SEN/SEL Designation

Princeton A.B. students must fulfill several general education requirements, including two Science and Engineering courses, one with a lab (SEL) and a second course that can be taken without a lab (SEN). The Council on Science and Technology ensures that courses designated SEL or SEN are innovative, engaging, and scientifically rigorous.  Through these courses, we hope that all students will learn content, skills, and habits of mind to be able to engage in science and engineering studies in meaningful ways.  

CST grants the SEL and SEN designation to science and engineering courses that are appropriate for students concentrating in the arts, humanities, and social sciences. Courses that are designed for only natural science or engineering students are approved by the Office of the Dean of the College (ODOC). Faculty members may request that new or existing courses be designated as an SEL or SEN. 

To request an SEL or SEN designation from the Council for a new course, an existing course, or if you are seeking dual designation (i.e., SEL or SEN with another general education designation, such as LA), please send the following to Sami Kahn, CST Executive Director at samik@princeton.edu:

  • Brief statement describing the request (e.g., SEN, SEL, or dual designation such as QRSL) and the alignment of course objectives to SE Goals.
  • Course Syllabus, including course objectives, a list of readings, and a description of representative assignments                                            

To receive an SEN/SEL designation, reviewers expect that at least 50% of the course content and assessments address the SE Goals.  The Council will review the proposal and will return a decision to the department.

  • If approved, the department should submit the materials, including the approval e-mail from the CST, to ODOC through the PeopleSoft Curriculum Management System as part of the CAP/CUP submissions process. 
  • If not approved for an SEL/SEN designation after the initial review, staff from the CST will contact the course instructor to discuss the feasibility of revising the course/syllabus to meet the SEN/SEL designation standards.

If you would like assistance with aligning course objectives to the SE Learning Goals, please contact us well in advance of the deadline. CST staff can assist you in preparing the requested materials for Council review. 

Questions about the process can be directed to Sami Kahn, samik@princeton.edu.