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First Year Seminar

Fall 2004




FYS 101A  First Year Seminar (AH) SENSE OF PLACE                  3 credits

(PermReq) Grade Method: REG
          GFR/GER:Meets   A/H.  GDR:Meets  H.   What
          social  and cultural meanings do we attach
          to  such  everyday  environments  as  "the
          city,"  "the suburbs,"  "the countryside"?
          Our    own    comfort    level   and   our
          understanding   of   such   settings  have
          immense consequences, both in terms of the
          kinds  of  choices  we make  about our own
          lives-where  we want to live, work, engage
          in  other  activities- as well  as how our
          society  is shaped now and  how it will be
          shaped  in the future.  Since the topic is
          inherently  interdisciplinary,  the course
          will  draw upon insights from a variety of
          fields,    including   American   Studies,
          Literature,   Geography,   Sociology,  and
          Psychology.  Readings will  include novels
          set in urban Baltimore and rural Colorado,
          together  with a vareity of other articles
          and  essays.  The course  will function in
          seminar format, with discussion based upon
          readings  and  assignments.   Class  field
          trips    for    observations    of   local
          Baltimore-area    sites    will    provide
          opportunities for first-hand investigation
          testing  concepts from the course. We will
          visit  a Baltiore neighborhood, the nearby
          greenspace  of Patapsco Valley State Park,
          and  the  planned  suburban  community  of
          Columbia. Regular writing assignments will
          include  essays on  the assigned readings,
          field  observation  and  analysis reports,
          and   a  final  project  on  a  particular
          "place,"  presented either  in power-point
          or  on-line  format.  This  course carries
          Arts  and  Humanities  credit  within  the
          General   Foundation   requirements.   Its
          emphasis upon reading, writing, discussion
          and  field research makes  it an excellent
          introductory   course   for   first   year
          students.
[3019] 0101 MW.........2:00pm- 3:15pm (ITE 237)       ORSER, E


FYS 101B  First Year Seminar (AH) Living and Dying                3 credits
          in Ancient Athens: An Archaeologist's             
          Point of View (AH)                                

(PermReq) Grade Method: REG
          GFR/GER:Meets  A/H. GDR:Meets  H.  In this
          course  we will investigate the way people
          lived and died in Athens during the period
          sometimes   called   "The  Golden  Age  of
          Athens,"  ca 460-400  BCE. First, students
          will learn how to interpret archaeological
          remains from the period. Second, they will
          be  introduced  to  the  other disciplines
          used by archaeologists of Athens, classics
          and history, in which the primary focus is
          written  evidence.  My  colleauges  in the
          Ancient  Studies Department  will serve as
          visiting   scholars  to  explain  life  in
          Athens   from   their   own  prospectivess
          (warfare,   economy,   education   in  the
          theater,  literature).  The  students will
          work   with  primary  evidence,  including
          artifacts  in the Walters  Art Museum. The
          class introduces them to the evaluation of
          sources,  since  the material  and written
          remains  do  not  seem  to  agree  in many
          cases.  It  also  brings  students  to the
          understanding  of the  necessity, at least
          in classical archaeology, of using printed
          as  well as Web  based sources in research
          projects.
[7557] 0101 TuTh.......1:00pm- 2:15pm (FA  006)       GOLDBERG, M


FYS 101C  First Year Seminar (AH) Beethoven's Music               3 credits
          & Cultural Legacy                                 

(PermReq) Grade Method: REG
          GFR/GER:Meets   A/H.   GDR:Meets  H.   Few
          figures in Western musical history possess
          such an enduring fascination as Beethoven.
          He   is  one  of  those  artists--such  as
          Shakespeare or Michelangelo--so central to
          Western  cultural history that any telling
          of  this  "story" is  scarcely conceivable
          without  them. This course will have three
          main  aims:  firstly, that  of attaining a
          greater understanding of Beethoven's music
          through  close listening of representative
          works   from  all  three  periods  of  his
          artistic  output.  The  basic  elements of
          Beethoven's musical form will be explained
          and certain works analyzed closely. Later,
          individual  groups  will  present  for the
          class  analyses  of their  favorite works.
          The ability to read music is not required,
          and  all  analysis  wil be  aurally based.
          Secondly,  it is hoped  that these efforts
          will lead to a deeper understanding of the
          notion  of abstract music; that a piece of
          music  can unfold a  coherent and powerful
          experience  through purely  musical means,
          without  the crutch of  a text program. In
          Beethoven's  time this was a radically new
          notion,  and  it  was  largely due  to his
          influence  that it  has become inseparable
          from   the   high   cultural  prestige  of
          classical music. Thirdly, this course will
          focus   on  the  heritage  of  Beethoven's
          entire cultural setting, the Golden Age of
          German    culture,   and   its   role   in
          propagating a "spiritual" from of cultural
          enlightenment,   intended   to   be   both
          universal  in  its ideals  and specific in
          speaking   directly   to   each   person's
          innermost   soul.   Readings  form  recent
          approaches will question the relevance and
          validity  of this legacy  -- including the
          notions  of  high  art  -- in  our present
          culture.
[3020] 0101 TuTh......11:30am-12:45pm (FA  212)       COX, F


FYS 102A  First Year Seminar (SS) Images of Madness               3 credits

(PermReq) Grade Method: REG
          GFR/GER:Meets   SS.   GDR:Meets   S.    In
          contemporary  society,  vitrually everyone
          goes  to movies theatres  or views feature
          films   at   home   on  videos,  DVD's  or
          televisoin.    For   many  people,  films,
          regardless  of their accuracy,  serve as a
          major  source  of  information  on  social
          issues,  including  mental  illness.  This
          course reviews Academy Award winning films
          depicting  mental illness  to consider the
          influence of motion pictures on the public
          perception of social issues, policies, and
          services.   Beginning  with The  Snake Pit
          (1948)  through As Good as it Gets (1997),
          we  will analyze films  using a historical
          framework and in conjunction with assigned
          readings     that     address     cultural
          stereotypes,  societal attitudes,  and the
          public's   response   toward  people  with
          mental   illness.  We  will  look  at  the
          history  of  treatment  and  services  for
          persons  with mental  illness, social work
          practic, and service delivery networks, In
          addition,   we   will   explore   critical
          concepts in socal work practice and policy
          related to people with mental illness. The
          class  will  engage in  critical thinking,
          analysis,    and   discussion   of   these
          issues--including  social  work's  role as
          advocate    and    change   agent.   Class
          assignments,   case   studies,  and  group
          exercises  will help us  to understand the
          potential   power   of   the  mass  media,
          specifically  films,  and to  question our
          awareness   of   and  response  to  mental
          illness.
[3021] 0101 Tu.........4:30pm- 7:00pm (SS  204)       TICE, C


FYS 102B  First Year Seminar (SS) Contrasting                     3 credits
          Visions of Society                                

(PermReq) Grade Method: REG
          GFR/GER:Meets   SS.   GDR:Meets  S.   This
          course  will  be  based  on  reading  four
          influential   works,   which   set   forth
          contrasting  visions of  society. The four
          works  are Adam Smith's Wealth of Nations,
          Plato's   Republic,   Marx   and   Engels'
          Communist   Manifesto,   and  Max  Weber's
          Protestant   Ethic   and   the  Spirit  of
          Capitalism. Each of these works with which
          educated   people   are   expected  to  be
          familiar  since each of  them continues to
          shape  discussions  of  policy  and social
          affairs.   Yet undergraduate  students are
          all  to infrequently provided opportunites
          to  study these texts  first hand in their
          general  education  courses.   This course
          will    provide    students    with   this
          opportunity.  It  will  aim to  develop an
          understanding  of each of these four texts
          and  the contrasts between  the visions of
          society  implicit  in  each  of  them.  In
          addition  each  student  will be  asked to
          read  and report on  a piece that exhibits
          the  contemporary influence of  one of the
          four   texts   above.   For   example,   a
          contemporary  discussion about  the use of
          choice  and vouchers as a way of reforming
          the    educational    system    could   be
          interpreted    as    an   application   of
          principles of competition proposed by Adam
          Smith.  Thus, a further aim of the seminar
          will  be  to cultivate  an appreciation of
          the  on-going  relevance  to  contemporary
          policy  and social issues  of these works.
          Each   of   these  texts  crosses  current
          disciplinary boundaries and can be seen as
          drawing  on the  disciplines of Economics,
          Philosophy,    Political    Science,   and
          Sociology.
[3022] 0101 TuTh.......4:00pm- 5:15pm (ITE 237)       MITCH, D


FYS 102C  First Year Seminar (SS) Diversity, Ethics               3 credits
          and Social Justice in the Context of              

(PermReq) Grade Method: REG
          GFR/GER:Meets  SS.  GDR:Meets  S.  Schools
          are   strong   social   institutions  that
          influence   all  of  us.  There  are  many
          significant      political,      cultural,
          psychological, and ethical forces that are
          directing  how schools prepare students to
          succeed  in our rapidly changing world. It
          is  important to  understand how education
          policies, practices, issues and values are
          constructed  and changed. In multicultural
          America,  classrooms  mirror  the  diverse
          nature  of  children'backgrounds, cultural
          experiences,   languages,   and  "ways  of
          knowing."  Drawing from our experiences as
          products  of the education system, we will
          explore  and  mediate  the  tensions  that
          exist in current reform efforts as schools
          endeavor  to  meet  the  needs  of diverse
          students.   This   course   will   use  an
          inquiry-based  approach to examine federal
          and  local  policies  and how  they impact
          students,  schools  and  society. Students
          will  participate in activities at a local
          school  in UMBC's Professional Development
          Schools    network.    The    Professional
          Development  Schools  are  active learning
          communities   in  which  higher  education
          faculty,   P-12   faculty,   and  students
          collaborate   to   optimize  learning  and
          success  for all. Students will complete a
          service-  learning project  based on their
          unique talents, interest, skills and field
          of  study  that makes a  contribution to a
          school.
[3023] 0101 MW.........3:00pm- 4:15pm (SS  101)       OLIVA, L


FYS 103A  First Year Seminar (MS) Physics Through                 3 credits
          the Decades (MS)                                  

(PermReq) Grade Method: REG
          GER:Meets   M/S.  GDR:Meets  M.   In  this
          course, we will study some of the greatest
          ideas  in modern physics. These ideas have
          been  used to describe nature on the scale
          of  the universe (10'''meters) down to the
          smallest  size  where  the  concept  of  a
          length  remains valid (10-" meters). Since
          this  journey  parallels  the  history  of
          modem physics, particular emphasis will be
          placed  upon the evolution  of the science
          of   measurement  and  the  way  in  which
          developments  in  physics have  led to our
          present-day understanding of the nature of
          the  universe.   We will  study how modern
          astronomy  has led to  an understanding of
          the  size and history  of the universe. We
          will    explore   Eintsein's   theory   of
          relativity  and  see  how both  length and
          time    are    relative,   not   absolute,
          quantities.  We will try to understand how
          the  fundamental  forces of  nature act by
          the exchange of carrier particles that can
          be  created  according  to  the Heisenberg
          uncertainty  principle; a  theory that led
          to   the   death  of  determinism  in  our
          description of -nature.
[3024] 0101 TuTh......11:30am-12:45pm (SS  206)       ROUS, P


FYS 103B  First Year Seminar (MS) Paradigms and                   3 credits
          Paradoxes: Attempt to Understand the              
          Universe                                          

(PermReq) Grade Method: REG
          GER:Meets  M/S. GDR:Meets M.  There are at
          least  two  kinds of  scientic activities:
          acquiring   and   generating   data,   and
          inquiring  and generating general modes of
          understanding.  The latter activities will
          dominate this course.  The course contents
          include   discussion  of  some  remarkable
          features   of   the  universe:  the  class
          discussions    will    require   no   more
          scientific  background  than  gained  from
          high  school  chemistry  and  mathematics.
          Some topics for the course are as follows:
          Matter   doesn't   collapse,   shrink   of
          disppear   -  it  has  size,  weight,  and
          sometimes  shape.   We take  this granted.
          Don't  we?  Positive and  negative charges
          attract.  The  atomic nucleus  is positive
          and  electrons  are  negative.   Why don't
          these   parts  of  atoms  get  closer  and
          closer,  and eventually collapse? In other
          words,  we ask, not only  why are atoms so
          small  but also why are  they so big? This
          topic  is merely philosophical.  Questions
          of  fuel  efficiency and  national defense
          arise   as   naturally  as  those  of  the
          existence  of  the universe.  There are 26
          letters in the English alphabet. There are
          4 letters in the genetic code and some 100
          chemical  elements in  the periodic table.
          There  are  millions  of  distinct  words,
          individual    organisms    and    chemical
          compounds. Are numbers 26, 4 and 100 small
          or  are  they  large?  As such,  our study
          includes    the    nature   of   language,
          information  and life. Consider the number
          3.14159265357988... . Can you identify it?
          Answering  this question should be easy as
          pie.  Hatmakers set the number equal to 3.
          Is  this a rational choice? Answering this
          question  tells  us  about  the  nature of
          numbers,    measurement,    design,    and
          industry, and also about the answerer.
[3025] 0101 MW.........2:00pm- 3:15pm (MP  105)       LIEBMAN, J


FYS 103C  First Year Seminar (MS) Issues in                       3 credits
          Biotechnology                                     

(PermReq) Grade Method: REG
          GER:Meets  M/S. GDR:Meets M.  Almost every
          newpaper  issue  today  has  one  or  more
          articles  about  how our  society is being
          affected by new advances in biotechnology,
          and  how its impact is controversial. Some
          of  these issues include: cloning, genetic
          engineering  of  plants  and  animals, DNA
          analysis   as   a   means  of  determining
          parentage   or   involvement  in  criminal
          events,  development of  new medicines and
          vaccines,  the emergence of drug-resistant
          bacteria,  the  human and  others species'
          genome  project, the  origin and genealogy
          of  human  group, etc. For  our society to
          discuss  these  issues  in a  rational and
          thorough    manner,   its   important   to
          understand  the  scientific basis  for the
          methods    used,    their    limits    and
          uncertainties,  and their  relationship to
          other  areas  of life  sciences, medicine,
          public   policy,  and  bioethics.  Through
          directed  readings, class discussions, and
          student  presentations, this  seminar will
          focus   on   understanding  these  various
          aspects  of  modern biotechnology  with an
          emphasis    on   its   scientific   basis.
          Practical  demonstrations  and  visits  to
          UMBC     labs    using    biotechnological
          techniques  will  be an  important part of
          the  course to illustrate  how the methods
          theoretically   discussed   in  class  are
          actually done.
[3026] 0101 F..........2:00pm- 5:00pm (BIOL461)       CRAIG, N


FYS 104A  First Year Seminar (C) Stereotypes: How We              3 credits
          Deal With Differences                             

(PermReq) Grade Method: REG
          GFR/GER:Meets   C.   GDR:Not   applicable.
          Stereotypes-national,  ethnic,  racial and
          religious-have  existed for  millennia and
          are  found  in  every  part of  the globe.
          Groups   of  one  kind  or  another  often
          develop    a    certain,   commonly   held
          perception  of  other groups  that resists
          contrary  evidence suggested  by reason or
          experience.   Many  conflicts  in  today's
          world   involve   stereotypical  views  of
          others and tend to make difficult problems
          even more complicated and harder to solve.
          In this course we will see how sterotyping
          works  by studying the American stereotype
          of  the  French,  as  well  as  the French
          perception  of  Americans.   (Knowledge of
          French is not required.) Through readings,
          ads,  commericals,  movies  and television
          programs,     we    wil    consider    the
          misunderstandings   and   prejudices  that
          underlie     these     caricutures     and
          generalizations.    Students   will   then
          conduct their own analysis of a stereotype
          of their choice and present their findings
          to  the  class.  They  will also  submit a
          written  report  of their  findings at the
          end of the semester.
[3027] 0101 MWF.......10:00am-10:50am (SS  101)       ROSENTHAL, A


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