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Substitution for an Institute Laboratory Subject

Petition Form


The Committee on Curricula (CoC) reviews petitions to substitute specific coursework for an approved Institute Laboratory subject or to substitute individual project work. See the Bulletin for a description of the Institute Laboratory requirement and the subjects that have been approved to fulfill it.


The CoC has established guidelines for reviewing subjects that departments develop to fulfill the Laboratory Requirement. When a student petitions to substitute for an approved lab subject, the Committee considers whether the proposed substitution meets the criteria for an Institute Lab. In its review, the CoC may consult with the instructor and the department offering the proposed substitution.

The CoC denies most petitions to substitute individual project work for the Institute Lab Requirement because it is typically difficult to determine whether such work fulfills the criteria of the Lab requirement. Only when the faculty project supervisor designates that the individual project is of outstanding quality, and the supervisor details a continued close involvement with the student's work, will the petition be favorably considered. In such cases, the student should ask the faculty project supervisor to contact the Committee staff.


Deadline: None. However, these petitions are normally reviewed by the full Committee, which does not meet during the summer months. Consult the meeting schedule for details.

  1. Complete the Petition to Substitute for an Approved Laboratory Subject.
  2. Print and sign the form; then have it signed by your advisor. If you are seeking approval to substitute individual project work, your project supervisor must also sign the form.
  3. Deliver the completed petition to the Committee on Curricula, 5-115. The CoC will notify you by e-mail of its decision.

For further information:

Committee on Curricula
Catalog and Publications, Registrar's Office, 5-115
(617) 258-6412;