Independent reading is approved if a course is cancelled or not offered when the student can take it because the instructor is on sabbatical or cannot teach that course for other reasons. An independent reading must be approved and supervised by a full-time faculty member and should be arranged well in advance of the start of the term. Professors are not required to take on any student for an independent reading and may be more inclined in cases where the student defines her or his interest in a subject fairly precisely. Students must submit a reading list and agree to specific due dates for assignments prior to faculty approval.
Independent reading is approved for doctoral students who wish to study a topic that is not offered or covered in the depth required in Wagner or other NYU graduate courses. In addition, doctoral students sometimes approach the end of coursework with “left-over” credit and an independent reading can be taken to earn necessary credit(s).