Who's interested in SLE?

<p>I certainly am -- anyone else? (And any current/former SLE student who's willing to answer questions about it?)</p>

<p>I am a current SLE student and will answer any questions you have.</p>

<p>What do you enjoy most about being in SLE? What do you enjoy least?</p>

<p>Compared to the academic joke that IHUM/PWR often are, SLE represents the best freshman undergraduate academic experience you can find at Stanford. I enjoy the smaller, more cohesive environment and I would contend, as the SLE faculty does, that SLE students tend to be some of the best of Stanford students, especially in terms of "humanities minds." If you do SLE, you will read a lot of great works and discuss them, and you may not like or enjoy some of what you read--but you will be much better off for having gone through it. Most Stanford students do not get the opportunity to do that. Writing "SLE papers" with a personal writing tutor is also a very good experience. I was a good writer coming into Stanford, but I am ten times better after only two quarters. </p>

<p>I'll be honest and say that I sometimes dislike the emphasis on literature rather than philosophy or especially history in SLE. I don't think SLE covers enough history and focuses too much on the literary aspect of the stuff we read. Also, discussion can be tedious at times.</p>

<p>I think I would like the program, but I am math and science focused. Plus, I don't think I would want to be with the same people 24/7. Is it weird living in dorms with your classmates? Do you ever get to see other people? How isolated is the program?</p>

<p>IHUM and PWR can actually be valuable experiences. Although I personally didn't get much out of PWR (honestly I didn't put much into it either... that's probably why) some of my friends loved their PWR and got a lot out of it. I loved my IHUM (fate of reason) this past quarter. Don't do SLE just to avoid IHUM and PWR. Some people would really enjoy SLE so do some research and see if it really is right for you.</p>

<p>From what I've heard, SLE is pretty hardcore. I wouldn't take it if you think you're going to be a techie. I haven't done PWR yet. IHUM can soimetimes be a pain in the ass - often times you end up in a class that you're not all that interested in - it's not a joke. There's a lot of good reading, and the discussion sections are pretty involved. Although I hated my last IHUM, I'm in fate of reason this quarter, too, and I really enjoy it.</p>

<p>SLE isn't really as "hardcore" as people think it is, to be honest. It's difficult but certainly isn't 9/10 units--maybe 7 instead. The most "hardcore" part is probably the papers, although that just may be me because I take the papers more seriously than the reading.</p>

<p>It's not weird living with classmates at all--it's good to have people going through the same thing you are. The night before papers are due, the whole dorm is up at 4AM. </p>

<p>You have other classes while doing SLE and you will join clubs and such, so you will definitely see other people.</p>

<p>It's as isolated as you make it. I really like SLE people so I tend to spend a lot of my time in FloMo, but there are some people I'll never see around there besides SLE classtime.</p>

<p>What is SLE? >_< :D</p>

<p>From what I understand, there are two SLE dorms, right? Alondra (all frosh) and a four-class dorm in FloMo which takes the other SLE kids? Would one be at a disadvantage being in SLE and living in a four-class dorm? How much out-of-the-classroom interaction is there between kids in both dorms?</p>

<p>SLE is a residential academic program replacing IHUM and PWR. Here's a link.<br>
<a href="http://www.stanford.edu/dept/undergrad/areaone/14des.shtml%5B/url%5D"&gt;http://www.stanford.edu/dept/undergrad/areaone/14des.shtml&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/p>

<p>Avalon, There are three SLE dorms.</p>

<p>Cardenal and Faisan are four-class. The dorms are both half freshman, all of whom are in SLE, and the other half upperclassmen. Alondra is all-freshmen and half of those freshmen are in SLE. All three dorms are connected. </p>

<p>There is no disadvantage living in a four-class dorm. I live in Cardenal and it's fine. Alondra tends to get more rowdy and drink more, and Cardenal is pretty quiet some weekends. But a lot of people are just off boozing somewhere else. All three dorms are in FloMo.</p>

<p>There is a lot of interaction between the three dorms, more so than in recent years according to some RAs. I think it's a good thing.</p>

<p>I really like the idea of taking SLE, and I looked at the link to it on the admit site (the reading list in the corner is very intriguing), but I'm not sure if I want to commit to something so intense right at the beginning of college/am ready for that level of learning mixed with living. I doubt that makes much sense, but I guess I feel that though I love arguing and discussing philosophy and literature and so on, when I get out of class sometimes I just want to sit down, relax, continue reading and discussing, but still chill out with my friends. Whenever people describe SLE they talk about how the SLEers are completely immersed and discussing over dinner and well into the night. Isn't there any wind-down time? So those are my concerns, that and the idea that SLE might be "social suicide." If you only live with/go to class with/eat with other SLE people how do you meet the other students?</p>

<p>"Whenever people describe SLE they talk about how the SLEers are completely immersed and discussing over dinner and well into the night."
To be honest, this doesn't happen at all. </p>

<p>It's intense, but it's not as intense as you think it is.</p>

<p>wow that sounds really awesome. I will have to look more into it.</p>

<p>thanks zephyr ^ ^. SLE is only for freshman year, correct? and when you're in SLE, is it difficult to fill your other core requirements? and while I'm at it, what are the core requirements?</p>

<p>yeah that's what i'm wondering haha. I haven't learned enough about what SLE is to be compared to (i.e. the requirements it replaces), but the personalized writing instruction sounds incredible. </p>

<p>Zephyr, how is that? It says "instructors and upper-class writing tutors," but what does that mean? Who was your tutor? How was it?</p>

<p>Also, I saw that it's nine units. So what else did you take your first quarters? I assume it would only be one or two other classes.</p>

<p>Also, who do you think is the best fit for the program? Who is better off following the more traditional coursework that SLE replaces?</p>

<p>And finally, is it difficult to become enrolled in SLE? </p>

<p>THANKS, and sorry for all the questions, but I guess that's what you're here for... :)</p>

<p>I'll try my best to answer your questions:</p>

<p>SLE lecturers and discussion leaders are Ph.D. prof types. Each student is assigned an upperclassmen former SLE student to help him/her write the essays--this is very, very helpful and your papers turn out to be of a very, very high quality as a result. I would contend that SLE papers are of a higher-level than IHUM papers (and a couple of professors I talked to agreed) partially due to the tutors--they really critique and help you write a better paper. The focus is on well-supported and well-argued points rather than flowery or excessive style. We get a new tutor every quarter. </p>

<p>I did SLE more for the writing than the reading aspect of it, and I haven't been disappointed. My writing, while very good in high school, has improved immensely in just two quarters. I don't know if that would be the case in IHUM. </p>

<p>My first quarter, I took Math 51 (5 units), two introductory seminars (3 each) and SLE for a total of 20 units. That is more than most students, however--most will do 15-17, I think. </p>

<p>The best fit for SLE is not necessarily someone who is a future humanities major but instead someone who is interested in simply reading (mostly) primary texts and critically/analytically looking at them in a very serious way. I don't think anyone can really say who is better off in SLE and who isn't--it depends on the learning style and interests of the student. </p>

<p>The SLE administrators pick students based on your Stanford app--although an e-mail or letter of interest can't hurt--and most kids who want to do it get in--acceptance rates are normally between 80-90%.</p>

<p>Bahhumbugger and others:</p>

<p>SLE is your freshman year only. </p>

<p>SLE actually knocks out more requirements than taking normal classes would.</p>

<p>Here's a brief rundown of core requirements:</p>

<p>You must take one course in the following subject areas: humanities, social sciences, mathematics, natural sciences (bio, chem, physics, etc.), and applied science (CS, engineering, etc.). There are literally hundreds of options for each subject area.</p>

<p>You must also take two "education for citizenship" courses, from a choice of four--Gender Studies, American Cultures, Global Community and Ethical Reasoning. Also a wide variety of courses for each area. </p>

<p>And lastly, you must take IHUM (Introduction to the Humanities) all three quarters (a one-quarter course in the fall and a two-quarter sequence in the winter and spring). You must also take PWR, Program in Writing and Rhetoric, one quarter your freshman year and one quarter your sophomore year. IHUM is a combination of English and history, mostly, and PWR is about writing essays and research skills. PWR has a bad reputation and most students don't like it. </p>

<p>SLE will knock out all of IHUM, both PWR and your humanities requirement. Nothing prevents you from fulfilling other requirements while in SLE. </p>

<p>I hope that all made sense.</p>

<p>Thanks so far. Is there more detailed info available about the program online? The main web site doesn't have say too much... </p>

<p>(I felt it'd be better than bogging you down with a bunch of other questions with answers that I could prob. find myself...)</p>

<p>"The SLE administrators pick students based on your Stanford app--although an e-mail or letter of interest can't hurt--and most kids who want to do it get in--acceptance rates are normally between 80-90%."</p>

<p>When do we find out if we qualify? If we don't, can we appeal/apply again? How do we let them know we want to be part of the program?</p>