The following 395H seminars are 3 credit hour classes. ACE credit is noted by each course (in some cases additional ACE credit may be forthcoming; contract Tamy Burnett for details). Some courses also meet College of Arts & Sciences College Distribution Requirements (ASC CDR); specifics are noted with each course. Enrollment in these courses will follow regular University enrollment procedures and occur on a first-come, first-served basis in accordance with your assigned priority registration times. If this is your final semester and you have an unmet ACE need AND you have difficulties getting into a course section with that ACE, contact Tamy Burnett ASAP.

Summer 2024

gold star with pain brushes


Soup Cans to Superstars: Understanding Popular Music and Arts in 20th Century American Culture

Course description ►

Section 302 Prof. Jackie Mattingly Web Conferencing, 9:00am-11:00pm, MTWRF
Three Week Session, May 20-June 7 ACE 7

When one talks about studying art and music, often one thinks of formalized experiences involving museums or performing arts centers. But art and music are all around us, permeating our lives through the popular culture that we experience daily. They are such a part of our daily landscape that we can easily take for granted the influence they have on our perceptions of the world, American society, our values, who we are, and how we understand the world. In this course, we will explore the role and significance of visual and musical forms of art in American culture. The course will cover art and music in the context of popular culture and explore relationships between art and music in everyday contexts. Students will share their perspectives and connect course material to their own lives throughout the session. This will be accomplished by using a variety of interactive activities, discussions, and a final presentation project.

Fall 2024

lit candles


Race, Nation, and Genocide in the Modern World

Course description ►

13160 Section 001 9:30am-10:45am, Tu/Th
Burnett 118 Dr. Bedross Der Matossian ACE 5; CAS CDR Humanities; 300-level course for History majors/minors

The aim of the course is to introduce students to one of the darkest phases of modern world history: the systematic annihilation and extermination of indigenous populations around the globe. Genocides are not only modern phenomenon pertaining to the modern world; rather they have existed in some fashion in the pre-modern period. What distinguishes the genocides of the modern period from other incidents of mass violence is that they have become more organized, intense, and lethal by using the tools of modernity. With the development of ideas of race, ethnicity, and nationalism in the 18th and the 19th century, genocides became more ideological in their attempt in justifying the annihilation of indigenous populations. We will explore a number of cases, beginning with the Armenian genocide; the genocides of the indigenous populations of Africa, Australia, and North America; the Holocaust, and ending with more contemporary genocides such as the case of Cambodia, Rwanda, ex-Yugoslavia, and Darfur. The course will end by discussing the development of the idea of Human Rights in response to these mass atrocities.

hand holding remote


Quality TV

Course description ►

No.: **** Section 003 11:30am-12:20pm, MWF
Knoll 150 Dr. Tamy Burnett 5 or 7; CAS CDR Humanities; Counts as 300-level English course for English major/minor

In this course, we will learn about and apply theories of the critical category of “quality television” in order to reach an understanding about how various production and narrative elements can contribute to the artistic quality of a scripted television show. Using the television show with the largest body of critical scholarship, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, as a point of comparison, we will examine exemplar episodes from several television series that scholars generally agree qualify as “quality TV” in order to develop an understanding of this visual media art form and critical approaches to it. We will explore a variety of shows from disparate genres including, The X-Files, The Sopranos, The West Wing, Veronica Mars, Game of Thrones, and Breaking Bad.



The Beatles

Course description ►

Section 005 Prof. Scott Anderson 3:30pm-4:45pm, MW
Knoll 258 ACE 7

The Beatles are arguably the most important rock band in the genre. Their music has been at the center of the discussion of popular music and culture for over forty years. The class will be divided into three style periods. The first style period covers the Liverpool to Hamburg experience and the early pre-Rubber Soul albums. The second style period covers Rubber Soul through Sergeant Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. The third style period covers The Beatles (The White Album) through Yellow Submarine, Let it Be and Abbey Road with further discussion of Apple Corp and each of the group’s first solo albums. We will approach their output thematically and trace it through engagement with American Popular Music, religion, politics and fame.

American Civil War cannon


Race and Redemption in the Literature of the Civil War and Reconstruction

Course description ►

Section: 009 Prof. Ken Price 11:00am-12:15pm, Tu/Th
Knoll 150 ACE 9; CAS CDR Humanities OR CDR Human Diversity in US Communities; Counts as 300-level English course for English major/minor; Fulfills Recent Lit or Concentration requirement for English majors

For American culture, the crisis of Civil War was crucial and remains a matter of current tension as monuments, meanings, and memory are debated anew. Class discussions will explore how various writers analyzed and contributed to fundamental transformations in U.S. society. We will examine how these writers reacted to the implications of a war that (for the north) changed as the war progressed— Abraham Lincoln’s crucial shift in emphasis from the preservation of the union to the liberation of three million people. As Lincoln noted, Southerners and Northerners “prayed to the same God” and invoked the same founding fathers, yet ultimately understood the meanings of freedom and democracy quite differently. For much of the twentieth century the consensus opinion was that no literature emerged from the war commensurate with the magnitude of the human toll. That conclusion is now being critiqued as canonical and non-canonical writers are reevaluated in light of new studies of regionalism, sentimentalism, and realism as seen in both books and the periodical press.

side by side green tree and land and brown


Living with Our Changing Climate

Course description ►

Section 010 Dr. Eric Hunt 8:30am-9:20am, MWF
Knoll 150 ACE 4

This course reveals the impact that each of us has on the climate. With this understanding, comes choices and actions for a more sustainable future. Earth’s climate is inherently variable, but is currently changing at rates unprecedented in recent Earth history. Human activity plays a major role in this change and is projected to do so well into the future. By incorporating the latest science, this course elaborates on this human interaction with the climate system along with how climate variations affect humanity. The primary issues examined in this course include the human and ecosystem vulnerabilities to climate change; the role of energy choices in affecting climate; the actions humans can take through adaptation, mitigation, and policy to lessen vulnerabilities and, the psychological, political and financial reasons behind climate change denial.

kid fingerpainting


The Science of Kids: Critical Issues in Developmental Psychology

Course description ►

Section 011 Prof. Anne Schutte 3:30pm-4:45pm, Tu/Th
Burnett 121 ACE 6; CAS CDR Social Sciences; Counts for a 300-level course for Psychological Science option for Psychology majors/minors

This class will examine current issues in theory and research in developmental psychology (e.g., nature vs. nurture). The course is an intermediate level study of developmental issues. We will also learn about theories and methods of developmental psychology.

By the end of the semester, you will have developed:

  1. Critical thinking and understanding in key selected topics in developmental psychology.
  2. Basic knowledge about cognitive, social, emotional, moral, and cultural development.
  3. An understanding of the roles of biology, families, media, peers, and other developmental agents.
  4. Learn to conceptually integrate and apply developmental knowledge to real world issues.