Program Courses

Course Descriptions

Computer Science: Introduction to Computer Science

Prof. Tim Hickey

The main goal of this course is for you to learn the skills and master the concepts needed to be able to create a working prototype of any web application you can imagine. A secondary goal is for you to learn whether you want to further your study of Computer Science. You will complete a final project in teams of 3 or 4 in which you create your own interactive database-backed web application.

Social Science: Embodied Faith: A Historical Analysis of Race & Religion in Black Life in America

Prof. Kendra Yarbor

This course introduces students to a variety of ways in which African Americans and other persons of African descent have practiced Christianity, Judaism and Islam in the United States. Students will broaden their understanding of these religious histories, learning more about what these religions and Black people’s embodiments of these faith traditions have contributed to American life and culture from slavery to the contemporary period. This study of Black Christians, Jews and Muslims certainly do not capture all of the possibilities of Black religiosity, but they do represent an important part of the religious narrative of this country. By demonstrating this legacy at work, students will learn about the historical factors that have shaped religion’s role in society.

Writing: International Voices: Short Fiction Across Cultures

Prof. Ruth Spack

This first-semester writing course focuses on developing analytical, interpretive, and argumentative skills that are essential for writing about fiction in clear and compelling prose. By bringing their own histories, assumptions, and beliefs to international stories, students will deepen their understanding of the historical, political, economic, and social forces that shape people’s lives across cultures. By making connections between their experiences and the experiences of characters with different backgrounds, they will be able to broaden their perspective on the meaning of their own lives.

Writing: Critical Approaches to the Speculative Story

Prof. Ian Muneshwar

This course will prepare students for reading, writing, and researching at the college level and beyond. The class is designed to be an introduction to writing practices and methodologies in an array of disciplines: students will explore writing and rhetoric in the humanities, the social sciences, and the natural sciences. The course heavily emphasizes reading and writing as process-based and collaborative endeavors; students will work together in generating and revising new material, in exploring a variety of texts, and in developing their own writerly voices.

Quantitative Reasoning: The Basic Practice and How to Lie with Statistics

Prof. David Albert

Statisticians can make numbers and graphs tell any story they want to tell. All those numbers you see in the news — election polls, product ads, the results of psychological and medical studies — tell a story, but are they always telling the true story? Learn how to read these statistics so that you will never be fooled again. Then learn how to produce your own statistics to tell the true story, or the story you want to tell.

Over two semesters, this course will take you through the basics of statistical analysis and into everything you need to know to conduct a scientific study in your chosen field (economics, business, psychology, biology, even literature – the material you will learn can be adapted to nearly any field). We will cover statistical methods including the collection and description of data both manually and with software; probability and sampling; confidence intervals and hypothesis testing; two-way tables and Chi-square analysis; linear regression and correlation; and in the second semester, we will explore other advanced statistical methods and study design. The second half of spring semester will be devoted to a final project of your own design.

Quantitative Reasoning: Statistics for People Who (Think They) Hate Statistics

Prof. Sarah Lupis

Part 1 of this course introduces students to experimental design and statistical analysis common to psychology, sociology, and other social sciences. In part 2 of this course, students will learn more about each step of the experimental process including experiment conceptualization and design, choosing appropriate assessment tools, and preliminary and experimental data analysis. This course will be conducted as a workshop that fully integrates lectures, exercises, and laboratory assignments to give you experience within each of these steps. In small sections, you will actively participate in laboratory tasks that demonstrate the range of activities in experimental research. The class will culminate with each student writing an APA style research report. Pending IRB approval, students may present this data in the form of a conference-style talk or poster presentation.