Independent Studies

About Independent Studies

The founders of Brown's New Curriculum envisioned independent study as a cornerstone of the Brown academic experience. Today, Independent Studies, including Group Independent Study Projects (GISPs), Independent Study Projects (ISPs), and Academic Internships (AIs), are an integral part of the New Curriculum. All students are encouraged to incorporate an independent study experience into their academic plans.

 In Group Independent Study Projects (GISPs) and Independent Study Projects (ISPs), students and faculty work together to develop credit-bearing courses that are not a regular part of the Brown curriculum.  Participating students are responsible for researching the course topic, constructing a syllabus, and planning and conducting the academic coursework.  Each GISP and ISP is sponsored by a faculty member who assesses the proposed study, provides advice during the semester, and evaluates the work of each student. GISPs are intended for multiple students while ISPs are for individual students.

With the exception of students enrolled in their first semester at Brown, all full-time undergraduate degree candidates in good standing at Brown are eligible to initiate and participate in a GISP or ISP.

For specific questions regarding Independent Studies, see Frequently Asked Questions. You can also contact our Independent Studies coordinators at or visit them at the CRC (Room 228, Campus Center).