HC Courses

HC Courses

We invite creative, informative, and exciting course proposals from all Oakland University faculty interested in teaching in The Honors College. Honors College courses are offered in the following general education areas:
  • Literature
  • The Arts
  • The Social Sciences
  • Western Civilization
  • Formal Reasoning
  • Natural Science and Technology
  • Global Perspective
Honors College courses fulfill HC students’ general education requirements for the areas listed above. HC classes are capped at 20 students and are intended to be interactive and innovative. Each course we offer is reviewed and accepted by the Honors College Director.

Examples of past Honors College courses:
  • The Art of Slavery
  • Spiral Dynamics and the Theory of Everything
  • Hip Hop and Urban Environments
  • The Making of the Atomic Bomb
  • The Photographic Text: Reading and Writing the Photographic Image 
  • Understanding the Human Animal Bond
  • Too Kind: The Science Behind Pathological Altruism
Summer 2016

HC 202 - Coming Soon to a Classroom Near You

Instructor: Susan Lynne Beckwith
Course Time: MW 1:00-4:20 pm
General Education: Literature & *Writing Intensive
Term: Summer 2016


* Prerequisite for writing intensive: completion of the university writing foundation requirement

Course Description:
Adaptations are more popular than ever. Movies to books; fandom creations to computer games. What could be easier? Just transfer the original to a new medium. Only successful adaptations require critical inquiry into the original and into the medium and the contemporary moment in which the ‘new’ version is created. We will analyze texts and their adaptations to better understand how one takes an existing object, interprets it, and then adapts it to suit new needs or to tell a different story which has yet to be told…. We will consider how classic novels and plays are adapted to film/stage; how graphically-driven comic books become films; how the voice of a minor character is brought to center stage…. By reading an original text and then reading or viewing the adaptation, we will seek to reach a new understanding of adaptation. We may even create a few adaptations of our own.


HC 390 - Introduction to the Thesis

Instructor: Graeme Harper
Course Time: Online
Term: Summer 2016

**Should be taken the year before you plan to graduate
**Requires departmental approval (contact hcadvising@oakland.edu)


Course Description:
The HC390 course aims to see you complete a strong, original proposal for your Honors College senior project, a proposal that, at then end of the course, can then be presented to the Honors College Council for review. Before taking this course, you must have communicated with a potential mentor and have a topic idea. During this course you will: Write a proposal outline, including a brief description of current work in the field or area in which you have interest Establish a set of aims and objectives that you will pursue in your project Explore the kinds of outcome(s) that you expect to achieve Produce an initial list (or bibliography) of things you might draw upon to complete your project Think about how this project might assist you in your future work or study And request thesis/project funding, if needed The purpose of HC390 is to complete your senior project proposal. One that you are excited about, and intend researching in your senior year. **Although this course is largely online there will be 1-2 mandatory class sessions: an Introductory session and a face to face appointment with an instructor.

Fall 2016
HC 100 -Making Discoveries
Instructor:Graeme Harper
Course Time:M/W 3:30-5:17 pm
Term: Fall 2016


Course Description:
HC 100 is a 4 credit Honors College freshmen course exploring the exciting nature of human discovery, whether in the sciences, social sciences or in the arts, whether by individuals or by groups. It is also a course in which you will explore your own ambitions, your own potential discoveries. Making Discoveries will look to the wider world, to the community and to industry for models of the opportunities that the world offers. We will also look at the things that have been (and are) discovered in and around a college or university (like this one!).
The course will encourage creative thinking, as well as active critical engagement. It will look at what we can do individually as well as what we can do in teams or groups, and it aims to provide you with those higher order skills that will actively build on your potential for success, no matter what your planned major or interest.


HC 201 - Freud's Vienna: Artistic and Scientific Interplay
Instructor: Jessica Payette
Course Time:T/R 3:00-4:47 pm
General Education: Arts & *Writing Intensive
Term: Fall 2016


* Prerequisite for writing intensive: completion of the university writing foundation requirement


Course Description:
Sigmund Freud’s pioneering investigations into the human psyche were undertaken in Vienna, Austria circa 1900, at a time when other scientific pursuits––concerning logic, evolutionary theory, and psychophysics and acoustics––contributed to both immense progress and setbacks. Viennese coffeehouses and salons provided a venue where scientists, artists and intellectuals conversed about their work and societal issues, affecting the emergence of what are now designated as some of the foundational tenets of artistic modernism, especially the portrayal of individualistic angst and emotional distress. This course examines how reflection on scientific thought influenced the design and content of literary, musical, architectural, and visual artworks. The artworks of Gustav Klimt, Adolf Loos, Arnold Schoenberg, and Arthur Schnitzler will be studied in depth.


HC 201 -Freedom of Expression: Appreciating U.S. Art Forms
Instructor: Paul Kohler
Course Time: W 5:00-8:00 pm
General Education: Arts & U.S.Diversity
Term: Fall 2016


Course Description:

The course will cover a number of renowned American Artist from 1870 to the present day. It will introduce students to a wide range of art created in the United States during these years of significant change and discovery. There will also be a concentration on artist and artifacts represented locally to promote support and appreciation in and around where we live. The class will learn to acquire a better understanding of the artistic thought process and composition in the visual arts. It is a desire that the students gain a genuine interest in art and take the initiative to explore art and artist in their community.

HC 202 -When Worlds Collide: The Re-Worlding of the British Cannon in the Metafiction of Jasper Fforde
Instructor: Susan Beckwith
Course Time: M/W/F 2:40-3:47 pm
General Education: Literature & Writing Intensive
Term: Fall 2016


* Prerequisite for writing intensive: completion of the university writing foundation requirement


Course Description:

The Thursday Next series doesn’t just borrow from other works’ plots, it imports characters to a parallel universe: from classic novels into the postmodern fantastic that is FForde’s Nextian BookWorld. The Prose Portal allows Literary Detective Thursday Next to enter texts and become part of the storyworld. Students will be transported to a new level of engagement with the very real world that not just Fforde, but all novels, create. Reading Fforde’s novels alongside the texts which inform Fforde’s work and are also changed—by his re-imagining of them and his re-writing of their endings—students will tackle questions of creativity and authorship, and considerations of that world-altering act: reading. Students will find themselves, like Thursday Next, inhabiting the worlds imagined by Fforde and the texts that inform his work, as we all become Literary Detectives whose job it is to investigate the riddle of our imagination…. Be prepared to be transported!

HC 202 -Historical Narratives in Fiction and Film: The Sack of Jerusalem and Constantinople
Instructor: Doris Plantus
Course Time: T/T 8:00-9:47 am
General Education: Literature & *Writing Intensive and U.S.Diversity
Term: Fall 2016


* Prerequisite for writing intensive: completion of the university writing foundation requirement


Course Description: This course will study Umberto Eco’s fictional account of the sack of Constantinople during the 4th Crusades, and Ridley Scott’s epic film of the Fall of Jerusalem, both situated in the 12th century, in order to explore the ways we fictionalize history, and historicize fiction. We will balance these creative epics, each in written and visual format, against the historical record, and thus seek a deeper understanding of seminal events in a world removed by time and space from our own. Students can then assess the veracity of Scott's and Eco's work in representing a very controversial historical event, with huge relevance for today's world.


HC 202 - In the Beginning
Instructor:Randall Engle
Course Time:M/W/F 8:00-9:47 am
General Education: Literature & *Writing Intensive
Term: Fall 2016


* Prerequisite for writing intensive: completion of the university writing foundation requirement


Course Description:
In the beginning…. … there was perfection, deceit, sex, violence, betrayal and survival. From the creation of the world, to the creation of a nation, in the book of Genesis the reader finds stories about conflicts between fathers and sons, husbands and wives, favored and slighted brothers--not to mention the tensions between God and God’s creatures. Indeed, the world’s best-selling book has it all! This honor’s college course will be devoted to the Book of Genesis, the first book of the Bible, or the Torah, or the Pentateuch (The Five Books of Moses). Genesis’ masterfully-crafted narratives contain stories crucial to understanding the whole of Western culture. We will read Genesis together, savoring the text, embracing its seeming contradictions, reveling in its endless allusions and metaphors, and discovering its ingenious cohesiveness. Through our reading(s) and our analysis, we will “hear” the plurivocality of the text, and explore later cinematic and literary works inspired by the stories. Literary analysis is our goal and method, but this course has a writing component, so there will be many writing assignments and opportunities for creative writing and research.


HC 204 - Explaining Jesus: A Case in the Interdisciplinary Study of Religions
Instructor: Ben Bennett-Carpenter
Course Time:T/R 1:00-2:47 pm
General Education: Western Civilization & *Writing Intensive and U.S. Diversity
Term: Fall 2016


* Prerequisite for writing intensive: completion of the university writing foundation requirement


Course Description:
How exactly does one explain Jesus? That is the central question of this course. "Explaining Jesus: A Case in the Interdisciplinary Study of Religions" explores the possibilities of science-based, secular, interdisciplinary explanation for the phenomenon of Jesus. In this course, students will explore the central question regarding Jesus while being introduced to the development of disciplinary and interdisciplinary views on religions as they have emerged in Western civilization -- with a focus on Christianity and the Americas from the late 19th century to early 21st century in particular. Attention will be put on how value systems and societal structures related to the phenomenon of Jesus in the United States are influenced and challenged by issues of race, gender, and ethnicity. Assignments will include several short writing assignments, a mid-semester test, a researched paper on a topic of the student's choosing (with a draft / feedback / revision process), portions of which will be shared with the class in a media format of the student's choosing. This course satisfies Western Civilization, U.S. Diversity, and Writing Intensive requirements. Texts include, among others, Repko, Szostak, & Buchberger's Introduction to Interdisciplinary Studies (2014), Prothero's American Jesus (2004), Boyer's Religion Explained (2001), Luhrmann's When God Talks Back (2012), and other select readings from Bloom, Feierman, Fredrikson, Farah & Heberlein, Schjodt et al., Swiney & Sousa, Tremlin, and Woods et al.


HC 204 - The Development of the Modern Public University
Instructor: Karen Miller
Course Time:T/R 10:00-11:47 am
General Education: Western Civilization & *Writing Intensive and U.S. Diversity
Term: Fall 2016


* Prerequisite for writing intensive: completion of the university writing foundation requirement


Course Description:
TBA


HC 204 - American Revolutions
Instructor: Christopher Apap
Course Time:M/W/F 12:00-1:07pm
General Education: Western Civilization & *Writing Intensive and U.S. Diversity
Term: Fall 2016

* Prerequisite for writing intensive: completion of the university writing foundation requirement

Course Description:
In 2008, Early American Literature and William and Mary Quarterly hosted a lively debate in which scholars discussed the usefulness of interdisciplinary work. In particular, they addressed how historical inquiry and literary interpretation might usefully intersect. In this class, we will test their theories and conclusions over the course of the semester using works written during the era of the American Revolution as a way of focusing the discussion. The class will be organized around a series of micro-units, including: revolutionary rhetoric; the public and quite contested constitutional debates; the popularization of so-called “scientific” evidence for racial difference; and the roles of women in the early republic. These units will help us to understand a vital moment in American history from a variety of perspectives while thinking critically about how literary culture informs historical inquiry as well as how historical practice can be a useful and necessary tool for literary interpretation


HC 204 - Race, Racism, and Public Policy
Instructor: Anthony Williams
Course Time:T/R 3:00-4:47 pm
General Education: Western Civilization & *Writing Intensive and U.S. Diversity
Term: Fall 2016

* Prerequisite for writing intensive: completion of the university writing foundation requirement

Course Description:
This course takes an interdisciplinary approach to the topic of race. It integrates reserach in biology, psychology, and sociology to foster a philiosophical exploration of issues involving race and racial reasoning. Racialism, the idea of a racial essence, will be considered through and investigation as a biologically significant concept, on the one hand, and the notion of race as a social construction, on the other. After condsidering the notion and application of racism, the belief in the relative superiority or inferiority of racial groups to one another, the course will turn to othe challenges and implications of racialism and racial reasoning. We will explore color consciousness versus color blindness, challenges for racial reasoning within the ideology of mulitculturalism, and the role race plays in specific public policy debates.


HC 205 - The Global Citizen
Instructor: Gregory Allar
Course Time:T/R 8:00-9:47 am
General Education: Global Perspective & *Writing Intensive
Term: Fall 2016

* Prerequisite for writing intensive: completion of the university writing foundation requirement

Course Description:
This course identifies four (4) different complex problems that currently serve as serious challenges for the world community. The method of instruction for this course features the inquiry-based learning approach, learning that is student-centered. Students will examine each problem following the same four step procedure: Define the problem Discuss what is known about the problem Identify what additional information is needed to solve the problem Review the problem in light of the new information and redefine the problem if necessary Course Objectives: · To present students with problems based on complex, real-life issues or situations; · To encourage critical thinking and collaboration while problem-solving; · To instill partial and explicit responsibility on the students’ shoulders for their own learning.


HC 205- Media Cultures and Technology
Instructor: Courtney Brannon Donoghue
Course Time:M/W/F 1:20-2:27 pm
General Education: Global Perspective
Term: Fall 2016

Course Description:
The proposed Media Cultures and Technology course will explore the intersection of global media industries and institutions—film, television, music, social media, computers, and consumer electronics—with audience, user, and consumer cultures. Grounded in an interdisciplinary humanities approach spanning cinema studies, media industry studies, new media and technology, political economy, and cultural studies, students will grapple with the relationship between contemporary media institutions, media content, hardware and software, and interactive audiences and user cultures. On the macro-level, what are the political, economic, and socio-cultural implications and impact of globalized media and technology companies such as Apple, Google, Sony, Netflix, Facebook, Spotify, and so on? How do we understand the transformative presence of these media companies and their platforms in the so-called Information Age? How can we critically understand the relationship between media content, data, devices, and platforms—Netflix streamed movies, Apple smart phones, Google data mining, Facebook social networks—in our daily lives?


HC 205- Moving Pictures: The Migrant Experience in Film
Instructor: Carol Hart
Course Time:T/R 1:00-2:47 pm
General Education: Global Perspective & *Writing Intensive
Term: Fall 2016

* Prerequisite for writing intensive: completion of the university writing foundation requirement

Course Description:

The theme of migration is an eternal and ever-renewing topic of concern for both emigrants/immigrants and the people and societies who receive them. This class will examine the topic through a series of films and readings that look at the migrant experience from both sides. Areas of study will include loss of home, the journey, work and exploitation, trafficking, human rights, alienation, and establishing a new identity. The migrant experience covers illegal migration as an escape from war or economic crisis and the legal movement to a new home. Legal and illegal migrants can have similar feelings of loss and alienation as well as the possibility of new beginnings. Students will gain understanding of the flow of populations, ideas and cultures across borders. They will further analyze films as social commentary and artistic expressions of human experiences.

HC 206- Leadership: Are you Up for the Challenge?
Instructor: Robin Michel
Course Time:M/W/F 8:00-9:07 am
General Education: Social Science
Term: Fall 2016

Course Description:
This course introduces students to the fundamentals of effective leadership. Students will investigate leadership concepts, theories,and models; gain an overview of personal leadership assessments and put together their own leadership development plans; enhanced leadership knowledge will come through experiential learning. Students will be expected to be involved in some on or off campus activity where they will be expected to apply their learning. Presidential Scholars are encouraged to take this course.


HC 206- Civil Rights & Work in the 21st Century
Instructor:Michael Long
Course Time:W 6:30-9:50 pm
General Education: Social Science and U.S. Diversity
Term: Fall 2016

Course Description:
Surveys the concept of civil rights and employment relationships in the United States through an evolving political, social, cultural, and ethical backdrop. Explores the cooperative roles of labor unions and management interactions and the impact upon people, culture, and organizations. Participants will examine leadership roles within organizations and participate in parliamentary procedures that provide proficiency for effectively contributing to ongoing functions within organizations and societal wellness. Satisfies the university general education requirement in the Social Science knowledge exploration area. Satisfies the university general education requirement in U.S. Diversity. *An extra credit field trip is being considered to incorporate a real world experience into the course.


HC 207- It's Just so Logical
Instructor:Carolyn R. Delia
Course Time:W 6:30-9:50 pm
General Education: Formal Reasoning & *Writing Intensive
Term: Fall 2016

* Prerequisite for writing intensive: completion of the university writing foundation requirement

Course Description:
This course is a non-mathematical based introduction to formal logic which attempts to show that being "logical" is immensely important but is only achieved through definite patterns of thinking. The course presents the types of logical reasoning, forms and rules, and practical applications of argument formation and evaluation. The text will provide the knowledge base for deductive/ inductive reasoning and abductive inference but examples and exercises will also come from the various disciplines and careers which require the use of logical reasoning.

  • Induction: prediction - used by weathermen, profilers, etc.
  • Deduction: based on observation - Students will look at relevant societal, environmental, political topics being currently debated.
  • Abduction : inference - Students will look at examples of medical diagnoses, detective cases, etc. (Students may be asked to watch some TV)
Various common fallacies will be explored. Since this is just an introductory course, all the types of logical reasoning will be mentioned and explained but detailed examination will probably not go beyond symbolic logic. Students will be able to identify the existence of (il)logical reasoning in daily situations. As part of the exercises, the students will gather examples of arguments from what they are reading and watching in their course work and daily life encounters. The class will uncover the premises and conclusions included in them and evaluate their validity. Students will become more proficient at formulating arguments for use in their courses, persuasive presentations or writings, and negotiations or proposals they may need in interactions with individuals and groups they encounter as voting citizens and career professionals.

HC 208- Darwin, Evolution and Scientific Theory
Instructor:Barry Winkler
Course Time:T/R 8:00-9:47 am
General Education: Natural Science & *Writing Intensive
Term: Fall 2016

* Prerequisite for writing intensive: completion of the university writing foundation requirement

Course Description:

“The proper and immediate object of science is the acquirement and communication of truth.” This elegantly simple statement by the late 18th century man of letters, Samuel Taylor Coleridge, provides the starting point from which scientific discoveries, great and small, emerge. Amongst the great scientific discoveries is Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution. His genius is manifest in the way his theory of evolution ties together disparate biological facts into a single unifying framework. As such, his approach is the embodiment of the scientific method: observation, replication, interpretation and verification. Drawing from the earlier ideas of Thomas Malthus, who proposed that population growth is limited by available resources, and from his own careful and extensive observations of animals and plants in Nature in different geographic and geologic domains, Darwin’s theory of evolution changed dramatically the way we view the origins of species. In addition, his ideas are fundamentally linked to another great scientific discovery by Watson and Crick, namely, uncovering the double helix structure and importance of the DNA molecule. Darwin’s theory is readily accessible to any literate person who spends pleasurable time reading On the Origin of Species (which we will do in this course). Darwin also recognized potential difficulties with his theory. For example, he wrote, “to suppose that the eye with all its inimitable contrivances. . . could have been formed by natural selection, seems absurd in the highest degree.” Yet, Darwin also recognized that if appropriate gradations could be found that were useful to the animal and were inherited, then the apparent difficulty would be overcome. We will explore a wide range of recent findings that capture glimpses of the gradations that appeared to have occurred during eye evolution. Students will learn that evolution is both theory and facts and, crucially, that it serves as a way of looking at the world that provides deep predictive and explanatory power.


HC 208- History, Art and Science of Meditation
Instructor:Thomas Ferrari
Course Time:M/W/F 12:00-1:06 pm
General Education: Natural Science
Term: Fall 2016

Course Description:

Meditation is not just practiced by Buddhist monks in ochre-colored robes or cloistered Catholic clergy. Nowadays, meditation and mindfulness practices have gone mainstream. But these practices have a long historical arc, with meditation practices extending back thousands of years in Asian, African, Egyptian, Persian, European, American, and other cultures. The development of these practices was intimately interwoven with art, through the creation of statuary, mandalas, labyrinths and other visual aids for the contemplative mind. Mindful movement practices, such as yoga and Tai Chi, were also developed. Music and sound were also harnessed in unique ways, such as Buddhist and Gregorian chanting, the use of singing bowls, drums and chimes. We now know that meditation practices improve mental focus, relieve stress, boost immunity, ease pain, and even extend life. Come learn more about the history, art, and science of meditation and develop your own research or service project to help move these practices into the future. (And yes, we will meditate!)

HC 390- Introduction to the Thesis
Instructor:Graeme Harper
Course Time:online
Term: Fall 2016
*Should be taken the year before you plan to graduate
**Requires departmental approval to register (contact hcadvising@oakland.edu)


Course Description:

The HC390 course aims to see you complete a strong, original proposal for your Honors College senior project, a proposal that, at then end of the course, can then be presented to the Honors College Council for review. Before taking this course, you must have confirmed a mentor and have a topic idea.
During this course you will:
  • Write a proposal outline, including a brief description of current work in the field or area in which you have interest
  • Establish a set of aims and objectives that you will pursue in your project
  • Explore the kinds of outcome(s) that you expect to achieve
  • Produce an initial list (or bibliography) of things you might draw upon to complete your project
  • Think about how this project might assist you in your future work or study And request thesis/project funding, if needed
The purpose of HC390 is to complete your senior project proposal. One that you are excited about, and intend researching in your senior year.


*Although this course is largely online there will be 1-2 mandatory class sessions: an Introductory session and a face to face appointment with an instructor.

Winter 2017
HC 201- Art of the Gods
Instructor:Paul Kohler
Course Time: W 5:00-8:20 pm
General Education: Arts and U.S.Diversity
Term: Winter 2017


Course Description:
Throughout history man has sought after a belief in a higher being and they have created art forms to represent, commemorate and worship their self-discovered god or gods. This course will introduce students to the Art of the gods and the cultures that created them throughout history. 

As the American experience developed and the diversity of world religions and new religions expanded, so will the art form of a diverse culture created by the melting pot of cultures from all over the world. Students will participate in visits to as many local religious facilities as possible to view and prepare a written report on the art that represents that religion and that congregation of believers.



HC 201- Image and Text: the Interplay Between Painting and Poetry in Chinese Literati Art

Instructor:Yilin Lui
Course Time:M/W/F 8:00-9:07 am
General Education:Art & *Writing Intensive 
Term:Winter 2017
** Prerequisite for writing intensive: completion of the university writing foundation requirement

Course Description:

This course is designed to be a in-depth study for a specific outlet in the Chinese art, namely, the literati art manifested mainly through scroll paintings from the Tang dynasty and onwards (700-1900s); In particular, the interplay between painting and poetry in Chinese literati art from the aforementioned historical periods. Through both the terminology and secondary scholarly works, students are expected to cultivate an aesthetic capacity to appreciate the pre-modern Chinese art with a critical eye, gaining a unique perspective on the Chinese literati art: within poems are hidden paintings, and within paintings are hidden poems. Moreover, two class meetings will be dedicated to hands-on experience with Chinese landscape paintings where students will have the opportunity to create an artistic piece of their own based on knowledge acquired throughout the semester, presenting their work/thoughts in front of the entire class as the concluding remark of the semester. Finally, this course engages students to think critically about the making of Chinese art history and, by extension, Chinese ideology manifested in the work of art/poetry, which can be of immense value in helping our students better interacting with a ever-growing global community.


HC 202- There's No Place Like Home: Expressions of Identity and Belonging

Instructor: Pamela Todoroff
Course Time:  T/R 10:00-11:47 pm
General Education: Literature, *Writing Intensive and U.S.Diversity 
Term:Winter 2017
** Prerequisite for writing intensive: completion of the university writing foundation requirement

Course Description:

Moving from family home to dormitory can be liberating or it can be terrifying. Often it’s a mixture of both. It can be an opportunity to redefine one’s self amongst stranger-neighbors, which may be an exhilarating progression towards maturity. Or it can be debilitating. The evolving definition of self involves one’s environment and, specifically, one’s living space. Using personal experience as a starting point, this course explores the relationship between home and identity particularly through the lens of upheaval such as immigration, asylum, even homelessness. Historical and recent immigrant literature—such as memoir, poetry, ballads and corridos, even social media—will be explored. Scholarly sources, films, song lyrics, and primary research will be required in order to arrive at an understanding of how our sense of place is expressed. A writing intensive course, students will write memoir, a researched academic essay, and produce a final project of their choosing.

HC 202- Shakespeare in Film

Instructor:Nicola Imbracsio
Course Time:T/R 5:30-7:17pm
General Education: Literature & *Writing Intensive 
Term:Winter 2017
** Prerequisite for writing intensive: completion of the university writing foundation requirement

Course Description:

In this course we will read five popular plays by Shakespeare and watch modern film adaptations of those plays in order to explore the nuances of "adaptation": what is lost when these plays are modernized? What is gained? Is Shakespeare truly "universal"? How is Shakespeare used to promote various political/ social values/ agendas? Is Shakespeare still relevant to modern audiences? How do Shakespeare's themes of Renaissance English identity translate to modern concerns over gender, sexuality, race, and class? Students should be comfortable reading Shakespeare's original texts.

HC 202- Oscar Wilde in Our Time

Instructor: Craig Smith
Course Time:T/R 1:00-2:47pm
General Education: Literature & *Writing Intensive 
Term:Winter 2017
** Prerequisite for writing intensive: completion of the university writing foundation requirement

Course Description:

The Irish playwright, novelist, cultural theorist, and celebrity provocateur Oscar Wilde remains one of the very few 19th-century writers who continue to find a wide and enthusiastic popular audience in the 21st century, quite apart from his secure position in the classroom. Each subsequent generation of young readers discovers a new Oscar Wilde who speaks to the personal concerns and cultural issues of their own time. 21st-century figures as diverse as Pope Francis, Lady Gaga, and the comedy team Key & Peele may be seen as having very direct connections with Wilde’s artistic and social innovations. As the virtual inventor of celebrity culture, a social activist intent on making art and literature available to all, and a constantly self-fashioning performance artist whose name became synonymous with minority sexual expression during an era of rigid conformity, Wilde remains an endlessly rich source of new ideas and fresh inspiration.

HC 202- Myths, Legends and Artifacts: Magical Realism in the Works of J.L. Borges

Instructor: Doris Plantus
Course Time: M/W/F 12:00-1:07 pm
General Education: Literature, *Writing Intensive  and U.S. Diversity
Term:Winter 2017
** Prerequisite for writing intensive: completion of the university writing foundation requirement

Course Description:

Argentine writer Jorge Luis Borges masterfully blends a rich variety of legend, mysterious artifacts, strange maps, mathematical problems, paradox, and philosophical concepts, with magical realism. The aleph, one of the points in space that contain all points; a troglodyte who is really Homer living out his immortality, a labyrinth, library, compass, tetragrammaton, and jaguar, that reveal as much as they conceal, are all part of Borges’ endless resources for stories whose characters and plots span the full arc of history. This course is a refreshing and new context in which to consider how objects, people, and events assume mythical proportions through knowledge and language, and become forces that compose our destiny.

HC 204- Churches, Cities and Courts as Centers of Artistic Life in Renaissance Italy

Instructor: David Kidger
Course Time:T/R 3:30-5:17 pm
General Education: Western Civilzation, *Writing Intensive 
Term:Winter 2017
** Prerequisite for writing intensive: completion of the university writing foundation requirement

Course Description:

The notion of the Renaissance as an artistic movement remains problematic for general historians, as well as historians of architecture, the arts, music, sculpture, and philosophy. This course examines and critiques the notion of the Renaissance as exemplified through the artistic life of a number of churches, cities and courts in northern Italy in the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries. In this period there was a patchwork of city states, republics, dukedoms and other principalities in what we now consider northern Italy. We consider how this puzzle contributed to artistic life, both sacred and secular, and how different modes of artistic expression developed as a result of these political and social systems. The course will make extensive use of internet and other multimedia resources to enhance the learning environment. Through a set of case studies of different types of artistic expression, students will discover how artists interacted with their patrons and their public audience, and how their work influenced contemporary life and thought. Finally, as a brief coda, students will examine how we view all of this in the 21st century, and what we can learn about the arts today from our study.

HC 204- Fable and Fiction: Stories Told About Gender/Race/Ethnicity through Media

Instructor:Anna Mrdeza
Course Time:M/W/F 12:00-1:07 pm
General Education: Western Civilzation, *Writing Intensive  and U.S. Diversity
Term:Winter 2017
** Prerequisite for writing intensive: completion of the university writing foundation requirement

Course Description:

Students will be asked to consider media and the way it portrays humans, human rights, human roles, and societal issues such as race/gender/ethnicity. Students will discover how media has shaped the stereotypes of yesterday, today, and will shape those of tomorrow. Students will be asked to explore how their own opinions of the world around them have been formed by media. Media can be described as television shows, film, news, books, magazines, newspapers, and social media. Discussions will be based on television clips, film clips, news clips, articles, and assigned text.

HC 204- The Modern American Gay Rights Movement: From Stonewell to SCOTUS

Instructor:Tim Larrabee
Course Time:M/W 1-2:15 pm
General Education: Western Civilzation, *Writing Intensive  and U.S. Diversity
Term:Winter 2017
** Prerequisite for writing intensive: completion of the university writing foundation requirement

Course Description:

Students will be expected to choose a specific period or event in the gay rights movement, and research their selected topic in greater detail than might be covered in class. Students will present their works at the conclusion of the course.


HC 205- Delightfully Dutch

Instructor:Randall Engle
Course Time:M/W/F 4:00-5:07 pm
General Education: Global Perspective and U.S. Diversity
Term:Winter 2017

Course Description:

During the Golden Age The Netherlands, barely one-third the size of the state of Iowa, grew to international preeminence. This course will explore how this first Republic broke with Catholic Spain to establish its own cultural and economic identity. The course will do so by reading Dutch history. Balancing these readings and lectures, each week the Professor (whose family are proud Dutch immigrants) will lead the class in sampling the contemporary life, language, cuisine, and customs of the Dutch.


HC 205- Exploring Smart Phones and their Global Environmental Impact

Instructor:Sheryl Ruszkiewicz
Course Time: T/R 8:30-9:27 am
General Education: Global Perspective and *Writing Intensive
Term:Winter 2017

** Prerequisite for writing intensive: completion of the university writing foundation requirement

Course Description:

Our smartphones and other electronic devices have become an integral part of our daily lives. We carry them (almost) everywhere with us, yet what is required to make electronic devices and what happens to our old devices when we become obsolete and discarded? This course will explore the global environmental impacts of creating electronic devices, as well as the growing concern of electronic waste created by discarded and obsolete electronic devices. In an effort to address this issue, students will have the opportunity to work firsthand on a technical writing service-learning project with iFixit, one of the largest providers of free repair manuals online, to edit and create repair manuals to help individuals repair broken electronic devices instead of discarding them. Students will also work to spread awareness of this global issue to the campus and/or surrounding community.

HC 205- KINO! The Russian Experience through Film

Instructor:Carol Hart
Course Time: M/W/F 12:00-1:07 pm
General Education: Global Perspective and *Writing Intensive
Term:Winter 2017

** Prerequisite for writing intensive: completion of the university writing foundation requirement

Course Description:

This course will be study the history of Russia from the pre-Soviet era to today through film. The Soviet era began as a heady experiment in social rebuilding that was enthusiastically reflected in experimental contemporary film. After Stalin assumed power, the freedom of expression was replaced with new forms of expression that acquiesced to the state or used imagery to subvert the demands of a ruthless machine. As glasnost allowed a more critical view of the state, a new generation of filmmakers shared an unrelenting critique of the society that came out of that experience. The post-Soviet era has seen new experimentation and new critiques of a new authoritarianism.

HC 206- Politics of the Commons

Instructor:Pat Piskulich
Course Time: T/R 10:00-11:47 am
General Education:Social Science
Term:Winter 2017

Course Description:

Whether and how to manage the commons involves questions of science, philosophy, economics, even theology. Sorting out the policy alternatives is thus ultimately a matter of politics. There are partisans on all sides, each camp armed with sincerely held convictions about the true shape of various ecological “problems” and accompanied by definite ideas (if not agendas) as to the appropriate scope of collective action by way of “solutions.” Indeed, even the notion of resource scarcity is in play. The purpose of this course will be to expose students to the breadth of perspectives competing in this policy space.

HC 206- Money

Instructor:Charles Mabee
Course Time: W 5:00-8:20 pm
General Education:Social Science
Term:Winter 2017

Course Description:

This course will examine the nature of money and the key role that it has played in the development of society. It will explore key aspects of the way money contiunes to function in our lives, with particular focus on institutions closely associated with government, banking, and finance. The course will also consider the problems and prospects associated with the dynamic influence of global capitalism and transnational corporate power in modern societies. Some study will also be devoted to alternatives to the dominant system through such alternative monetary frameworks as the principles of Islamic finance and Marxist economic thought

HC 207-The Logical Structure of Language

Instructor: Fritz McDonald
Course Time: T/R 1:00-2:47 pm
General Education: Formal Reasoning
Term:Winter 2017

Course Description:

In the 19th and 20th centuries, philosophers, mathematicians, and computer scientists made major discoveries in logic. These discoveries provided the basis of modern philosophy of language and linguistics. In this course, we will learn propositional and predicate logic, including how to symbolize and analyze arguments. We will apply logic to symbolic and natural languages. We will study the issues of meaning, reference, and truth in the philosophy of language.

HC 207-The Making of the Atomic Bomb

Instructor: Brad Roth
Course Time: M/W/F 10:40-11:47 am
General Education: Natural Science
Term:Winter 2017

Course Description:

This course will be based on the Pulitzer Prize winning book The Making of the Atomic Bomb by Richard Rhodes. It is a mixture of history and science. We will discuss the people and discoveries of the atomic age, and will examine wartime work on the atomic bomb, the impact of the Manhattan Project on science and society, and the difficult ethical questions surrounding atomic weapons. We will study many of the original scientific papers describing experiments that established the fundamentals of nuclear physics. The making of the atomic bomb not only transformed the world during World War II, but also influences international relations to this day.
HC 390- Introduction to the Thesis

Instructor: Graeme Harper
Course Time: online
Term:Winter 2017
*Should be taken the year before you plan to graduate
**Requires departmental approval to register(contact hcadvising@oakland.edu)
***Before taking this course, you must have confirmed a mentor and have a topic idea.


Course Description:

The HC390 course aims to see you complete a strong, original proposal for your Honors College senior project, a proposal that, at then end of the course, can then be presented to the Honors College Council for review. Before taking this course, you must have confirmed a mentor and have a topic idea.
During this course you will:

  • Write a proposal outline, including a brief description of current work in the field or area in which you have interest
  • Establish a set of aims and objectives that you will pursue in your project
  • Explore the kinds of outcome(s) that you expect to achieve
  • Produce an initial list (or bibliography) of things you might draw upon to complete your project
  • Think about how this project might assist you in your future work or study And request thesis/project funding, if needed

The purpose of HC390 is to complete your senior project proposal. One that you are excited about, and intend researching in your senior year.


*Although this course is largely online there will be 1-2 mandatory class sessions: an Introductory session and a face to face appointment with an instructor.

Courses in the Major

Honors College ‘in major” Advanced Scholarship Courses

New Option to Satisfy HC requirements:

Starting in fall 2015, a student has the option to take up to 2 (4 credit) "Advanced Scholarship" courses in their major

Option A. If a Honors College student is advised to stay more in their major, they take:

  • 2 advanced scholarship /in major courses
  • 2 HC Gen Ed courses

Plus the language, thesis, and service requirements

Option B. If an Honors College student is best advised to take more HC Gen Eds, they can choose no Advanced Scholarship courses in their major.

  • They simply take 3 HC Gen Eds.

Plus the language, thesis, and service requirement.

Advanced Scholarship courses are considered reasonably advanced work in a particular discipline. Students are advised to consult an Honors College adviser before making any selection of  “in major” courses.

Current list of “in major” Advanced Scholarship choices (this will be added to in the semesters ahead)

Anthropology
AN 395 - The Human Skeleton in Social Science [CRN 44702]

Biology
BIO 417 - Molecular Biology
BIO 419 - Advanced Genetics
BIO 421 - Medical Microbiology
BIO 423 – Immunology
BIO 427 -Cell Biology of Cancer
BIO 443 - Functional Genomics and Bioinformatics
BIO 465 - Medical Parasitology
BIO 471 - Stream Ecology
BIO 482 - Topics in Evolutionary Biology
BIO 483 - Topics in Community and Population Biology
BIO 493 - Integrative Pharmacology
BIO 495 – Scientific Inquiry and Communication
BIO 499 - Integrative Biomedicine and Disease

Chemistry
CHM or BCM 490

Communication/Journalism
COM 303 - Theories of Communication.
COM 385 - Multicultural Communication.
COM 350 - Popular Media in the Age of Convergence.
JRN 329 - Digital Storytelling for the Media: Diversity, Identity, and Community.

Engineering & Computer Science
ME 490
ISE 490
ECE 490, or
CSE 490

Also

ISE 495 ST: Competing in a Connected World, CRN 43112, from 2015 fall semester

Health Sciences
HS 423
HS 405

Also, specifically:

FALL 2015
HS 423/PH 525: Research Methods in Health T-R 3:30-5:17 pm
HS 423/PH 525: Research Methods in Health M-W 5:30-7:17 pm
HS 465/PH 565: Social Determinants of Health W 6:00-9:20 pm

WINTER 2016
HS 455/PH 555: Qualitative Research Methods W 6:00-9:20 pm

Music
MUS 331
MUS 332

Nursing
NRS 304: Human Sexuality

Physics
Phys 490

Psychology
Psy 302 - Evolutionary psychology
Psy 302 - Science and Superstition