potential employment opportunities and career paths.

Interested in enrolling in BIS 495?  Below are the 5 steps that will get you started.

STEP 1: COURSE ELIGIBILITY AND INFORMATION

Eligibility to enroll in BIS 495 requires that you:

  • Are an IAS student and have completed BIS 300
  • Have an internship and learning contract in place before course starts
  • Be in good academic standing

Class Information

  • Variable 2-6 credits (see below)
  • The grading is credit/no credit
  • May count toward electives or toward the 20 additional IAS credits
  • Can only be taken once
  • Offered autumn, winter, spring and summer quarters
  • Sample BIS 495 Syllabus (Fall 2015)

STEP 2: FIND AN INTERNSHIP

To be admitted into course, you need to have an internship confirmed and a learning contract completed at least two weeks before the quarter for approval (Step 4 provides instruction on submitting the learning contract). If you need help finding an internship, Career Services can help. You can make an appointment to meet with Career Services staff and go over internship options. You can also search HuskyJobs for internships. There are plenty of internship opportunities out there for everyone!

Your internship must be a short-term educational experience that is related to your degree and future career aspirations. If your internship is with a current employer, it must have a mentorship component that is specific to that time frame and provide experiential learning and professional development opportunities that are significantly different from your current responsibilities. The internship must be concurrent with the class.

What is an internship?

An internship:

  • Provides a structured learning experience that has a defined beginning and end;
  • Creates opportunities to apply classroom knowledge in a “real world” professional environment;
  • encourages you to develop and refine skills that are transferable to a variety of work settings;
  • includes a position description with relevant and clearly defined learning objectives;
  • provides for supervision/feedback from a professional with expertise and background in that field;
  • includes resources, equipment, and facilities that support learning goals.

STEP 3: DETERMINE THE NUMBER OF CREDITS

BIS 495 is a variable credit course. Credit loads vary with weekly hours logged at your internship site: 2 credits (4-6 hours); 3 credits (7-9 hours); 4 credits (10-12 hours); 5 credits (12-14 hours); 6 credits (15 hours or more). Work with your internship site supervisor and your IAS academic advisor to determine the proper number of credits for the course.

STEP 4: SUBMIT LEARNING CONTRACT FOR ADMITTANCE INTO THE COURSE

Once you have your internship confirmed and credits determined, submit the learning contract (signatures are not needed until the first day of class) two weeks before the beginning of the quarter to uwbintrn@uw.edu.

A learning contract:

  • is a document that structures the course and shapes a robust learning experience;
  • has clearly defined learning goals that complements classroom learning with practical experience;
  • ensures that the intern and site supervisor have clear expectations about the internship;
  • must be submitted by the deadline below to receive an add code for the course.

Learning contracts will be reviewed within 10 days of receipt on a first come, first serve basis up to 2 weeks before the quarter.

Final Deadline for learning contract submission for course admittance:

  • Winter 2016: Monday, December 21, 2015
  • Spring 2016:  Monday, March 17, 2016
  • Summer 2016: Monday, June 6, 2016

Add codes will be sent once you are admitted to the course, and no later than a week before the quarter starts. If the contract requires revision, you will be contracted. The course is limited to 15 students and typically fills up well before the end of the previous quarter, so please plan in advance. Once the course fills we will start a waitlist, in the event that someone drops before the quarter begins.

We will review the learning contracts to assure that it:

  • is a structured learning experience that has a defined beginning and end;
  • provides opportunities to apply classroom knowledge in a “real world” professional environment;
  • encourages you to develop and refine skills that are transferable to a variety of work settings;
  • includes a position description with relevant and clearly defined learning objectives;
  • provides for supervision/feedback from a professional with expertise and background in that field;
  • includes resources, equipment, facilities that support learning goals.

STEP 5: ONCE ADMITTED INTO THE COURSE

Original and signed hard copy learning contracts must be submitted to the BIS 495 faculty on the first day of class.

  • Fall 2015: Thursday, October 1, 2015
  • Winter 2016: Friday, January 8, 2016
  • Spring 2016: Friday, April 1, 2016
  • Summer 2016: Friday, June 24, 2016

Requirements

All students must:

  • Attend the three mandatory, on-campus class sessions held Fridays from 1-3pm the 1st, 5th, and 10th weeks of the quarter (Summer the 1st, 5th and 9th weeks of the quarter). See time schedule for dates/times/location. Students are responsible for coordinating the class schedule with their internship site.
  • Complete weekly assignments that integrate the course readings and the internship experiences.
  • Keep a field journal of your internship experience.
  • Present a final poster based on your experiences in the course to an audience of students, UW staff and IAS faculty during the final class period.

Have Questions?
Need Help?

About course syllabus, eligibility, and assignments – BIS 495 Instructor Loren Redwood lredwood@uw.edu

Credits applied toward major and academic requirements – IAS Advisor iasadv@uw.edu

Internship search and learning contract specifics – Career Services, uwbintrn@uw.edu