Programs & Services

Seminar XL/LE

An academic enrichment seminar primarily for freshmen, Seminar XL enables participants to develop mastery of both core subject matter — Calculus, Physics, Chemistry and Biology — as well as intellectual skills for future success in advanced coursework.

Interested in becoming a Seminar XL facilitator? Please click here

Seminar XL is a structured small study group program based on Dr. Uri Treisman’s Challenge Calculus Workshops.  It provides students, especially first-year students, with a supportive venue for collective conceptual problem-solving and topic discussion. Each semester, students in pursuit of the best possible grades join Seminar XL groups, where they work with facilitators to deepen their understanding of the course curricula.

After registering for Seminar XL, the students are grouped according to the MIT courses they are taking. The small groups (3-7 students) meet twice per week for 90-minutes each session during the academic year.  Although the groups do not assist students with specific homework problems, each member of a group is expected to identify questions and/or problems similar to the homework to discuss.  Each group functions as a safe haven where students can explore topics that are not raised in class.  Graduate students and undergraduates who earned an A in the relevant course, serve as facilitators for the study group, guiding students through extensive discussions, board work, and collaborative thinking.

Seminar XL participants, who are first-year students, earn three units of academic credit for each Seminar XL class completed if they register before the Add Date. Students who receive a Fifth Week Flag may receive one unit of academic credit if they join Seminar XL LE for the subject in which they received a flag and two units of academic credit if their participation continues through IAP (e.g., for a Seminar XL LE group in conjuction with 8.01L or 18.02A). For students that enroll in Seminar XL LE, but have not received a Fifth Week flag or enrolled in Seminar XL LE for a subject other than the one for which they received a flag the policy will remain the same as other MIT subjects (no credit after Add Date).