May Term at Illinois Wesleyan University is a distinctive month-long experiential learning option where students focus on a single course or topic.

May Term is designed to stretch traditional boundaries between in-class and out-of-class learning.

Students choose from a variety of May Term courses ranging from travel abroad and national study options to course options outside the standard curriculum or research collaborations and internships.

With this opportunity for immersion in learning, students may study contemporary and often controversial issues; travel to historical, commercial, or cultural sites in conjunction with a course; or attend lectures, concerts, or theatrical events related to a May Term theme.

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Examples of recent courses taught on campus include:

  • Economics: Game Theory Goes to the Movies
  • English: Exit, Pursued by a Bear
  • Music: The Gourmet Listener
  • Philosophy: Rights and Wrongs
  • Physics: Energy and Society
  • Political Science: Politics in Literature
  • Psychology: Animal Behavior
  • Religion: From Mecca to Malcolm X

A sampling of recent May Term travel courses:

  • Art: Urban Photography in Barcelona
  • Biology: Tropical Biology (Costa Rica)
  • Business Administration: Eastern Europe and the European Union
  • Chemistry: Introduction to Food Biochemistry (Hawaii)
  • Greek and Roman Studies/History: The Ancient Roman City: Art, Architecture, and Urban Planning
  • Health/Nursing: Transcultural Healthcare in Hawaii
  • Literature & Culture: Renaissance Italy
  • Political Science: Politics & Society in Contemporary South Africa