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Frequently Asked Questions

How do I begin preparing for the Colloquium?

In a sense, you have already begun getting ready for the Colloquium by taking Gallatin courses and building your concentration. By the start of the junior year, you should collaborate with your primary faculty adviser to plan for the timing of your Rationale and List of Works development and the Colloquium. You should also plan to attend one of the Colloquium workshops held periodically throughout the year. These workshops articulate the timeline and expectations for the colloquium process. All upperclass students are advised to attend a colloquium workshop.

When should I complete my Colloquium?

Students expecting to graduate in May 2023 must complete their Colloquium by March 10, 2023, the last day of classes before the start of Spring Break. However, students are strongly encouraged to complete the Colloquium in the penultimate semester before graduation. This timing will allow you to do a Senior Project in your final semester if you choose. Completing the Colloquium early in the senior year is beneficial for post-graduation planning freeing up time for applications and the job search, as well as situating you to better explain your academic focus during interviews and networking events. Read through the information in the calendars and scheduling section.


Am I required to register for COLLQ-UG?

Yes. Students should register for COLLQ-UG in the semester they plan to sit for the Colloquium. COLLQ-UG does not apply to the 32 credit Gallatin requirement. Note that students entering Gallatin prior to Fall 2015 are not required to register for COLLQ-UG.


How should I collaborate with my adviser to prepare for the conversation?

Your primary faculty adviser helps focus your interests, provides feedback on rationale drafts, recommends works for your List of Works, and discusses works to help you prepare to orally communicate your ideas. Your adviser must approve the List of Works and Rationale before your can sit your Collqouium. Because your adviser is integral to your process, we encourage you to be in touch early and often as you develop your plans.


What kinds of works should be included in my List of Works?

The List of Works should consist of the kind of texts, art works, objects, music, or other materials students have encountered in their studies. What matters most is that these works be significant for your inquiry. Normally, students should avoid how-to manuals, self-help books, and most textbooks unless they plan to engage critically with these genres. Work closely with your primary faculty adviser regarding works decisions. For further guidance on preparing your List of Works, plan to attend one of our Rationale and List of Works Overview Workshops.


Are there guidelines for using non-written works? 

There are a number of ways to approach incorporating maps, art, film, and music into your List of Works. You should collaborate with your adviser to determine the most appropriate and academically rigorous application of works to your Colloquium conversation. For further guidance on using non-written materials in your List of Works, plan to attend one of our Colloquium Workshops.


When should I submit my Rationale and List of Works?  

Students are strongly encouraged to complete the Colloquium in the penultimate semester before their planned graduation and should follow the Rationale and List of Works submission deadlines below. Seniors who fail to submit the adviser-approved Rationale and List of Works to Gallatin by these deadlines will have a registration hold placed on their accounts. The hold will remain in place until an adviser-approved Rationale and List of Works has been submitted to Gallatin.

Expected GraduationAdviser-Approved Rationale Submission Deadline  
January October 1
May November 1
September April 1

What happens if I miss the Rationale submission deadline?

Students who fail to submit the adviser-approved Rationale to Gallatin by the deadline will have a registration hold placed on their accounts.

If my Rationale is submitted late and I have a registration hold on my account, how do I have the hold removed, and how long does it take for the hold to be lifted?

The registration hold will remain in place until an adviser-approved Rationale and List of Works has been received by Gallatin. Once the Rationale and the adviser approval is received the block will be lifted within 2 business days.

How do I submit my Rationale and List of Works?

Once your primary faculty adviser has approved your final draft, please use the online Rationale and List of Works submission form. Upon submission, your adviser will automatically be asked to confirm his/her approval.

Do I invite my other Colloquium faculty committee member?

Yes, students are expected to select the second faculty committee member for their Colloqiuim. Be mindful that your committee must fulfill certain characteristics. The two person committee must include your primary faculty adviser and a full-time member of the Gallatin faculty (this may be your primary faculty adviser). Everyone on your committee should have a faculty affiliation with NYU.

How do I schedule the Colloquium?

Scheduling the Colloquium is a multi-step process. You'll want to ensure that you have a committee meeting the composition requirements (above) available during the general time of year that you would like to hold the Colloquium. For example, you can ask faculty if they are available during a given month (ex. November) or able to participate during a certain window (ex. first two weeks of the spring semester).

Once everyone has agreed to a general time frame, then work with the group to find a two-hour window open in everyone's schedule. Some students use online schedulers (ex. to streamline the scheduling process. Once you have found a two-hour period when everyone agrees to hold your Colloquium, submit a Colloquium registration form. Please register at least two weeks in advance of your desired date. Gallatin will confirm the date, time, and location of your Colloquium. As well, Gallatin will send the students and the committee a copy of the approved Rationale and List of Works.

Please note that in order to accommodate winter break, the last day of fall classes in December is the last day to register a January Colloquium.

Can I change the date and time of my Colloquium or a panel member after I have submitted the Colloquium registration form to Gallatin?

Yes, but you must notify the Office of Advising of the change at least two weeks prior to the date of the Colloquium by resubmitting the Colloquium registration form.

Where will my Colloquium be held? Do I need to find a room?

The majority of Colloquia are held remote and take place over Zoom. If you and your committee agree to an in-person Colloquium, depending on availability, your Colloquium will likely be held in the Colloquium rooms(427) or your primary faculty adviser’s office. You will be notified as to the location of your Colloquium in the Colloquium confirmation email sent to you, your adviser, and the rest of the committee by the Office of Advising. You are not responsible for finding a location.

What kinds of questions will the committee ask me?

During the Colloquium, your committee will ask questions that are broad and thematic, and you may be asked to clarify your point by providing specific examples from the works. Generally, questions come from the content of your Rationale. The committee is interested to understand your ideas and how they relate to those found in works on your list. Work closely with your adviser to prepare for the conversation. We also suggest attending one of our Colloquium Workshops to gather strategies for approaching the Colloquium conversation.

Will the title of my Colloquium be printed on my diploma or my transcript?

If you entered a Colloquium title on your Colloquium registration form, then your title will appear on your transcript. After your Colloquium is completed, we cannot add a title or change one previously submitted. Your diploma states that you earned a Bachelor of Arts in Individualized Major.

How should I explain the Colloquium to a potential committee member?

Each year Gallatin enjoys including faculty from across the university in the Colloquium requirement. If you are inviting a member of the faculty who has not participated in a Colloquium previously, be prepared to tell them about the Colloquium and your specific focus.

If your potential committee member has additional questions, you may them in touch with the Senior Class Advisers by emailing

What happens if I fail the Colloquium?

If your Colloquium needs to be repeated, you will have one more opportunity to pass the requirement. Your committee will make specific recommendations to help you prepare for the reprise. The Senior Class Adviser will provide you with information about next steps should this situation arise. The best way to avoid this situation is to prepare months in advance, taking the time to develop your ideas and be familiar with your selected works.

I still have questions regarding the Colloquium, what should I do?

After reading the Colloquium-related sections of the Gallatin website, speak with your primary faculty adviser. You can also be in touch with the Senior Class Advisers.