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Manchester Study Group

Director Fall 2015: Professor Randy Fuller, Department of Biology and Environmental Studies


Students hiking in Snowdonia National Park

Studying at the University of Manchester:   An important part of any study abroad program is the integration of its participants into the host country’s fabric of daily life. The Division of University Studies' Manchester Study Group (MSG) offers its members the opportunity to continue their Colgate programs by taking four credits and living with British or international students at the University of Manchester (UM). Registering as non-matriculating students, study group members are guaranteed full access to the University's libraries, Student Union, health services and sports and fitness facilities.

Over a decade's worth of student evaluations show that one of the most valuable aspects of MSG is the opportunity to study at an outstanding British university, so different from Colgate in the diversity and size of its student body, its extensive curriculum, and location. Approximately 12,000 students study at the university, which comprises over 70 academic departments. Valuing the richness of UM course offerings, in the last four years credit has been earned in the following Colgate departments:  Art History · Biology · Chemistry · Computer Science · Economics ·Studies· English · Geography · Geology · History · Music · Philosophy · Religion · Sociology & Anthropology · Women’s Studies

The University Theatre, home to the professional Contact Theatre Co.; the Academy, offering almost nightly music events; and the impressive Whitworth Art Gallery are all located on the main campus. The university's proximity to the city center allows easy access to a variety of cultural amenities available in this city of half a million. Manchester is also a convenient jumping-off point for excursions to London, Edinburgh (regular train service to either takes just over 3 hours), and beyond. As part of the 2015 program, the study group will take overnight trips to London and Durham, and explore the socio-ecological conditions of Manchester and its hinterland.

The 2015 program will be the 27th group of Colgate Students to enroll at the University of Manchester.  Its director will be Randy Fuller  (227 Ho Science Center), Department of Biology and Environmental Studies.

This study group has not been designated to satisfy the Core Global Engagements requirement. Students will need to meet the Global Engagement requirement by enrolling in a designated course offered on campus.

Program Prerequisites

All students will enroll in two elective courses and three required courses (two are ½-credit courses), which are designed specifically to reflect the study group’s unique location.

UNST 313Y: DARWIN--Science and Society in Victorian Britain and Today (Randy Fuller, Colgate University)
Charles Darwin’s The Origin of Species precipitated a scientific and philosophical revolution that continues to reverberate in con-temporary society. This course will be a vehicle for exploring the extent to which Darwin’s theory of natural selection reflected and transformed the scientific, social, political, and artistic fabric of Britain in the Victorian age (1830s-1900). An appreciation for Victorian society will reveal how Darwin’s travels, scientific activities, domestic life, fragile health, and delayed publication of his evolutionary theory were shaped by the culture of the time. Examining the intense reactions to Darwin’s ideas will show how his theory influenced ideas well beyond biology to a broad range of disciplines, including sociopolitical movements (democracy, femi-nism, Marxism, etc.); religious debates that continue to garner political attention today through creationist organizations; analysis of issues related to race, gender, ethics, and evolutionary psychology; and connections between science, literature, and other forms of artistic expression

UNST 324Y: The History of Technology, Science, and Culture in Manchester (½ CR)
This half credit course is an experiential look at the evidence of how technology and science changed Manchester, the first industrial city in the world, and by extension, changed the way we live in the industrialized modern age.  During the two weeks before the UM term begins the group will visit an operating textile mill at Helmshore; the site of the first commercially smelted iron in the world at Ironbridge; the Leeds Liverpool Canal and its system of canal locks; the Albert Dock, at Liverpool, a primary nineteenth century port for cotton and emigration; North Wales and its early 19th century bridges and aqueducts; and a slate mine near Mt. Snowdon that provided Victorian Britain with its roof tiles. Students will be assessed on the basis of their participation in seminar discussions, an exam and a paper on the autobiography of an entrepreneur or engineer who made significant contributions to the Industrial Revolution. Taught by Prof. Joseph Marsh, historian of science and technology.

UNST 326: Workshop of the World: Britain’s Industrial Revolution in Regional Perspective (½ CR)
This half credit course is a survey of key themes in the economic and social history of Britain during the classic period of the industrial revolution (c. 1740 – 1850) and later economic transformation (1851 – c. 1939). The themes of the course will be explored through a series of weekly workshops during which students will be introduced to key literature and historical debates.  The aims of this course are to encourage students to reflect upon debates that historians have engaged in relation to these themes, as well as to relate these broad themes to regional perspectives (e.g. emergence of the railway networks vis-à-vis regional specialization of industrial activity, the regional impact of the loss of export markets for British goods following the First World War, etc.)

Courses 3 & 4: Two courses from the University of Manchester's visiting students’ handbook in consultation with the study group director.

Living Arrangements

Students atop a castle in WalesStudents live with other UM students in residence halls. Each has a single room that is part of a 'flat' of six or seven other singles with a shared sitting room, kitchen, and bathrooms. Students purchase and prepare their own meals. Visitors to the University are occasionally housed in suite rooms before UM students arrive.

Selection Criteria and Eligibility

The Manchester Study Group is sponsored by the Division of University Studies and open to all Colgate students. UM requires a GPA of 3.00 for participation. You may gather additional information from the University of Manchester’s website for international students at


For details of student expenses on this study group, please see Student Cost Estimate Sheets.

Calendar and Deadlines

All students interested in applying should plan on attending one of the informational sessions.  The deadline for applications to the Fall 2015 Manchester Study Group is Friday, November 7, 2014.  Applications are on the Colgate University Off-Campus Study/International Programs study groups' website and are submitted online. Only finalists in the selection process will be interviewed. Interviews will take place before fall exams and will be arranged by e-mail. Student notification of selections will take place late December 2014.

Passports and Visas

You must confirm that your passport is valid through June 2016. All students participating on the Manchester Study Group will be required to obtain a U.K. student visa. With participation on this study group comes the responsibility of understanding and complying with U.K. government visa requirements. If you will not be traveling on a U.S. passport it is imperative that you contact an adviser in Off-Campus Study/International Programs, 101 Lathrop, and International Student Services, 103C Lathrop Hall, to learn as much as you can about the regulations. For some students there are significant visa requirements to be met that take time, advance planning, and incur extra costs.

Program Dates

Manchester Study Group program dates: late August (arrival) – mid-December 2015.

Information Sessions

Monday, October 6, 2014 from 7:00 - 8:00 p.m.
Wednesday, October 22, 2014 from 4:15 - 5:15 p.m.

Both meetings will be held in Ho Science Center, Room 326

All students interested in applying should plan to attend one of these sessions.

More Information

For more information, contact Prof. Randy Fuller, 227 Ho Science Center (315-228-7393) or

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