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 University Honors

Honors Courses



Fall 2014


Intercultural Communication (COMM 3535 Section 550**)
Ryan Goei
Course # 29657
TuTh 6pm – 9:40pm
4 credits
Fulfills Cultural Diversity in the US liberal education requirement (old Social Science Category 6 and also the International Perspectives requirement)

**this section is open to incoming UH freshmen only

Intercultural Communication is an extremely popular and rewarding class opportunity for UH students. Intercultural Communication is a very unique class. There are no textbooks. It is an applied class in which students engage with each other, a culturally diverse group of classmates, to learn about individuals and their experience with culture and communication here in the US and around the world. The class is based on the notion that to understand people and culture one must start by getting to know the person. As such the class requirements are almost exclusively relational in nature. You will be engaging in and writing about out-of-class “dates” with classmates from other cultures and will be participating in several class activities and trips (including two all day Saturday trips) to spend some time together building friendships. In the past these relationship-building class activities have included picnics, canoeing, swimming, camping, roller-skating, competitions, and dining out, amongst others. Students leave this class with an immensely personal understanding of humans and how culture affects their lives and views. They also often leave the class with lifelong friends, friends from various cultures both within the US and around the globe.

Intercultural Communication fulfills the Cultural Diversity in the United States requirement of UMD’s Liberal Education Program requirements. It is a four-credit class that begins the first week of Fall semester, like all others, but lasts only six weeks instead of sixteen. The class is time intensive early but complete before midterm exams are scheduled for most other classes.


Special Topics: Psychology of Drinking and Alcohol Misuse (HON 3095 Section 550)
Scott Carlson
Course # 34804
MWF 11-11:50
3 credits
Fulfills Social Science liberal education category (students using the pre-2012 liberal education program will need to consult with Dr. Carlson and petition CEHSP for lib ed credit)

Alcohol use is common in North America and alcohol misuse is a major social, psychiatric, and public health problem in the United States. This course provides both an overview of psychological perspectives on the causes of drinking and alcoholism and an introduction to major theories within the broader discipline of psychology. Students will be exposed to general concepts and perspectives in major sub-disciplines within psychology and these will then be applied specifically to the study of alcohol use and problems. An emphasis is placed on how psychologists empirically approach answering questions through quantitative research. Students will be mentored in the writing of relevant types of proposals needed in the conduct of research in this field.


Special Topics: The World of Surfing (HON 3095 Section 551)
Scott Laderman
Course # 34805
TuTh  9:15-10:55am
4 credits
Fulfills both Humanities and Global Perspectives liberal education categories 
(students using the pre-2012 liberal education program will need to consult with Dr. Laderman and petition CEHSP for lib ed credit)

The World of Surfing will combine the classroom study of the history of surfing with pool- and Lake Superior-based instruction on how to surf.  Surfing is of course a major cultural phenomenon, having spawned numerous movies, television programs, novels, works of visual art, video games, bands, and lines of clothing.  The course will examine the basis for this popularity, tracing the sport's modern evolution from nineteenth-century Hawai'i through its global ubiquity in the twenty-first century.  Along the way, we will explore surfing's intersection with some of the major developments of the last two hundred years: empire-building and the "civilizing mission," economic and cultural modernization, the growth of international tourism, the political upheavals of the Cold War era, and corporate globalization.  In addition to this classroom content, we will spend time in the UMD pool, where students will learn and develop surfing skills, which they will ultimately put to use during a surfing outing on Lake Superior.


The City in Film (CST3095)
Kathryn Milun
Course # 32751
TuTh 10 - 11:50am
4 credits

Currently under review for lib ed approval. Will likely fulfill one or more lib ed categories. It is under consideration as Liberal Education offering in categories II.  Knowledge Domains (Social Sciences  and Fine Arts) and III.  Key Topics (Global Perspectives and Sustainability).  If it achieves these designations in the Fall of 2014, the instructor will work with CLA advising to see whether the 2014 Honors students can receive appropriate Lib Ed credit.   

“The City in Film” is an ambitious, interdisciplinary course that offers, through a cross-cultural array of feature films, a unique, story-based way to learn about the history of the modern city, its global extension outside of its Euro-American beginnings, the social and environmental issues triggered by industrialized urban form, and the artistic and popular responses to such urban modernity.  The course has a production dimension so that students will learn to be not only social analysts but also artistic producers.  Throughout the course, students will learn to connect the social content of what films say about modern urban life with the artistic rhetoric of how films speak.  As producers of their own three-minute short film on Duluth—a collaborative, peer-reviewed production process that will be built into the course from the beginning--students will learn to view filmic content as both social analysts and creative storytellers.  The students will host a “Local City Shorts” mini-film festival at the end of the semester to showcase their productions.  In this course, students will learn to bring social analysis into the process of visual storytelling so that, in the end, they become more adept at telling others what it feels like to live within large social structures that, as historically created forms, are neither inevitable nor inert. In short, by becoming city filmmakers themselves, students are encouraged to think as analysts and problem-solvers creatively facing the challenges of the large scale built environment they have inherited.


Global Issues (SW 1212 Section 001)
Dennis Falk
Course # 31761
TuTh 3:30-4:45pm
3 credits
Fulfills Social Science and Global Perspective liberal education category (old category 8—Contemporary Social Issues and Analysis)

Focus on global problems of war, peace, and national security; population, food, and hunger; environmental concerns and global resources; economic and social development; human rights. Examination of issues from systems, problem solving, and futurist perspectives in honors seminar format. 

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