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Academic Year 2016-2017 Fall First Year Seminar Course Descriptions

FY 100            Art as Life:

This is a course that uses the methods developed by Albert Barnes to help Americans understand art. Using the art in his vast collection, students will evaluate, analyze, research, do a digital exhibit of selected works, and visit the Barnes Foundation Museum in Philadelphia.  3 Credits. 


FY 100            Artemis Archetype:

Since the creation of the "Princess" product line, the Disney Princesses have become role models for the majority of girls and young women, yet the princess archetype suffers from several detrimental attributes, including lack of female bonding and an obsession with physical appearance culminating in the need to be chosen and cared for by a mate. In the face of such dis-empowerment, the antidote to the plague of passivity dominating girl culture may lie in myth through the Artemis archetype. Because Artemis represents feminine strength and self-reliance, her value as a role model resides in her ability to choose her own goals, basing her self-worth on her accomplishments, rather than her appearance or marital status. While the Artemis archetype has been visible for several years in different media, it came to the forefront recently with the release of film adaptations of The Hunger Games trilogy. This course will describe characteristics of "princess" culture and then explore the Artemis archetype through representations of the goddess in contemporary film, fiction, and television series.  3 Credits. 


FY 100            Arts & Community: Murals:

This course is designed to develop understanding of the social roles of art and the impact of murals in communities.  The course will combine the study of public arts, local history and studio practices related to the development and creation of murals.  Students will participate in the process of building proposals, designs and budgets, meeting, presenting to and collaborating with potential clients, and participating in the collaborative process of mural painting. 3 Credits. 



FY 100            Getting What You Want Through Communication:

This course guides students' ability to engage in oral and nonverbal communication with others to accomplish an end goal.  This is accomplished by examining research and synthesizing differing viewpoints to identify relevant impacts, exercises to develop speech skills that consider sender and receiver interpersonal variables that impact exchanges, and group projects that require collaborative efforts of members that build on identifying individual strengths for the group.  3 Credits   


FY 100            Honey of a Hobby:            

This version of the FY 100 seminar will examine the role of honeybees in our society.  It will integrate content dealing with the biology and ecology of the bee with that of the economic impact this insect has on our agriculture.  Students will conduct a marketing study on honey characteristics, debate the relevance of a law banning bees from within Dover city limits as well as become familiar with all aspects of the biology of this keystone species.  3 Credits 


FY 100            Human or Non-Human:

This seminar seeks to explore the distinctive aspects of common human experience, such as consciousness, reflection, deliberation, intention, problem-solving, conscience, volition, valuation, action initiation, etc., and to compare these aspects to both living and non-living entities (especially computers and other intelligence-based machines).  The seminar will encourage thoughtful investigation into, and discussion of, what, if anything, sets human existence apart from the rest of natural and non-natural reality.  3 Credits 


FY 100            In the Mood for Art:

In this course we will explore how art and design influence how we see, experience, and express ourselves.  We will also discuss how art affects the individual and community.  Topics will include: visual art as a tool for social, political, and environmental change; color theory and its role in advertising and textile design; the influence of architecture and interior design on daily experience; and the healing power of art therapy.  3 Credits


FY 100            Musical and Spirituality:

This course explores a variety of musical styles from Gregorian chant to American pop, all in an effort to understand what it is about music that connects us to something beyond ourselves and our perceptions.  Students will share their own experiences in music, both from the past and present, in order to demonstrate and appreciate the variety of styles that are available to us today.  3 Credits 


FY 100            Myth, Archetype & Culture:

In this course students explore the relationship between myth and contemporary culture. here, students use mythic literature as a lens for reading culture ("the good, the bad, and the ugly") and explore how culture reflects the mythic imagination and those recurrent patterns that, ever since Carl Jung and James Hillman, have been referred to as "archetypal." 3 Credits



FY 100            Puzzles & Play:

The course activities focus on students solving puzzles in multiple formats and working collaboratively to achieve goals in Adventure Education.  During all activities students will learn, practice and apply the four-step process of critical thinking outlined and described on the College Inquiry rubric.  The research and communication thread of the course will be students' consistent use and documentation of critical thinking for spatial problem solving and achieving an Adventure Education goal.  3 Credits  


FY 100 Sacred Geometry: A Mathematical and Mystical Adventure Into the Structure and Meaning of the Cosmos:

This is not your high school math course!  Together in this seminar we will discover mathematics as through we were ancient geometers.  Equipped only with compass and straightedge, we will construct our own understanding not only of mathematics but also of the world.  We will search for number, shape, and pattern in the works of nature and the works of humankind, and we will follow the sacred geometry down related roads of magic and myth, philosophy and religion, music and art; engineering and science.  3 Credits


FY 100            Sacred Stories Myth & Scripture:

This course examines the nature and use of foundational stories expressed in scriptural texts and mythologies across religious traditions, and contrasts them with the foundational stories of other cultural traditions (e.g., nations).  In other words, this is a course about the stories people base their lives on, and how and why they choose to do so.  The goal of the class is not to make students experts in any one tradition's stories, but to expose students to the function of such stories and foster and understanding of how they are important.  3 Credits 


FY 100            To Be Or Not To Be An Actor:

In this seminar, students will be introduced to drama and learn the basics of acting.  They will begin with the History of Drama starting with Dionysus and the Greeks, followed by a vocabulary unit, then the Stage and Body positions.  The students will have multiple performances throughout the semester, including a pantomime, a soliloquy, and a scene study, etc.  All performances are videotaped and transferred to their flash drives so students can write self-critiques.  Also included will be a variety of "Theatre Games," improvisations, character analyses, and the oral reading/performance of the play Proof by David Auburn.  3 Credits


FY 100            Trivial Pursuit Knowledge:

This course examines the nature and use of foundational stories expressed in scriptural texts and mythologies across religious traditions, and contrasts them with the foundational stories of other cultural traditions (e.g., nations). In other words, this is a course about the stories people base their lives on, and how and why they choose to do so. The goal of the class is not to make students experts in any one tradition stores, but to expose students to the function of such stories and foster an understanding of how they are important. 3 Credits.


FY 100            Windows On American Culture:

The American musical provides a basis for studying U.S. culture, personal identities, and social tensions.  This course will explore musicals that overtly engage with race, class, gender, and sexuality as sociopolitical dynamics.  The topics we will consider range from West Side Story's depiction of racial violence to Rent's portrayal of artists struggling on the Lower East Side.  Throughout the course, students will learn about the special methodological issues of analyzing musicals by reading libretti, listening to cast recordings, and experiencing musicals on stage and in archival videos at the Performing Arts Library. 3 Credits.


FY 100            Growing Green: Edible Gardens (LLC):

The food consumed on Wesley's campus in just one day has traveled millions of miles with the average meal traveling 1500 miles over 7 to 14 days before it reaches our plates. As fuel prices rise and climates change, the current food system is not environmentally sustainable. In this course we will research rooftop and community garden options, generate a plan for a campus garden, and present a proposal for the establishment of an edible campus garden.We will also take a closer look at sustainability practices on campus. Through this process students will refined their investigation, research, writing, and presentation skills that serve as the foundation to higher education. 3 Credits.


FY 100            Hungry for Change: Food Culture (LLC):

This course uses the behavioral arena of food and eating to examine aspects of human behavior and social organization in the United States. The course will examine various aspects of food and eating, including the cultural, biological, economic, and social determinants and consequences of patterns of eating in America. Ultimately, the course will focus on the extent to which individuals' experience of food and eating depends on one's social location, and thus will revolve around the issue of class, highlighting the ways in which ones socioeconomic status determines their eating habits.


FY 100            Mysteries of Culture (LLC):

Through study of international mysteries and crime thrillers, students will explore the distinguishing characteristics of each cultures' approach to gender, race, religion, and economics as well as their historical and political past. Students enrolled in this Living-Learning Community seminar will have the opportunity to travel to London, England, during Thanksgiving break to experience another culture. 3 Credits.


FY 100            Show Me the Money (LLC):

This course provides a semester-long introduction to the college academic experience including emphasis on development of inquiry and communication skills. Specifically, this course delves into what it means to be a college student and participant in today's economy. 3 Credits. 


FY 100            To Boldly Go: Science Fiction from Frankenstein to Star Wars

Through study of science fiction in various forms, including written texts, films, and television shows, students will gain an understanding of, as appropriate, mythology, man as god, war, racisim, and what it means to be human in a vast universe.  Students will explore novels and short stories by writers such as Mary Shelley, Douglas Adams, and John Scalzi; film such Jurassic Park, Star Wars, and X-Men; and television episodes from Star Trek, The Twilight Zone, and Doctor Who.