Winter Session Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Who is eligible to enroll in a Winter Session course?
A: At this time, Winter Session is only open to enrolled undergraduate Brown students. Brown-RISD Dual Degree students should contact their academic advisor to confirm eligibility. Students must have been enrolled at Brown for the fall semester (on campus or on an approved study abroad program) in order to register for and attend Winter Session. December completers (0.5-ers) may be eligible with approval from the DOC Office.
Note: Upon request, doctoral students may be eligible to enroll in Winter Session courses, pending instructor permission and Graduate School approval. Doctoral students who are approved to enroll in a Winter Session course will be responsible for paying tuition independently for that course. Master's students are not eligible to enroll in Winter Session courses. Please direct questions to Vanessa Ryan, Associate Dean of the Graduate School.
Q: Can I enroll in a Brown Winter Session course if I have already taken four Brown summer courses?
A: Students may count up to four Brown courses taken outside of the academic year (i.e., Summer and/or Winter Session) towards their degree completion. If you have already completed four summer courses, you may enroll in a Winter Session course for enrichment; however, the Winter Session course will not count towards the thirty courses you need to graduate.
Q: How many courses may I take?
A: Due to the intensive nature of these courses, students may only enroll in one course per Winter Session.
Q: Will any academic support services be available during the Winter Session?
A: Academic coaching may be offered, pending individual availability. For more information, please visit the Academic Support Services website (https://www.brown.edu/academics/college/support/academic/).
Q: Is it possible to study off-campus during the Winter Session and transfer the credits?
A: No. Brown will only accept credits earned during the winter break if the course is taught as part of the Brown Winter Session or the RISD Wintersession.
Q: Why does Brown charge tuition for the Winter Session? Couldn’t I take a course at RISD for no added tuition cost?
A: Brown charges tuition for Winter Session courses for four important reasons that differentiate it from the RISD Wintersession.
- Brown students do not have priority for RISD courses, but they do enjoy priority for Brown Winter Session courses. Brown’s Winter Session is only open to Brown students, so course registration is on a first-come, first-served basis. There is no waiting period for enrollment, as no students get preference over others. Contrary to Brown’s Winter Session, RISD's January term is only available to Brown students on a space-available basis, which often means that students cannot enroll in a RISD course.
- Unlike RISD’s wintersession, Brown Winter Session courses count as a separate term for enrollment purposes. This means that students who take a Brown Winter Session course can choose to take five spring courses. Brown students who enroll in a RISD winter course use one of their five spring course slots to do so.
- Brown’s Winter Session course offerings are unique educational opportunities for intensive engagement. Rather than merely condensing semester-length courses into a shorter time period, courses taught during the Brown Winter Session have been developed with pedagogical innovation in mind.
- The Brown Winter Session calendar does not overlap with the start of the spring semester, so students do not need to juggle multiple schedules at once.