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Spring 2017

Students choose to complete either a Learning Community or a First-Year Seminar to complete the FYE graduation requirement.

Learning Communities (LC) link two academic courses (6-8 credit hours). Faculty teaching these courses work together to establish joint activities and common curriculum themes designed to explore the ways in which subjects are interrelated. All Learning Communities fulfill the FYE Graduation Requirement in addition to counting towards other general education requirements (listed with each LC).

First-Year Seminar (FYSE) is an academic course (3 credit hours) that explores special topics taught by outstanding faculty. 

All FYE courses have an attached Synthesis Seminar (FYSS).  FYSS courses are not academic and are discussion based so students get the most out of the experience.  Upperclassmen serve as peer facilitators and lead weekly 50-minute synthesis seminars that introduce students to the College’s academic community. The synthesis seminar component offers the advantage of getting the perspective of and advice from a successful College of Charleston student.

Students must be enrolled in all parts of their Learning Community (including all science labs) or First-Year Seminar to receive credit. 

Experiencing Charleston
Children and Families with Diverse Needs: How are they served in your community? (LC)
Beyond the Grave: What Old Cemeteries Tell and Teach the Living
The Wonderful World of Real Estate According to King Street

Countries and Cultures, Past and Present
Cross-Cultural Communication and Experience – Destination Latin America! (LC)
A Glimpse into India
Playing House, Making Home: Houses and Families in Greece, Rome, and America
A Window into Russia
Stories of Brazilian Carnival

Contemporary Issues
What’s for Dinner? (LC)
Feminist Jiu-Jitsu for Self-Defense (LC)
A Post-Racial and Post-Gendered Society? The Politics and Sociology of Race and Gender in the United States (LC)
Understanding War (LC)
Dialogues on Social Identities and Social Justice
The Power of a Nudge: Designing Public Policies for Real People
The Importance of Financial Literacy
Where is Religion?
Conflict and Cooperation in American Politics
Us and Them: The Politics of Identity
Origins: The History of Religion
Special O.P.S. Therapy Tactics
Another Brick in the Wall: Exploring the Representation of Education in Pop Culture
The Nature of Solitude: Sacred & Secular, Voluntary & Involuntary
Making a Difference in the Lives of Children and Families

Technology, Science and Health
Natural History of the Low Country
Technology, Innovation, and Sustainability
Computer Science Scholars
Cybersecurity: Chasing Ghosts in the Wires
The Scientist in Society
How Things Work: the “Science” of Everyday Life
Marketing Analytics and Information Management
Out of the Lab and Into the World: Science, Media, and Society
The Zombie Brain… and Non-Zombie Brain: A Beginner’s Guide

Art, Film and Literature
When Bruce Lee Meets Bruce Leroy: Afro-Asian Connections
The Architecture of Utopia
American War Literature: Hemingway to 9/11
Monsters and Monstrosity
Gothic Literature
Shakespeare on Screen
Terror in the Aisles: American History and American Horror
Jack the Ripper
Female Action Figures on the Screen
Theatre's Visual Language
Learning Communities:

What’s for Dinner? (LC1)
SOCY 109: Sociology of Food and HEAL 257: Principles of Nutrition (ONLINE) and FYSS 101
Idee Winfield and Michelle Futrell
Sociology and Health and Human Performance
3 social science and 3 elective credits
Course times: TR 10:50-12:05 and online and M 12:00-12:50
CRNs: 23792 and 22498 and 21902
 
This Learning Community will focus on food in both traditional classroom (SOCY 109) and online classroom (HEAL 257) environments, a unique opportunity for first-year students. It will combine the nutrition science behind current dietary guidelines with an examination of the cultural, structural, and political foundations that shape dietary choices, food lifestyle, and risks for disease and/or premature death. The Learning Community will provide students with an opportunity to understand their own personal dietary habits with the larger socio-political context.
 
Feminist Jiu-Jitsu for Self-Defense (LC2)
WGST 120: Studies in Women's and Gender Studies and PEAC 120: Women’s Self-Defense and FYSS 101
Kristi Brian and John Venable and Pat McGuigan
Women and Gender Studies and Health and Human Performance
3 humanities and 2 elective credits
Course times: TR 9:25-10:40 and TR 1:40-2:55 and T 5:05-5:55 pm
CRNs: 23793 and 23518 and 21903
 
This learning community combines jiu-jitsu training for self-defense and an introduction to feminist empowerment. Each week students will have physical self-defense training on the mat and classroom engagement centered on feminist analysis of oppression, identity, power and the body. The course aims to achieve a holistic approach to an interactive dialogue. Students will be encouraged to document throughout the course how their own evolution towards greater empowerment is shaped by the jiu-jitsu practice and feminist teachings. The course is intended to be inclusive and suitable for all genders. Men, women, transgender, and gender non-conforming students will all be acknowledged for the situated knowledge they bring to the topic.
 
Cross-Cultural Communication and Experience – Destination Latin America! (LC3)
FYSE 111: Cross-Cultural Communication: Focus Latin America and LACS 101: Introduction to Latin American and Caribbean Studies and FYSS 101
Celeste Lacroix and Lola Colomina-Garrigos
Communication and Latin American and Caribbean Studies
3 FYE and 3 humanities credits
Course times: TR 10:50-12:05 and TR 1:40-2:55 and M 1:00-1:50 pm
CRNs: (A) 21878 and 20771 and 21904 / (B) 23803 and 23804 and 21908
 
This learning community will provide an introduction to both Latin America and the Caribbean and cross-cultural communication studies. The community will trace back pertinent historical aspects related to the social, political, cultural and economic development that lead to relevant contemporary issues or topics affecting the continent while also equipping students to understand the communicative opportunities and challenges that arise when North Americans interact with members of Latin American cultures. In particular, in preparation for the spring break study abroad trip to Cuba, an optional component of the course, we will focus on the culture and politics of Cuba in light of re-established diplomatic relations with the United States. More information on the optional travel component can be found here.
A Post-Racial and Post-Gendered Society? The Politics and Sociology of Race and Gender in the United States (LC4)
POLI 101: American Government and AAST 200: Introduction to African America Studies and FYSS 101
LaTasha Chaffin and Anthony D. Greene
Political Science and African American Studies
3 social science and 3 humanities credits
Course times: MWF 10:00-10:50 and MWF 9:00-9:50 and R 11:05-11:55 am
CRNs: (A) 22430 and 21770 and 21905 / (B) 23805 and 23806 and 21909
 
This course explore historical and contemporary racial and gender relations in the United States from a socio-political perspective. Specifically, we will study the underlying issues that characterize the nexus between and among different racial-ethnic groups and gender in our country. Students will examine historical and contemporary political events and social moments that have impacted underrepresented minority and gender groups that have been influenced by these demographic groups. We will explore explanations for discrimination and various forms of inequality while developing analytical and communication skills that will enable students to examine and assess divergent ideas and perspectives on historical, contemporary and diverse issues.
 
Children and Families with Diverse Needs: How are they served in your community? (LC5)
PSYC 103: Intro to Psychological Science and FYSE 138: Children and Families with Diverse Needs and FYSS 101
Silvia Youssef Hanna and Genevieve Hay
Psychology and Teacher Education
3 social science and 3 FYE credits
Course times: MWF 1:00-1:50 and MW 2:00-3:15 and M 8:00-8:50 am
CRNs: 21991 and 21898 and 21906

This learning community will merge the fields of Psychology and Education to explore alternative careers in working with children and their families. We will examine how cultural competence and diversity play a central role in working with children and their families. Psychology 103 will introduce the tools psychologists use to investigate, describe, predict and explain emotions, thoughts and behaviors, emphasizing reactions to illness. Students will learn how to interview various professionals who work with children to equip students with a broader knowledge of alternative opportunities available in working with children beyond the typical career paths. (Sample career paths covered will be Child Life Specialists, Pediatric Medicine, Behavioral Specialists, Special and General Education, Physical Therapists, Recreation Therapists, Speech and Language Pathologists, Occupational Therapists, Healthcare Social Workers, Guidance Counselors, School Nurses, and Juvenile Justice Professionals.)
 
Understanding War (LC6)
POLI 102: Contemporary Political Issues and FYSE 132: Psychology of War and FYSS 101
Christopher Day and Jennifer Wright
3 social science and 3 FYE credits
Course times: TR 9:25-10:40 and TR 1:40-2:55 and R 3:05-3:55 pm
CRNs: 21747 and 21894 and 21907
 
This learning community will examine the role of violence in politics, society, and individuals in the contemporary world. Students will consider a range of casual factors for violence and conflict as well as both the distinct and broader contexts in which violence occurs. These include historical legacies (borders, power, institutions), social and political identities (ethnicity, nationality, religion), and economic agendas. They will also consider the role of a number of biological and psychological factors, such as genetics, neurological function, family and larger community environment, socialization, and cultural ideologies. The learning community will encourage students to view violence through both political science and psychology, designed to socialize students into the social sciences as part of their overall liberal arts education.

First-Year Seminars:
When Bruce Lee Meets Bruce Leroy: Afro-Asian Connections
FYSE 102 and FYSS 101
Mari Crabtree
African American Studies
Course times: TR 9:25-10:40 and W 4:00-4:50
CRNs: 21876 and 21910
 
This course explores the complexities of political and cultural (dis)connections between African Americans, Asian Americans, and Asians over the past century. Students will explore the possibilities for trans-Pacific and domestic political alliances among people of color, as well as analyze films, literature, music, and art that capture various forms of Afro-Asian cultural syncretism. The assignments consist of daily reading assignments, two essays, and a final project, and the course materials include W.E.B. Du Bois's Dark Princess; selections from AfroAsian EncountersAfro-OrientalismEverybody Was Kung Fu Fighting, and Traveling Texts and the Work of Afro-Japanese Cultural Production; the films Enter the DragonThe Last DragonYojimbo, and Afro-Samurai; GZA's Liquid Swords; DJ Krush's Milight; haiku by Richard Wright; and Iona Rozeal Brown's ukiyo-e-inspired art.
 
Dialogues on Social Identities and Social Justice
FYSE 103 and FYSS 101
Kristi Brian and Ade Ofunniyin
Women's and Gender Studies and Anthropology
Course times: T 4:00-6:45 pm andR 5:05-5:55
CRNs: 23794 and 21911
 
This course offers students a framework for engaging in meaningful dialogue about processes of individual identity related to systems of oppression. As students explore how the social, political, and analytical categories of race, gender, class, sexuality, etc. relate to their own experiences, they gain a point of entry into the study of movements of social justice.  Students will study and practice the methods of Intergroup Dialogue through structured interactive exercises that we will debrief in class. Students will develop facilitations skills, which they will use in their dialogue projects. The goal is to inspire students to develop their own social justice lens and to produce leaders on campus who will be well prepared to build and promote diverse and inclusive communities.
 
The Architecture of Utopia
FYSE 105 and FYSS 101
Nathaniel Walker
Art and Architectural History
Course times: MW 2:00-3:15 and M 4:00-4:50
CRNs: 22414 and 21913
 
The idea of paradise is as old as history itself, and as widespread across the planet as our species. This course will examine the different ways that many cultures have conceived of Paradise and Utopia, with a focus on the formation and expression of these “places” in spatial, architectural, and urban terms. We will investigate, for example, the Daoist Immortal abodes of Han China, the enclosed gardens of Islamic Spain, ideal cities of the Italian Renaissance, and the high-tech wonderlands promised by twentieth century Modernists. In every case we will ask how the use of architectural designs, real or fantastic, have been used to delineate and define the alternative worlds, and what they suggest about the individuals and societies that produced them.

A Glimpse into India
FYSE 107 and FYSS 101
Mrunalini Karambelkar
Asian Studies
Course times: TR 9:25-10:40 and M 3:00-3:50
CRNs: 21877 and 21914

This course introduces students to various aspects of India to study the past, present and future of this country. The topics will include fine arts, history, religion, current issues and more to increase their overall understanding about this diverse country. Students will also develop individual projects on a topic of their interest that they will research throughout the semester. Along with watching films, reading books and interviewing people, students will also visit places of Indian gatherings around Charleston to mingle with the Indian community.

Natural History of the Low Country
FYSE 109 and FYSS 101
Eric McElory
Biology
Course times: TR 8:00-9:15 and F 11:00-11:50
CRNs: 23796 and 21915
 
During this course students will be introduced to the natural history of the diverse ecosystems found within coastal SC through in-class instruction and field trips. We will explore the impacts human settlement and development has had on the natural landscape and living resources. By the end of the course students will be able to identify many common animals and plants and understand how these organisms interact with their environments and with humans. There is no course pre-requisite.

Playing House, Making Home: Houses and Families in Greece, Rome, and America
FYSE 110 and FYSS 101
Allison Sterrett-Krause
Classics
Coure times: MW 3:25-4:40 and T 5:05-5:55
CRNs: 23797 and 21916

What makes a house into a home? What makes a family? How do the dwellings we live in shape our experiences of the world? In this class, we will explore the relationship between the physical structure of the house and the social structure of the family. Our study will focus on the evidence from ancient Greece and Tome as well as our own experiences as people who live in houses and dorm rooms with family and roommates. Through our study of domestic life in ancient societies, based on archaeological evidence, Greek and Roman literature, and artistic representations of houses and families, we will learn how to examine the ways in which that material world shape our own lives.
 
Beyond the Grave: What Old Cemeteries Tell and Teach the Living
FYSE 111 and FYSS 101
Patrick Harwood
Communication
Course times: M 6:00-8:45 pm and R 3:05-3:55
CRNs: 22416 and 21917 

The College of Charleston is surrounded by Charleston’s historic streets, buildings, and cemeteries.  This seminar will focus on the many 18th and 19th century graveyards within walking distance of campus. We will use multiple disciplinary perspectives to study lives lost long ago and what how they were buried, memorialized, and remembered can tell us about our lives and lifestyles today.
 
Technology, Innovation, and Sustainability
FYSE 112 and FYSS 101
Lancie Affonso
Computer Science
Course times: TR 9:25-10:40 and M 3:00-3:50
CRNs: 21879 and 21918

This first-year seminar offers students the opportunity to analyze organizations whose strategies and technology products are designed to offer innovative solutions to some of the twenty-first century's most difficult societal challenges. A new generation of profitable businesses are actively engaged in cleantech, renewable energy, and financially successful product system designs that attempt to meet our economic development aspirations while addressing our social and ecological challenges. Students will examine the political economy and business implications of new and innovative technological applications for sustainable development. Students will also be introduced to Computational Sustainability-an interdisciplinary field that aims to apply techniques from computer science, information science, operations research, applied mathematics, and statistics for balancing environmental, economic, and societal needs for sustainable development.

Computer Science Scholars
FYSE 112 and FYSS 101
Lancie Affonso
Computer Science
Course times: MW 3:30-4:45 and W 5:00-5:50
CRNs: 22417 and 21919 

This first year experience seminar introduces computer science scholars to some of the computer and digital technology concepts and skills necessary to succeed in college, careers, and in life. In this seminar course, we will evaluate the impact of emerging digital technologies on local and global culture and the ethical dilemmas that arise. Students will discuss computer ethics, intellectual property rights, privacy, freedom of speech, and globalization.  Students will analyze information systems components (people, procedures, hardware, and software) from organizational and technological perspectives. Students will also attend computer science research presentations and learn about student research opportunities in computer science, data science, computing in the arts, and information systems. 

Cybersecurity: Chasing Ghosts in the Wires
FYSE 112 and FYSS 101
Xenia Mountrouidou
Computer Science
Course times: TR 9:55-11:10 and F 10:00-10:50 am
CRNs: 23798 and 21927

Cybersecurity is a rapidly changing field with new threats and solutions introduced every day. Emerging challenges, such as the prevalence of smartphones and the Internet of Things, demonstrate that cybersecurity is an exciting field of study that spans to multiple disciplines. In this course students from different majors will be able to explore concepts of cybersecurity and how to apply them to their own program of study. Topics will include: cyber defense and current cyber threats, cybercrime and forensics analysis, risk assessment, scripting and data analysis for security, design of policies and mechanisms for security, and hands on experimentation with computer and network security tools.

The Power of a Nudge: Designing Public Policies for Real People
FYSE 113 and FYSS 101
Daniela Goya-Tocchetto
Economics
Course times: MWF 2:00-2:50 and M 6:00-6:50 pm
CRNs: 21880 and 21930  

Over the last 30 years, psychologists and economists have joined forces to study how people process information and actually make decisions, rather than how they would make decisions if they were completely selfish and rational. We will study several of the systematic decision biases present in human reasoning, and how they impact our lives, businesses, and our society as a whole. The central goal of this course is to improve students’ abilities to design policies and interventions that advance human development and societal well-being, focusing on how to leverage insights about human decision making for the design of the so-called nudge policies. This will be accomplished by building on the toolbox that standard economics provides for influencing behavior (namely, incentives and information) with the insights from the behavioral sciences.

American War Literature: Hemingway to 9/11
FYSE 114 and FYSS 101
Susan Farrell
English
Course times: TR 9:25-10:40 and W 12:00-12:50
CRNs: 22418 

This course examines American literary representations of war from the early twentieth century to today’s war on terror. It will include writings by Ernest Hemingway, Kurt Vonnegut, Tim O’Brien, and Jonathan Safran Foer. We’ll consider debates about courage, cowardice, heroism, and the morality of warfare. We’ll examine traditional gender expectations in relation to war and discuss whether the various writers uphold or critique these expectations. We’ll explore how authors integrate both history and fiction into their accounts. Finally, we’ll discuss the lingering effects of war trauma and how these effects are communicated in narrative, focusing specifically on how these writers all search for a literary form that can adequately convey the horrors of war.
 
The Scientist in Society
FYSE 114 and FYSS 101
Caroline Hunt
English
Course times: MWF 11:00-11:50 and M 10:00-10:50 am
CRNs: 21881 and 21932

This seminar asks future science majors and non-scientists how scientists should function in their communities.  Topics include experimentation on humans, genetic engineering, and the social responsibilities of scientists. We focus on how to find and assess reliable information and how to communicate the results effectively. Students who have taken an earlier version of this course have found it useful in preparing for future allied health careers.
 
Monsters and Monstrosity
FYSE 114 and FYSS 101
Kathy Beres Rogers
English
Course times: MWF 9:00-9:50 and M 10:00-10:50 am
CRNs: 21882 and 21912 

Did you ever wonder why monsters have pervaded popular culture since the middle ages (and probably earlier) What does it mean to be monstrous, and why have we clung so tightly to this category? This course will examine the ideas of monsters and of monstrosity by reading texts (and/or watching movies) such as Beowulf, Mary Shelley's Frankenstein, Victor Hugo's The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Bram Stoker's Dracula, Christine Sparks'sThe Elephant Man, Richard Matheson'sI am Legend, and sections of Robert Kirkman/ Charlie Adlard'sThe Walking Dead. We will supplement these readings with a few disability studies articles that consider questions of disability and difference. In the end, is it the monsters or society that is "monstrous?"
 
Gothic Literature
FYSE 114 and FYSS 101
Scott Peeples
English
Course times: TR 10:50-12:05 and W 6:00-6:50 pm
CRNs: 21884 and 21933 

Ghosts, nightmares, hidden passages, dark secrets, revenge, and violence: these are just some of the ingredients of Gothic literature from the eighteenth century to the present. We will explore a range of gothic tales, novels, and films, exploring psychological and cultural implications of texts ranging from E. T. A. Hoffman’s “The Sandman” to Oscar Wilde’s The Picture of Dorian Gray to Jennifer Kent’s The Bobadook.

Shakespeare on Screen
FYSE 114 and FYSS 101
Kay Smith
English
Course times: TR 10:50-12:05, screenings W 5:00-8:00 and T 4:05-4:55 pm
CRNs: 21993 and 21934

If you like Shakespeare and enjoy films, this course will help you learn more about both. We will look in depth at five or six of Shakespeare's most popular plays. We will become familiar with the language of film and develop a sense of how the language of Shakespeare can adapt to this visual medium in a number of ways. We will also examine the different screen approaches to Shakespeare, from animation and digital media to YouTube and beyond. 

The Importance of Financial Literacy
FYSE 115 and FYSS 101
Denise Fugo
Finance
Course times: TR 8:00-9:15 and M 10:00-10:50 am
CRNs: 21938 and 21935

This course is an introduction to financial management concepts. Topics include money management, investment fundamentals, budgeting and an introduction to consumer credit. An emphasis will be placed on financial goal setting with a view toward personal values and the effect of financial choices on quality of life.

The Wonderful World of Real Estate According to King Street
FYSE 115 and FYSS 101
Elaine Worzala
Finance
Course times: TR 1:40-2:55 and W 5:00-5:50 pm
CRNs: 22419 and 21936

This course will introduce students to the multi-faceted nature of the real estate industry. King Street will be our case study. We will explore office, retail/restaurant, industrial, residential, hospitality, and public spaces. An incredible laboratory, students will go out in the field to experience the marketplace and we will bring professionals into the classroom. Students will be able to see firsthand the variety of real estate that is located in an urban environment and the professionals will expose students to the many different career paths that are intimately involved with this discipline including business, law, historic preservation, public policy, politics, urban studies, environmental sciences, and arts management.


A Window into Russia
FYSE 118 and FYSS 101
Oksana Ingle
German and Russian Studies
Course times: MWF 9:00-9:50 and T 5:05-5:55
CRNs: 21886 and 21937
LET RUSSIA SURPRISE YOU. Step into “A Window into Russia” for a colorful survey of Russia’s major historical events and figures, along with a glimpse into the country’s literature, art, music, and contemporary life. You have never seen Russia like this, and you will never think of it the same. Come travel with us through one of the world’s most intriguing cultures.

Stories of Brazilian Carnival
FYSE 120 and FYSS 101
Luci Moreira
Hispanic Studies
Course times: MW 2:00-3:15 and T 1:05-1:55
CRNs: 21888 and 21980

Brazilian carnival is a time of festivity, excess, and fun. While Brazil is famous for many different reasons, carnival is one of the most important. During those days of frenetic exuberance and merriment it seems that the eyes of the world turn to Rio de Janeiro (among other cities) and to the performances of the Rio Samba Schools. But carnival is not all glitz and glamour, and many Brazilian authors have explored its different facets. This course will examine what stories Brazilians tell about carnival through relevant poetry, short stories, and musical lyrics, and will focus on the social and cultural ramifications of this national celebration.
 
Terror in the Aisles: American History and American Horror
FYSE 121 and FYSS 101
Scott Poole
History
Course times: W 4:00-6:45 and M 3:00-3:50
CRNs: 21889 and 21982 

“Terror in the Aisles” explores the historical and literary foundations of horror films in the United States and encourages students to examine non-traditional primary sources with theoretical sophistication and analytical enthusiasm. Students will be introduced to some of the literary forerunners of the modern horror genre, including H.P. Lovecraft, Robert Bloch and Clarke Ashton Smith and learn how these works bridge assumed gaps between high and low culture in America. We will then critically examine specific moments in twentieth century American history by asking how American horror films grew out of a variety of traditions, folklore and ideas about monsters and have intersected with important historical events, cultural ideologies and moral panics in the American historical experience.
 
Where is Religion?
FYSE 124 and FYSS 101
Shari Rabin
Jewish Studies
Course times: TR 1:40-2:55 and M 5:00-5:50
CRNs: 21891 and 21983 

Everything happens somewhere. This course will analyze those "somewheres" within American religious history, from churches to prisons, mosques to mikvehs. We will useparticular controversies – involving Judaism and other religious traditions – in order to understand how diverse religious spaces have been shaped by political conflict and how space has been significant to discussions of religion in American public life.
 
Marketing Analytics and Information Management
FSYE 126 amd FYSS 101
Lancie Affonso
Management and Marketing 
Course times: MWF 11:00-11:50 and M 10:00-10:50 am
CRNs: 22185 and 21985

Information Technology is significantly changing the global competitive landscape. Marketing increasingly needs to be complemented by information management and data analysis skills. This interdisciplinary course provides a big-picture overview to help students understand the advantages and objectives of quantitative marketing. Students will learn about  the principles and strategic concepts of marketing analytics, a high-growth area that uses computer-based information management models and metrics to improve marketing decisions.

How Things Work: the “Science” of Everyday Life
FYSE 130 and FYSS 101
Ana Oprisan
Physics
Course times: MWF 12:30-1:20 and M 9:00-9:50 am
CRNs: 23662 and 21996

This course introduces students to physics in the context of everyday life. This course focuses on physics concepts rather math and on familiar objects rather than abstract constructs. Among other goals, the course intends to reduce students’ fears of science, to convey a substantial understanding of our modern technological world, to serve as a useful and enjoyable component of students’ education. In addition to hands-on activities aimed at relating concepts with everyday life phenomena, we will use peer instruction to bolster our conceptual understanding of how things work. By the end of the course, students should become aware of science in everyday life, develop and expand physical intuition, and learn that the world is predictable and not magical.

Conflict and Cooperation in American Politics
FYSE 131 and FYSS 101
Jordan Ragusa
Political Science
Course times: MWF 2:00-2:50 and T 3:05-3:55
CRNs: 21892 and 22106 

Our Founding Fathers created a government that requires cooperation between competing actors and institutions. James Madison famously said that the three principles of the federal government are “compromise, compromise, compromise.” Yet even casual observers know that contemporary American politics is marked by significant polarization and disagreement between Democrats and Republicans. Simply put, the characteristic feature of our current government is conflict, not cooperation. In this class we will explore a number of issues related to cooperation and conflict in American politics: (1) the basic features of the American political system, (2) normative debates about the virtues of cooperation and conflict, (3) historical variation in political polarization, and (4) the causes and consequences of polarization.
 
Us and Them: The Politics of Identity
FYSE 131 and FYSS 101
Mark Long
Political Science
Course times: TR 9:25-10:40 and W 9:00-9:50
CRNs: 21893 and 22435

This course will explore one of the central facets of the human condition: our identities. Scholars argue that our sense of ourselves may begin in-utero, and certainly much of our educational experiences revolve around reinforcing collective identities. Every instance of studying American art, geography, history, literature, music, politics, a long etcetera, serves as an example of that process. So much of that effort entails using others as foils against which we can define ourselves. We will consider explanations of the process of othering from the biological to the political, through scholarly literature, literature and film. The course will consider the construction of identity at various scales and in various places; with a focus, however, on the US.
 
Jack the Ripper
FYSE 132 and FYSS 101
Chad Galuska
Psychology
Course times: MWF 10:00-10:50 and M 9:00-9:50 am
CRNs: 22422 and 22436
 
In the autumn of 1888, a series of horrific murders in the east end of London shocked the world. Over 125 years later, the murders of Jack the Ripper continue to fascinate; and despite recent claims we are no closer to identifying the culprit. Within the context of the deplorable socio-economic conditions prevailing in Whitechapel, this course both analyzes the crimes of Jack the Ripper and attempts to humanize his victims. Contemporary and modern suspects are critically evaluated. The reality of the Whitechapel murderer is contrasted with his portrayal in popular media. In doing so, this course seeks to shine a light through the fog of myth onto the Jack of history.
 
Out of the Lab and Into the World: Science, Media, and Society
FYSE 132 and FYSS 101
Gabrielle Principe
Psychology
Course time: TR 8:00-9:15 am and F 10:00-10:50 am
CRNs: 22423 and 22439

Science is central to many of the big issues that we as a society are grappling with, such as climate change, environmental regulation, health care, and even what’s in schoolchildren’s textbooks. At the same time, scientific literacy has declined and there is increased skepticism about the value of science in informing decision making. These trends have been accompanied by a shortage of useful and accurate science writing for the general public. In this course, we will explore all of these issues and more as we ask what happens when science enters the public sphere, and explore the ethical, social, and political issues raised by media coverage of science.
 
The Zombie Brain… and Non-Zombie Brain: A Beginner’s Guide
FYSE 132 and FYSS 101
Michael Ruscio
Psychology
Course times: MWF 2:00-2:50 and W 8:00-8:50 am
CRNs: 22440 and 22441

Curious about how the brain works?  Curious why the zombie brain works differently?  Using behavioral neuroscience we will examine the zombie brain as a basis for comparison to the human brain.  We will use real human case studies (not zombies) to help diagnose common symptomatology seen in most instances of zombification.  We will intertwine this with an historical perspective regarding the creative inception of, and psychological fascination with zombies.  Zombies are pure fiction (most likely), but were inspired in part by fears of actual conditions such as rabies, that produce severe behavioral changes.   From a psychological perspective we will examine the undead monster as an archetype that has existed in fiction and folklore across cultures for over a thousand years.

Origins: The History of Religion
FYSE 134 and FYSS 101
Louise Doire
Religious Studies
Course times: MWF 9:00-9:50 and W 11:00-11:50
CRNs: 21895 and 22442

This course is designed to be an introduction to the study of religion and the origins of the world's major religious traditions including Hinduism, Buddhism, Confucianism, Taoism, Judaism, Christianity and Islam. The course will focus on the historical development of these traditions and may also include a study of sacred text, ritual and concepts of the divine. 

Special O.P.S. Therapy Tactics
FYSE 138 and FYSS 101
Susan Flynn
Teacher Education
Course times: W 3:00-6:00 and W 1:00-1:50 pm
CRNs: 21899 and 22562

Special O.P.S. Therapy Tactics course is designed to provide students interested in pursuing a degree in occupational and physical therapy as well as teacher education, with the knowledge and skills to design and implement movement experiences to enhance children's physical, social and emotional development. Students will participate in an aquatic and motor clinic putting theory to practice teaching young children in a therapy setting. Students will be required to go to an off-site facility during scheduled class times for 7 of the semester class sessions.  Students will need at least 45 minutes of travel time before 3:00 p.m. 

Another Brick in the Wall: Exploring the Representation of Education in Pop Culture
FYSE 138 and FYSS 101
Reid Adams
Teacher Education
Course times: MW 12:30-1:45 and W 3:00-3:50 pm
CRNs: 21900 and 22707

In this course, our main purpose will be to explore and analyze how education has been represented in popular culture. The term "education," refers to teachers, students, principals, and the everyday processes of schooling, and the phrase "popular culture," refers to such media forms as films, television shows, music videos and songs, and other media forms. The rationale for undertaking such an exploration or representations of education in popular culture is that films, television programs, music CDSs and videos, video games, etc. - are "public pedagogies" that play a powerful role in mobilizing meaning, pleasures, and identifications. Students will explore and analyze films, videos, music and other popular culture texts throughout the semester to help better understand the role it plays in constructing how we come to know "education" and "schooling." 

The Nature of Solitude: Sacred & Secular, Voluntary & Involuntary
FYSE 138 and FYSS 101
Quinn Burke
Teacher Education
Course times: TR 9:25-10:40 and M 11:00-11:50 am
CRNs: 23801 and 22818

“Whosoever us delighted in solitude is either a wild beast or a god” – Aristotle, Politics, Book 1
 
Aristotle’s sentiment here fittingly captures the divisive nature of solitude, which has long had a polarizing existence in public perception. While some people recoil just at the thought of being alone and view solitude as inherently anti-social, others bask in its possibilities as an opportunity for reflection and deeper, more productive thinking. So, is solitude an elevating or denigrating existence and what kinds of solitudes, voluntary and involuntary, exist in this life? These fundamental questions represent the course’s starting point. After initially examining the philosophical and ethical underpinnings of solitude, the course will turn to a series of specific themes such as the relationship between solitude to creativity and to Romantic ideals as well as its darker turn as potentially promoting aloofness and encouraging inactivity. The course closes by investigating the relationship between solitude and technology as many media theorists argue that despite the 24/7 “connectivity” characteristic of modern life, humans find themselves more isolated and from each other than ever before.

Making a Difference in the Lives of Children and Families
FYSE 138 and FYSS 101
Ashley Vaughns
Teacher Education
Course times: MW 11:00-12:15 and W 1:00-1:50 pm
CRNs: 23802 and 22992

During the early years, birth-age 8, there are several conditions that negtaively impact the growth and development of young children and their families. Many of these conditions can be addressed with the help of informed advocates - people who stand up for, speak for, and work to enhance the lives of others who are not able - or not just yet able - to speak for themselves. This course seeks to provide students with skills and experiences, specific to the field of early childhood education, so that they can be effective advocates in multiple contexts.

Female Action Figures on the Screen
FYSE 139 and FYSS 101
Evan Parry
Theatre
Course times: TR 9:25-10:40, screening R 6:00-8:15 pm and R 11:05-11:55 am
CRNs: 21901 and 23848

If a woman wields a gun is she strong?  If a woman is physically aggressive is she an empowered woman, or is she just acting like a man? Why have women of physical action, even “violence” been traditionally regarded as unacceptable or abnormal? Are there motives that justify such violence? Is a violent (or simply physically strong) woman more acceptable now than 30 years ago? Is such a woman more or less acceptable in America than elsewhere? Through the viewing of a variety of films, this course will explore answers to these questions by critically evaluating the way in which female action figures are constructed both visually and thematically on the screen.

Theatre’s Visual Language
FYSE 139 and FYSS 101
Janine McCabe
Theatre
Course times: MWF 11:00-11:50 and R 3:05-3:55 pm
CRNs: 22425 and 23849

Images can communicate ideas as strongly as words. When we watch plays, movies, TV, or even walk down the street; the colors, lines and style of all we see has an impact.  Visual communication is a crucial element in the collaborative process of creating theatre. This seminar will explore and analyze the way theatre design teams communicate visually and verbally in the process of developing a production.  Students will see plays, meet designers and directors, and collaborate with each other to understand the communicative power of images.