Spring 2013 Courses

FS 111, 121, 131, 141 are 3 unit courses designed for first year students for Liberal Studies distribution block credit.

FS 111 = Science (non-lab)
FS 121 = Aesthetic & Humanistic Inquiry
FS 131 = Cultural Understanding
FS 141 = Social & Political Worlds

CRAFTS / Community Engagement Initiative course with an Action Research Team
These Seminars may require students to work together in Action Research Teams on projects identified in consultation with community partners.

Science (non-lab) Liberal Studies distribution block
FS 111 Global Sustainability (Stefan Sommer, Biological Sciences)
This Seminar will present our cutting edge understanding of environmental sustainability. Students will learn how sustainability is understood by ecological, social, economic, and engineering experts. We will explore the ways in which people are working to create a more sustainable society.

Contact: Stefan.Sommer@nau.edu
Aesthetic & Humanistic Inquiry Liberal Studies distribution block

FS 121 Animal Performers and Performance (Season Ellison, Theatre)
What is evident within popular films and novels such as “Marley and Me” and “Water for Elephants,” to American classics such as “Mr. Ed” and “Lassie,” to live performances found at the circus, zoo, or “Cirque du Soliel,” is that our human relationship to non-human animals is incredibly complex. In this Seminar we will use performance (literally and metaphorically) as a way to contemplate this relationship. This Seminar will consist of four primary sections: (1) We will look at live and filmed animal performers and consider the ethics of employing animals for entertainment purposes; (2) We will examine how animals perform in their daily lives and consider what the concept of “performance” can teach us about our animal-human experiences; (3) We will examine the ethics and performance components of animal training, and; (4) We will consider how human-animals perform the non-human animal.
Contact:  Season.Ellison@nau.edu

FS 121 Civil Discourse in Action (Rosalinda Haddon, Nursing)
This is a highly interactive Seminar in which students will develop the skills of reason and the use evidence to cogently construct oral arguments.
Contact:   Rosalinda.Haddon@nau.edu

FS 121 Civility, Reason, Engagement (Lori Poloni-Staudinger, Politics and International Affairs; Andrea Houchard, Philosophy)
We all recognize that our society has become increasingly fractured and politicized, with less space than ever for reasoned and deliberative debate. The most recent Arizona Town Hall proceedings on Civic Engagement found that Arizonans held a deep desire to increase civic engagement (described as participation in the life of one’s community in order to improve it and shape its future) and foster a sense of connection within communities, as well as a respect for human dignity and diversity of opinion. A majority of Arizonans in a recent survey were deeply unhappy about the nature of the state’s civic health. Similarly, Arizona ranked very low in terms of civic health, as measured by such things as voter turnout and participation in other civic activities.

In light of these findings, the purpose of this class is to build deliberative skills and give students opportunities to engage in deliberative democracy. Students will do this with each other in the classroom, and in the general public. We will spend the semester discussing “hot topics”.  These topics have been identified by stakeholders in the NAU and Flagstaff communities as important concerns that warrant reasoned discussion.  We will concurrently discuss topics in the class that are discussed in university and community forums.  Students will attend community forums as observers. In the class, students will serve as facilitators.  By the end of the class, students will have the opportunity to facilitate their own “hot topic”.  To this end, the class has three broad purposes.

  • To understand civility, deliberative democracy and civic engagement.
  • To give students an opportunity to engage in civil discussions with members of the community.
  • To develop students’ research and analysis abilities to critically and impartially evaluate political issues.

The types of issues we may discuss include topics such as taxes and the federal debt, the cost of higher education, climate change, health care access and coverage, and global citizenship in an age of globalization.
Contact:   Andrea.Houchard@nau.eduLori.Poloni-Staudinger@nau.edu

FS 121 Comics: Pow! Bam! Biff! (Kevin Ketchner, First Year Seminar Program and Honors)
The modern comic book will inform the contextual analysis for this Seminar.  We will explore comics from their humble origins in the 1930’s as the reprinted pages of the Sunday newspaper comic strips, to the best selling graphic novels of today. It will be seen that comics and their heroes soak up and reflect their culture and their times.  This encompasses the battles waged against the Axis powers of World War II, the diversity of themes and social consciousness of the 1960’s and 1970’s, the adaption of popular culture titles such as Star Wars, the reformation of the industry with the advent of the graphic novel and comic-based film, to the current industry as the country redefined it’s place in the world post-9/11.
Contact:   Kevin.Ketchner@nau.edu

FS 121 Communication & NAU Community (Emilly Borthwick-Wong, First Year Seminar Program)
Communication is integral to every facet of our society.   Students in this Seminar will attend activities such as guest lectures, athletic events, films and theater performances on the Northern Arizona University’s campus.  You will have the opportunity to explore and analyze how communication helps to create, maintain and challenge share beliefs.  Students will attend 15 NAU events and then as a class will work to make sense of NAU’s community and analyze how communication helps shape campus culture.
NOTE:  Students enrolled in this course should be prepared to attend an event once a week. The events may take place on weeknights or during the weekend.  Attendance at events outside of class is a mandatory portion of the course.
Contact:   Emilly.Borthwick@nau.edu

FS 121 Ecology of Mind (Jeffrey Warren Bloom, Education)
From aboriginal cultures to the “big” thinkers of today, “ecology of mind” has been an important perspective on people’s relationships to the Earth, to themselves, and to others. This Seminar focuses on using systems thinking and pattern thinking to explore how we can connect to a deeper sense of being, to others, and to our environments. As we proceed with our explorations, we will find interconnections across various disciplines (e.g., the arts, sciences, humanities, etc.) and contexts (e.g., cultures and everyday experiences). Through a variety of inquiries students will examine a number of key aspects of such thinking, including: (a) relationships between objects and concepts of various kinds; (b) feedback loops and other non-linear cycles of information and/or materials flow; (c) transformation and change; (d) patterns that extend across and characterize different disciplines; (e) patterns of organization; (f) coordination; (g) continuity; (h) separation and unification; (i) regulation; (j) epistemology or how we see the world; (k) double binds; (l) ecology of mind and nature); and (m) aesthetics and beauty. In examining various objects and phenomena, students will engage and develop skills in the basic aspects of systems thinking and pattern thinking, which include taking multiple perspectives, developing models and explanations, inviting a diversity of ideas, analyzing functions, analyzing meanings, and evaluating the applicability of explanations across contexts. Student work will focus on group and individual inquiries and the development of a major project in an area of individual interest.
Contact:   Jeff.Bloom@nau.edu

FS 121 New Mind Yourself  (Barbara Sheeley, Art)
There’s a mismatch between the high-tech world we’ve created and the ‘old mind’ we inherit as humans. Contemporary culture requires ways of thinking and responding in alignment with the high stakes of the new century.  To ‘new mind yourself,’ students learn about how the mind creates, modifies and recreates experience using an innovative method of examining art as the starting point. Through guided analyses of different forms of creative expression, we develop active thinking skills that enable more clarity and flexibility. We use these skills to spotlight some important trends within society and around our planet and develop written, visual and verbal presentations focused on issues of local, national and global importance.
Contact:   Barbara.Sheeley@nau.edu

FS 121 Noir in Film & Literature (Bruce Fox, Forestry)
In this Seminar we will discuss the characteristics and import of noir as it reflects societal values and perspectives—or does not—using a variety of scholarly texts and articles, books, and films.  We will use texts from the Brothers Grimm, Mark Twain, and hard-boiled detective novels from the 1940s and 1950s.   Some classicfilm noir include, but will not be limited to, Chinatown, High Noon, Double Indemnity, Dirty Harry, and I am a Fugitive From aChain Gang.
Contact:  Bruce.Fox@nau.edu

FS 121 King Arthur in Legend and Literature (John Doherty, First Year Seminar Program and Honors)
C.S. Lewis once compared the Arthurian legend to a great medieval cathedral that was built by many over generations.  In this case, it has been 1,500 years in the making, and still going strong.  Since 1900 literature, film and music have contributed more to the Arthurian story than at any other time since it first emerged as oral tales in the Wales of the 500s.  We will briefly examine the first 1,400 years of the story, and then concentrate on the recent additions of film and fiction, including Monty Python and the Holy Grail, Excalibur, The Mists of Avalon, The Crystal Cave, and the recent BBC TV series Merlin.  We will critically examine how the 20th Century has put its own unique spin on a very popular story.
Contact:   John.Doherty@nau.edu

FS121 Photography as Activism (Gerald Wood, Education)
Course description:  Can photographs change the world? Come find out as we study the work of social and documentary photographers. We will consider how photographs have been used in social movements and how art has been used to inspire new possibilities for imagination and action. Through this class, we will identify social issues in Flagstaff and create photo essays and exhibits to support social change.
Contact: Gerald.Wood@nau.edu

FS 121 Just Food (Kimberley Curtis, First Year Seminar)
CRAFTS / Community Engagement Initiative course with an Action Research Team
Would you like to live in a world where communities grow much of their own food in highly productive small scale sustainable gardens and farms, where energy is used wisely and comes from renewable sources, and where power and respect depend not on the amount of money you have but on your ability to creatively work with others to co-create the world?  Who wouldn’t?  But how do we get there?  How can we become powerful participants in the transition to a more sustainable and more just world?  What do we need to know?  And how do we begin to act? Explore these questions by studying how some of the most visionary social critics answer them, and by formulating your own powerful answers by becoming “seeds of change” as you participate with students and community members in fun and life-changing social action projects such as greening the schools and localizing the food system.
Contact: Kimberley.Curtis@nau.edu

FS 121 Slam Poetry, Art, and Activism (Jacob Dolence, First Year Seminar)
CRAFTS / Community Engagement Initiative course with an Action Research Team
Art, poetry, and music have the amazing potential to energize, engage, and shape the world we live in.  These artistic mediums have a long history of being critical in large social justice and environmental organizing efforts.  This Seminar will provide a narrative history and give students a chance to develop their own skills of artistic impression as a way to spark social movements and find their own voice.  This Seminar will have a community engagement component that will require students to be involved in local open mic, slam poetry, concerts, and live art events in the Flagstaff community outside of class time.
Contact: Jacob.Dolence@nau.edu

FS 121 Social Justice – Youth Empowerment   Jacob Dolence, First Year Seminar Program)
CRAFTS / Community Engagement Initiative course with an Action Research Team
Young people have the opportunity to shape the world around them.  This Seminar will serve as a space for inquiry development, teaching methods, and a gained understanding of democracy through the Public Achievement model.  NAU students will serve as coaches and teachers in one of two elementary schools in Flagstaff to highlight the voices of their students through a community based project.  Core concepts such as power, community, engagement, and grassroots organizing will be practiced and discussed throughout the semester.
Contact:  Jacob.Dolence@nau.edu

FS 121  Social Justice-Youth Empowerment  (Lauren Berutich, First Year Seminar Program)
CRAFTS / Community Engagement Initiative course with an Action Research Team
Young people have the opportunity to shape the world around them.  This Seminar will serve as a space for inquiry development, teaching methods, and a gained understanding of democracy, public work, and citizenship through the Public Achievement (PA) model.  NAU students will serve as coaches and teachers at Kinsey Elementary School in Flagstaff to highlight the voices of their students through a community based project.  Student concerns addressed during the after school program will lead to issue identification and grassroots democracy participation.  Core concepts such as power, community, engagement, and grassroots organizing will be practiced and discussed throughout the semester.  Students will engage in hands-on learning through field work and leadership development.  They will not only develop crucial critical thinking and leadership skills while gaining a deeper understanding of who they are in the world, but will have the opportunity to pass this knowledge down to the next generation of thinkers, doers, and civic agents of change.
Students are required to be available one day a week (flexible) on a weekly Monday through Thursday basis from 3:00-5:00 p.m. to attend Kinsey as a PA coach.
Contact:   Lauren.Berutich@nau.edu

Social & Political Worlds Liberal Studies distribution block

FS 141  Democracy, Social Justice & the Environment  (Jacob Dolence, First Year Seminar Program)
CRAFTS / Community Engagement Initiative course
In this Seminar, grassroots democratic participation is explored in relation to problems of environmental sustainability, social justice, and diversity from the local level to the global.  We will examine systemic aspects of social and environmental problems as well as alternative pathways for change.  Community-based research and engagement are a vital component of the course, facilitating a process in which students can participate in fostering the changes that they want to see in the world.
Contact:   Jacob.Dolence@nau.edu

FS 141 The Logo  (James I. Bowie, Sociology and Social Work)
As symbols of identity for organizations, products, people, and places, logos are ubiquitous in our world, and they have become a primary carrier of meaning in our increasingly visually-oriented culture.  This Seminar will examine logos from a variety of perspectives, assessing their significance with regard to commerce, art, marketing, branding, design, and society in general.
Contact:   James.Bowie@nau.edu

FS 141  Music, Nature & Society (Thomas Sheeley, Music)
Beginning with a reading of C.S. Lewis’ “Abolition of Man,” and utilizing the examples of nature, this Seminar will explore the differences between natural and artificial orders as they exist in music, political philosophy and society.
Contact:  Thomas.Sheeley@nau.edu

FS 141 Religion and Politics ( Mohamed Mohamed, Comparative Cultural Studies)
Religion and politics are two important aspects of our everyday life. In this Seminar, we will focus on their interrelationships as they unfold in the modern life. The course will address five fields—the State, Society, Law, Economy and Culture—to examine five concepts—Secularization, Public Debate, Legitimacy, Power and Identity. We will engage in a global study of the subject by examining cases and events from five countries—U.S., France, Iran, Egypt and Israel. Reading newspapers and web-logs, we will apply the above theoretical knowledge in understanding a number of issues, such as Religious Freedom, Abortion, Terrorism, Religious Education and Family Laws.
Contact:   Mohamed.Mohamed@nau.edu

FS 141  Religion and Violence  (Kathleen Day, Criminology and Criminal Justice)
CRAFTS / Community Engagement Initiative course
Religion and politics are two important aspects of our everyday life. In this Seminar, we will focus on their interrelationships as they unfold in the modern life. The course will address five fields—the State, Society, Law, Economy and Culture—to examine five concepts—Secularization, Public Debate, Legitimacy, Power and Identity. We will engage in a global study of the subject by examining cases and events from five countries—U.S.,France, Iran, Egypt and Israel. Reading newspapers and web-logs, we will apply the above theoretical knowledge in understanding a number of issues, such as Religious Freedom, Abortion, Terrorism, Religious Education and Family Laws.
Contact:  Kathleen.Day@nau.edu

FS 141   Trafficking of Women & Girls  (Chineze Onyejekwe, First Year Seminar Program and Women’s & Gender Studies)
The trafficking of women and girls happens all over the world and yet remains hidden from public view. This Seminar explores the various issues related to the complex phenomenon of human trafficking of women and girls (also referred to as a form of modern day slavery). Case studies will include discussion of the problems of trafficking in women and girls in various countries such as Africa, Asia, Latin America, and Eastern to Western Europe and North America. Relevant topics include the commercial sexual exploitation and trafficking of women and girls for the purpose of prostitution, the role of the internet in the commercialization of sex, transnational marriages such as the mail-order bride industry, trafficking for other slave-like practices, forced labor, the exploitation of immigrant females for domestic services, the US Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000 (TVPA), the U Visa for immigrants who are victims of crime, and the role of the international community in fighting this problem.
Contact:  Chineze.Onyejekwe@nau.edu

FS 141   The Wilderness Within   (John David Lynch, Geography; Planning and Recreation)
This course will foster student ability to analyze interconnectivity between the natural world and psychological maturation. The aim of this course is to help students explore how nature assists in “listening” to the deeper parts of the psyche through concepts found in ecopsychology and mythological archetypes. By reconnecting to the natural world in an intimate and authentic way, this course attempts to encourage students to develop greater ethics, responsibilities, and understanding surrounding nature. This class contributes to the sustainable movement by positively fostering ecocentric consciousness at an individual level.
Contact:   John.Lynch@nau.edu