Core Curriculum

Core Curriculum

Core Capstone Courses:
SPRING 2015

ABEC 419A: Anthrozoology TR 1:00-2:15

Instructor: Paul Waldau
Prerequisites:  Seniors only

ABEC 419 focuses on humankind’s relationships with other animal species. It takes a multidisciplinary approach as students examine our relationships with both domesticated species and wildlife in various nations, regions, communities, and cultures. Through this material, students focus not only on historical trends, scientific investigations and cultural differences, but also on religious perspectives, ethical issues and gender differences. The overarching goal of the course is to help students read, think, discuss and write about their role in our increasingly interconnected world.

COM 414A: Issues in Advertising
MWF 11:00-11:50 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 are asked to read Advertising Age, an important weekly magazine published for advertising/ marketing industry professionals. From those readings (as well as supplementary video, other reading, outside speakers and advertising artifacts) they are required to outline and explain current industry news (e.g. new branding initiative from JK Rowling, a hard look at what Facebook knows and tells about us, how Komen is trying to restore its tarnished brand, a reconstitution of agencies at WPP for Colgate-Palmolive.). Each week, each student presents information from assigned readings to the class. Each is also responsible to interpret the potential impact of that story on the industry, the economy, consumers and our popular culture. He/she 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, etc. At the same time, students are expected to explore the various core attributes that attach to each of the readings. Beyond that weekly work, every student must select a contemporary advertising topic to explore, research, and subsequently present to the class. This culminates in a research paper that follows APA style.

DMA 399A: Social Documentary MW 1:00-2:15

Instructor:  James O’Neil
Prerequisites:  Seniors only

This capstone course combines viewership of famous social documentaries, with an art survey of documentary photographers and culminates in a written documentary proposal, along with a detailed, oral presentation of the project or, screening of a completed segment of a video or photo documentary. This course will be open to any student who has fulfilled the prerequisite, DMA201: Intro to Digital Media. Below is a description of how certain films viewed as part of the course relate to attributes. Documentary photography will be covered with the help of a textbook (yet to be chosen) that familiarizes students with famous war photographers such as Timothy O’Sullivan, John Heartfield and Eddie Adams, as well as pop documentarians such as Annie Leibovitz

ENG 365A: Dante TR 11:30-12:45

Instructor: Johanna Fisher
Prerequisites:  Seniors only

This capstone will use selected cantos from Dante’s Divine Comedy, particularly cantos chosen from Inferno and Paradiso as well as other selected texts to form the basis of our discussion of topics related to the subject areas of the core curriculum. A literary examination of visions of Hell in selected works will lead us to thinking about how those visions are reflected in the important subject areas of justice, ethics, global and diversity (broadly defined). The course will be structured as a seminar, with some introduction followed by student oral presentations and extended written versions of the presentations.

We will strive to create a climate of openness and respect as we deeply think about and discuss the issues that arise from the readings and presentations. The topic for the presentations will be drawn from concepts found in a close reading of the texts. In this way we will address the oral communication facet of the course. The writing component will consist of short papers and a longer final paper.

ENG 365DA: Post-Colonial Literatures
TR 11:30-12:45

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. 

CLG 400A: Paideia TR 1-2:15

Instructor: Thomas Banchich
Prerequisites: Seniors only; see description below

The range of meaning of the Greek work Paideia encompasses our notions of education, culture, and literature. The course will be devoted to the study of a particular ancient Greek author—for example, Homer, Sophocles, or Aristotle—, group of authors—for example, Thucydides and Euripides or Plato and Aristophanes—, or genre—for example, philosophy, tragedy, or history. Whatever the authors or texts, most of them will be read in the original Greek.

As a result, though the course is not limited to Classics majors, students will be required to have had at least three semesters of ancient Greek. To ensure that this is the case and that those who wish to register have completed or are in the process of completing their core requirements, the permission of the instructor will be required for all who wish to take CLG 400. CLG 400 may count toward the completion of the major or minor in Classics.

HIS 421A: Nature and the Arts of Angling, Rest, and Contemplation TR 11:30-12:45

Instructor: Richard Bailey
Prerequisites:  Seniors only

As an exercise in the genre of cultural history, HIS 421 is an introduction to the history, literary and cultural significance, and practice of fly fishing in America, as well as around the world. In “Nature & the Arts of Angling, Restoration, & Contemplation,” students will also examine the religious themes and the “spiritualization” often attached to fly fishing, which have been expressed in some of the most loved writings in the English language. Students will additionally gain a basic knowledge of fly fishing and an understanding of the ecological, ethical, and justice-related issues surrounding the sport.

CLL 400A: Humanitas MWF 12:00-12:50

Instructor: Kathryn Williams
Prerequisites: Seniors only; see description below

The range of meaning of the Latin work Humanitas encompasses our notions of education, culture, and literature. The course will be devoted to the study of a particular ancient Latin author—for example, Virgil, Cicero, or Suetonius—, group of authors—for example, Plautus and Terence or Caesar and Sallust—, or genre—for example, philosophy, poetry, or history. Whatever the authors or texts, most of them will be read in the original Latin.

As a result, though the course is not limited to Classics majors, students will be required to have had at least three semesters of ancient Latin. To ensure that this is the case and that those who wish to register have completed or are in the process of completing their core requirements, the permission of the instructor will be required for all who wish to take CLL 400. CLL 400 may count toward the completion of the major or minor in Classics.

PHI 399CBA: Ethics, Justice and the Problem of Poverty TR 2:30-3:45

Instructor: Deacon Newhouse
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.

This course was open to all students from all 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 399CBB: Ethics, Justice and the Problem of Poverty TR 1:00-2:15

Instructor: Deacon Newhouse
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.

This course was open to all students from all 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 399CBC: Ethics, Justice and the Problem of Poverty TR 6:00-8:45

Instructor: Heron Simmonds-Price
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.

This course was open to all students from all 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.

PED 494HYB: Capstone Seminar for Teachers
T 2:30-4:30

Instructor: Clancy Seymour
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, ethics, global awareness and social justice and how these pertain to their own development as teachers

PSC 442A: Seminar in International Relations
W 2:30-5:00

Instructor: Jonathan DiCicco
Prerequisites: Senior IR Majors or Professor's Signature

The seminar focuses on leaders and leadership in international politics. We work together to identify models of leadership that we might strive to emulate, as well as examples of errant behavior and poor leadership that we can try to avoid. In so doing, we repeatedly raise the question, by what criteria -- practical, ethical, and moral -- should we judge “good” and “bad” international leaders? We do not limit our focus to larger-than-life figures like Mahatma Gandhi, Dag Hammarskjöld, Margaret Thatcher, Nelson Mandela, or Pope John Paul II; we also consider and discuss different ways of conceptualizing international leadership and international leaders, including leading states in the international system, regional leaders, and transnational advocacy groups, and we analyze the political structures, motives, and incentives that encourage poor leadership. The seminar requires a solid base of knowledge in international and national politics and is best suited for majors in International Relations and Political Science.

PSC 452A: Politics of Identity in Europe TR 1:00-2:15

Instructor: John Occhipinti
Prerequisites: Seniors only

Nationalism, separatism and European identities. Immigrant communities and responses by Europe’s governments and political parties. Islam in Europe and challenges for identity and security. Lessons for US public policy. 

RST 399C ONL: Liberation Theologies TBA

Instructor: Patrick Lynch, S.J.
Other: Online Course

This course will study the origins and development of Liberation Theology in Latin America before investigating the ways in which this theology developed among other racial, ethnic, and gender groups in the United States and elsewhere in the world. In particular, the course will study aspects of African American, Latino/Latina, GLBTQ, and feminist theologies in the U.S. and liberation theologies in Latin America, Asia and Africa. Within these theologies special attention will be given to issues of social justice. Ethical issues will also be addressed when considering liberation in the context of feminism, health care, and criminal punishment.