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New Summer Courses Available for Current and Incoming Students

Stressed by your course load?  Worried about your GPA?  Concerned about being on track for graduation?  Wanting to take a lighter course load next year – especially if you will be starting Senior IS or taking on the challenge of Student Teaching?  Wishing you could focus on just one class and do well in it?  Looking for something to give your summer focus and a sense of accomplishment?  Just wanting to stay connected with Wooster faculty and students over the summer?

The College of Wooster is pleased to announce a new, fully remote, six-week Summer Session for 2021.  We are offering ten courses, all of which meet requirements that count toward graduation.  All courses will be taught remotely, using a combination of synchronous and asynchronous modes of learning.  Some class schedules will be flexible, to allow for your work schedule and/or different time zones.  All classes will earn a full Wooster credit (1.000), so there is no need to worry about the paperwork or costs of transferring credits in from other institutions.  Classes begin on May 24 and end on July 2, giving you plenty of time to relax before the fall semester begins.  Best of all, you will be working with Wooster faculty and other Wooster students on courses directly related to your Wooster curriculum requirements.  If you need to take a class this summer, why not make it a Wooster class?

For these ten special summer session courses, The College of Wooster is offering a significant tuition discount.  For each course credit, tuition will be $2,500, discounted from the usual summer tuition price of $3,050.  On top of that, need-based financial aid will be available, based on your FAFSA status.  Students may take up to two courses in the summer session.

For more information, please contact Prof. Hettinger, Director of the Wooster Summer Session:  mhettinger@wooster.edu.

Choose from these 10 Courses:

Biology 11100: Foundations of Biology (Prof. Erzsébet Regan)

COURSE DESCRIPTION AND OBJECTIVES: This introductory course focuses on concepts considered central to understanding biology, including the nature of science, inheritance, gene expression, descent with modification and evolution by natural selection. This course is designed to provide potential biology majors with the fundamental concepts required for the study of biology. The course serves as a prerequisite for all biology courses number higher than 20000. The course is also open to non-majors and fulfills the Learning Across the Disciplines requirement in Math and Natural Sciences [MNS]. This course also counts toward: BCMB, ENVS, ESCI, GEOL, NEUR.

CONTENT/FORMAT: This course will give students an opportunity to study The Foundations of Biology in a focused and immersive way, building on their knowledge of the language and application of biology with frequent online activities, both synchronous and asynchronous small group work, video lectures, and optional Question and Answer sessions. Students will be able to work through the material individually as well as in small groups with frequent opportunities for interaction with the instructor.

Computer Science 10000: Scientific Computing (Prof. Heather Guarnera)

COURSE DESCRIPTION & OBJECTIVES: The purpose of this course is to show some of the connections between computer science and other disciplines such as mathematics and the natural sciences. We will study the fundamental computer science concepts for the design and Python implementation of solutions to problems that can be solved through approximations, simulations, interpolations, and recursive formulas. This course fulfills the Learning Across the Disciplines requirement in Math and Natural Sciences and the Quantitative Literacy requirement [MNS, QL]. This course also counts toward: DATA, EDUC, ESCI.

CONTENT/FORMAT: Course material includes Python programming for plotting functions and data, approximating Pi using various methods, encryption and cipher algorithms, computing statistics with large datasets, processing digital image and manipulating image files, clustering analysis, and creating simulations to model more complex behavior (e.g., to simulate predator-prey relationships). The course consists of regular programming assignments in the form of in-class activities to promote experiential learning, independent homework assignments, regular reading quizzes, and exams. It also includes a large final collaborative programming project designed to solve a student-selected problem. Past student projects have included a program that will translate COVID-19 DNA to mRNA and analyze the amino acid sequence, a program to manipulate an image so that it can be viewed by people with colorblindness, a twitter bot, and various videogames.

English/Africana Studies ENGL 21035: Constructing Black Lives in Film & Literature (Prof. Leslie Wingard)

COURSE DESCRIPTION & OBJECTIVES: In this summer course, we will analyze 19th, 20th and 21st century classic, documentary, and biographical films, autobiographies, and memoirs to investigate the different ways in which African-American men’s and women’s life narratives are constructed. In particular, we will consider the impact of historical events and processes upon identities, the ways identities are performed, and the mutually constitutive relationship among race, class, gender, and sexuality. Some class time will also be spent critiquing visual art in terms of identity construction. This broad course topic allows us to engage in interdisciplinary scholarship (involving, Africana studies, literature, history, music, film, and visual art). The technique that unites these fields is close reading/explication. Since strong analysis of varied texts depends upon your ability to give complex, evidence-based interpretations of them, together we will learn and practice (1) skillfully close reading/explicating; (2) arguing our points aloud via “live” debate; and (3) writing our thoughts clearly. This course counts toward the Learning Across the Disciplines requirement in Arts and Humanities as well as the Diversity requirement [AH, D]. This course also counts toward: CMLT, GMDS

CONTENT/FORMAT: Possible course texts include the following books: Harriet Jacobs, Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl (1861), James Weldon Johnson, The Autobiography of an Ex-Colored Man (1912), Anne Moody, Coming of Age in Mississippi (1968), Jill Nelson, Volunteer Slavery (1994), June Jordan, Soldier (2000), Richard Wright, Black Boy (1944), and/or Rosemary L. Bray, Unafraid of the Dark (1998). Films may include Julie Dash’s Illusions (1982) and Elia Kazan’s Pinky (1949), Stanley Nelson’s The Murder of Emmett Till (2003), Clark Johnson’s Boycott (2001), Marlon Riggs Tongues Untied (1990), Cheryl Dunye’s Watermelon Woman (1996), and/or Steve James’ Hoop Dreams (1994). We will also consider visual art from museum websites all across the country and the world! Our VOICES.com class blog will be a space where we can debate issues presented in our texts, while also talking to each other about connections we’re seeing between them, material in our other courses, current events, online guest speakers, music, and so forth. Students will be required to post online at least once per week and to respond to at least two classmates’ posts and create a formal response paper to submit online each week. You will be asked to do peer review of writing both synchronously and asynchronously with writing buddies whom you will get to know quite well by the end of the term. Students will also know current events quite well as we navigate them via a plethora of links shared in our chat box and beyond.

Environmental Studies 22000: From Farm to Table: Understanding the Food System (Prof. Matt Mariola)

COURSE DESCRIPTION & OBJECTIVES: The purpose of this class is to come to a deeper understanding of the complex system of the production and consumption of food. We begin on the farm, discussing the history of American agriculture and the rise of modern industrial farming. Then we explore some of the alternatives that have been proposed to industrial farming, including organic farming and going local. Finally we turn our attention to food itself and tackle the most basic question of all: what should we eat? This course counts toward the Learning Across the Disciplines requirement in History and Social Sciences. The summer offering of this course also counts toward the Writing Across the Curriculum requirement [HSS, W].

CONTENT/FORMAT: This course mainly consists of analysis and discussions of agriculture in the United States, including its historical and geographic diversity. We also discuss the topics of the family farm, nutrition, and the western diet, and how these link back to the industrial farming system. The first part of the course will focus on the history and geographic distribution of U. S. agriculture, the decline of the family farm, and nutritional aspects of our food system. In the second half of the course our discussions will center on a book about a family farm in Nebraska This Blessed Earth, by Ted Genoways, which contextualizes and humanizes the themes of the course. As a Writing Intensive course, students will write short weekly essays in response to the reading material, culminating in a final comprehensive assignment. Several course meetings will be set aside for writing workshops and peer review. All class content and workshops sessions will be accessible through both synchronous and asynchronous discussion formats to accommodate students in different time zones. A unique feature of the course will be opportunities to share our recipes and experiments in home cooking as we consider how the ingredients we use are related to the themes of the course.

Global Media & Digital Studies 19901: Digital Media and Everyday Lives (Prof. Ahmet Atay)

COURSE DESCRIPTION AND OBJECTIVES: Why is the study of everyday life important, and how has digital media become an integral part of our everyday lives and identities? Everyday life is an important topic of study because it is the small, seemingly inconsequential actions that chisel out the ultimate shape that our lives take. Increasingly, digital media, social networks, and quick media applications have become an essential element of those day-to-day actions. In this course, we will situate digital media among our everyday lives and examine the shifts that these technologies have brought about in our daily routines. This class will offer insights into the ways we interact with media, including an investigation into how media become immersive and intimate. We will also focus extensively on the shift taking place around us right now: technology and the Internet is with us at all times due to the pervasiveness of mobile media in our lives. Finally, this course offers an examination of how digital communication technologies create and promote digital identities and digital social spaces, as well as interpersonal and communal interactions.

CONTENT/FORMAT: In this course, we will explore the following topics: digital lives on social media; quick media applications and identity; digital diversities (race, ethnicity, sexuality, gender, class, nationality, and ability/disability); digital relationships and digital love; digital education; digitalized families; digital memory; digital shopping and consumer culture; and digital entertainment industries. This course considers the nature of new or digital media, introducing students to the wide range of texts and artifacts and practices associated with that term. Class time includes regular short presentations by students, discussion of readings, and occasional organized group activities. Student interest and expertise drive this class. The course will conclude with a collaborative final project that will get participants to use everyday technologies in new and unexpected ways. Much of the course material and discussion will take place asynchronously, through online discussion and digital engagement.

Mathematics 10000: Math in Contemporary Society (Prof. Drew Pasteur)

COURSE DESCRIPTION AND OBJECTIVES: This is a survey course that explores a broad spectrum of mathematical topics; examples include the search for good voting systems, the development of efficient routes for providing urban services, and the search for fair procedures to resolve conflict. The emphasis is on observing the many practical uses of mathematics in modern society and not on mastering advanced mathematical techniques. This course does not satisfy the prerequisites for further Mathematics courses, nor does it count toward a major or minor. Mathematics majors and minors may take the course only if they have permission of the chair. This course counts toward the Learning Across the Disciplines requirement in Mathematics and Natural Sciences as well as the Quantitative Literacy requirement [MNS, Q, QL].

CONTENT/FORMAT: The class will meet for an hour each day, with some sessions devoted solely to answering student questions and working through examples. All classes will be recorded for those who may be unable to attend synchronously on a given day. Instead of high-stakes tests, this class uses mastery-based grading; short online quizzes allow students to demonstrate their understanding of each topic, with multiple attempts allowed on each one. These quizzes and associated practice problems will be available asynchronously via Moodle.

Music 21600: The Art of Rock Music (Prof. Peter Mowrey)

COURSE DESCRIPTION AND OBJECTIVES: The study of the artistic and aesthetic potential of rock music. Areas of emphasis may include the history and analysis of rock music; rock music aesthetics and their relationship to the aesthetics of other music and art forms; the evolution of rock musical styles; the connections between rock, poetry, and literature; “covering,” quotation, and stylistic borrowing in rock music; the impact of the electronic music revolution; and the live performance of rock. This course counts toward the Learning Across the Disciplines requirement in Arts and Humanities [AH]. This course also counts toward: MUHL, MUSP, MUTC.

CONTENT/FORMAT: The summer offering of this course will focus on two interrelated themes: rock music as an aural/poetic art form (i.e., its essence as a sonic, musical-poetic experience), and the expansion of this artistic form through the blending of rock music with theatrical drama. Thus we will examine such plays as Hair, Jesus Christ Superstar, Tommy, The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway, Hedwig and the Angry Inch, and Hamilton. This seminar-style course will feature a lot of remote student discussion in small groups, both synchronously and asynchronously through an online discussion format, depending on student schedules.

Psychology 29916: Neurodiversity (Prof. Grit Herzmann)

COURSE DESCRIPTION AND OBJECTIVES: This course will introduce students to neurodiversity, the idea that neurological differences, whether arising from developmental (i.e., Dyslexia, ADHD, Autism) or mental conditions (i.e., Schizophrenia or Tourette’s) should be accepted and valued as natural variations to human brain and behavior. This course will combine synchronous and asynchronous activities including small-group discussions, large-group discussions, students presentations, and lectures with active learning components. Asynchronous activities will include reading of primary literature as well as auto- and biographical essays, watching videos, reflective writing, and experiential learning. The usual pre-requisite for this course is Psychology 100 or Advanced Placement Psychology, but this requirement will be waived as long as the student has taken an introductory level course in one of the social or natural sciences, such as Biology 111, Neuroscience 200, or Sociology/Anthropology 100. This course also counts toward the major and the minor in Psychology and Cognitive-Behavioral Neuroscience and may be of special interest to students in Communication Sciences and Disorders, Music Therapy, Pre-Health, or the Public Health Pathway.

CONTENT/FORMAT: After laying the foundation of basic concepts in psychology and neuroscience, we will discuss such examples of neurodiversity as Autism, ADHD, Dyslexia, Bi-polar Disorder, Schizophrenia, and Tourette Syndrome, among others. Students will learn the behavioral and brain profiles of each and use both case studies and autobiographical experiences to discuss how societal pressures and prejudice impinge on the lives of people with these conditions. To provide a fuller picture, discussions of neurodiversity will be supplemented with considerations of neurotypical variations in brain and behavior. Equipped with the knowledge on neurodiverse and neurotypical experiences, students will examine the controversy about how best to understand these conditions within the neurodiverse communities themselves.

Spanish 10100: Beginning Spanish Level I (Prof. Aida Diaz de Leon)

BEGINNING SPANISH LEVEL I Oral-aural instruction and practice with grammar, reading, and some writing. Emphasis on practical everyday language for direct communication. Instruction focuses on the cultural meaning of language.

CONTENT/FORMAT: This is the first of a two-semester sequence of courses that introduces students to the Spanish language and the cultures of the Spanish-speaking world. Through the integration of grammar topics, conversational activities, reading materials and listening exercises, students will receive a basic training in the language with special attention given to the acquisition of a functional vocabulary. Homework and exams will be completed and submitted on the textbook website. The course textbook is Aventuras (e-Book and online access key required), which can be purchased through the Wilson Bookstore. Students will attend four synchronous sessions per week, MTWF, from 10:00 AM – 11:50 PM, to practice the language in an online group setting. Upon completion of this course, students will be fully prepared to continue with SPAN 102, which will cover the second half of the Aventuras textbook.

Spanish 10200: Beginning Spanish Level II (Prof. Brian Cope)

BEGINNING SPANISH LEVEL II Additional oral-aural instruction and continued practice with grammar, reading, and writing. Further emphasis on practical everyday language for communication. Instruction focuses on the cultural meaning of language. Prerequisite: SPAN-10100.

CONTENT/FORMAT: This is the second of a two-semester sequence of courses that introduces students to the Spanish language and the cultures of the Spanish-speaking world through a variety of participatory activities structured around reading, listening, writing, and speaking. SPAN 10200 builds on the vocabulary and grammar taught in SPAN 10100 and promotes the active use of Spanish in everyday situations. As an online course, students will attend three synchronous sessions per week from 9:00-11:40 AM EDT for the purpose of practicing the language in an online group setting. Homework and exams will be completed via the textbook website, which provides exercises for practicing the language and for learning vocabulary and grammar. Students enrolled in the course should plan to spend 1-2 hours per day studying for the course in addition to the time spent in the online classroom. Synchronous attendance is required. Testing, however, will be asynchronous. This course is not recommended for students who are unable to attend the scheduled online sessions. The book that will be used in the course is Aventuras (Vista Higher Learning, 5th Edition, 2018), which can be purchased through the Wilson Bookstore (e-Book and online access key required).