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Sampling of First Year Courses

HON 191 Profit, People and the Planet: Competing Roles of Business in Society

Introduces students to corporate social responsibility from multiple stakeholder perspectives, exposing the often conflicting or differing viewpoints that companies must consider. Introduces the triple bottom line that guides business environments in all industries locally and globally.

HON 191 Science and Symbols

What do rhetoric—the ancient art of political and judicial persuasion, in which carefully chosen words and phrases present selective perspectives on reality—and science—the pursuit of an objective understanding of reality—have in common? This seemingly paradoxical question has been central to long-lasting philosophical debates in the history of Western thought. But this question also has a more contemporary, more practical significance. Why do some scientific findings or programs so readily capture the public imaginary, where others fail? How do scientists communicate important findings and complex, invisible risks to non-expert publics? And what role do the lexical choices and metaphors scientists choose to communicate about complex concepts among themselves—like “black hole” in astronomy, or “tipping point” in climate change research—play in the making of science itself?

HON 191  Astrobiology and the Search for Life in the Universe

This course will focus on the interdisciplinary scientific concepts and methods relating to detecting life on other planets, including the biochemical components required for life to function, how organisms deal with extreme conditions, and how we might recognize life over vast distances. In addition, to lecture and active-teaching activities, this course will incorporate group discussions led by students, on topics including ethics of space travel, major controversies in the fields of geology, biology, and chemistry that relate to astrobiological concepts, and scientific methods and evaluative tools in research. The goals of this course are to introduce students to a rapidly evolving field with broad disciplinary reach, which is likely to impact their experiences with future science courses, and will encourage critical skills for evaluating scientific research.

HON 191 Investigating Infectious Diseases

The concept behind the course is the introduction of students to the principles of public health in an agricultural setting.  The course is constructed from selected case studies which highlight health challenges and pose questions of human and animal importance, primarily in the area of infectious disease.  Inquiry is directed at the health implications present at multiple levels; societal, cultural, and production-related.  The student will be asked to consider a situation drawn from a real world case study, examine the history provided, interpret the data, and synthesize a solution that will address the health problems presented.

HON 191 Conversation Online: The Internet, Social Media and the Research Process

A critical interrogation of today’s information landscape and the tension between our roles as both consumers and creators of content in the online environment.

You will successfully complete this course when you are able to demonstrate that you can:

  • Develop and use a personal strategy for searching for information about a topic

  • Successfully choose appropriate and relevant resources to meet your information needs

  • Critically (re)evaluate your research strategies, methods and the resources you find

  • Demonstrate the ability to identify the wide variety of formats in the online environment and trace the connections/conversations between them

  • Evaluate information for bias, subjectivity and relevancy

  • Successfully navigate and utilize various forms of social media to aid in information seeking (rather than socializing)

HON 191 A Zombie Nation: Cultural Values and the Walking Dead

This course explores the history, significance, and representation of zombies in popular culture. This course will draw on the recent popularity of The Walking Dead and other apocalyptic media, encouraging interdisciplinary exploration and requiring students to consider how their majors intersect with the topic.

HON 191 Divide and Conquer

In this course you will explore properties of the integers and applications through hands-on activities and discussions. Investigations will be centered on the building blocks of integers, the prime numbers. Our goal will be to discover the key facts about the integers and especially the primes that underlie many applications of Number Theory appearing in past and modern world events. In particular, we will look at RSA public key cryptography.

HON 191 The Politics of Videogames

This course explores how videogames intersect with historical and contemporary events. Though videogames are often conceived in terms of mimesis (i.e., as reflections of the "real world") or fantasy (i.e. as escapist, imaginings of impossible worlds), this course engages with the field of critical games studies. We argue instead that videogames are deeply embedded in ongoing historical developments: politics, economics, warfare, domestic life, etc.

HON 193   Undergraduate Research: First Year Projects  Busting Brain Myths

Myths about the brain have persisted for years, and these myths often have profound implications for policy, education, and interpersonal interactions. In this class, student teams will focus on a prominent myth about how the brain works; students will examine the source of the myth, its implications (e.g., how it has affected public policy or educational approaches), and evidence in support of or against the myth, and will design an experiment to test some aspect of the myth. Student teams will present their work at the end of the semester.

HON 193   Undergraduate Research: First Year Projects Artificial Intelligence

As artificial intelligence (AI) promises to become increasingly prevalent, it is important to examine both the potential for AI to improve society, and the potential negative implications (economic, political, social, etc) of an increasing reliance on AI. In this class, student teams will generate a concept for an AI application, focusing on (a) the societal benefits of the application, (b) potential concerns about the application, and (c) approaches to mitigating those concerns. In doing so, the students will examine other examples of AI in society, identifying their positive and negative implications. Student teams will present their work at the end of the semester.

HON 193   Undergraduate Research: First Year Projects

Student teams will explore a refugee population in the FM area through ethnographic techniques, image boards, behavior mapping, and other relevant data collection methods.  Through the collection of this information students will be able explain the cultural and socioeconomic characteristics of a particular refugee household/group and create a static (still image) or dynamic (video) presentation to educate the public.  The presentation piece may represent a promotional piece on the refugee’s success in the community or serve as an expose on some of the challenges associated with refugee’s living in the FM community.  Each student team will determine this outcome.


Student Focused. Land Grant. Research University.

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