Independent Study Programs (2-4 points)

While the Physical Education department strongly encourages students to meet the graduation requirement through regular physical education classes, certain factors sometimes make independent study a desirable option. Specifically, the independent option is for:

a) highly skilled students whose level of expertise or area of activity is beyond the scope of regular course offerings 
b) students with medical conditions that require modified physical activity (programs developed and approved by Connie Bauman, in conjunction with Health Services)

No student may earn more than four (4) units of physical education credit through the standard independent option.  Students may not receive credit retroactively – i.e., for activities already completed.

To apply for independent study credit, a student must submit a written proposal to Connie Bauman,  Associate Professor of Physical Education, prior to starting her independent program.  The proposal should include the student's full name, ID number, a list of PE classes already taken, and detailed answers to each of the following questions:

1) What sport or fitness activity will the student be doing and what is her level of expertise?
2) Where will the student engage in the activity?
3) What is the anticipated schedule (dates, times, length of sessions).
4) With whom will the student work?  What are her/his qualifications?
5) What are the student’s specific learning/performance goals?
6) How will the student assess attainment of these goals (letter from coach, daily log, etc.)?

The Department evaluates each proposal based on the information provided, so the student must offer thorough explanations in each area, emphasizing the educational components of her program.

Credit for classes at other colleges

Students may earn credit for physical education classes taken at other colleges by asking the host institution’s Physical Education Department to send a letter to the Wellesley Physical Education Registrar confirming thestudents’ satisfactory completion of the class. This policy applies to M.I.T., all schools in the 12-College Exchange and any certified institution of higher learning, provided the courses are part of the host institution’s Physical Education Department’s curriculum and taught by faculty members of that department.

Credit for PE classes at MIT

Wellesley students who are cross-registered at MIT are eligible to register online for MIT Physical Education courses as if they are a MIT student. Students should confirm with the MIT registrar ( that they are eligible to register. The MIT PE Online Registration calendar (for cross-registered student reference) can be found by clicking on “Calendar” at (first come, first serve). Click here for the MIT PE schedule.

Wellesley students who are not cross registered should follow the registration instructions here. After the close of online registration, MIT Physical Education will post a list of courses with open spots for Wellesley students to  consider.

In order to receive PE credits at Wellesley, students should email to request that confirmation be sent to the Wellesley Physical Education registrar. Include your name and the course you took at MIT (including days of week and time of the course).

Transfer students

Transfer students are admitted as if they have completed some credit points in physical education prior to admission at Wellesley. The number of physical education points awarded to a student depends on the number of academic credits she earned at her previous institution. In general, students admitted as first-semester sophomores (with 8 academic credits) receive 4 credit points, which means they must earn 4 more points to meet the graduation requirement. Students admitted as first-semester juniors (with 16 academic credits) receive 8 credit points, which fulfills the requirement. Transfer students may petition the Department for additional credit.