Course Descriptions

Spring 2019 Honors Courses

 

Anchor H298: The Idea of Culture

Drs. Stephen Christ and Stephen Dilks, MW 4:00-5:15pm, Class Number: 14910

What is culture, and how do we define it? Most people think they know what their own culture is, but end up defining it through opposition to other cultures. Is culture a normative or descriptive concept? Is it opposed to or connected with nature and science? What does it mean to “be cultured?” The course will follow the evolution of ideas of culture from Classical Antiquity to the present, discussing different notions of culture across the world, whether anthropological, political or otherwise.

Anchor H397: Urban Public Education

Drs. Henrietta Rix Wood and Stephen Christ, MWF 1-1:50pm, Class Number: 14904

Is public urban education a “wicked problem,” an unparalleled opportunity, or a complex challenge that can be met during the twenty-first century in the United States? This interdisciplinary class will interrogate that question by surveying the history of public urban education, by considering contemporary educational issues, and by sending students into public urban schools to make their own observations and recommendations. We will meet on Mondays and Wednesdays, with no class on Fridays so that students can work at least twelve hours during the semester at designated Kansas City schools. This class will be closely connected to the associated Discourse H300 class.

Biology H206: Genetics

Drs. Saul Honigberg and Scott Hawley, MWF 8-8:50pm, Class Number: 13772

A modern approach integrating molecular and organismal studies of the general genetics of lower and higher organisms.  Chromosomal structure and function, gene transmission, heredity, plasticity and population genetics will be discussed.

Biology H385: Special Topics (Invasive Species)

Dr. Jessica Magaña, TuTh 1:00-2:15pm, Class Number:

Invasive species are of concern to the public, scientists, and governments as invasive species can negatively impact native ecosystems, economies, and human health. Students in this 3-credit-hour course will study the biological traits that contribute to successful invasions, the ecological and economic impacts of invasive species, and the legal and cultural responses to invasions. Students will develop critical analysis and communication skills by analyzing scientific literature, discussing implications, and presenting arguments in written and oral platforms.

Honors component for Bio 385: This is not an honors-only seminar. Students who wish to earn honors credit for this class will give a 10-minute presentation from the point of view of a shareholder dealing with an invasive species. After presentations we will have an in-class debate about potential solutions in which presenters will answer questions “in-character.” All students will write a brief summary and evaluation as a Policy Advice Paper.

Biology H498WI: Critical Analysis of Biological Issues

Dr. Jess Magaña, TuTh 10:00-11:15am, Class Number:

Why do animals do what they do, and how do we know? This three-credit-hour course explores evolutionary influences on animal behavior and the challenges associated with developing and testing hypotheses. Students will develop critical analysis skills and effective written and oral communication skills by analyzing scientific articles, discussing methodology and implications, writing analytical papers, and communicating through oral presentations.

This is not an honors-only seminar. In order to earn honors credit, students need to complete additional work for the course at the honors level. Students who wish to earn honors credit for this class will write a research proposal addressing a need for specific knowledge related to behavior.

Discourse H200: Culture and Diversity

Dr. Henrietta Rix Wood, TuTh 2:30-3:45, Class Number: 15409

Culture and Diversity in Kansas City:

What do Kansas City institutions and icons tell us about the culture and diversity of our community? How do local monuments, museums, historical sites, places of worship, and other sites represent the attitudes, ideas, and ideals of citizens of the past and present?  To learn more about the culture and diversity of Kansas City, we will visit sites such as the historic 18th and Vine District; the John Wornall House and Loose Park; the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art; the Shawnee Indian Mission; and the Toy and Miniature Museum. Assignments will include speeches and research essays on cultural sites of interest to individual students. For more information, contact Dr. Wood at woodhr@umkc.edu.

Discourse H300: Civic and Community Engagement

Dr. Henrietta Rix Wood, TuTh 11:30-12:45 pm, Class Number: 15410

Discourse H300: Civic and Community Engagement invites students to explore important cultural, political, and social issues by choosing their own topics, conducting research, and sharing their findings in speeches and essays. In recent sections of this class, students have investigated the politics of food, the rhetoric of immigration policy, Russian cyber warfare, and transgender healthcare discrimination.

Honors 330: Honors Practicum

Dr. Jess Magaña, TBD

Senior Honors Thesis/Project Practicum: This graded, one-hour credit course will prepare honors students to undertake a Senior Honors Thesis or Project. In this class, students will explore different options for theses or projects; identify a topic and faculty advisor; plan the production of the thesis or project; produce a component of the thesis or project; and collaborate effectively with other honors students to develop their plans. The week before classes begin, students will choose, in consultation with Dr. Magaña, the day and time of the class.

Honors 499: Senior Thesis/Project Writing Group

Dr. Jess Magaña, TBD, Class Number: 14932

This one-hour credit, graded course is open to honors students and high-achieving students who are working on senior theses, projects, or capstone papers. The group meets twice a month to offer peer response to the work of members who set goals and deadlines for producing their theses or projects.

Sociology H320: Social Deviance

Dr. Stephen Christ, online

This course is a sociological examination of deviant behavior in American society; its nature, theoretical perspectives, and societal reactions.  A special emphasis of the course will focus on the development of deviant identities, specific behaviors including substance abuse, sexual deviance, crime and delinquency, mental illness, and social protest.

Honors component for SOCIOL 320:  This is not an honors-only seminar. Students who wish to earn Honors credit for this class will meet with Dr. Christ to develop a plan of additional work to satisfy the honors credit requirement. In previous semesters, this has included photojournalism, developing a comic series, and an original research project. Each honors credit arrangement is a collaboration between Dr. Christ and the student.

Honors 496 and Honors 496A

Dean Jim McKusick (Section 0001) or Jessica Elam (Section 0002)

Honors Internship:

This course is an academic internship that requires written assignments in addition to the work performed in a professional workplace. Internships are individually arranged with the sponsoring organization, which may be a business, school, nonprofit agency or government office. Academic credit may range from 1 to 6 credit hours (0 credit hours for Honors 496A). There will be a Learning Agreement established in the first week of the semester that states the contractual responsibilities of the student, the workplace supervisor and the internship coordinator. This Learning Agreement will outline the job responsibilities, workload expectations, assignments and anticipated learning outcomes of the internship experience.

 

Fall 2018 Honors Courses

Anch H199: Reacting to the Past: Climate Change in Copenhagen 2009 and Greenwich Village, 1913

Section 1: Drs. Henrietta Rix Wood and Jess Magaña, MW 4-5:15pm

Section 2: Drs. Henrietta Rix Wood and Jess Magana, TTh 11:30-12:45pm

Drs. Wood and Magaña will teach this interdisciplinary anchor course. It is part of the Reacting to the Past Program, which invites students to explore important issues and ideas by recreating the historical contexts that generated those issues and ideas. This semester, we will recreate the international conference on climate change in Copenhagen in December 2009 and the meeting of feminists, labor activists, and bohemians in New York City in 1913. Approaching these events as “games,” students will assume roles based on real or historically accurate figures. To perform their roles, students will read and discuss relevant texts, write analytical papers, and present persuasive speeches. The instructors of this course will act as “gamemasters” who provide information and guidance, but do not dictate the outcomes of games. This will be a challenging course, and it may also be the most fun that you have had in a classroom. For more information, contact Dr. Wood at woodhr@umkc.edu.

Discourse H100

Thomas Ferrel, TuTh 1-2:15

Anchor H199: Social Justice

Dr. Stephen Christ and Rhiannon Dickerson, TuTh 10-11:15

Social Justice Studies constitute an interdisciplinary inquiry into the social, cultural, and institutional responses to inequality and oppression. We will examine the institutional structures, cultural practices, and social behaviors that inform the concept of equality by drawing on an array of academic disciplines to facilitate the understanding of historical and contemporary representations of social justice. We will begin with a foundational exploration into social justice concepts, issues, and policy remedies in order to assess inequality and injustice and to address historical and contemporary issues. The scope of this course is as broad as the idea(s) of social justice itself and as complex as notions of equality. For more information, contact Dr. Stephen Christ at christsr@umkc.edu

Anchor H299: Self, Society, and the Sacred

Drs. Stephen Christ and Bryan LeBeau, TuTh 11:30-12:45pm

Religion is one of the most powerful cultural sources of social cohesion, order, meaning, disruption, protest, and change in human societies, both historically and today in the modern world.  Drawing on multiple academic disciplines, this course provides students with an interdisciplinary perspective and analytical tools and theories for describing, understanding, and explaining the nature and influence of religion and its role in the shaping the culture and identity of individuals, groups, and societies. This course will engage the following kinds of questions: What is religion? Why is religion so prevalent in human societies? What causal role does religion play in human personal and social life? This course is focused on one topic: religion.  But our examinations of religion will accomplish more, providing an opportunity to explore many dimensions of human social life as a subject of study.  For more information, contact Dr. Stephen Christ at christsr@umkc.edu.

This is not an honors-only seminar. In order to earn honors credit, students will need to complete additional work for the course at the honors level. This work could include, but is not limited to, a collaborative learning experience, an additional individual research paper, an applied learning project, or an artistic project. Students will meet with Dr. Christ at the start of the semester to develop a plan.

Discourse H200

Dr. Henrietta Rix Wood, TuTh 2:30-3:45

Culture and Diversity in Kansas City:

What do Kansas City institutions and icons tell us about the culture and diversity of our community? How do local monuments, museums, historical sites, places of worship, and other sites represent the attitudes, ideas, and ideals of citizens of the past and present? These are among the questions that we will pursue in this course, which will be closely connected to Anchor H299: Self, Society, and the Sacred. To learn more about the culture and diversity of Kansas City, we will visit sites such as the historic 18th and Vine District; the John Wornall House and Loose Park; the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art; the Shawnee Indian Mission; and the Toy and Miniature Museum. Assignments will include speeches and research essays on cultural sites of interest to individual students. For more information, contact Dr. Wood at woodhr@umkc.edu.

Biology H498WI

Dr. Jess Magaña, TuTh 10-11:15

Why do animals do what they do, and how do we know? This three-credit-hour course explores evolutionary influences on animal behavior and the challenges associated with developing and testing hypotheses. Students will develop critical analysis skills and effective written and oral communication skills by analyzing scientific articles, discussing methodology and implications, writing analytical papers, and communicating through oral presentations.

This is not an honors-only seminar. In order to earn honors credit, students need to complete additional work for the course at the honors level. Students who wish to earn honors credit for this class will write a research proposal addressing a need for specific knowledge related to behavior.

Honors 330

Dr. Jess Magaña, TBD

Senior Honors Thesis/Project Practicum: This graded, one-hour credit course will prepare honors students to undertake a Senior Honors Thesis or Project. In this class, students will explore different options for theses or projects; identify a topic and faculty advisor; plan the production of the thesis or project; produce a component of the thesis or project; and collaborate effectively with other honors students to develop their plans. The week before classes begin, students will choose, in consultation with Dr. Magaña, the day and time of the class.

Psych H210

Dr. Melisa Rempfer, TuTh 1-2:15

The purpose of this classroom-based, lecture course is to introduce you to the fundamental principles, theories, and methods of psychological science. Upon completion of this course, students will be able to:

  • Describe fundamental terms, concepts, and theories that comprise the general field of psychology;
  • Compare the major psychology sub-disciplines;
  • Apply psychological principles;
  • Explain how matters of diversity are vital to a thorough understanding of psychological science.
  • The honors section will involve more writing and research than the large lecture class.

This is not an honors-only seminar. In order to earn honors credit, students need to complete additional work for the course at the honors level. This work could include, but is not limited to, a collaborative learning experience, an additional individual research paper, or an applied learning project.  Students will meet with Dr. Rempfer at the start of the semester to develop a plan.

Discourse H300: Civic and Community Engagement

Rhiannon Dickerson TBA, TuTh 1-2:15

Honors 496 and Honors 496A

Dean Jim McKusick

Honors Internship:

This course is an academic internship that requires written assignments in addition to the work performed in a professional workplace. Internships are individually arranged with the sponsoring organization, which may be a business, school, nonprofit agency or government office. Academic credit may range from 1 to 6 credit hours (0 credit hours for Honors 496A). There will be a Learning Agreement established in the first week of the semester that states the contractual responsibilities of the student, the workplace supervisor and the internship coordinator. This Learning Agreement will outline the job responsibilities, workload expectations, assignments and anticipated learning outcomes of the internship experience.

 

 

Courses vary by semester. Check the university catalog or Pathway for courses offered, and remember you can always contract for honors credit.