We begin with a brief historical perspective of first-year experiences and how, through a 30-year journey, that pedagogical innovation recently and literally flipped upside down my approach to produce student learning. Then we will examine the genesis, development, and teaching of my current FYS Water: Economics, Politics and Policy, and why it has been such a successful course at my university. Next, my coauthor will examine the genesis, development, and teaching of his FYS Morality and the Great Recession of 2008-2009, another successful example of the FYS at our university.

With that as a pedagogical foundation, we offer recommendations on how to develop a syllabus and how to teach the hypothetical business law counterpart of my seminar: The Business of Water: Law, Rights, and Policy. The article concludes with discussion of “Seven Best Practices in Drafting a First-Year Seminar Syllabus and Teaching the Seminar,” a presentation conducted for faculty in our business school Innovation in Teaching Seminar Series by my coauthor.

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Copyright © 2014 Cengage Learning. This article first appeared in Journal of Legal Studies in Business 19 (2014), 2-46.

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