University of Virginia Library


To be admitted as a student of the University, the applicant must be
at least sixteen years of age; but the Faculty may dispense with this
requirement in favor of one who has a brother of the requisite age entering
at the same time.

If the applicant for admission has been a student at any other incorporated
seminary, he must produce a certificate from such seminary,
or other satisfactory evidence of general good conduct.

In this institution there is no curriculum or prescribed course of study
to be pursued by every student, whatever his previous preparation or
special objects. In establishing the University of Virginia, Mr. Jefferson,
for the first time in America, threw open the doors of a University,
in the true sense of the name, providing, as amply as the available means
would permit, for thorough instruction in independent schools in all the
chief branches of learning, assuming that the opportunities for study thus
presented were privileges to be voluntarily and eagerly sought, and allowing
students to select for themselves the departments to which they are
led by their special tastes and proposed pursuits in life to devote themselves.

The wisdom of this plan has been amply vindicated by time and experience;
and within the last few years many of the institutions of higher
culture in the United States have, to a greater or less extent, remodelled
their method of study in accordance with the example here set. This
elective system commends itself especially to those who desire to make
professional attainments in any department of knowledge. At the same
time the courses of academic study are so arranged as to provide for the
systematic prosecution of a complete plan of general education.


Page 25

While every student may thus select the schools he will attend, in the
academic department he is required, as a rule, to attend at least three,
unless, upon the written request of his parent or guardian, or for good
cause shown, the Faculty shall allow him to attend less than three.

Students are permitted to exchange schools, with transfer of fees, within
ONE WEEK after admission; thereafter no exchange is allowed, except by
leave of the Faculty, and then without transfer of fees.

The session commences on the 1st of October, and continues without
interruption until the Thursday before the 4th of July.

The mode of instruction is by lectures and text-books, accompanied
by daily examinations.