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Bulletin Archive

This archived information is dated to the 2008-09 academic year only and may no longer be current.

For currently applicable policies and information, see the current Stanford Bulletin.

Structured Liberal Education

Director: Roland Greene (Comparative Literature)

Coordinators: Suzanne Greenberg and Greg Watkins

Lecturers: Suzanne Greenberg, Rashi Jackman, Nicole Lopez, Jeremy Sabol, Greg Watkins

Department Offices: Sweet Hall, Second Floor, and Florence Moore Hall

Mail Code: 94305-8581

Department Phone: (650) 725-0102


Web Site:

The Program in Structured Liberal Education (SLE) offers freshmen an interdisciplinary approach to the liberal arts. The program emphasizes intellectual rigor and individualized contact between faculty and students. SLE has three basic purposes: to present a coherent program of instruction; to develop a student's ability to ask effective questions of texts, teachers, the culture, and themselves; and to develop intellectual skills in logical reasoning, critical reading, expository writing, and group discussions. SLE encourages students to live a life of ideas in an atmosphere that stresses critical thinking and a tolerance for ambiguity. Neither the instructors nor the curriculum provides ready-to-serve answers to the questions being dealt with; rather, SLE encourages a sense of intellectual challenge, student initiative, and originality.

The residence hall is the informal setting for lectures and small group discussions. SLE instructors work closely with students and participate in dorm life. SLE enhances the classroom experience with other residence-based educational activities, including a weekly film series and a student-produced play each quarter.

Freshmen interested in enrolling in SLE should indicate this preference for their IHUM assignment. SLE is designed as a three quarter sequence and students should be willing to make a commitment for the entire year.

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