Core Curriculum

Core Curriculum

Core Capstone Courses: 
Fall 2014

ABEC 404:  Wildlife, Ecology, and Conservation in South Africa

Instructor: Susan Margulis 
Prerequisites: Senior ABEC Majors Only

Travel to South Africa for three weeks during the summer to study wildlife ecology and conservation from a more global perspective. Students will have the opportunity to interact and collaborate with students and researchers from the University of Venda and the research staff of the Lajuma Research Centre as part of their field experience. In addition to the scientific components of the course, students will gain a deeper understanding of the cultural, historical and political issues of South Africa, and the realities of conservation in a developing nation, via discussion and reading. The class also involves travel to Kruger National Park. Research projects are completed during the fall semester. Students must apply for this course during FALL of their junior year.

CHM 482: Contemporary Chemical Technology Issues MWF 10:00-10:50 AM 

Instructor: Steven Szczepankiewicz
Prerequisites: Seniors Only 

Chemically intensive processes vital to the modern society such as energy, food and materials production, water purification, and waste management, carry with them significant societal implications. Before entering the workforce, students trained in the technical aspects of chemistry must also develop a perspective on professional ethics, and analyze current chemistry and chemical technology intensive societal issues from the perspective of risk assessment and risk management, as well as social justice and ethics with a global perspective. Most of the discussions and content in this course are student-generated, and reflections will be formalized in the form of position papers and oral debates.

COM 414: Issues in Advertising MWF 10:00-10:50 AM

Instructor: John Dahlberg 
Prerequisites: Seniors only; COM Majors or Professor's Signature

This course is an exploration of contemporary marketing communication through the social scientific lens of Communication Studies. Students will read Advertising Age, an important weekly magazine published for advertising/ marketing industry professionals, for the latest information about trends in marketing communication, in all media, and about virtually any current topic in the advertising and marketing world.  Each week, each student will present information from assigned readings to the class and will be responsible for interpreting the potential impact of the story in that reading on the industry, the economy, consumers and our popular culture. Students must critically analyze that behavior in the context of marketing communication and applicable theoretical communication frameworks such as Elaboration Likelihood Model, information theory, commitment and consistency, uses and gratifications.

ECCH 494: Capstone Seminar for Teachers M 4:30-7:00

Instructor: Jill Whalen
Prerequisites: Senior Education Majors Only
Other: Hybrid 

This seminar is the reflective course that accompanies student teaching for education majors. Teacher candidates reflect on their student teaching experience, engage in classroom discussions, and complete readings, reflection papers, and a final project related to issues of diversity, global awareness and social justice.

EDE 494: Capstone Seminar for Teachers M 4:30-7:00

Instructor: Jill Whalen 
Prerequisites: Senior Education Majors Only
Other: Hybrid

This seminar is the reflective course that accompanies student teaching for education majors. Teacher candidates reflect on their student teaching experience, engage in classroom discussions, and complete readings, reflection papers, and a final project related to issues of diversity, global awareness and social justice.

EDS 494: Capstone Seminar for Teachers M 4:30-7:00

Instructor: Roberto Gregorius 
Prerequisites: Senior Education Majors Only
Other: Hybrid

This seminar is the reflective course that accompanies student teaching for education majors. Teacher candidates reflect on their student teaching experience, engage in classroom discussions, and complete readings, reflection papers, and a final project related to issues of diversity, global awareness and social justice.

ENG 365D: Post-Colonial Studies: Contemporary Middle Eastern Film and Literature TR 1:00-2:15

Instructor: Jean Gregorek 
Prerequisites: Seniors only

One of the most dramatic world-historical shifts in the twentieth century has been the political liberation of three-fourths of the planet from European domination.  The new 'interdiscipline' of postcolonial studies examines this shift, the complexities of the process of decolonization, and the hybrid culture of peoples and places emerging from European colonial rule.

This course seeks to introduce students to the field of postcolonial studies, drawing primarily on examples from the Islamic world of North Africa and the Middle East.  Through the study of literature, film, and history, as well as of current events, we will investigate encounters between the West and the Middle East, including ways in which twentieth-century European artists and writers have represented these lands, as well as how some Middle Eastern artists and writers have responded to these representations.  Reading and viewing works from North Africa, Afghanistan and Pakistan, we will consider some important postcolonial themes:  the paradoxes of assimilated or hybrid identities; the place of tradition; the public role of women; debates around revolutionary violence; healing the scars of war; the possibilities for cross-cultural understanding; what modernity looks like outside of the West.  This course should be of interest to students of Literature, History, International Relations, Political Science, and Religious Studies. 

FAM 390: Sounding Society MWF 1:00-1:50

Instructor: Richard Falkenstein
Prerequisites: Seniors only

The premise that music is one of the richest cultural expressions of a community forms the basis for this course, which explores how music represents, instills, and challenges the values of ethics, justice, diversity, and global awareness in different societies. In addition to art music (Western and otherwise) the course also encompasses popular and indigenous music. The course is flexible enough to accommodate students without music reading skills.

HIS 460 A:  The Life and Times of Theodore Roosevelt TR 8:30-9:45

Instructor: Nancy Rosenbloom
Prerequisites: Seniors only
Other: Hybrid 

This course explores the life and times of Theodore Roosevelt (1859-1919), a period that saw the birth of modern America.  If historians sometimes argue that the man makes the times, alternatively they also argue that times make the man.  Roosevelt helped to forge a political culture in response to modernity and articulated a national and international vision that reflected both an understanding of American diversity and the demands of being a player on the world stage.  At the same time, Roosevelt developed a concept of civic virtue that met the ethical standards of what he famously called “the strenuous life,” and, as President from 1901-1908, he used his office as a “bully pulpit” towards the achievement of a more just economic and social order. For this reason, The Age of Theodore Roosevelt focuses on the period that roughly encompasses the political career of one of the most fascinating figures in modern American history.

HIS 460 B:  The Life and Times of Theodore Roosevelt T 10:00-11:15

Instructor: Nancy Rosenbloom
Prerequisites: Seniors only
Other: Hybrid

This course explores the life and times of Theodore Roosevelt (1859-1919), a period that saw the birth of modern America.  If historians sometimes argue that the man makes the times, alternatively they also argue that times make the man.  Roosevelt helped to forge a political culture in response to modernity and articulated a national and international vision that reflected both an understanding of American diversity and the demands of being a player on the world stage.  At the same time, Roosevelt developed a concept of civic virtue that met the ethical standards of what he famously called “the strenuous life,” and, as President from 1901-1908, he used his office as a “bully pulpit” towards the achievement of a more just economic and social order. For this reason, The Age of Theodore Roosevelt focuses on the period that roughly encompasses the political career of one of the most fascinating figures in modern American history.

PED 494: Capstone Seminar for Teachers M 4:30-7:00

Instructor: TBA
Prerequisites: Senior Education Majors only
Other: Hybrid 

This seminar is the reflective course that accompanies student teaching for education majors. Teacher candidates reflect on their student teaching and observations, complete readings, engage in classroom discussions and complete reflections and other projects related to issues of diversity, ethics, global awareness and social justice and how these pertain to their own development as teachers. 

PHI 399D: Ethics, Justice and Poverty MWF 11:00-12:50

Instructor: Sean Johnson
Prerequisites: Seniors only

This course synthesizes the learning experiences from having completed the components of the Core Curriculum. The course has two parts. The first part takes up consideration of two texts that provide a strong yet accessible background in ethics, justice, and diversity: (1) Kwame Anthony Appiah, Cosmopolitanism: Ethics in a World of Strangers; and (2) Michael Sandel: Justice. The second part of the course examines the controversy between two development economists; here the texts are: (3) Jeffrey Sachs, The End of Poverty; and (4) William Easterly, The White Man’s Burden: Why the West’s Efforts to Aid the Rest Have Done So Much Ill and So Little Good. The emphasis then is on global awareness. Examining the controversy between Sachs and Easterly raises concern about how good will and a commitment to justice by themselves seem not to entail clear and easy solutions to the problem of world poverty.

Open to all students from all majors, this core capstone course was partly designed for Business Majors. We will consider several rival versions of our moral self-understanding and several rival versions of how to address contemporary moral problems. Our goal is to apply these different approaches to the problem of world poverty. Since by current estimates, over 1.7 billion people live in absolute poverty [less than $1.25 per day], how do different economic approaches to these problems entail different conceptions of justice and of the living well? The course considers our position as moral beings in a poverty stricken world.

PHI 399 B: Ethics, Justice and the Problem of Poverty TR 1:00-2:15

Instructor: TBA
Prerequisites: Seniors only

This course synthesizes the learning experiences from having completed the components of the Core Curriculum. The course has two parts. The first part takes up consideration of two texts that provide a strong yet accessible background in ethics, justice, and diversity: (1) Kwame Anthony Appiah, Cosmopolitanism: Ethics in a World of Strangers; and (2) Michael Sandel: Justice. The second part of the course examines the controversy between two development economists; here the texts are: (3) Jeffrey Sachs, The End of Poverty; and (4) William Easterly: The White Man’s Burden: Why the West’s Efforts to Aid the Rest Have Done So Much Ill and So Little Good. The emphasis then is on global awareness. Examining the controversy between Sachs and Easterly raises concern about how good will and a commitment to justice by themselves seem not to entail clear and easy solutions to the problem of world poverty.

Open to all students from all majors, this core capstone course was partly designed for Business Majors. We will consider several rival versions of our moral self-understanding and several rival versions of how to address contemporary moral problems. Our goal is to apply these different approaches to the problem of world poverty. Since by current estimates, over 1.7 billion people live in absolute poverty [less than $1.25 per day], how do different economic approaches to these problems entail different conceptions of justice and of the living well? The course considers our position as moral beings in a poverty stricken world.

PSY 365:  Psychology of Aging TR 10:00-11:15

Instructor: Marguerite Kermis
Prerequisites: Seniors Only

This course is a psychology elective which presents an overview of current research in the psychology of adulthood and aging. People enter life with the accumulated experiences gained over six or seven generations-experiences which affect their attitudes, behaviors and resources. Wars, economic downturns, technology and cultural change have shaped the experience of old age for each cohort of the elderly, but have also shaped the unique biographies of individuals. This course will examine the health, intellectual, demographic and social changes that accompany late life. It will examine brain aging and longevity in illness and health. The purpose of the course is to provide a comprehensive overview of aging in America. Discussions, readings, film and musical images of aging will help students understand the way in which society shapes the life course and development of individuals.

Readings will include “Public Health Then and Now: The Tuskegee Syphilis Study (1932-1972), “Hard Times in Women’s Lives:  Historical Influences Across Forty Years”, as well as the textbook, World of Difference – Inequality in the Aging Experience by Eleanor Palo Stoller and Rose Campbell Gibson.  Course requirements include exams, a research paper and oral presentation that will address the diversity, ethics, global awareness and justice considerations of an aging society

RST 399: Christian Marriage MW 3:00-4:15

Instructor: Nancy Rourke
Prerequisites: Seniors only

This course considers a specific intersection of Church and society; namely, the institutions of marriage and family.  In marriages and families, many sectors of life come together.  Private life, public life, religious life, work life, political life, economic life, spiritual life, sexual life, emotional life and intellectual life are all bound together in human families and in the decision to partner with someone for life.  The course also engages the question of what it means to be simultaneously both a citizen of a nation (and its culture) and a member of a body of religious believers, as, for instance, American Catholics are.

RST 399B:  Religious Diversity in Buffalo T 6:00-8:45

Instructor: Jonathan Lawrence 
Prerequisites: Seniors only

This course will explore the nature of religious diversity in Buffalo through visits to congregations from different religious traditions and discussions of larger themes concerning religious diversity in America and around the world.  During visits to these congregations and other sites, students will videotape worship services (when permitted) and interview clergy and members about their religious beliefs, practices, and experiences of interactions with other religious communities. Students will conduct background research into the congregations and other sites they are visiting and compose reflections on those visits which will be shared on the website for an on-going project the instructor is conducting.

SPE1:  Capstone Seminar for Teachers M 4:30-7:00

Instructor: Roberto Gregorius 
Prerequisites: Senior Education Majors Only

This seminar is the reflective course that accompanies student teaching for education majors. Teacher candidates reflect on their student teaching and observations, complete readings, engage in classroom discussions and complete reflections and other projects related to issues of diversity, global awareness and social justice, and how these pertain to their own development as teachers.

SPEB:  Capstone Seminar for Teachers M 4:30-7:00

Instructor: Roberto Gregorius 
Prerequisites: Senior Education Majors Only

This seminar is the reflective course that accompanies student teaching for education majors. Teacher candidates reflect on their student teaching and observations, complete readings, engage in classroom discussions and complete reflections and other projects related to issues of diversity, global awareness and social justice, and how these pertain to their own development as teachers.