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Newberry Seminar: Research in the Humanities

Chicago, Illinois

 See what students experience on the Newberry Seminar!

The Newberry Library is one of the world’s leading independent research libraries.  Focused on the humanities, its evolving collections embrace the history and literature of  Western Europe and the Americas.  With an active educational and cultural presence in Chicago, the Newberry offers a host of exhibits, lectures, classes, concerts, and other public programming related to its collections.  In addition, the Newberry makes available a variety of highly-acclaimed fellowships and programs to scholars, teachers, and undergraduates.  Located in the heart of Chicago’s Gold Coast neighborhood, the Library is near theatres, museums, parks, concerts, shopping, restaurants, and Lake Michigan, making it a vibrant location from which to experience all that Chicago has to offer.  Click to see some highlights from the Newberry's collections.

The ACM Newberry Seminar offers motivated and mature students a tremendous opportunity to do independent study and research while working closely with professors and scholars in one of the world’s great cities.  Participants in the fall seminar write a substantial paper on a topic of their choice, based on research in the rich primary collections of the Newberry Library.  They work closely with faculty members and a select group of colleagues in a seminar that provides context and guidance for their research.  In some cases, the paper qualifies as a senior or honors thesis.  In all cases, the fall seminar gives participants significant research experience that prepares them for graduate study, professional education (such as law school), or other careers.  Each year, the fall seminar is taught by a team of two visiting faculty members, with a focus on a specific theme in the humanities.  Themed short-term seminars, offered in the winter and spring, include class meetings and a shorter paper, providing a similar experience of independent research and writing.

Students live in furnished, shared apartments within walking distance of the Newberry Library, where the majority of their research and work takes place.  During the fall semester, students can gain additional work experience through a variety of part-time jobs at the Library. 

For more detailed information, please use the links located on the left-hand side of this page.

Quick Facts

  • Term: Fall semester
  • Language prerequisite: None
  • Language of instruction: English
  • Living arrangements: Apartment
  • Who can apply? Students from any college or university

Application deadlines

Fall semester 2016

Final deadline: March 15, 2016

Fall semester 2017

Final deadline: March 15, 2017

If the deadline has passed and you are interested in applying, contact the ACM Office immediately. Late applications may be accepted on a space-available basis.

Program contacts

Emily Gaul
Assistant Program Manager

11 E. Adams Street, Suite 800
Chicago, IL 60603
Phone: 312.561.5919
egaul@acm.edu

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Publications & Resources

ACM Newberry Seminar brochure

Newberry Student Handbook - Fall 2015

Newberry Seminar: Research in the Humanities

Follow us online


Scott Newstok My semester of immersion in the Newberry's archives set me on my scholarly path. In fact, my work with the Cowley Papers that term led to my fascination with Kenneth Burke and, years later, a scholarly edition of his Shakespeare criticism. It was also my introduction to the public face of a research library, as I worked at the circulation desk. My admiration for the Newberry’s mutually reinforcing commitments to humanities scholarship and public outreach has only grown in the two decades since. Thank you to the ACM for sustaining this singular program!

—Scott Newstok, Newberry Seminar, Fall 1993

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Who we are

The Associated Colleges of the Midwest (ACM) is a consortium of independent, liberal arts colleges in Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Colorado.