Skip to main content

For Students

Still have questions?

Here are some answers to our frequently asked questions.


FYI classes are inquiry-guided learning classes intended specifically for first-year students at NC State who desire classes where they may be effectively guided to take more direct responsibility for their own learning. These classes feature small faculty/student ratios that encourage active learning opportunities; close relationships among students and professors; students working with a faculty member on important, timely topics; focused development of critical reading, writing, and discussion skills necessary for all college students. The classes are designed to facilitate the transition from high school to mature university-level thinking. They are not designed for students with special transition needs; see the Summer Start program for help.

Students are expected to participate actively and attend class regularly. In class discussions, students must confront differing opinions respectfully, responsibly, and wisely while working towards workable solutions for complex problems. They will also be expected, with proper guidance, to take charge of their own education — learning to think critically, growing beyond dualism and relativism towards greater intellectual maturity. You will do more work in an FYI class than in a regular lecture section. But our assessments show you will reap important benefits that help you succeed in college and beyond, including a statistically higher GPA than non-FYI students. Yes, just one class can make a real difference!

FYI courses fulfill general education program requirements.

FYI courses have regular departmental prefixes in which a “Q” follows the course and section number. Ex: PS 201-002Q.

Exploratory Studies Village “linked” courses are a subset of FYI courses that target a specific population of Exploratory Studies students and pair those students in the FYI class with a USC 101 class. The FYI program currently partners with the Exploratory Studies program for students who live in the Exploratory Studies Village (Tucker, Owen, and Bowen Residence Halls). Students in this community may share a common FYI class paired with the ESP USC 101 course.

  • Spring registration is limited to one “Q” course per student.
  • Fall registration is limited to incoming first-year students only.
  • Spring semester courses are open to all first-year students.