SPAN 2013: Spanish for Native Speakers

Spanish for Native Speakers
M-W. 2:50-4:10, Fisk 101
https://iasext.wesleyan.edu/regprod/!wesmaps_page.html?crse=012580&term=1171

Do you speak Spanish at home and with some friends, but feel like there are gaps in your language ability?   SPAN 203 is for you!   

SPAN 203 is designed for heritage speakers of Spanish who feel that they need to gain confidence and ability to take their fluency in Spanish to another level.  In this course you will

  • expand your vocabulary and your understanding of grammar
  • recognize a shared “standard”, while appreciating the many dialects and registers of Spanish
  • work on formal and academic registers
  • develop a critical attitude towards language use and language learning, as well as issues of identity
  • learn strategies for the life-long adventure which is being an educated speaker of a language

 Recognizing that Spanish is an essential element of  the Hispanic identity, as well as an important professional and social asset, SPAN 203 guides students through projects that develop their ability to express themselves in Spanish in a variety of contexts.

The class involves intense reading and writing, presentations, group work, and constant assessment.

 

New Course: “The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly: Rethinking the Italian Renaissance”

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The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly: Rethinking the Italian Renaissance
FIST 224 – COL 224 – ITAL 224 – MDST 223 
Prof. F.M. Aresu | Monday and Friday, 10:50 AM – 12:10 PM | FISK210

In this course we will critically explore the intellectual achievements of the Italian Renaissance through a detailed analysis of some of its literary masterpieces. We will inquire into the rediscovery and emulation of classical literatures and civilizations. We will examine the revalidated notions of beauty, symmetry, proportion, and order. We will analyze the ways in which this rebirth fundamentally changed the languages, literatures, arts, philosophies, and politics of Italy at the dawn of the modern era. We will also approach often-neglected aspects of Renaissance counter-culture, such as the aesthetics of ugliness and obscenity, and practices of marginalization (misogyny, homophobia). In a pioneering quest for the fulfillment of body and soul, self-determination, glory, and pleasure, Italian scholars, philologists, poets, playwrights, and prose writers contributed to the development of new and increasingly secular values. Through a close reading of texts by authors such as Francesco Petrarca, Niccolò Machiavelli, and Michelangelo Buonarroti, we will investigate continuities and ruptures between their quest for human identity and ours.

* Fear not! Course conducted in English. All primary and secondary sources in English.

For more information, please go to: https://iasext.wesleyan.edu/regprod/!wesmaps_page.html?crse=014560&term=1171 and do not hesitate to contact Professor F. Marco Aresu <faresu@wesleyan.edu>.

New and Timely Course for this Coming Semester: FIST 229 “Political Turmoil”

FIST229: POLITICAL TURMOIL: “What just happened? What’s going to happen? What do we do now?”
Prof. Meg Furniss Weisberg <mweisberg@wesleyan.edu>
Tuesdays and Thursdays, 1:20-2:40pm
https://iasext.wesleyan.edu/regprod/!wesmaps_page.html?crse=014857&term=1171

Political turmoil, while disconcerting to say the least, is nothing new. This course will look at case studies from different times and regions (the creation of the US; the 1960’s in the US, France, Italy, and elsewhere; Brazil’s and Chile’s dictatorships; Italy in the 90s; the Arab Spring; post-Revolution Iran; the Great Leap Famine in China; contemporary Mali and D. R. Congo; and the U.S. just before the Civil War, among others) to see how others have responded to periods of political oppression and upheaval. After an initial period of discussion based on readings, we will hold conversations with members of our campus community who have experienced various forms of political turmoil.

The goal of the course is ultimately project-based: as we gain perspective on the issues, we will turn what we learn into well-informed, measured, concrete action. In particular, we will workshop several writing exercises related to the topic and destined to make an impact (letter to the editor, letter to an elected official, public service announcement for the radio, etc). All students (including those whose first language is not English) are welcome in the course and will receive individualized attention to their writing.

The structure of this course will be somewhat unusual: after the first few meetings, the first session of each week will be devoted to discussing the week’s reading and collectively brainstorming questions; during the second session, we’ll ask those questions of the week’s invited guest (often, but not always, another faculty member). We will write and workshop pieces related to the topic and/or destined to make an impact (letter to the editor, letter to an elected official, public service announcement for the radio, etc). We are also going to make a radio program interviewing our guests, so that the course can reach a wider audience.

This course is going to be an experiment: it will operate more like a working group than a regular academic course, and I will be learning beside you, rather than imparting information. My role will be to teach about effective writing, deepen your critical thinking and analytical abilities, solicit guest speakers who will suggest readings, and facilitate discussions. The class will be graded CR/U, and would likely be fine to take in addition to a normal course load—though it goes without saying that you should check with your advisor.

More info: contact:

Meg Furniss Weisberg
Visiting Assistant Professor of French
Interim Director of Academic Writing
Wesleyan University
300 High St, Middletown CT USA
+1 (860) 685-2902
https://wesleyan.academia.edu/MegWeisberg

Seats Still Available in Allbritton Center classes

This spring, the Center for the Study of Public Life (CSPL) is showcasing several classes taught by some exciting and unusual visitors, in addition to some wonderful classes taught by Wesleyan professors. The following courses still have seats available:

Community Research Seminar (SOC 316), cross-listed with ENVS, the Civic Engagement Certificate, and the Environmental Studies Certificate.  Taught by Rob Rosenthal (1.5 credit, meets M/W 10:50 am-12:10 pm) – contact Course Assistant Maddie Scher for the application and with any questions. 

Teams of students learn the theory and practice of doing community research while carrying out research for local nonprofits, community organizations, and activist groups.  1.5 credits.  Highly challenging, highly rewarding. This year’s projects include research on how institutional and systemic racism effects of Communities of Color in Middletown (for the Middlesex Coalition for Children) and the long-range effects of service-learning courses (for the Wesleyan Service-Learning Program).

Group Psychology in Politics: Local, State, and National Perspectives (CSPL 206).  Taught by Middletown’s Mayor Dan Drew (0.5 credits, meets Friday 1:20-4:10 pm) – open to first-years!

This course is an introduction to the use of group dynamics to understand the deep personal and systems-level issues at play in the body politic. This framework is applicable at the local, state, national, and international levels. Often, if not most of the time, these issues play an outsized role in any public policy initiative, debate, vote, action, deliberation, and discourse, though they are rarely acknowledged. This class will examine group dynamics as it is practiced in the field of organizational development (OD), a branch of organizational psychology used to implement cultural changes across social systems. The application of OD to politics is not widespread, but its tools are useful in understanding the dynamics in political situations and in the understanding of how power is exercised. The course will introduce concepts in open systems theory and will introduce three models to hold the data in our case studies: the Burke-Litwin Model, BART, and GRPI. 

Topics in Journalism: Writing, Wit, and the Natural World (CSPL/WRCT 250K).  Taught by Koeppel Fellow Richard Michael Conniff (1 credit, meets T/R 2:50-4:10 pm)

This course will engage students as readers and writers of essays, opinion pieces, and long form articles about the natural world. We live in the shadow of climate change and the sixth great extinction event. So when is outrage effective, and when does wit or irony allow a writer to find a more persuasive voice? What’s the role of objectivity in a world where everybody seems to be shouting? We’ll consider the work of such writers as Gerald Durell, David Quammen, Elizabeth Kolbert, and Peter Matthiessen. Students will also write regularly and collaborate together in class to critique and improve one another’s work. 

Collaborative Cluster Initiative Research Seminar II (CSPL 321).  Taught by Sean McCann and Charles Barber (0.5 credit, meeting time TBA) – POI (open to any interested students)

Students participating in the Collaborative Cluster Initiative will take this course in the spring semester. They will continue with projects started in the fall semester. This is a continuation of CSPL320. This course will supplement the seminars providing historical and cultural background of the prison system in the United States. The emphasis will be on the practical application of topics engaged in the other seminars and contemporary concerns related to the prison system in the U.S. We shall follow current debates at both the national and state level, including legislation, media, and university initiatives. Students will also visit local sites. Speakers will visit the class to share their experiences and expertise. Students will conduct individual research projects and present them in workshop fashion.

Music Movements in a Capitalist Democracy (CSPL 333).  Taught by singer/songwriter Dar Williams (1 credit, meets Wednesday 1:20-4:10 pm)

This course will focus on music movements that have used the presentation, expression, and production of music and music events to facilitate sociopolitico transitions. The vital context of these movements is the United States in particular, where the speed and power of commerce, as well as the concentration of capital, present unique opportunities for progressive values and goals in music.

We will look at huge events, like the Newport festivals, Woodstock, Michigan Womyn’s Music Festival, Lillith Fair, and Bonnaroo, and examine how these movements have both evolved and spread their tendrils into the world (if they have). We will also spend some time on smaller, grassroots venues and music series in Chicago, Boston, San Francisco, and New York and see how blues, folk, punk, and “Americana” venues have affected and interacted with their communities. We will look at how music scenes evolved and grew and sometimes became institutions, like the Chicago Old Town School of Music.

Topics in Education, Innovation, and Entrepreneurship: Social Entrepreneurship in Education (CSPL 341B).  Taught by Harber Fellow Bernard Dean Bull (1 credit, meets T/R 10:20-11:40 am)

This seminar focuses upon educational innovation and entrepreneurship as a form of social entrepreneurship, some of society’s greatest challenges in education. Learners will survey critical issues in contemporary education and explore innovative and entrepreneurial efforts to address these issues. Learners will explore how diverse education startups, non-profit organizations and NGOs, individuals and grassroots groups, K-12 schools, Universities, foundations, professional associations and others are responding to these issues in innovative ways. As the course progresses, learners will explore the roles of foundations, corporations, and government policies and regulations upon educational innovation and entrepreneurship. As part of this course, learners will work individually or in groups to research solutions to a pressing contemporary educational challenge and propose/pitch a means of addressing that challenge through social entrepreneurship.

New Teaching Evaluations Update

Wesleyan is implementing a new teaching evaluation form this fall.  The majority of classes will use the new teaching evaluation form, with new questions.  However, a small number of classes will continue to use the old form for a few more terms, so some students will complete a different form for certain classes.  There will be one landing page for all student course evaluations, with a link to the correct form for each course.

Winter Session Registration – Courses Filling

If you are interested in taking a Winter Session course, register as soon as possible! 

To register for Winter Session, print the form from the bucket in your portfolio, complete the form, have your advisor sign it, and bring the form with payment to the Winter Session office (74 Wyllys Ave). You can also prepay on your student account before bringing your form in.

Housing and Dining forms for Winter Session are also in your portfolio and will close at noon on December 6. Only students who have completed the forms as well as registered for Winter Session (or another program) by noon on December 6 will be eligible for housing and dining. More information at http://www.wesleyan.edu/wintersession

Please contact the Winter Session office with any questions – winter@wesleyan.edu or 860-685-2005.

New Course: CGST 210 “Language and Thought: Introduction to Linguistics”

Q:  What is linguistics?
A: It’s the study of language, its structures, and the way it works.

We’re pleased to be re-introducing into the Wesleyan curriculum an introductory course on Linguistics, to be taught by Prof. Louise Neary in Spring 2017.  This course will introduce students to some of the principal areas like phonology  (the study of the sounds of language),morphology (the structure of words), syntax (the structure of sentences) and semantics (the meaning of language). 

This course has no prerequisites and will be interesting for anyone curious about how and why humans make the sounds we make. 

Check out Wesmaps for more info.  Offered M & W—2:50-4:10 p.m.

New 0.25 credit course for Spring 2017: CIS 115 “Experiential Design and Application”

This course, co-taught with Director of Physical Plant Operations Mike Conte, will allow students to work directly with Facilities employees to design and execute modifications and repairs to existing Wesleyan spaces. The specific projects will change from semester to semester, but could include designing and building informal learning spaces, and planning and carrying out repairs and modifications to mechanical and plumbing systems. Students will learn design and engineering by carrying out projects to improve Wesleyan’s facilities. Students must be willing to work with tools and machinery with supervision. The grading in this quarter-credit repeatable course will be based primarily on active participation, and the class meetings will be held on location and at times built around participants’ schedules. The first organizational meeting will be held in the Cady building at 170 Long Lane on Friday, January 27 at 2:50 pm; interested students who cannot attend the first meeting should e-mail the instructors.  More information available in the WesMaps listing.

New FYS course: “Live Like a Philosopher”

“Live Like a Philosopher” is a project-based learning course where students will be asked to put into practice several philosophical theories about the good life from the ancient world.  Activities include the cultivation of specific habits, changing one’s behavior with others in a certain way, and going about one’s everyday routines a little differently.  In place of essays and exams, students will complete a course journal for themselves with daily diary entries.  They may also be asked to create digital stories or video diaries chronicling their experiences living like a philosopher, and at least some class time will be spent outside the classroom engaged in work related to the course content.  15 seats are available to first-years: details here.

Socrates quote

Section 2 of PSYC 105

Professor Lisa Dierker is teaching a small, media-based section of PSYC 105 that exposes students to psychology concepts through photography, sound, video production, editing, and graphic design.  It is a nice opportunity for first-year students to take this gateway course to the Pschology major and earn an SBS credit in a small, project-based environment.  PSYC 105 Section 2 is POI.

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Change of Grading Mode Deadline 5pm Today

For courses with a “Student Option” grading mode, the deadline to change the grading mode is today at 5:00p.m.

To review the grading modes for the courses in your schedule, login to your portfolio and click on “Current Classes & Schedule.”  The “Grade” column will indicate the current grading mode for the course.  To determine whether a course is “Student Option,” click on the link in the “Course ID” column to review the WesMaps description.

If you decide to change the grading mode for a course, you will need to submit a Grading Mode Change Form to the Registrar by 5pm today. Faculty Advisor and Class Dean signatures are NOT required to submit the form.

Seats Available in PHYS 107 “Life in the Cell from a Molecule’s Perspective”

Professor Candice Etson is offering a new FYS course in the Physics Department: PHYS 107, Life in the Cell from a Molecule’s Perspective, which meets TR 10:20-11:40 in Exley 221.

Have you ever wondered how things happen in the cell at the molecular level? What does DNA look like when it is not condensed into chromosomes? If a molecular motor walks, how does it take a step? How do partners in molecular processes find each other? Students will have a chance to explore these questions by discussing primary scientific literature in this course, which is a writing intensive introduction to a handful of important topics in molecular biophysics. While Professor Etson intends the course to introduce students to biophysics while they still have time to pursue the certificate, it would also be a great choice for a student looking for a course in NSM that is not math heavy. There are no problem sets, and no exams. Assessments consist of contributions to the class website (20%), twice-weekly exploratory writing assignments (40%), and a final paper (40%).