Fall 2021 Featured Courses

DMD/HRTS: Human Rights Archives I: Documenting & Curating Community Memory

[UConn Storrs]

HRTS 3540-002 (Topics in Human Rights Practice)
HRTS 5351-001 (Topics in Human Rights Practice)
DMD 3998-007 (Variable Topics)
DMD 5998-010 (Variable Topics)

Instructor: Catherine Masud

While the undergraduate courses (HRTS 3540, DMD 3998) are not Honors courses, Prof. Masud welcomes Honors students of all majors and would be happy to offer Honors conversions for interested students. Seniors may also choose to register for the graduate courses (HRTS 5351, DMD 5998), which act as Honors credit so long as you earn a grade of B- or higher.

This is the first part of a two-semester practice-based unit. Designed to introduce students to the use of human rights archival materials in documentary storytelling, Human Rights Archives Part I will focus on methods and best practices of collecting and managing digital visual and audio-visual archival assets. Students will engage with existing human rights-related archival collections, both private and institutional, to develop an appreciation of the “living” archive and its importance both as a repository of witnessing and memory and as a vehicle for the continuous retelling of history in the present moment. A series of relevant readings, films, and short storytelling exercises will help to provide context and connections. Later in the semester, students will apply what they’ve learned about human rights archives, digital asset management, and storytelling by documenting and digitizing the family stories and artifacts of an immigrant community that bears the multi-generational scars of genocide and displacement, following some of the strategies of the History Harvest model. The assets collected through this collaborative community-centered project will form the basis of an important new collection that students will be involved in processing, organizing, and cataloguing. This collection will be a primary resource for the visual storytelling work in the second course of the unit. Part I, however, is not considered a prerequisite for Part II.

University Honors Laureate: This Variable Topics course will count toward the Arts & Humanities category.

UNIV 1995: Honors Human Flourishing (Special Topics)

[UConn Storrs]

Instructor: Sierra Trudel

1 credit course

Honors Human Flourishing is aimed to engage students in well-being research and how to then apply the research in a meaningful way to their own lives. Each course topic will include a week of analysis of pertinent research followed by a workshop style class to put the research into action. Students will learn meaningful strategies in the areas of meaning and purpose, relationships, character strengths, positive emotions, engagement, and achievement, to promote personal and professional development. Ultimately, the goal of the course is to provide students with the knowledge and skills to foster well-being to support them throughout their undergraduate academic journey.

Please email sierra.trudel@uconn.edu with any questions.

HIST 3510: Civil War America

[UConn Storrs]

Instructor: Prof. Christopher Clark

The Civil War (1861-65) was the direst crisis to face the United States since its founding in the American Revolution. The secession of eleven southern states to form the Confederate States of America would, if it had been sustained, have permanently divided the nation. As it was, it took a four-year-long war and the loss of probably more than 750,000 lives to bring the Confederacy to an end.

Using contemporary documents and recent historical works, we’ll explore the war’s origins, events, and outcomes; explain the creation and eventual defeat of the Confederacy, and why the war lasted so long; examine the abolition of slavery and the postwar legacies of Reconstruction, civil rights, and race-based repression; and look at how the war changed the course of U.S. history, affected Americans of all kinds, and has been marked ever since in national memory.

ENGL 6750: Seminar in Language & Literature

Section 2: Labor, Utterance, & Meaning in the Maritime World

[UConn Storrs]

Graduate courses act as Honors credit, as long as you earn a grade of B- or higher.

Instructor: Mary K. Bercaw Edwards

For as long as history has been recorded, sailors have stepped on shore with a tale to tell. Until the laying of telegraph cables across oceans finally outpaced sailing ships in carrying messages in the 1850s, the sight of a sail on the horizon might be the first herald of news of many kinds: political, cultural, financial, or personal. The figure of the sailor as a storyteller stretches back beyond the earliest written records. The gulf of ocean between the sailor and the port and the events or circumstances that sailor described lent a paradoxical mix of authority and doubt regarding stories sailors told. The writers we will consider in this course inherited willingly or unwillingly the long heritage of these sailor storytellers. This course will examine the chronological development of a literature wherein the sea functions as physical, psychological, and philosophical setting. The course will begin by investigating early uses of the sea in literature and ways in which early works influenced later writings. It will continue with the use of the sea in contemporary literature and literature by writers of color. Through the use of literary theory and maritime history, the course will establish the context in which these works were produced as well as closely examining the works themselves. The requirements for the course will include presentations, several short papers, and a longer final essay.

ENGL 2605. Capitalism, Literature, and Culture

[UConn Storrs]

Instructor: Clare Eby

Prerequisite: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011.

In this section dedicated to Honors students, we’ll read some of capitalism’s most influential theorists (such as Adam Smith and Karl Marx) and look at some of its most ardent defenders (including Milton Friedman and Ayn Rand). The primary focus, however, will be on twentieth- and twenty-first century novels and a few films that raise questions about whether capitalism is indeed the best, much less the inevitable, way of structuring the economy—and so many other aspects of our lives. We will consider if there is a racial component to capitalism and also the possibility of a new form of surveillance capitalism emerging in the digital age. The reading list for this course is still a work in progress, but will likely include such novels as Mohsin Hamid’s The Reluctant Fundamentalist, Dave Eggers’s The Circle, Colson Whitehead’s Zone One, and Ursula K. Le Guin’s The Dispossessed. In addition to a substantial amount of reading, course requirements include a 15-minute presentation on a full scholarly book, a short paper, a research paper, spot quizzes—and lots of lively discussion. I love working with Honors students, and expect this course to be a blast.

If you have any questions, including about waiving the prerequisite, feel free to email me (clare.eby@uconn.edu).

CA 1.

CLCS 1101: Classics of World Literature I (Conversion opportunity)

[UConn Storrs]

Instructor: Fiona Somerset

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

In this course we will study the world through its literatures, starting from the earliest written sources and selecting a range of writings up to around 1600 CE. Rather than trying to tell an overall story about cultural change in this period, we will consider how a range of cultures across the world used writing, and how it was a means to convey the imaginary. We will focus especially on writings about travel, since this will help us to understand that the world has always been interconnected, and has always involved contact between people different from each other, even when movement from place to place was generally slower than it is now.  

CA 1. CA 4-INT.

Healthcare Innovation graduate courses

[UConn Storrs]

Graduate courses act as Honors credit, as long as you earn a grade of B- or higher

Honors students are invited to take one or more courses in Healthcare Innovation on a space-available basis. Courses must be taken in sequence:

  • NURS 5111: Healthcare Innovation Theory and Application (Spring)
  • NURS 5112: Healthcare Opportunities for System Level Solutions (Fall)
  • NURS 5113: Developing & Leading a Sustainable Culture of Healthcare Innovation (Spring)
  • NURS 5114: Healthcare Innovation Development (Fall)

Contact Dr. Tiffany Kelley to discuss your interest in and fitness for these courses. The sequence is not recommended for first-year students.

UNIV 3784-Z81: Interdisciplinary Honors Seminar

[UConn Stamford]

Instructor: Richard Watnick

Honors students are able to enroll without a permission number. Non-Honors students will need to request a permission number by emailing Professor Watnick with the name of a faculty member who would recommend your participation. 

This seminar has multiple faculty session leaders from different departments. There will be a guest session leader for approximately 10 of the weekly meetings, and the other meetings are for open discussion. The topic of the course for Fall 2021 will be Ideas and Actions. Professor Watnick organizes the course and attends all meetings. Each session leader, still to be identified for fall 2021, assigns reading material ahead of time and then presents before opening up discussion.

Fall 2020 Sample sessions (Topic: Resilience): 

  • Jerome Sehulster, Professor of Psychology, The concept of Resilience in the field of psychology
  • Susan Herbst, President Emeritus and Professor of Political Science, American Political Institutions:  How Resilient Are They in 2020?
  • Shanelle Jones, Honors Student, University Scholar, Day of Pride Scholar, POLS & Human Rights, Untold Stories of the African Diaspora: The Lived Experiences of Black Caribbean Immigrants in the U.S
  • Mark Boyer, Board of Trustees Distinguished Professor of Geography, Adapting to Climate Change 
  • Connecticut Attorney General William Tong, Resilience in litigation and negotiation
  • Jeff Schlosser, National Supply Chain Lead Partner, Strategy and Transactions, Ernst & Young LLP and Kelly Stals, Senior Manager, Operating Model Effectiveness, in Ernst & Young’s International Tax and Transaction Services Group “Supply Chain Resilience – Responses to Disrupted Supply Chains in the COVID-19 Era”
  • Joel Blatt, Professor of History, Fred Roden, Professor of English and special guest Roland Tec, On the work of Nechama Tec, Emeritus Professor of Sociology, The Resilience of Polish partisans during the Holocaust
  • Jeffrey O. G. Ogbar, Professor of History, Black Power: Radical Politics and African American Identity 
  • Vicki Knoblauch, Professor of Economics, Analyzing responses to the pandemic through game theory
  • Gregory Pierrot, Associate Professor of English, The Haitian Revolution: a global, artistic, and cultural legacy 
  • Fred Roden, Professor of English, Viktor Frankl’s Man’s Search for Meaning 

50% of your grade is based on the open discussion in class and on HuskyCT as well as the additional discussion of the topic on your final exam. The other 50% of your grade consists of a term paper or project on a topic in your major under the supervision of a faculty member in your major. You and your faculty supervisor will decide upon the topic and nature of your project so that you can progress in your area of interest. Your faculty supervisor will determine this portion of your grade. Professor Watnick and Kaitlin Heenehan will help you connect with a faculty member if needed.


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).