Fall 2019 Featured Courses

ENGL 1616W-001: Major Works of English & American Literature

Instructor: Veronica Makowsky

Prerequisite: ENGL 1010, 1011, or 2011

Who Am I? Am I the same person I was yesterday? What will I be tomorrow? To what extent do I control my identity and to what extent is it imposed upon me by my historical and cultural contexts? To what extent is it formed by my family and the relationships between and among family members? We will explore these questions about identity and change as we read and discuss major works of poetry, drama, and fiction. In the first half of the course, we will survey some important British works from the Renaissance through the nineteenth century, including Hamlet and selections from our anthology, The Norton Introduction to Literature (Shorter, Twelfth Edition), as well as Robert Louis Stevenson’s brief novel The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1886), interspersed with one or two twentieth-century American plays that focus on family dynamics. In the second half of the course, we will concentrate on modernism and on American ethnic literature, including Julie Otsuka’s short novel When the Emperor Was Divine. Students will write and revise four short papers. Class participation is essential and will include almost daily in-class writing assignments. The course is intended as an introduction to reading and interpreting English and American literature with no background required other than having met the first-year writing requirement.

(CA 1, W)

HIST 2020: Pyramids, Pirates, and the Polis: The Ancient Mediterranean

Instructor: Joseph McAlhany

The purpose of this course is to introduce you to the histories and cultures of the ancient civilizations surrounding the ancient Mediterranean, with special emphasis on the transformations they underwent as a result of their interactions, both peaceful and violent. The political and religious developments of these cultures are still with us today, in ways we might not recognize and in ways we might not like.

From readings of both primary and secondary sources, written and visual, you will learn not only what this history was, but also what it wasn’t. Along the way, you will also learn to appreciate how history gets made, both by the people who live it and the people who write it.

(CA 1, CA 4-Int)

SOCI 2275: Social Well-Being

Instructor: Bradley Wright 

We all have days when we feel happy or sad, with purpose or lost, satisfied or dissatisfied. Why do these states happen when they do? Is it what we are doing? Where we are in life? Who we are with? This course examines how well-being is experienced in society. It explores different conceptualizations of it as well as who has the most of it. It examines the various antecedents of it, including cognitive, emotional, situational, and societal factors.

DMD 3620: Collaborating with Cultural Organizations (Conversion Opportunity)

Instructor: Clarissa Ceglio

While this is not an Honors course, Prof. Ceglio welcomes Honors students of all majors and would be happy to offer Honors conversions for interested students. Alternatively, Honors students may enroll in the cross-listed graduate section (DMD 5998-005), which will entail additional advanced work. 

Museums, archives, and other cultural organizations are spaces of digital media experimentation as they seek new ways to communicate ideas, make collections accessible, inspire learning, connect people, and build community. In addition to exploring what the terms digital, public, and humanities mean—alone and in combination—we will examine ways in which digital media, from apps to virtual reality (VR) to hashtags, are being used to critically engage us in questions about our human past, present, and future. We will explore, too, the place of digital/public/humanities within contemporary debates about cultural organizations’ histories and responsibilities with regard to social justice, activism, and inclusivity. This Service Learning course also involves collaborating with on and off-campus cultural organizations on a set of microprojects with such partners as the Keney Park Sustainability Project. Through this course students will gain an understanding of the roles that current and emerging digital media play in public engagement and gain hands-on experience with basic tools, such as Omeka, an open-source software for building online collections and exhibits. No prior digital media skills required.

PSYC 3250W: Laboratory in Animal Behavior and Learning

[UConn Storrs]

Instructor: Etan Markus

Prerequisites: (1) ENGL 107, 1010, 1011, or 2011; (2) PSYC 1100; (3) PSYC 2100; (4) PSYC 2200 or 2500 or 3201 or 3552; (5) a good knowledge of statistics

Permission number required. Request a permission number using this form.

Remember how you got to class today? a bad experience? learning to ride a bike? What parts of the brain are involved in these different types of behaviors? How can one examine these questions in the laboratory rat? This hands-on laboratory will provide students with an opportunity to conduct experiments using modern behavioral techniques. The ability of rats to carry out different types of tasks will be related to different brain structures.

This is a serious lab designed for students interested in continuing to graduate or medical school.

  • This is a hands-on lab, most of the time we will only have a brief classroom session. Instead, on about half the weeks students will be training animals for about 1-2 hours/day for 3-4 days a week.
  • On occasion you will have to come in on the weekend to care for your animals.
  • This is also a “W” class, and I’ll be working with you on your writing (& re-writing).


ECON 3473: Microeconomic Issues in Economic Development and Policy Making

Instructor: Nishith Prakash

Prerequisites: ECON 1200 or 1202; ECON 2201 or 2211Q. The requirement of intermediate microeconomics (2201/2211Q) may be waived for Honors students who have taken ECON 1200 or 1201. Email Prof. Prakash to request a permission number.

A majority of the world’s population lives on less than $2/day. The goal of this course is to better understand the lives of the world’s poor. What are their lives like? Why do they remain poor? In particular, we will explore 3-4 interrelated topics such as poverty, education, political economy and corruption.

Key highlights of this course:

  1. Students will learn impact evaluation.
  2. Students will learn how to evaluate government policies.
  3. Students will learn how to design effective policies aimed at improving the well-being of individuals.
  4. Students will learn a statistical tool – STATA, a powerful tool used in Applied Microeconomics.

POLS 2998W-008: (Political Issues) The Politics of War Memory and Memorialization (Conversion Opportunity)

Instructor: Christine Sylvester

Prerequisite: ENGL 1010, 1011, or 2011.

While this is not an Honors course, Prof. Sylvester welcomes Honors students of all majors and would be happy to offer Honors conversions for interested students.

This course considers processes whereby major wars are remembered and memorialized in the USA and elsewhere.  The question addressed throughout is whose version of a war is remembered and memorialized and whose is ignored, disputed, or assigned less legitimacy in the politics of national memorialization? Cases revolve around the atom bombing of Hiroshima, the rape of women in Berlin by Russian troops at the end of World War II, the destruction of ancient artifacts in recent Syrian and Iraq wars, the politics of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial and of Confederate statues today, and how/whose war is curated in related museum exhibitions, war cemeteries, and war novels. Geared for advanced undergraduate and graduate students, the course entails student presentations, in-class written analyses, and a culminating paper. Previous courses in international relations or issues of public memory helpful.

DMD 3998-012 (Variable Topics): Visual Representations of Armenian Memory

Instructor: Catherine Masud

Fridays 10:10 AM – 3:20 PM (with lunch break). Email catherine.masud@uconn.edu or stacy.webb@uconn.edu for permission number.

Seeking talented students who are: Film Editors, Motion Graphics Animators, Graphic Designers, Historians, Writers.

In this course, students will develop a deeper understanding of and appreciation for the ways in which audio-visual media can be used to recreate memory of lost communities. Students will produce a collaborative documentary film project that integrates primary archival materials with their own student-generated graphics, animations, and sound treatments. The film and supporting presentation materials will premiere at a conference near the end of the term. In addition, students will develop individual creative projects that enable them to reflect on the intersection of history and personal memory.

The collaborative film project will tell the multi-dimensional story of Armenian history and culture that was lost due to ethnic cleansing and genocide. The Armenian Holocaust (1915-19) resulted in the systematic extermination of the majority of the Armenian Christian population within the Ottoman Empire and the subsequent expulsion of survivors from Turkey. The historical circumstances surrounding this period are still controversial today. For more information, visit houshamadyan.org.

This course will be taught by award-winning filmmaker, Catherine Masud, who has a passion for national memory and oral history narratives. This unique course offers students the chance to develop their professional skills under the guidance of a master filmmaker and expert historians. This course is also an opportunity for students with an interest in history and human rights to engage in a compelling, historical narrative which is still relevant and deserving of understanding today.