Curricular Innovations

Reimagined Curriculum

Across the CMC curriculum, members of our faculty are meeting the challenge of these unprecedented and historic times, delivering exceptional coursework in a fully online modality. Reimagined and redesigned courses feature the best of the CMC on-campus classroom — research and collaborative projects, expert speakers and world-class faculty — with innovations including at-home lab kits, newly modeled group projects and more.

The classes below represent just a few of the many new opportunities for students this fall.  Innovations have been made across the CMC experience, and we look forward to sharing our academic enhancements as the new semester approaches.

We hope you will browse and enjoy this sampling, organized by academic department, and, below, by the innovation represented in each course offering.

Stay tuned!

Doubling
Down on CMC

Explore New Classes for Fall 2020

The problems we face in the world today call on the full power of our liberal arts minds to contribute responsive, effective solutions. In these ways, now more than ever, we draw on the core values that distinguish CMC, the singular strengths that propel us forward, the learning commitments that help us persevere when it is difficult to carry on.

Innovation

Tutorials

Many courses have adopted small group, tutorial approaches to teaching. You will get to know your faculty and fellow students really well and spend much of your time working in small groups under the tutelage of your professor. Below are just some examples: they differ in approach but all involve deep personal interaction in very small groups.  
 
 

Professor Mary Evans  
Principles of Economic Analysis  
While lectures will remain a component as the course moves online, part of the live course time will be run as a tutorial with Prof. Mary Evans walking students through multiple examples and practice scenarios. The course will also make use of asynchronous materials in the form of pre-recorded material, videos and podcasts, and online economics games/exercises using MobLab.  

Professor Daniel Michon 
Freshman Humanities Seminar: Religion and Modernity  
Prof. Daniel Michon will deploy Camtasia and OneNote for readings and annotations in his First-Year Humanities Seminar. Students will develop questions and share them via OneNote. Prof. Michon plans to host two class sessions to go over readings and discuss them together. 

Professor Bethany Caulkins 
Quantum Chemistry 
Prof. Bethany Caulkins will use both asynchronous and synchronous techniques. Students will prepare for Zoom class meetings asynchronously by watching short pre-recorded video lectures anytime that is convenient for them before the class meeting. The class will be split into two groups for Zoom meetings, with 12 people in each group. Prof. Caulkins will meet with each group on both Tuesday and Thursday synchronously for 45 minutes during the normally scheduled class time, 9:15 – 10:30 am PT. This time will be used for group problem solving and for people to ask any questions they may have on the material presented in the lectures. We will use breakout rooms so students can work on the problem-solving activity for the day with their peers, building a sense of community while having easy access to ask questions. By taking advantage of shared screen and electronic white board technology, students will be able to see me clearly and legibly work through problems in real-time.    

Professor Hilary Appel and Professor Jennifer Taw 
Race, Gender, and Identity in International Relations 

Professors Hilary Appel and Jennifer Taw are offering a by-application course that has three components. (1) Students will attend seminar discussions and guest lectures on issues of race, gender, and identity in the study, practice, and institutions of international relations. (2) They will also be assigned to a mentor, a 5C alum who can speak to them about real world experiences with these issues. (3) Each student will work independently or in a small group on a project they develop with their faculty reader. Students will be exposed to broad issues of race, gender, and/or identity in International Relations; deepen their overall understanding of the discipline and the applications of its tenets and theories; develop expertise on a select issue within the topic area; hone their research, analysis, and writing skills; be introduced to the nexus of academia and policy; and receive support and advice from practitioners. 

Professor Angela Vossmeyer 
Econometrics 
Prof. Angela Vossmeyer is dividing her class into teams, who participate in data science and statistics competitions to derive new models for out-of-sample prediction. She is constructing a large repository of datasets to allow students to apply the econometric models from class to data and topics of their choice (spanning labor, finance, health, crime, trade, macro, voting, etc., topics). 

Professor Jennifer Feitosa, director of the METRICS Lab 
Statistics for Psychologists 
Prof. Jennifer Feitosa teaches Statistics and will utilize a flipped classroom design to provide more resources to students and spend more time on complex problem-solving. Prof. Feitosa will incorporate small group exercises to encourage peer learning and community building and draw upon continuous monitoring to assess learning outcomes, challenges, and overall reactions to the course. Specifically, Prof. Feitosa plans to schedule informal learning opportunities, utilize Zoom polls, and hold extra office hours for one-on-one meetings.  

Professor Terril Jones 
The Politics and Craft of International Journalism 
The Politics and Craft of International Journalism will bring in analyst and journalist guest speakers for story-writing assignments that delve into international dimensions of the U.S. presidential election and the Coronavirus crisis. Two experts and one journalist will speak to the class for a story assignment on Black Lives Matter and police brutality issues. Prof. Terril Jones will also host numerous newsmakers and subject experts, who will speak on international political topics. The class will use Zoom breakout rooms in new exercises: divide the class into groups, have them do the same exercise and produce short write-ups, then compare and assess them. Students will gain experience interviewing news sources and writing stories on a variety of topics. 

Professor Sarah Cannon 
Discrete Mathematics 
In Prof. Sarah Cannon’s Discrete Mathematics course, she plans to employ a partially flipped classroom. Students will watch a short video before class (likely on Edpuzzle, so they have to answer questions as they go along to make sure they’re engaged), and then class time will be spent working through examples first as a class and then in breakout groups.  She is also considering adding an extra optional problem session on Fridays where students can meet and get started on next week’s homework together – since working on homework with classmates is one of the best ways to learn, and meeting classmates will be hard virtually, she is hoping that this will help get some of those homework collaborations started. 

Professor Andrew Finley 
Introduction to Accounting 
Prof. Andrew Finley will flip his two Introduction to Accounting courses: Students will prepare for class sessions by watching video content asynchronously and taking notes in a workbook template he provides. That will free up class sessions for more student-centered learning strategies, such as discussions and problem-based learning. To facilitate active learning in a remote environment, students will work on exercises in small groups using a real-time editing platform, enabling him to monitor student progress and provide timely feedback during class sessions. Students will go over some more challenging problem sets together as a class. 

Professor Laura Grant 
Public Economics 
Prof. Laura Grant’s course will meet virtually in small groups to discuss progress and clarify goals as they develop “reference cards”—short but sophisticated tools that explain core concepts of public economics through (1) Definition, (2) Intuition, (3) Mathematical/technical, (4) Graphical, (5) Real-world aspects, and (6) Practice questions. 

Research

Research is more central than ever. New courses have been created, and many existing courses have been modified, that give students the opportunity to dig deeply into the fascinating and complicated challenges of our time. 

Professor Manfred Keil 
The Coronavirus Recession in Historical Perspective: Business Cycle Theory and Policy 
Prof. Manfred Keil will lead a new research seminar on The Coronavirus Recession in Historical Perspective: Business Cycle Theory and Policy. Students will work in small groups to study business cycles past and present while acquiring sophisticated mathematical, statistical, and economic models in the process. 

Professor Peter Uvin 
Alt Perspectives on Development 
Students in Prof. Peter Uvin’s new course Alt Perspectives on Development will identify a conception and practice of development that is non-dominant at the international level—Buddhism or Islam and development, for example, or development as happiness—and prepare a virtual class for their peers, complete with asynchronous materials and synchronous discussion prompts.   

Professor Tamara Venit-Shelton 
Human Health and Disease in American History 
In her fall course, Human Health and Disease in American History, Prof. Tamara Venit-Shelton gives students the opportunity to work with Covid19@CMC, a program to document and archive the lived experience of the Covid-19 pandemic among the CMC community. Students will work closely with faculty from the History Department; conduct interviews with other students, alumni, faculty, and staff; and collect materials that will become part of a digital archive, housed by Special Collections at the Claremont Colleges Library. Students can either participate in the project for course credit or for a stipend if selected as a Humanities Lab Fellow through the Gould Center. 

Professor Rima Basu  
Belief, Evidence, and Agency  
This is the advanced seminar for philosophy majors. The goal of this class is to both provide the theoretical background in an area of philosophy and to prepare students to make their own original contribution to that area of philosophy through a final research paper. This serves as training for writing a thesis.  

Prof. Basu will host a guest speaker approximately every week to visit the class to workshop new work, as well as discuss with students the writing and research process. These discussions will demystify that process, allowing students to see work that’s in development (rather than just polished journal articles), and speak to the authors they read. In addition, students will also be able to gauge hot topics in the field and focus on those where themselves can make contributions.    

Professor Zhaohua Irene Tang 
Cell Cycle, Diseases and Aging 
In her Cell Cycle, Diseases and Aging course, Professor Irene Tang will foster collaborative learning and community building. Students will explore the principles of cell cycle regulation and apply the concepts to the mechanisms of cancer development and premature aging.  Students will play active roles in the learning process, including problem-based discussion of topics in the field, related research papers, and questions relevant to the real world.  Lecture materials, readings, and study/discussion questions will be provided for students to study asynchronously before Zoom meetings. The class time will be used for lecture, discussion, and activities to facilitate problem-based learning. 

Professor Lars Schmitz 
Vertebrate Anatomy  
The labs will take the form of an authentic research experience, centered on the function and evolution of anatomical structures. Lab activities will involve the following components: generating hypotheses, literature search, collecting data, curating data, in depth description of anatomical structures, visualization of data (in R), statistical analyses (in R) to test hypotheses, writing, and figure preparation (Illustrator). Work will be performed in a variety of different formats: individually, small groups, everyone together, for a total of 4 hrs per week, with frequent check-ins throughout the week as needed. The goal is to submit our work to a peer-reviewed journal, with all of you as co-authors. 

Expert Guest Speakers

Many courses are bringing in more speakers. Top scholars in philosophy and history will discuss their current research with students, sharing draft papers for feedback. Policymakers and senior executives from the private sector will answer the students’ questions in economics classes. 

Professor Kevin Moffett 
Freshman Writing Seminar: Creative Nonfiction 
Prof. Kevin Moffett will use Anna Deavere Smith’s Twilight: Los Angeles, 1992 as a teaching model for students to conduct their own oral histories, which may focus on how they and those around them have navigated the current epidemic. He will encourage students to find diverse voices and perspectives from their home communities, as well as their college experiences. A playwright and screenwriter will be invited to class to share their perspectives on writing and the challenges posed by adaptation and recounting other people’s stories. 

Professor Jennifer Feitosa, director of the METRICS Lab 
Organizational Psychology (Spring)  
In Prof. Jennifer Feitosa’s Organizational Psychology class, she will organize a virtual panel of industrial and organizational psychologists in the field to discuss their careers. In addition, Prof. Feitosa will manage a team-applied project to diagnose specific organizations. Students have the opportunity to collect data, evaluate organization’s needs, and provide real-world recommendations to address the challenges they are facing. This applied project is a comprehensive demonstration of the knowledge students learned in the course, including teamwork and translation of science. 

Professor Jeffrey Flory 
Development Economics 
Prof. Jeffrey Flory added an interactive project to his Development Economics course, “enabling students to actually make small loans (“microcredit”) to the poor in the developing world, integrated with the themes and concepts and questions that we will be studying throughout the fall semester.” To do this, Prof. Flory will use the online lending platform kiva.org. In addition, Prof. Flory will bring in guest speakers from government organizations, multilateral international institutions such as the World Bank, scholars/researchers from other universities.   

Professor Shana Levin 
Directed Research in Psychology 
Confronting Prejudice and Discrimination: Psychology Research in Action 
Psychology Professor Shana Levin’s new directed research course, Confronting Prejudice and Discrimination: Psychology Research in Action, helps students become well-versed in the theory, research, and practice of confronting prejudice and discrimination. Students will debate key findings in the literature, and design their own research proposal to test novel research questions. Throughout the semester, Prof. Levin will discuss the important new book Confronting Prejudice and Discrimination: The Science of Changing Minds and Behaviors (Mallett & Monteith, Eds., 2019). 

Professor Nicholas Warner 
Art and Politics in the Hollywood Western 
Art and Politics in the Hollywood Western will include virtual class visits by film specialists, as well as collaborative student work and the use of asynchronous audio-visual materials to supplement class discussion. 

Professor Bassam Frangieh 
Introductory Modern Standard Arabic 
Prof. Bassam Frangieh will invite guest speakers from the region or currently residing outside of the Arab world. Many have spent years living and working in the Middle East. Students will learn Arabic and major aspects of the Arabic morphology, syntax, and grammar through conversations and engaging training. Once the Arabic basic elements are covered, classic Arabic films, songs, iconic music videos, and Qur`anic recitations will be screened and discussed via Zoom. Guest speakers will include religious practitioners, poets, novelists, and media anchors—thus the Arabic culture is reflected through the language. The classes are dynamic, engaging, and interesting. 

Professor Amy Kind 
Experience 
Prof. Amy Kind introduces a variety of new components to her Experience class. Several of the authors whose articles students read will serve as virtual guest speakers during the weekly class meetings.  Outside of those meetings, students will be creating vlogs and group projects, and will be offered the opportunity to develop and submit a creative project in place of a final paper. 

Role-playing and Simulations

Professors in mathematics, economics, and philosophy all brought games into their classes. Role-playing and simulations will be part of courses in religious studies, international relations, philosophy, and history.

Professor Gary Gilbert 
Israel, Zionism and the Jewish States
Prof. Gary Gilbert will invite students to participate in a series of simulations based on actual historical events, such as The First Zionist Congress and the political and military deliberations that led up to 1967 (Six Day) War.  Based on a reading of publicly available archival materials, students will recreate these seminal moments in the history of Israel.  “The decision-making exercises are designed to give everyone a better sense of the important figures in these discussions, their respective positions, and the complex issues they addressed,” Gilbert said.

Collaborative Teamwork

Many courses have students work in teams, applying what they learned from synchronous or asynchronous lectures together, with the professor virtually moving between groups.

Professor David Bjerk 
Economics of Poverty, Inequality, and Discrimination
Prof. Dave Bjerk will hold live lecture/discussion classes with each section via Zoom. There will be virtual visits from authors read in class presenting new research related to discrimination in policing. Several collaborative activities will take place, including joint problem sets and student led discussions on innovations in education in high poverty environments for the last few class sessions.

Professor Gary Gilbert 
Jewish Civilizations
Student teams will develop content for a website on Medieval and modern Jewish communities around the world.  Each team will be assigned to a specific location of long-standing importance in Jewish history (e.g., Barcelona, Berlin, Prague, Vilna, Warsaw, Krakow, Amsterdam, New York, Los Angeles, Tel Aviv).  The website will trace the history of a particular Jewish community, provide short biographies on important communal figures, and describe the important communal institutions and buildings.  “Students will be required to engage not only with general Jewish ideas and practices,” said Gilbert, “but with specific Jewish lives and how those lives negotiated not only the intricacies of Jewish tradition, but also the broader political and social realms in which they lived.”

Professor Albert L. Park 
Modern Korean History
Professor Park will structure his course around weekly collaborate projects to connect historical issues to contemporary affairs in modern Korea. With background information from weekly lectures, students in groups of three will work together on a joint project covering political, economic, social or cultural issues that they will present to the entire class. Examples of collaborative projects include teams drawing up plans on how to de-nuclearize the Korean peninsula, designing ways to reunify North and South Korea and creating their own K-Pop group to learn about the cultural dynamics of contemporary South Korea.

Professor Ananda Ganguly 
Strategic Cost Management
The class will be mainly online, with flexibility to accommodate in-person activity if feasible.  Either way, students will receive instructional videos prior to each day’s class, and prepare for class by watching these videos and answering online questions based on them.  In class, breakout groups of 3-5 students (on Zoom or in person) will perform simulated real-life tasks that organizations face.  These class activities will deal with tasks such as measuring and controlling an organization’s costs, deciding on optimal mixes of products or services that the organization should bring to market, deciding whether or not to shut down a department or product line, and analyzing causes when costs or profit numbers differ from budgets.  Professor Ganguly will cycle from group to group providing suggestions and “consulting” advice.  Students will meet with the professor outside of class in coffee-room chats weekly throughout the semester to reflect, discuss and extend.

New Software Tools

Many professors have been scouring the market for new software tools that fit the needs of their courses and teaching styles, to ensure that students achieve the goals for the course in more engaging and effective ways.

Professor Mark Huber 
Probability
Prof. Mark Huber writes that “One tool I will be using in my classes is Whiteboard.fi.  This is the modern-day computer equivalent of the historic school slate board.  It gives each participant in the class a small whiteboard that they can type or draw upon.  It is perfect for mathematics courses where it is necessary to draw figures to explain one’s answer. Students can see their own board and mine. As the instructor, I can see everyone’s boards in order to better gauge how much of the class is following the lesson.”

In his Probability class, Prof. Huber writes, ”it is very helpful to get a tactile feel for the mathematics through the use of dice or playing cards.  Fortunately, the gamers of the world have long been building software systems to play games remotely. I will be using one such system, roll20.net, which allows students to connect and play games. With this software, it is possible for an entire class of students to see dice being thrown and cards being dealt in ways that help students internalize probabilistic facts. As the class progresses, we will move to more advanced simulation using R Studio, modern software for data science that is widely used in the field today.”

Professor Gretchen Edwalds-Gilbert 
Molecular Biology
Prof. Gretchen Edwalds-Gilbert will host virtual guest lectures from scientists at labs, in industry and academia throughout her Molecular Biology course this fall. In addition, students will annotate articles for discussion using the platform Perusall prior to meeting. Class time will be used for group discussion of the review and research articles with an emphasis on the data figures, which will be shared on screen. We will use breakout rooms so students can discuss article annotations with their peers, building a sense of community while being able to consult directly with Prof. Edwalds-Gilbert.

Professor James Taylor  
Accounting for Decision Making
Prof. James Taylor will be using a new adaptive, predictive technology to enhance each student’s learning experiences.  The ebook for this course, Financial Accounting, by Libby 10e, is an adaptive reading experience. Students will spend the majority of time studying the material least familiar with and will not spend extra time on material already known.  Each class period will be equally divided between lecture, student discussion and problem solving.

Using Technology for Fitness

Our great PE faculty will also be using technology to ensure that you stay physically active in moderate to intense ways. 

Professor Gina Oaks Garcia 
HIIT: High Intensity Interval Training
Our great PE faculty will also use technology smartly. Gina Oaks Garcia writes about her HIIT course: “The online model of my High Intensity Interval training classes will consist of mostly body weight movement exercises. Some of the workouts can be used with light weights if a student chooses to implement weight or has access to them. We will do a high amount of reps in short amounts of time to get the heart rate up and cardiovascular endurance going. We rest as needed however get right back into action. The movements are based off of a timer and has built in rest periods throughout the workouts. You will be sweaty and feel amazing once you conclude each workout. The workouts will be done in a small area through multiple platforms. Zoom will be the most used platform. The students will be receiving the workouts prior to class starting.” Many PE classes will follow this model. Take care of your body. 

Other Innovations

Professors have taken elements of their courses and thought about them in new ways. Here are a few more examples:

Professor Samuel Nelson 
Multivariable Calculus
In Prof. Samuel Nelson’s Multivariable Calculus classes this Fall, traditional exams will be replaced with essays, in which students select and write their own explanations and examples of key course concepts. This shifts the focus away from rote memorization, encouraging students to take ownership of the concepts and offers the chance to be creative in showing their understanding of mathematical concepts.

Professor Robert Valenza 
Calculus 
Abstract Algebra
Legendary professor Robert Valenza has brought the joy of learning Calculus to thousands of students. He describes his “non-innovative innovation” through the use of technology: “The major initiative in my courses–Math 30 (Calculus I) and Math 171 (Abstract Algebra)–is to bring about the experience of a real classroom taught in my usual style for my remote students. Both courses are naturally and, for the most part, necessarily lectures given at a blackboard. To preserve this, our IT staff is installing a tracking camera and two special displays in Davidson Hall so that I can develop the mathematics on the boards, with the students taking notes and asking questions, as usual. One of the displays will show all of the students attending remotely, allowing me to read their faces and thus to anticipate questions and points that need reinforcement; the other will show a view of what the remote attendees are seeing, so that I can be sure that the blackboard material is properly visible. I expect that this intensely technological approach to some thoroughly vetted course designs will allow me to teach in what is for me the most direct and effective mode: live lecture with immediate student participation.”

Professor Florian Madison 
Intermediate Macroeconomics
Topics range from empirical measurement of key economic variables to static and dynamic theoretical equilibrium models analyzing long-run economic growth and short-run fluctuations. Furthermore, students will explore the effects of macroeconomic policy, distinguishing between fiscal and monetary interventions. To tackle the geographical challenges of remote learning, Prof. Madison will teach three sections spread throughout the day and allow students in inconvenient time zones to join whichever section they prefer, even if enrolled in a different section. He also firmly believes in the need to create a real community of learners. To that effect, he will have an online introduction meeting for all students enrolled in his classes to get to know each other, followed by two follow-up meetings during the semester to discuss the progress and allow students to provide feedback on the instruction and what can be improved. He will hold weekly online office hours for students off-campus in a small group tutorial format and is available for individual meetings throughout the semester at any time.

Projects

Some professors have organized significant parts of their course around a major project. The projects will engage students individually or in teams to collaborate on creating a product, analyzing data, or finding solutions to problems.

Professor Mary Evans and Professor Branwen Williams 
Modeling Climate Change through Economic and Natural Science Lenses
Prof. Mary Evans (an environmental economist) and Prof. Branwen Williams (an environmental scientist in the Keck Science Department) will teach a new course, “Modeling Climate Change through Economic and Natural Science Lenses.” Guest speakers working on various dimensions of climate change will join the course live several times during the semester. The course will also offer hands-on experience in gathering, evaluating and interpreting various types of climate change data (e.g., energy use, temperature).  Asynchronous course materials include academic and popular press readings as well as TED Talks, other videos and podcasts.

Professor Tamara Venit-Shelton 
The American West
Students enrolled in Prof. Venit-Shelton’s The American West will consult with the Autry Museum of the American West on the redesign of their signature gallery, “The Imagined West.” Students will work with curators at the Autry to understand the museum’s needs, to research objects for display, and to construct and evaluate prototypes.

Professor Kathleen Purvis-Roberts 
Environmental Chemistry
Prof. Kathleen Purvis-Roberts’s Environmental Chemistry has a most exciting project this year. “In addition to learning about how chemistry is involved in air, water, and soil systems and the generation of different types of energy, we are going to work on a collaborative project with students at the King Mongkut’s University of Technology Thonburi (KMUTT) in Bangkok. A Khlong (canal) system in Bangkok historically was used for transportation and floating markets. Many of these canals have been filled in, but the Thornburi side of Bangkok still has larger Khlongs and a mixture of housing and agricultural land surrounding them. The Thai government is interested in assessing the environmental condition of the waterways and developing solutions to revitalize the area. Citizen scientists in Bangkok are going to take water quality, air quality, weather and canal usage (how many boats go by certain locations and how many cyclist/pedestrians use the paths that exist on some parts of the canals) measurements. Claremont Colleges and KMUTT students will work together to analyze the data and develop creative ways to present their findings to the public and government officials. During the semester, we will also have presentations about environmental issues in the Asia-Pacific by faculty in the region.”

Professor Kevin Moffett 
Freshman Writing Seminar: Creative Nonfiction
Prof. Kevin Moffett will use Anna Deavere Smith’s Twilight: Los Angeles, 1992 as a teaching model for students to conduct their own oral histories, which may focus on how they and those around them have navigated the current epidemic. He will encourage students to find diverse voices and perspectives from their home communities, as well as their college experiences. A playwright and screenwriter will be invited to class to share their perspectives on writing and the challenges posed by adaptation and recounting other people’s stories.

Professor Jeffrey Flory 
Development Economics
Prof. Jeffrey Flory added an interactive project to his Development Economics course, “enabling students to actually make small loans (“microcredit”) to the poor in the developing world, integrated with the themes and concepts and questions that we will be studying throughout the fall semester.” To do this, Prof. Flory will use the online lending platform kiva.org. In addition, Prof. Flory will bring in guest speakers from government organizations, multilateral international institutions such as the World Bank, scholars/researchers from other universities.

Professor Jeho Park  
Advanced Projects in Data Science
Our “Advanced Projects in Data Science” course, taught by Prof. Jeho Park together with multiple faculty, is a project-based course that allows teams of students to experience with real-world problems in data science. Leveraging and developing computational, statistical, and domain expertise, students work directly with industry clients (businesses, non-profit agencies, and public agencies) for their data project in a remote working environment. Students will also develop soft skills that are often not fully utilized in traditional courses, such as professional communication and writing, project management, teamwork, and ethics in data science, through a series of virtual client meetings and online seminars/workshops.

Note: Advanced Projects in Data Science (DS180) serves as the capstone experience for the Data Science Major and Data Science Sequence.

Professor Zachary Courser and Professor Eric Helland
Policy Lab
Profs. Zachary Courser and Eric Helland co-teach Policy Lab. For the fall term they plan an in-class project on mail-in balloting and election reform. “We anticipate a busy and productive semester of policy research and learning in our virtual classroom.”

“Our fully-online research and teaching involves frequent group and client meetings, policy writing projects, and applications of data science. We have engaged students in creating survey instruments, conducting interviews with former congresspersons, creating datasets, and writing policy memos,” they say.

This semester the in-class project will be the launch of a year-long collaboration with the American Enterprise Institute on elections reform. Students and faculty will perform an analysis of state and federal laws concerning disrupted elections, working toward a policy report that will outline current state law, federal authority, and present policy alternatives based on the findings. We hope to inform congressional action on the development of a federal elections disruption policy. During the semester Lab Managers and research assistants will also continue work with CREW and longtime partner the RAND Institute.”

Professor Heather Ferguson
Muhammad to the Mongols
In a global context in which travel is restricted, we will use the discipline of History to construct a time capsule for the early history of Islam and collaboratively develop historical characters for each key development in the Middle East from the 6th to the 14th century. Students will first enter a world before Islam, when Roman and Persian empires vied for control of the Arabian Peninsula. We will then create characters who: assess whether to rebel against the status quo and join the prophetic revolution of Muhammad; debate which leader to follow after Muhammad’s death; strategize the military campaigns that will expand this movement as far as the Iberian Peninsula and along old trading routes into Central Asia; experience the gendered, religious, social and racial hierarchies that develop in booming urban centers such as Baghdad, Cairo, Qayrawan, and Samarkand; journey along trade and pilgrimage routes as diplomats, judges, and preachers; release pamphlets arguing for the “correct” method for using the Qur’an as the basis of a legal code; join volatile intellectual debates about what it means to be a Muslim in different historical moments and whether Sufism or philosophy are heretical methods or paths toward truth; fight for survival as invaders from the land beyond the sea (crusaders) redefine the landscape; and strive to explain death and famine as a plague engulfs the then-known world. These journeys across a historical landscape will culminate in final projects that present a time capsule capable of demonstrating that the history of Islam actually contains many histories of “Islams.” These time capsules will be designed for the children of the future, and contain visual, textual, and material objects that will counter the race-based Islamophobia that dominates print and media records and serve as an alternative “archive” of sources to guide future journeys into the past.

Video Production

For many faculty, projects involve video production—a great tool to use in these days of remote communication.

Professor Norman Valencia 
Intermediate Portuguese
Students will travel to Brazil with Prof. Norman Valencia as their guide via YouTube videos from vloggers, travel shows, and newscasts. Materials, in original Portuguese language, will help students with different accents and cultural expressions from a diversity of regions in Brazil. By the end of the class, students will produce their own videos in Portuguese and use simple video editing tools on a Brazilian cultural expression of their preference.

Professor Christine Crockett 
Freshman Writing Seminar: The American Dream
Prof. Christine Crockett will take advantage of digital media by asking students to submit multimedia assignments, including a collaborative website project. Students will create shared expectations for a virtual learning environment and imagine how we all will engage in creative and exciting ways while we are apart. This includes creating virtual spaces for interaction and engagement “outside” of class where ideas and questions might emerge organically, just as they do when we are in person.

Professor Sarah Sarzynski 
The Amazon
In Prof. Sarah Sarzynski’s course The Amazon, students examine how certain narratives about Amazonia hold enduring power in the Western World, such as exploration tales of El Dorado and the Amazon as a “green hell.” To deeply engage with the medium of film, students produce their own short films using a simple video-editing program (WeVideo).  The introduction to such technology not only allows students to analyze racialized and gendered narratives of Amazonia in Hollywood and European cinema, but also provides students with a useful communications skill for other courses or contexts.

In the second half of the course, students focus on understanding Amazonia from within, employing indigenous methodologies to develop research proposals in small groups for oral history projects with indigenous peoples about COVID-19.  In creating such project proposals, students learn about the histories of exploitation of the Amazon and its people, including resource extraction (rubber industry, mining), development projects (dams, highways and cattle ranching), and prior indigenous experiences with Western diseases and vaccines.”

Professor Chiu-Yen Kao 
Linear Algebra with Computing 
Image Processing
In Prof. Chiu-Yen Kao’s courses (Linear Algebra with Computing and Image Processing) students tailor their final projects based on their interests, learn approaches to solve math problems, and make a short simulation movie. Instead of the final exam, there will be a final presentation where students discuss final projects and movies.

Connecting to the World Around Us

Some courses at CMC have been reimagined to connect with the world around us and give you the tools to analyze, to problem solve, and to lead through uncertainty and change.

Professor Albert L. Park 
Design Activism
Professor Park will structure the course as a cross-disciplinary investigation on the intersection between design and activism in global history. Every week features hands-on weekly design projects where teams work together to design a solution to political, social, economic and cultural issues. Examples of assignments for weekly design projects include using Legos to design and build sustainable and socially just buildings, using spray paints to express political messages, employing craft materials to discuss issues related to gender discrimination and carrying out landscape architecture through designs that foster harmony between the human and non-human beings.

Professor Jennifer Feitosa, director of the METRICS Lab
Diverse Teams at Work Seminar (Spring)
In her Diverse Teams seminar, Prof. Feitosa will employ collaborative software tools and video production apps to forge and maintain connections with students. She has already leveraged from these tools when CMC went virtual for the Spring semester. In addition, students will collaborate virtually with students from other schools in an effort to mirror how teams function in the real world. She will draw from her research in team and diversity science to implement strategies throughout the course (e.g., peer feedback, parsing out cultural differences, etc.)

Professor Lisa Koch 
Introduction to International Politics
Prof. Lisa Koch will delve into the most important hot-button issues of today—such as the border dispute between China and India, and tensions between Iran and the U.S.—in her Introduction to International Politics course. She will explore topics such as international trade during the pandemic, the global environment, the role of race in international relations, and the policy tools countries use to pursue their interests. Students will work with their peers, creating a micro-community of scholars. The course concludes with a live simulation: students will be immersed in a fictionalized version of a real-world international crisis and use what they’ve learned during the semester to try to achieve their country’s goals.

Professor Shana Levin 
Directed Research in Psychology
Confronting Prejudice and Discrimination: Psychology Research in Action
Psychology Professor Shana Levin’s new directed research course, Confronting Prejudice and Discrimination: Psychology Research in Action, helps students become well-versed in the theory, research, and practice of confronting prejudice and discrimination. Students will debate key findings in the literature, and design their own research proposal to test novel research questions. Throughout the semester, Prof. Levin will discuss the important new book Confronting Prejudice and Discrimination: The Science of Changing Minds and Behaviors (Mallett & Monteith, Eds., 2019).

Current Issues

Faculty have developed brand new courses that engage this important moment in our history. Others have added new foci to existing courses.  Below are some of the new offerings, covering race, inequality, disease, and the environment. CMC has many more courses that deal with these issues from a variety of perspectives—economic analysis, policy making, political theory with a focus on freedom and responsibility, history, or forensic psychology. Challenge yourself and take courses from different disciplines and political perspectives.

Professor Wendy Lower, director of the Mgrublian Center for Human Rights
Racism Today and Human Rights Abuses, Historical Dimensions and Redress.

Prof. Wendy Lower, director of the Mgrublian Center for Human Rights, will teach a new course, Racism Today and Human Rights Abuses, Historical Dimensions and Redress. In this course, students will develop a deeper historical knowledge of the ideas and practices of racism in order to better understand the challenges facing people of color around the world and especially black communities in America today. They will have the opportunity to directly apply this knowledge toward possible redress and reforms. In addition to weekly readings and discussions on the history of racial violence and injustice, students will be divided into research teams assigned to collect data for current legal investigations of police brutality, and to present research on historical crimes that have not been redressed such as slavery, the pattern of race riots (massacres) in Atlanta, Tulsa, Harlem, Detroit, Chicago, and the 2020 response to the murder of George Floyd.

With the additional involvement of human rights lawyers affiliated with the Mgrublian Center, students will learn about qualified immunity, bodycam regulations and other hindrances to exposing and prosecuting violators. Campaigns led by BLM and the Innocence Project on the prison-industrial complex and other forms of institutionalized racism will be evaluated and students will be encouraged to analyze individual prisoner cases. As part of this investigative approach to contemporary events, students will also virtually meet and interview local and prominent witnesses, such as the eminent black photojournalist Eli Reed.

Professor Derik Smith 
African American Poetry / An Inside-Out Course
African American poetry will connect students from CMC with incarcerated students at the nearby California Rehabilitation Center (CRC). Video-conferencing technology will bring CMC students inside a prison classroom in this first-of-its-kind course. Few students in the country—or the world—have participated in an endeavor like this. Through reading, writing, and discussions and performances held in virtual-space, the course introduces CMC and CRC students to some of the most influential literary and vernacular poetry emerging from the African American cultural context. For the most part, these works will be considered in relation to the historical moments in which they were produced. This historical approach will enable class discussions to focus on the way in which Black poetics has chronicled, reflected, and contributed to African Americans’ varied, vexed relation to the “American project.” Attention to history will also lead students to consider the intimate connection between the aesthetic choices of African American poets and the evolving legal, economic, and social statuses of Black people in America.

Professor Daniel Livesay 
Slavery: A World History / An Inside-Out Course
This virtual course is part of a pathbreaking effort to continue education justice efforts in the wake of the COVID pandemic. The course focuses on the history of slavery from the ancient world to the present, with a particular focus on the transatlantic slave trade from Africa, and its impact on the Americas.  This course is a component of the Inside-Out program, which brings students attending traditional colleges and universities together with individuals who are pursuing college degrees while serving prison sentences.  Both groups will collaborate to develop projects that investigate and explore issues of modern-day slavery across the globe.  Inside Students will bring their own experiences and research from time spent in prison, while outside students will bring in academic research tools, to build case studies over a multi-week period that uncover the ongoing struggle against bondage.  This class is one of the first four virtual Inside-Out courses that has ever been taught.

Professor Terril Jones 
The Politics and Craft of International Journalism
The Politics and Craft of International Journalism will bring in analyst and journalist guest speakers for story-writing assignments that delve into international dimensions of the U.S. presidential election and the Coronavirus crisis. Two experts and one journalist will speak to the class for a story assignment on Black Lives Matter and police brutality issues. Prof. Terril Jones will also host numerous newsmakers and subject experts, who will speak on international political topics. The class will use Zoom breakout rooms in new exercises: divide the class into groups, have them do the same exercise and produce short write-ups, then compare and assess them. Students will gain experience interviewing news sources and writing stories on a variety of topics.

Professor Hilary Appel and Professor Jennifer Taw
Race, Gender, and Identity in International Relations
Professors Hilary Appel and Jennifer Taw are offering a by-application course that has three components. (1) Students will attend seminar discussions and guest lectures on issues of race, gender, and identity in the study, practice, and institutions of international relations. (2) They will also be assigned to a mentor, a 5C alum who can speak to them about real world experiences with these issues. (3) Each student will work independently or in a small group on a project they develop with their faculty reader. Students will be exposed to broad issues of race, gender, and/or identity in International Relations; deepen their overall understanding of the discipline and the applications of its tenets and theories; develop expertise on a select issue within the topic area; hone their research, analysis, and writing skills; be introduced to the nexus of academia and policy; and receive support and advice from practitioners.

Professor Frederick Lynch 
Inequality, Politics and Public Policy
This course will shift smoothly to online format to study the most important issue of our time: the changing landscape of economic, political and social inequalities and political and policy efforts to reduce them. Major topics include:  concentration of wealth and power, institutional racism, sexism and white privilege, rapidly changing class and occupational structures, shifting patterns of social mobility, immigration and globalization.  New emphases on how Silicon Valley, technological change, and the COVID-19 pandemic have magnified major societal divides. Policy areas will include: redistribution through taxation, safety-net programs (including “Obamacare”), and efforts to sustain the middle classes (work-family balance issues), anti-poverty policies and affirmative action/diversity programs.  Constantly updated Sakai-based readings, documentaries, data, charts and graphics will be presented and discussed via Zoom as they would be via the classroom computer screen. Guest speakers will address campus diversity climates, California’s new affirmative-action ballot proposition, and career strategies.

Professor Seth Lobis 
Freshman Writing Seminar: Shakespeare and Otherness
Prof. Seth Lobis revised his FWS, which is now called “Shakespeare and Otherness,” and will explore Shakespeare’s constructions of authority, identity, and otherness (in terms of race, religion, gender, and sexuality–as well as language, culture, society, and geography).

Professor Andrew Sinclair 
Introduction to American Politics 
Introduction to American Politics, students will focus their final papers on the strategic choices available to one of the two major American political parties to navigate the environment defined by the new election results.  This assignment will build off a semester-long exercise in bringing the technology of 1800 and 2020 together: writing letters to intellectual collaborators (in the fashion of John Adams, “to explain ourselves to each other”) about politics, and then reflecting on them in small online conversations.   As my teaching assignments and research work are very closely connected, I am looking forward to sharing with my students ongoing work on these issues.  I am planning on using “special sessions” – lectures not tied to the sequence of readings in the course – to give students a sense of the frontiers of academic inquiry.  For example, I am currently working on a paper (coauthored with recent CMC graduates Maria Gutierrez-Vera and Maya Love) for the 2020 American Political Science Association conference on public administration and calls to “defund the police.”  “I’m also planning on implementing a survey project before the 2020 election, so I will have new data to share,” Prof. Sinclair said.

Professor Jonathan Petropoulos 
History of Weimar and Nazi Society and Culture
Prof. Jonathan Petropoulos will teach two sections of his popular History of Weimar and Nazi Society and Culture. Students will read books by major authors, whose arguments are relevant for today’s world as well, and these authors will participate in the course via Zoom. The course has been modified to deal more with matters of racism, illiberalism, demagoguery, and the aesthetics of fascism–all highly relevant in today’s world. Petropoulos’s courses always entail hundreds of slides of artworks, historical scenes, and maps (among other subjects), as well as video clips and musical segments; these will continue to be featured in the on-line iteration of the course, which will include a curated film series (classics from Weimar and Nazi Germany, plus several postwar productions, such as Cabaret from 1972). Petropoulos will also have the students read sections of his new book, Göring’s Man in Paris: The Story of a Nazi Art Plunderer and His World (due out from Yale University Press in January 2021).  “In the course, we will study the death of democracy in Weimar Germany, just before the November elections in the U.S.  I will have the students read works specifically on the descent into tyranny, including Benjamin Cart Hett’s book, The Death of Democracy: Hitler’s Rise to Power and the Downfall of the Weimar Republic,” said Prof. Petropoulos

Professor Zachary Courser and Professor Eric Helland 
Policy Lab
Profs. Zachary Courser and Eric Helland co-teach Policy Lab. For the fall term they plan an in-class project on mail-in balloting and election reform. “We anticipate a busy and productive semester of policy research and learning in our virtual classroom.”

“Our fully-online research and teaching involves frequent group and client meetings, policy writing projects, and applications of data science. We have engaged students in creating survey instruments, conducting interviews with former congresspersons, creating datasets, and writing policy memos,” they say.

This semester the in-class project will be the launch of a year-long collaboration with the American Enterprise Institute on elections reform. Students and faculty will perform an analysis of state and federal laws concerning disrupted elections, working toward a policy report that will outline current state law, federal authority, and present policy alternatives based on the findings. We hope to inform congressional action on the development of a federal elections disruption policy. During the semester Lab Managers and research assistants will also continue work with CREW and longtime partner the RAND Institute.

Professor Jon Shields
Policing the American City
In the wake of George Floyd’s vicious murder, Americans are once again debating policing. While critics see a policing system riddled with systemic racism and call for the defunding of police departments, defenders stress other problems and fear that defunding campaigns will undermine the critical work police do to protect citizens in disadvantaged communities. As a half-credit special topics course, this class will meet semi-regularly to discuss some of the best social science research on policing in American cities. In particular, the course will explore the social role of the police and the factors that shape police behavior. Answering these questions will help us think more deeply about the best way to reform American policing.

Co-curricular

We are starting to see some new co-curricular opportunities from the Research Institutes for you to consider, to add other dimensions to your CMC experience. Here are a few examples from the Kravis Lab for Social Impact.

Gemma Bulos, director of Social Innovation and Impact and Scott Sherman, senior director of Social Innovation & Co-Curricular Programming

The Kravis Lab for Social Impact offers the following programs this fall:

  • TRANSFORMING ADVERSITY INTO STRENGTH– During this global pandemic, all of us face significant unprecedented challenges. How do we grow stronger and more resilient during these uncertain stressful times? This 8-week program trains students to develop and strengthen these essential life skills. As a co-curricular initiative, students will learn and apply evidence-based tools emerging from the best scientific and academic research, as well as receive personalized mentorship, coaching, tutoring, and peer-to-peer learning. Designed specifically for 1st year students, this experiential learning opportunity helps them navigate their entry to college and set meaningful goals for their college career.
  • DEVELOPING MEANINGFUL CONNECTIONS, AND EFFECTIVE AND INFLUENTIAL COMMUNICATION – This eight-week co-curricular program trains students in key relational skills they need to succeed in college and in life. As technology, artificial intelligence and automation become more pervasive, human capacities such as social and emotional learning, empathy, and transformative communication will be key attributes students will need to be build strong relationships and be competitive in the future of work. Currently we are intending to offer this to sophomores and upperclassmen.
  • SOCIAL INNOVATION AND COMMUNITY IMPACT – This eight-week program trains students to become creative problem-solvers. This is specifically for students who want to use their education to do good in the world and finding, supporting and/or implementing innovative ideas and strategies to solve the world’s most pressing problems. Students will be applying what they learn to real-world situations, helping organizations locally and globally to maximize their social impact.
Writing

Writing—clear, correct, convincing, and, why not, beautiful—remains one of the pillars of our education, and we will make available to all students a wide range of opportunities to grow as writers: courses that are highly writing intensive, professors who give lots of feedback, support from the Center for Writing and Public Discourse. We offer additional programs to our first-year students, to support the transition to college this year. 

Center for Writing and Public Discourse 

The First-Year Writing Associates program will pair specially trained CWPD consultants (“Writing Associates”) with FHS and FWS courses. These students – selected both for their skill and experience as writers and tutors and for their interest in helping first-year students improve as writers – will provide one-on-one peer mentorship and feedback to students enrolled in FHS and FWS courses. Writing Associates represent a wide range of disciplines, including STEM fields, the Humanities, and the Social Sciences and they will receive special training enabling them to offer more targeted feedback to FHS/FWS students. Our Writing Associates will promote peer learning and interaction in a remote setting and give first-year students a lasting connection to an important academic success resource on campus. The tips and strategies they share will prepare our students write effectively in different disciplines and contexts, and those skills will be relevant in the fall and, of course, in the future. 

Appel Fellowship 

The Appel Fellowship provides first-year students up to $3500 for domestic projects and up to $5000 for international projects to support purposeful, independent experiences that culminate in a meaningful writing project. This Fellowship asks students to engage in independent writing projects that have the potential to be life-transforming. 

Science Labs

Our colleagues in the Keck Science Department spent an enormous amount of time together finding solutions to the lab quandary and creating powerful science courses that work under the current constraints. I have already given examples of innovations in science teaching earlier, and here will focus primarily on their solutions to science labs. The chemistry group in Keck Science tells us that “We are super excited to present our “at-home” general chemistry lab program.

Professor Janet Sheung and Professor Tom Dershem
Principles of Physics
Everyone has an opinion, but do you know how to turn yours into a scientific statement? Each student will be mailed a box of items, including components to build a catapult and a high precision 6-axis sensor, for performing multiple guided experiments from home, with their own hands. Working in small groups with fellow classmates during virtual class sessions, students will learn to design experiments, perform statistical analyses on their data, and communicate their results. The course will culminate with each student presenting the results of an experiment of their own design.

Professor Jason Borchert  
Vertebrate Physiology
This is the current plan for Prof. Jason Borchert’s Vertebrate Physiology. This plan is still in a work in progress; however, it will be attempted to adhere to this course description as closely as possible. Vertebrate Physiology will be a remote class that will use a mixture of synchronous and asynchronous activities. Some class periods will feature live lectures (that will also be recorded). While other classes will have pre-recorded lectures with a flipped classroom during the normal meeting time. Additionally, we will read and discuss scientific papers both in class and on discussion boards on Sakai. Labs will consist of a variety of different activities including analyzing videos, carrying out simulated experiments using software programs, basic at-home experiments (using things like heart rate and respiratory rate), performing data analyses of previously collected data, and experiments where students will establish specified parameters and direct me while I am in the lab via Zoom. Further, we will write partial and full lab reports where we will analyze and interpret data. The textbook we will be using is the Fourth Edition of Animal Physiology by Hill et al.

Professor Erin Jones 
Cell Biology
Erin Jones, who teaches Cell Biology, tells us that “in the lab you will cover a variety of techniques used to answer questions in cell biology and will focus on data analysis and experimental design. You will be part of citizen scientist projects, manage real samples analyzed remotely, and even do your own experiments using safe materials wherever you are!”

Professor Sarah Budischak 
Disease Ecology and Evolution
Prof. Sarah Budischak, who teaches Disease Ecology and Evolution, will follow a flipped classroom model with short pre-recorded videos or assigned pre-class readings. Thus, class time can be used for activities, discussions and digging deeper into the material. While synchronous participation is highly encouraged, options for asynchronous participation will be made available for those who cannot attend during class time.

What a fitting time to learn disease modeling! Computer modeling is the main focus of the lab as we delve into epidemiology, network models of transmission, and detecting differences in infection among groups (no coding experience necessary). Fortunately, Zoom breakout rooms are great for sharing code and working together so there are few curricular changes from in-person instruction. While synchronous participation is highly encouraged for immediate peer collaboration and instructor feedback, asynchronous learning will be facilitated. We’ll also use a card game to explore co-evolutionary dynamics (e.g. how virus evolution is shaped by vaccines) in a fully asynchronous lab – so students might receive a deck of cards on the mail! We will also utilize some lab time to focus on scientific communication about the pandemic (collaboration with Pitzer’s Center for Community Engagement in progress).

Professor Patrick Ferree 
Developmental Biology
Developmental Biology with Prof. Patrick Ferree will be taught online in the fall of 2020. Although the lectures and labs will be largely synchronous, they will all be recorded and posted on the course Sakai site. During Tuesday lectures we will cover foundational concepts underlying important processes in animal development. On Thursdays, we will discuss landmark scientific studies of those topics published in journal articles. The article discussions will be led by students. In the laboratory component of the course, we will perform comparative analyses of ovary and testis development using microscopic imaging data of these tissues. Working in groups, students will identify novel morphological differences between closely related insect species and propose hypotheses to explain those differences. Thus, despite the remote nature of this course, the lab activities will involve real research. Another emphasis of the lab will be the “art” of figure-building (i.e., visual portrayal of data and patterns/trends). The course will provide weekly opportunities for individual student-instructor discussions of the assigned concepts and activities.

Organized by Professor Mike Brown
Introductory Biology 
The ongoing pandemic has illuminated how important science is to solving real-world problems. Introductory Biology exposes students to broad biology fields. Introductory Biology (Bio 43) focuses on the molecular basis, as well as structural and functional units of living systems.  The course will be completely online this fall semester.

The structure of each lecture section may vary, but all will include a mix of synchronous and asynchronous learning modules. The sections will meet synchronously during regular meeting times (2 or 3 times per week).  Sections may also be broken down into subsections to facilitate active engagement with course material, while incorporating community-building and collaborative learning. For example, synchronous sections may highlight case studies, break in to small groups for problem-solving, utilize electronic white boards, or discuss lecture concepts. Each section will provide pre-recorded mini lectures, readings, activities, study questions or worksheets for students to study asynchronously before Zoom meetings. Each instructor will also hold regular office hours.  All sections will utilize the textbook Brooker’s Biology, 4th edition (both physical copies and e-books are available).

Lecture
The structure of each lecture section may vary, but all will include a mix of synchronous and asynchronous learning modules.  The sections will meet synchronously during regular meeting times (2 or 3 times per week).  Sections may also be broken down into subsections to facilitate active engagement with course material, while incorporating community-building and collaborative learning.  For example, synchronous sections may highlight case studies, break in to small groups for problem-solving, utilize electronic white boards, or discuss lecture concepts.  Each section will provide pre-recorded mini lectures, readings, activities, study questions or worksheets for students to study asynchronously before Zoom meetings.  Each instructor will also hold regular office hours.  All sections will utilize the textbook Brooker’s Biology, 4th edition (both physical copies and e-books are available).

Labs
Are you concerned about how human lung cells are affected by pollutants?  Do you wonder how dairy is metabolized?  Join the discovery team to find it out!  The online Bio43 Lab in the fall semester will create new opportunities for students to embark on an adventure for research experience.  Students as researchers will practice posing questions, reading scientific papers, analyzing data, and proposing hypotheses based on evidence.  Students will also conduct the computational planning phases for a molecular cloning project of identifying and cloning genes of interest.  To exercise team-working skills students will form groups and present their projects in a virtual symposium at the end of the semester.  Although most work can be completed asynchronously, each lab section will meet weekly (up to) 3-hour session to discuss projects with the instructors and peer mentors, as well as work with the virtual lab mates to facilitate collaborative learning.  Lab sections are scheduled each weekday at 2:30-5:30 pm PT and 7-10 pm PT Wednesday and Thursday.  We are excited to take the adventure in biological research with you in the fall!

Dr. Sadie Otte, Professor Kersey Black, Professor Joel Mackey, Professor Hou Ung, and Professor Anna Wenzel
Organic Chemistry Labs
Organic lab will be online. Laboratory Coordinator Dr. Sadie Otte is working with all of the organic chemistry faculty while managing the move to online instruction for the Fall. Our major topics will be computational chemistry, science writing, and spectroscopy. There will be mixture of synchronous and asynchronous learning with emphasis on student community and collaboration. Topics will relate to lecture content and/or current events. There will be a small number of kitchen chemistry activities.

Tom Davis, Professor Babbes, Professor Caulkins, Professor Fucaloro, Professor Hatcher-Skeers, Professor Purvis-Roberts and Professor Warter
Basic Principles of Chemistry Labs
The chemistry group in Keck Science tells us that “We are super excited to present our “at-home” general chemistry lab program, which is being managed by Lab Coordinator Tom Davis and will involve all faculty in the lecture part of the course.  We will be shipping all the supplies you need for your general chemistry experiments right to your door!  Students will be testing dyes and determining sugar content in popular beverages, testing their local water supply for hardness, pH and contaminants, using augmented reality to study molecular shapes and much more.

Students will work on their experiments asynchronously then meet with a small group of their peers for 2 hours each week (Mondays or Tuesdays from 1-3 or 7-9 pm) to discuss their results and prepare their reports.  Faculty and peer mentors will be available to answer any questions during these 2-hour sessions.  Capstone lab experiences will include a short formal paper (with many opportunities for drafts and peer editing) and a final group presentation on their water project.

Professor Babak Sanii and Professor Ethan Van Arnam
Advanced Laboratory in Chemistry
This fall Advanced Laboratory in Chemistry will be co-taught by Babak Sanii and Ethan Van Arnam as an online-only class. Student experiences in this course will include: labs in which you specify parameters, real samples are analyzed remotely, and you analyze the resulting data; Computational chemistry, where you perform chemistry calculations and model molecular behavior; Labs that you run at home (or wherever you are) that tackle real chemistry questions using simple, safe materials; Taking live virtual tours of high-end chemistry facilities around the world as they open.

Department

W.M. Keck Science

Professor Kersey Black, Professor Joel Mackey, Professor Hou Ung, and Professor Anna Wenzel
Organic Chemistry
In first-semester Organic Chemistry, all class sections will provide a mixture of synchronous and asynchronous instruction, and all will cover the same material and rely on the same textbook, Organic Chemistry by Paula Bruice, 8th edition.  Sections will vary somewhat in their structure.  Some will rely principally on a synchronous lecture (with opportunities for later review of that lecture) and problem sessions.  Other sections will rely on pre-recorded mini-lectures to be watched in advance of class with class time then being used to discuss the video lessons and develop problem-solving skills through worksheets and activities.  This in-class work will be done working with classmates, a peer educator (an upper level chemistry mentor) and the professor.

Labs
Organic lab will be online. Laboratory Coordinator Dr. Sadie Otte is working with all of the organic chemistry faculty while managing the move to online instruction for the Fall. Our major topics will be computational chemistry, science writing, and spectroscopy. There will be mixture of synchronous and asynchronous learning with emphasis on student community and collaboration. Topics will relate to lecture content and/or current events. There will be a small number of kitchen chemistry activities.

Professor Jason Borchert
Vertebrate Physiology 
This is the current plan for Prof. Jason Borchert’s Vertebrate Physiology. This plan is still in a work in progress; however, it will be attempted to adhere to this course description as closely as possible. Vertebrate Physiology will be a remote class that will use a mixture of synchronous and asynchronous activities. Some class periods will feature live lectures (that will also be recorded). While other classes will have pre-recorded lectures with a flipped classroom during the normal meeting time. Additionally, we will read and discuss scientific papers both in class and on discussion boards on Sakai. Labs will consist of a variety of different activities including analyzing videos, carrying out simulated experiments using software programs, basic at-home experiments (using things like heart rate and respiratory rate), performing data analyses of previously collected data, and experiments where students will establish specified parameters and direct me while I am in the lab via zoom. Further, we will write partial and full lab reports where we will analyze and interpret data. The textbook we will be using is the Fourth Edition of Animal Physiology by Hill et al.

Professor Sarah Budischak
Disease Ecology and Evolution
Prof. Sarah Budischak, who teaches Disease Ecology and Evolution, will follow a flipped classroom model with short pre-recorded videos or assigned pre-class readings. Thus, class time can be used for activities, discussions and digging deeper into the material. While synchronous participation is highly encouraged, options for asynchronous participation will be made available for those who cannot attend during class time.

What a fitting time to learn disease modeling! Computer modeling is the main focus of the lab as we delve into epidemiology, network models of transmission, and detecting differences in infection among groups (no coding experience necessary). Fortunately, Zoom breakout rooms are great for sharing code and working together so there are few curricular changes from in-person instruction. While synchronous participation is highly encouraged for immediate peer collaboration and instructor feedback, asynchronous learning will be facilitated. We’ll also use a card game to explore co-evolutionary dynamics (e.g. how virus evolution is shaped by vaccines) in a fully asynchronous lab – so students might receive a deck of cards on the mail! We will also utilize some lab time to focus on scientific communication about the pandemic (collaboration with Pitzer’s Center for Community Engagement in progress).

Professor Bethany Caulkins
Quantum Chemistry
Prof. Bethany Caulkins will use both asynchronous and synchronous techniques. Students will prepare for Zoom class meetings asynchronously by watching short pre-recorded video lectures anytime that is convenient for them before the class meeting. The class will be split into two groups for Zoom meetings, 12 people in each group. I will meet with each group on both Tuesday and Thursday synchronously for 45 minutes during the normally scheduled class time, 9:15 – 10:30 am PT. This time will be used for group problem solving and for people to ask any questions they may have on the material presented in the lectures. We will use breakout rooms so students can work on the problem-solving activity for the day with their peers, building a sense of community while having easy access to me for asking questions. By taking advantage of shared screen and electronic white board technology, students will be able to see me clearly and legibly work through problems in real-time.

Professor Pete Chandrangsu, Professor Findley Finseth, Professor Kyle Jay, Professor Zhaohua Irene Tang, Professor Cory Kohn and Professor Mike Brown
Introductory Biology 
The ongoing pandemic has illuminated how important science is to solving real-world problems. Introductory Biology exposes students to broad biology fields. Introductory Biology (Bio 43) focuses on the molecular basis, as well as structural and functional units of living systems.  The course will be completely online this fall semester.

The structure of each lecture section may vary, but all will include a mix of synchronous and asynchronous learning modules. The sections will meet synchronously during regular meeting times (2 or 3 times per week).  Sections may also be broken down into subsections to facilitate active engagement with course material, while incorporating community-building and collaborative learning. For example, synchronous sections may highlight case studies, break in to small groups for problem-solving, utilize electronic white boards, or discuss lecture concepts. Each section will provide pre-recorded mini lectures, readings, activities, study questions or worksheets for students to study asynchronously before Zoom meetings. Each instructor will also hold regular office hours.  All sections will utilize the textbook Brooker’s Biology, 4th edition (both physical copies and e-books are available).

Lecture
The structure of each lecture section may vary, but all will include a mix of synchronous and asynchronous learning modules.  The sections will meet synchronously during regular meeting times (2 or 3 times per week).  Sections may also be broken down into subsections to facilitate active engagement with course material, while incorporating community-building and collaborative learning.  For example, synchronous sections may highlight case studies, break in to small groups for problem-solving, utilize electronic white boards, or discuss lecture concepts.  Each section will provide pre-recorded mini lectures, readings, activities, study questions or worksheets for students to study asynchronously before Zoom meetings.  Each instructor will also hold regular office hours.  All sections will utilize the textbook Brooker’s Biology, 4th edition (both physical copies and e-books are available).

Labs
Are you concerned about how human lung cells are affected by pollutants?  Do you wonder how dairy is metabolized?  Join the discovery team to find it out!  The online Bio43 Lab in the fall semester will create new opportunities for students to embark on an adventure for research experience.  Students as researchers will practice posing questions, reading scientific papers, analyzing data, and proposing hypotheses based on evidence.  Students will also conduct the computational planning phases for a molecular cloning project of identifying and cloning genes of interest.  To exercise team-working skills students will form groups and present their projects in a virtual symposium at the end of the semester.  Although most work can be completed asynchronously, each lab section will meet weekly (up to) 3-hour session to discuss projects with the instructors and peer mentors, as well as work with the virtual lab mates to facilitate collaborative learning.  Lab sections are scheduled each weekday at 2:30-5:30 pm PT and 7-10 pm PT Wednesday and Thursday.  We are excited to take the adventure in biological research with you in the fall!

Professor Gretchen Edwalds-Gilbert
Molecular Biology 
Prof. Gretchen Edwalds-Gilbert will host virtual guest lectures from scientists at labs, in industry and academia throughout her Molecular Biology course this fall. In addition, students will annotate articles for discussion using the platform Perusall prior to meeting. Class time will be used for group discussion of the review and research articles with an emphasis on the data figures, which will be shared on screen. We will use breakout rooms so students can discuss article annotations with their peers, building a sense of community while being able to consult directly with Prof. Edwalds-Gilbert.

Lab will include both asynchronous and synchronous learning. In lab on Thursday afternoon PT (12:45-3:45), students will design experiments to epitope-tag a gene of interest in yeast using CRISPR/Cas9 and will watch videos of cloning experiments prior to lab time. Students will analyze the data from the yeast strain construction process, working with a lab team. The other lab activities include a deep dive into current molecular biology methods, such as ribosome profiling and crosslinking/immunoprecipitation (CLIP) strategies, and writing a research proposal based on data exploration in the yeast genome database (yeastgenome.org).

Professor Mary Evans and Professor Branwen Williams
Modeling Climate Change through Economic and Natural Science Lenses
Prof. Mary Evans (an environmental economist) and Prof. Branwen Williams (an environmental scientist in the Keck Science Department) will teach a new course, “Modeling Climate Change through Economic and Natural Science Lenses.” Guest speakers working on various dimensions of climate change will join the course live several times during the semester. The course will also offer hands-on experience in gathering, evaluating and interpreting various types of climate change data (e.g., energy use, temperature).  Asynchronous course materials include academic and popular press readings as well as TED Talks, other videos and podcasts.

Professor Patrick Ferree
Developmental Biology
Developmental Biology with Prof. Patrick Ferree will be taught online in the fall of 2020. Although the lectures and labs will be largely synchronous, they will all be recorded and posted on the course Sakai site. During Tuesday lectures we will cover foundational concepts underlying important processes in animal development. On Thursdays, we will discuss landmark scientific studies of those topics published in journal articles. The article discussions will be led by students. In the laboratory component of the course, we will perform comparative analyses of ovary and testis development using microscopic imaging data of these tissues. Working in groups, students will identify novel morphological differences between closely related insect species and propose hypotheses to explain those differences. Thus, despite the remote nature of this course, the lab activities will involve real research. Another emphasis of the lab will be the “art” of figure-building (i.e., visual portrayal of data and patterns/trends). The course will provide weekly opportunities for individual student-instructor discussions of the assigned concepts and activities.

Professor Babbes, Professor Caulkins, Professor Fucaloro, Professor Hatcher-Skeers, Professor Purvis-Roberts and Professor Warter
Basic Principles of Chemistry 
Chemistry 14KS will be fully online this Fall semester.  The faculty have worked closely to create an online curriculum that will teach you all the important concepts while still providing the welcoming community you expect from a small liberal arts college.

There will be one fully synchronous online course taught by Professor Anthony Fucaloro (MWF 11:20-12:10).

All other sections will combine synchronous and asynchronous learning modules.  These sections will have some content (pre-recorded lectures, worksheets, activities) posted online and will meet synchronously only twice per week.  The synchronous meetings will be broken down into smaller groups where students will work on problem sets, worksheets and activities with their classmates, professor and a peer educator (an upper level chemistry mentor).

One of these sections (section 1, MWF 8:40-9:30) will be restricted and students can enroll by permission only.  This section, reserved for first-time, first year students who identify as having weaker high school science and mathematics preparation, will be smaller and require an additional synchronous hour (Wed 7:20-8:10) to develop quantitative and problem-solving skills.  Students interested in this section should email Professor Hatcher-Skeers (mhatcher@kecksci.claremont.edu) explaining their background in math and science.

Labs
The chemistry group in Keck Science tells us that “We are super excited to present our “at-home” general chemistry lab program, which is being managed by Lab Coordinator Tom Davis and will involve all faculty in the lecture part of the course.  We will be shipping all the supplies you need for your general chemistry experiments right to your door!  Students will be testing dyes and determining sugar content in popular beverages, testing their local water supply for hardness, pH and contaminants, using augmented reality to study molecular shapes and much more.

Students will work on their experiments asynchronously then meet with a small group of their peers for 2 hours each week (Mondays or Tuesdays from 1-3 or 7-9 pm) to discuss their results and prepare their reports.  Faculty and peer mentors will be available to answer any questions during these 2-hour sessions.  Capstone lab experiences will include a short formal paper (with many opportunities for drafts and peer editing) and a final group presentation on their water project.

Professor Erin Jones
Cell Biology 
Prof. Erin Jones, who teaches Cell Biology, tells us that “in the lab you will cover a variety of techniques used to answer questions in cell biology and will focus on data analysis and experimental design. You will be part of citizen scientist projects, manage real samples analyzed remotely, and even do your own experiments using safe materials wherever you are!”

Professor Donald McFarlane
Ecology
Prof. Donald McFarlane teaches Ecology with asynchronous online lectures together with weekly Zoom-based question-and-answer tutorials. The lab will consist of online data analysis tutorials.

Evolution
Evolution with Prof. Donald McFarlane will be taught by asynchronous online lectures, together with weekly Zoom-based question-and-answer tutorials.

Professor Kathleen Purvis-Roberts
Environmental Chemistry
Prof. Kathleen Purvis-Roberts’s Environmental Chemistry has a most exciting project this year. “In addition to learning about how chemistry is involved in air, water, and soil systems and the generation of different types of energy, we are going to work on a collaborative project with students at the King Mongkut’s University of Technology Thonburi (KMUTT) in Bangkok. A Khlong (canal) system in Bangkok historically was used for transportation and floating markets. Many of these canals have been filled in, but the Thonburi side of Bangkok still has larger Khlongs and a mixture of housing and agricultural land surrounding them. The Thai government is interested in assessing the environmental condition of the waterways and developing solutions to revitalize the area. Citizen scientists in Bangkok are going to take water quality, air quality, weather and canal usage (how many boats go by certain locations and how many cyclist/pedestrians use the paths that exist on some parts of the canals) measurements. Claremont Colleges and KMUTT students will work together to analyze the data and develop creative ways to present their findings to the public and government officials. During the semester, we will also have presentations about environmental issues in the Asia-Pacific by faculty in the region.”

Professor Babak Sanii and Professor Ethan Van Arnam
Advanced Laboratory in Chemistry
This fall Advanced Laboratory in Chemistry will be co-taught by Babak Sanii and Ethan Van Arnam as an online-only class. Student experiences in this course will include: labs in which you specify parameters, real samples are analyzed remotely, and you analyze the resulting data; Computational chemistry, where you perform chemistry calculations and model molecular behavior; Labs that you run at home (or wherever you are) that tackle real chemistry questions using simple, safe materials; Taking live virtual tours of high-end chemistry facilities around the world as they open.

Professor Lars Schmitz
Vertebrate Anatomy 
The labs will take the form of an authentic research experience, centered on the function and evolution of anatomical structures. Lab activities will involve the following components: generating hypotheses, literature search, collecting data, curating data, in depth description of anatomical structures, visualization of data (in R), statistical analyses (in R) to test hypotheses, writing, and figure preparation (Illustrator). Work will be performed in a variety of different formats: individually, small groups, everyone together, for a total of 4 hrs per week, with frequent check-ins throughout the week as needed. The goal is to submit our work to a peer-reviewed journal, with all of you as co-authors.

Professor Janet Sheung and Professor Tom Dershem
Principles of Physics
Everyone has an opinion, but do you know how to turn yours into a scientific statement? Each student will be mailed a box of items, including components to build a catapult and a high precision 6-axis sensor, for performing multiple guided experiments from home, with their own hands. Working in small groups with fellow classmates during virtual class sessions, students will learn to design experiments, perform statistical analyses on their data, and communicate their results. The course will culminate with each student presenting the results of an experiment of their own design.

Professor Zhaohua Irene Tang
Cell Cycle, Diseases and Aging
In her Cell Cycle, Diseases and Aging course, Prof. Irene Tang will foster collaborative learning and community building. Students will explore the principles of cell cycle regulation and apply the concepts to the mechanisms of cancer development and premature aging.  Students will play active roles in the learning process, including problem-based discussion of topics in the field, related research papers, and questions relevant to the real world.  Lecture materials, readings, and study/discussion questions will be provided for students to study asynchronously before Zoom meetings. The class time will be used for lecture, discussion, and activities to facilitate problem-based learning.

Professor Diane Thomson
Conservation Ecology
Conservation Ecology, taught by Prof. Diane Thomson, will be an open-ended, discussion and project- based experience. There are no fixed topics. The class will identify current issues and questions in conservation ecology to work on together. We will then deepen our understanding of those topics through finding, sharing, and commenting on materials from both the primary scientific literature and online media resources. The class will be offered completely online, but if conditions permit there will be optional opportunities for students to work at the Bernard Field Station. Our time online will combine asynchronous (contribute, review and comment on materials) and synchronous (Zoom full class or small group discussions) experiences. Students will produce a series of articles on course topics aimed at the general public, such as blog posts. In lab, students will develop small-group research projects mostly done online, using tools like Google Earth to collect observations. The class will also offer opportunities to design research that can be set up at Keck.

Professor Nancy S.B. Williams
Inorganic Chemistry

Inorganic chemistry this year will take place in three main modes: community meetings, drop-in office hours, and workshop meetings. The community meetings will be 75 minutes, over Zoom, twice a week. There will be a short discussion of Oliver Sacks’ memoir/novel Uncle Tungsten, with a focus on thinking about the human side of science. Mini-lectures and working whiteboard problems will be the foundation for the weekly homework, which is the backbone of the course. Each student, will have their own whiteboard and Rocketbook Beacons Smartbooks shipped to them so that we can easily share whiteboards during community meetings. There will be some (asynchronous) mini-lectures as well that will help students prepare for community meetings. Drop-in office hours are self-explanatory, and also over Zoom, and are intended to meet students’ individual needs. Workshop meetings are the signature difference we’ll bring to this iteration of the class—they are a halfway point between drop-in office hours and community meetings. Students will form groups of 3-4 and will have a scheduled time to meet with me to workshop problems twice a week (either homework or other problems we select). If one or more campuses is in-person, these workshop meetings will be the in-person component for those students. The students in a group may cancel a workshop if they feel they don’t need it, but it’s opt-out, whereas office hours are opt-in. Prof. Williams expects to see students every week in community meetings, most weeks in workshop, and some weeks in office hours.

The Robert Day School of Economics and Finance

Professor David Bjerk
Economics of Poverty, Inequality, and Discrimination
Prof. David Bjerk will hold live lecture/discussion classes with each section via Zoom. There will be virtual visits from authors read in class presenting new research related to discrimination in policing. Several collaborative activities will take place, including joint problem sets and student led discussions on innovations in education in high poverty environments for the last few class sessions.

Professor Mary Evans
Principles of Economic Analysis
While lectures will remain a component as the course moves online, part of the live course time will be run as a tutorial with Prof. Mary Evans walking students through multiple examples and practice scenarios. The course will also make use of asynchronous materials in the form of pre-recorded material, videos and podcasts, and online economics games/exercises using MobLab.

Professor Andrew Finley
Introduction to Accounting
Prof. Andrew Finley will flip his two Introduction to Accounting courses: Students will prepare for class sessions by watching video content asynchronously and taking notes in a workbook template he provides. That will free up class sessions for more student-centered learning strategies, such as discussions and problem-based learning. To facilitate active learning in a remote environment, students will work on exercises in small groups using a real-time editing platform, enabling him to monitor student progress and provide timely feedback during class sessions. Students will go over some more challenging problem sets together as a class.

Professor Jeffrey Flory
Development Economics
Prof. Jeffrey Flory added an interactive project to his Development Economics course, “enabling students to actually make small loans (“microcredit”) to the poor in the developing world, integrated with the themes and concepts and questions that we will be studying throughout the fall semester.” To do this, Prof. Flory will use the online lending platform kiva.org. In addition, Prof. Flory will bring in guest speakers from government organizations, multilateral international institutions such as the World Bank, scholars/researchers from other universities.

Professor Ananda Ganguly
Strategic Cost Management
The class will be mainly online, with flexibility to accommodate in-person activity if feasible.  Either way, students will receive instructional videos prior to each day’s class, and prepare for class by watching these videos and answering online questions based on them.  In class, breakout groups of 3-5 students (on Zoom or in person) will perform simulated real-life tasks that organizations face.  These class activities will deal with tasks such as measuring and controlling an organization’s costs, deciding on optimal mixes of products or services that the organization should bring to market, deciding whether or not to shut down a department or product line, and analyzing causes when costs or profit numbers differ from budgets.  Prof. Ganguly will cycle from group to group providing suggestions and “consulting” advice.  Students will meet with the professor outside of class in coffee-room chats weekly throughout the semester to reflect, discuss and extend.

Professor Laura Grant
Public Economics
Prof. Laura Grant’s course will meet virtually in small groups to discuss progress and clarify goals as they develop “reference cards”—short but sophisticated tools that explain core concepts of public economics through (1) Definition, (2) Intuition, (3) Mathematical/technical, (4) Graphical, (5) Real-world aspects, and (6) Practice questions.

Professor Eric Helland
Introduction to Economics
Prof. Eric Helland’s flagship ECON 50, the intro economics course taken by the large majority of CMC students, will include tutorial topics on subjects traditionally featured in introductory economics. It will also delve into discussion topics such as income inequality, stock market bubbles, and the determinants of long-term economic growth.

Professor Manfred Keil
The Coronavirus Recession in Historical Perspective: Business Cycle Theory and Policy
Prof. Manfred Keil will lead a new research seminar on The Coronavirus Recession in Historical Perspective: Business Cycle Theory and Policy. Students will work in small groups to study business cycles past and present while acquiring sophisticated mathematical, statistical, and economic models in the process.

Professor Florian Madison
Intermediate Macroeconomics
Topics range from empirical measurement of key economic variables to static and dynamic theoretical equilibrium models analyzing long-run economic growth and short-run fluctuations. Furthermore, students will explore the effects of macroeconomic policy, distinguishing between fiscal and monetary interventions.

To tackle the geographical challenges of remote learning, Prof. Madison will teach three sections spread throughout the day and allow students in inconvenient time zones to join whichever section they prefer, even if enrolled in a different section. He also firmly believes in the need to create a real community of learners. To that effect, he will have an online introduction meeting for all students enrolled in his classes to get to know each other, followed by two follow-up meetings during the semester to discuss the progress and allow students to provide feedback on the instruction and what can be improved. He will hold weekly online office hours for students off-campus in a small group tutorial format and is available for individual meetings throughout the semester at any time.

Professor James Taylor
Accounting for Decision Making
Prof. James Taylor will be using a new adaptive, predictive technology to enhance each student’s learning experiences.  The ebook for this course, Financial Accounting, by Libby 10e, is an adaptive reading experience. Students will spend the majority of time studying the material least familiar with and will not spend extra time on material already known.  Each class period will be equally divided between lecture, student discussion and problem solving.

Professor Angela Vossmeyer
Econometrics
Prof. Angela Vossmeyer is dividing her class into teams, who participate in data science and statistics competitions to derive new models for out-of-sample prediction. She is constructing a large repository of datasets to allow students to apply the econometric models from class to data and topics of their choice (spanning labor, finance, health, crime, trade, macro, voting, etc., topics).

History

Professor Daniel Livesay
Slavery: A World History (Inside-Out Class)
This virtual course is part of a pathbreaking effort to continue education justice efforts in the wake of the COVID pandemic. The course focuses on the history of slavery from the ancient world to the present, with a particular focus on the transatlantic slave trade from Africa, and its impact on the Americas.  This course is a component of the Inside-Out program, which brings students attending traditional colleges and universities together with individuals who are pursuing college degrees while serving prison sentences.  Both groups will collaborate to develop projects that investigate and explore issues of modern-day slavery across the globe.  Inside Students will bring their own experiences and research from time spent in prison, while outside students will bring in academic research tools, to build case studies over a multi-week period that uncover the ongoing struggle against bondage.  This class is one of the first four virtual Inside-Out courses that has ever been taught.

Professor Wendy Lower, director of the Mgrublian Center for Human Rights
Racism Today and Human Rights Abuses, Historical Dimensions and Redress
Prof. Wendy Lower, director of the Mgrublian Center for Human Rights, will teach a new course, Racism Today and Human Rights Abuses, Historical Dimensions and Redress. In this course, students will develop a deeper historical knowledge of the ideas and practices of racism in order to better understand the challenges facing people of color around the world and especially black communities in America today. They will have the opportunity to directly apply this knowledge toward possible redress and reforms. In addition to weekly readings and discussions on the history of racial violence and injustice, students will be divided into research teams assigned to collect data for current legal investigations of police brutality, and to present research on historical crimes that have not been redressed such as slavery, the pattern of race riots (massacres) in Atlanta, Tulsa, Harlem, Detroit, Chicago, and the 2020 response to the murder of George Floyd.

With the additional involvement of human rights lawyers affiliated with the Mgrublian Center, students will learn about qualified immunity, bodycam regulations and other hindrances to exposing and prosecuting violators. Campaigns led by BLM and the Innocence Project on the prison-industrial complex and other forms of institutionalized racism will be evaluated and students will be encouraged to analyze individual prisoner cases. As part of this investigative approach to contemporary events, students will also virtually meet and interview local and prominent witnesses, such as the eminent black photojournalist Eli Reed.

Professor Albert L. Park
Modern Korean History
Prof. Albert Park will structure his course around weekly collaborate projects to connect historical issues to contemporary affairs in modern Korea. With background information from weekly lectures, students in groups of three will work together on a joint project covering political, economic, social or cultural issues that they will present to the entire class. Examples of collaborative projects include teams drawing up plans on how to de-nuclearize the Korean peninsula, designing ways to reunify North and South Korea and creating their own K-Pop group to learn about the cultural dynamics of contemporary South Korea.

Design Activism
Prof. Albert Park will structure the course as a cross-disciplinary investigation on the intersection between design and activism in global history. Every week features hands-on weekly design projects where teams work together to design a solution to political, social, economic and cultural issues. Examples of assignments for weekly design projects include using Legos to design and build sustainable and socially just buildings, using spray paints to express political messages, employing craft materials to discuss issues related to gender discrimination and carrying out landscape architecture through designs that foster harmony between the human and non-human beings.

Professor Jonathan Petropoulos
History of Weimar and Nazi Society and Culture
Prof. Jonathan Petropoulos will teach two sections of his popular History of Weimar and Nazi Society and Culture. Students will read books by major authors, whose arguments are relevant for today’s world as well, and these authors will participate in the course. The Weimar and Nazi course will study, among other topics, racism, and demagoguery–all highly relevant themes.  “In the course, we will study the death of democracy in Weimar Germany, just before the November elections in the U.S.  I will have the students read works specifically on the descent into tyranny, including Benjamin Cart Hett’s book, The Death of Democracy: Hitler’s Rise to Power and the Downfall of the Weimar Republic,” said Prof. Petropoulos.

Professor Sarah Sarzynski
The Amazon
In Prof. Sarah Sarzynski’s course The Amazon, students examine how certain narratives about Amazonia hold enduring power in the Western World, such as exploration tales of El Dorado and the Amazon as a “green hell.” To deeply engage with the medium of film, students produce their own short films using a simple video-editing program (WeVideo).  The introduction to such technology not only allows students to analyze racialized and gendered narratives of Amazonia in Hollywood and European cinema, but also provides students with a useful communications skill for other courses or contexts.

In the second half of the course, students focus on understanding Amazonia from within, employing indigenous methodologies to develop research proposals in small groups for oral history projects with indigenous peoples about COVID-19.  In creating such project proposals, students learn about the histories of exploitation of the Amazon and its people, including resource extraction (rubber industry, mining), development projects (dams, highways and cattle ranching), and prior indigenous experiences with Western diseases and vaccines.”

Professor Tamara Venit-Shelton
Human Health and Disease in American History
In her fall course, Human Health and Disease in American History, Prof. Tamara Venit-Shelton gives students the opportunity to work with Covid19@CMC, a program to document and archive the lived experience of the Covid-19 pandemic among the CMC community. Students will work closely with faculty from the History Department; conduct interviews with other students, alumni, faculty, and staff; and collect materials that will become part of a digital archive, housed by Special Collections at the Claremont Colleges Library. Students can either participate in the project for course credit or for a stipend if selected as a Humanities Lab Fellow through the Gould Center.

The American West
Students enrolled in Prof. Venit-Shelton’s The American West will consult with the Autry Museum of the American West on the redesign of their signature gallery, “The Imagined West.” Students will work with curators at the Autry to understand the museum’s needs, to research objects for display, and to construct and evaluate prototypes.

History

Professor Daniel Livesay
Slavery: A World History (Inside-Out Class)
This virtual course is part of a pathbreaking effort to continue education justice efforts in the wake of the COVID pandemic. The course focuses on the history of slavery from the ancient world to the present, with a particular focus on the transatlantic slave trade from Africa, and its impact on the Americas.  This course is a component of the Inside-Out program, which brings students attending traditional colleges and universities together with individuals who are pursuing college degrees while serving prison sentences.  Both groups will collaborate to develop projects that investigate and explore issues of modern-day slavery across the globe.  Inside Students will bring their own experiences and research from time spent in prison, while outside students will bring in academic research tools, to build case studies over a multi-week period that uncover the ongoing struggle against bondage.  This class is one of the first four virtual Inside-Out courses that has ever been taught.

Professor Wendy Lower, director of the Mgrublian Center for Human Rights
Racism Today and Human Rights Abuses, Historical Dimensions and Redress
Prof. Wendy Lower, director of the Mgrublian Center for Human Rights, will teach a new course, Racism Today and Human Rights Abuses, Historical Dimensions and Redress. In this course, students will develop a deeper historical knowledge of the ideas and practices of racism in order to better understand the challenges facing people of color around the world and especially black communities in America today. They will have the opportunity to directly apply this knowledge toward possible redress and reforms. In addition to weekly readings and discussions on the history of racial violence and injustice, students will be divided into research teams assigned to collect data for current legal investigations of police brutality, and to present research on historical crimes that have not been redressed such as slavery, the pattern of race riots (massacres) in Atlanta, Tulsa, Harlem, Detroit, Chicago, and the 2020 response to the murder of George Floyd.

With the additional involvement of human rights lawyers affiliated with the Mgrublian Center, students will learn about qualified immunity, bodycam regulations and other hindrances to exposing and prosecuting violators. Campaigns led by BLM and the Innocence Project on the prison-industrial complex and other forms of institutionalized racism will be evaluated and students will be encouraged to analyze individual prisoner cases. As part of this investigative approach to contemporary events, students will also virtually meet and interview local and prominent witnesses, such as the eminent black photojournalist Eli Reed.

Professor Albert L. Park
Modern Korean History
Prof. Albert Park will structure his course around weekly collaborate projects to connect historical issues to contemporary affairs in modern Korea. With background information from weekly lectures, students in groups of three will work together on a joint project covering political, economic, social or cultural issues that they will present to the entire class. Examples of collaborative projects include teams drawing up plans on how to de-nuclearize the Korean peninsula, designing ways to reunify North and South Korea and creating their own K-Pop group to learn about the cultural dynamics of contemporary South Korea.

Design Activism
Prof. Albert Park will structure the course as a cross-disciplinary investigation on the intersection between design and activism in global history. Every week features hands-on weekly design projects where teams work together to design a solution to political, social, economic and cultural issues. Examples of assignments for weekly design projects include using Legos to design and build sustainable and socially just buildings, using spray paints to express political messages, employing craft materials to discuss issues related to gender discrimination and carrying out landscape architecture through designs that foster harmony between the human and non-human beings.

Professor Jonathan Petropoulos
History of Weimar and Nazi Society and Culture
Prof. Jonathan Petropoulos will teach two sections of his popular History of Weimar and Nazi Society and Culture. Students will read books by major authors, whose arguments are relevant for today’s world as well, and these authors will participate in the course. The Weimar and Nazi course will study, among other topics, racism, and demagoguery–all highly relevant themes.  “In the course, we will study the death of democracy in Weimar Germany, just before the November elections in the U.S.  I will have the students read works specifically on the descent into tyranny, including Benjamin Cart Hett’s book, The Death of Democracy: Hitler’s Rise to Power and the Downfall of the Weimar Republic,” said Prof. Petropoulos.

Professor Sarah Sarzynski
The Amazon
In Prof. Sarah Sarzynski’s course The Amazon, students examine how certain narratives about Amazonia hold enduring power in the Western World, such as exploration tales of El Dorado and the Amazon as a “green hell.” To deeply engage with the medium of film, students produce their own short films using a simple video-editing program (WeVideo).  The introduction to such technology not only allows students to analyze racialized and gendered narratives of Amazonia in Hollywood and European cinema, but also provides students with a useful communications skill for other courses or contexts.

In the second half of the course, students focus on understanding Amazonia from within, employing indigenous methodologies to develop research proposals in small groups for oral history projects with indigenous peoples about COVID-19.  In creating such project proposals, students learn about the histories of exploitation of the Amazon and its people, including resource extraction (rubber industry, mining), development projects (dams, highways and cattle ranching), and prior indigenous experiences with Western diseases and vaccines.”

Professor Tamara Venit-Shelton
Human Health and Disease in American History
In her fall course, Human Health and Disease in American History, Prof. Tamara Venit-Shelton gives students the opportunity to work with Covid19@CMC, a program to document and archive the lived experience of the Covid-19 pandemic among the CMC community. Students will work closely with faculty from the History Department; conduct interviews with other students, alumni, faculty, and staff; and collect materials that will become part of a digital archive, housed by Special Collections at the Claremont Colleges Library. Students can either participate in the project for course credit or for a stipend if selected as a Humanities Lab Fellow through the Gould Center.

The American West
Students enrolled in Prof. Venit-Shelton’s The American West will consult with the Autry Museum of the American West on the redesign of their signature gallery, “The Imagined West.” Students will work with curators at the Autry to understand the museum’s needs, to research objects for display, and to construct and evaluate prototypes.

Professor Heather Ferguson
Muhammad to the Mongols
In a global context in which travel is restricted, we will use the discipline of History to construct a time capsule for the early history of Islam and collaboratively develop historical characters for each key development in the Middle East from the 6th to the 14th century. Students will first enter a world before Islam, when Roman and Persian empires vied for control of the Arabian Peninsula. We will then create characters who: assess whether to rebel against the status quo and join the prophetic revolution of Muhammad; debate which leader to follow after Muhammad’s death; strategize the military campaigns that will expand this movement as far as the Iberian Peninsula and along old trading routes into Central Asia; experience the gendered, religious, social and racial hierarchies that develop in booming urban centers such as Baghdad, Cairo, Qayrawan, and Samarkand; journey along trade and pilgrimage routes as diplomats, judges, and preachers; release pamphlets arguing for the “correct” method for using the Qur’an as the basis of a legal code; join volatile intellectual debates about what it means to be a Muslim in different historical moments and whether Sufism or philosophy are heretical methods or paths toward truth; fight for survival as invaders from the land beyond the sea (crusaders) redefine the landscape; and strive to explain death and famine as a plague engulfs the then-known world. These journeys across a historical landscape will culminate in final projects that present a time capsule capable of demonstrating that the history of Islam actually contains many histories of “Islams.” These time capsules will be designed for the children of the future, and contain visual, textual, and material objects that will counter the race-based Islamophobia that dominates print and media records and serve as an alternative “archive” of sources to guide future journeys into the past.

Literature

Professor Christine Crockett
Freshman Writing Seminar: The American Dream
Prof. Christine Crockett will take advantage of digital media by asking students to submit multimedia assignments, including a collaborative website project. Students will create shared expectations for a virtual learning environment and imagine how we all will engage in creative and exciting ways while we are apart. This includes creating virtual spaces for interaction and engagement “outside” of class where ideas and questions might emerge organically, just as they do when we are in person.  

Professor Seth Lobis
Freshman Writing Seminar: Shakespeare and Otherness
Prof. Seth Lobis revised his FWS, which is now called “Shakespeare and Otherness,” and will explore Shakespeare’s constructions of authority, identity, and otherness (in terms of race, religion, gender, and sexuality–as well as language, culture, society, and geography).

Shakespeare’s Comedies
In his Shakespeare’s Comedies course, Prof. Lobis is working to expand performance work as a means of experiential learning. He intends to have students meet on their own and rehearse scenes from Shakespeare plays that they can then perform for the whole class (the effect would be similar to—though no doubt not as polished as—that of the Hamilton cast performing some of the musical online). 

Professor Kevin Moffett
Freshman Writing Seminar: Creative Nonfiction
Prof. Kevin Moffett will use Anna Deavere Smith’s Twilight: Los Angeles, 1992 as a teaching model for students to conduct their own oral histories, which may focus on how they and those around them have navigated the current epidemic. He will encourage students to find diverse voices and perspectives from their home communities, as well as their college experiences. A playwright and screenwriter will be invited to class to share their perspectives on writing and the challenges posed by adaptation and recounting other people’s stories. 

Professor Derik Smith
African American Poetry
/ An Inside-Out Course
African American Poetry
will connect students from CMC with incarcerated students at the nearby California Rehabilitation Center (CRC). Video-conferencing technology will bring CMC students inside a prison classroom in this first-of-its-kind course. Few students in the country—or the world—have participated in an endeavor like this. Through reading, writing, and discussions and performances held in virtual-space, the course introduces CMC and CRC students to some of the most influential literary and vernacular poetry emerging from the African American cultural context. For the most part, these works will be considered in relation to the historical moments in which they were produced. This historical approach will enable class discussions to focus on the way in which Black poetics has chronicled, reflected, and contributed to African Americans’ varied, vexed relation to the “American project.” Attention to history will also lead students to consider the intimate connection between the aesthetic choices of African American poets and the evolving legal, economic, and social statuses of Black people in America.

Professor Nicholas Warner
Art and Politics in the Hollywood Western
Art and Politics in the Hollywood Western
will include virtual class visits by film specialists, as well as collaborative student work and the use of asynchronous audio-visual materials to supplement class discussion.

Government

Professor Hilary Appel and Professor Jennifer Taw
Race, Gender, and Identity in International Relations
Profs. Hilary Appel and Jennifer Taw are offering a by-application course that has three components. (1) Students will attend seminar discussions and guest lectures on issues of race, gender, and identity in the study, practice, and institutions of international relations. (2) They will also be assigned to a mentor, a 5C alum who can speak to them about real world experiences with these issues. (3) Each student will work independently or in a small group on a project they develop with their faculty reader. Students will be exposed to broad issues of race, gender, and/or identity in International Relations; deepen their overall understanding of the discipline and the applications of its tenets and theories; develop expertise on a select issue within the topic area; hone their research, analysis, and writing skills; be introduced to the nexus of academia and policy; and receive support and advice from practitioners.

Professor Zachary Courser and Professor Eric Helland
Policy Lab
Profs. Zachary Courser and Eric Helland co-teach Policy Lab. For the fall term they plan an in-class project on mail-in balloting and election reform. “We anticipate a busy and productive semester of policy research and learning in our virtual classroom.”

“Our fully-online research and teaching involves frequent group and client meetings, policy writing projects, and applications of data science. We have engaged students in creating survey instruments, conducting interviews with former congresspersons, creating datasets, and writing policy memos,” they say.

This semester the in-class project will be the launch of a year-long collaboration with the American Enterprise Institute on elections reform. Students and faculty will perform an analysis of state and federal laws concerning disrupted elections, working toward a policy report that will outline current state law, federal authority, and present policy alternatives based on the findings. We hope to inform congressional action on the development of a federal elections disruption policy. During the semester Lab Managers and research assistants will also continue work with CREW and longtime partner the RAND Institute.”

Professor Terril Jones
The Politics and Craft of International Journalism
The Politics and Craft of International Journalism will bring in analyst and journalist guest speakers for story-writing assignments that delve into international dimensions of the U.S. presidential election and the Coronavirus crisis. Two experts and one journalist will speak to the class for a story assignment on Black Lives Matter and police brutality issues. Prof. Terril Jones will also host numerous newsmakers and subject experts, who will speak on international political topics. The class will use Zoom breakout rooms in new exercises: divide the class into groups, have them do the same exercise and produce short write-ups, then compare and assess them. Students will gain experience interviewing news sources and writing stories on a variety of topics.

Professor Lisa Koch
Introduction to International Politics
Prof. Lisa Koch will delve into the most important hot-button issues of today—such as the border dispute between China and India, and tensions between Iran and the U.S.—in her Introduction to International Politics course. She will explore topics such as international trade during the pandemic, the global environment, the role of race in international relations, and the policy tools countries use to pursue their interests. Students will work with their peers, creating a micro-community of scholars. The course concludes with a live simulation: students will be immersed in a fictionalized version of a real-world international crisis and use what they’ve learned during the semester to try to achieve their country’s goals.

Professor Frederick Lynch
Inequality, Politics and Public Policy
This course will shift smoothly to online format to study the most important issue of our time: the changing landscape of economic, political and social inequalities and political and policy efforts to reduce them. Major topics include:  concentration of wealth and power, institutional racism, sexism and white privilege, rapidly changing class and occupational structures, shifting patterns of social mobility, immigration and globalization.  New emphases on how Silicon Valley, technological change, and the COVID-19 pandemic have magnified major societal divides. Policy areas will include: redistribution through taxation, safety-net programs (including “Obamacare”), and efforts to sustain the middle classes (work-family balance issues), anti-poverty policies and affirmative action/diversity programs.  Constantly updated Sakai-based readings, documentaries, data, charts and graphics will be presented and discussed via zoom as they would be via the classroom computer screen. Guest speakers will address campus diversity climates, California’s new affirmative-action ballot proposition, and career strategies.

Organization of Health Care and Public Policy
This course will be COVID-19 centered this semester! We begin with a documentary on the horrific 1918 flu pandemic as a springboard for detailed analysis of COVID-19 via new data and reports uploaded almost daily onto the Sakai course website and bibliography. From there we move the study of: epidemiology, disease prevention, healthcare professions and organizations, health care inequities and diversity issues, the evolution of health care insurance (employer-based, Medicare, Medicaid, Affordable Care Act [“Obamacare”]), the uninsured population, and the possibility of Medicare-for-all. The latter will be a major policy debate focus as will the exploding topic of individual rights v. public health mandates (vaccines, masks, stay-at-home orders, etc.) Zoom format expands the range of guest speakers:  two physicians (private group practice and non-profit Kaiser system), a health insurance consultant, and a biotech, medicine and health professions career specialist.

Jon Shields
Policing the American City
In the wake of George Floyd’s vicious murder, Americans are once again debating policing. While critics see a policing system riddled with systemic racism and call for the defunding of police departments, defenders stress other problems and fear that defunding campaigns will undermine the critical work police do to protect citizens in disadvantaged communities. As a half-credit special topics course, this class will meet semi-regularly to discuss some of the best social science research on policing in American cities. In particular, the course will explore the social role of the police and the factors that shape police behavior? Answering these questions will help us think more deeply about the best way to reform American policing.

Professor Andrew Sinclair
Introduction to American Politics 
Prof. Andrew Sinclair’s two courses will feature projects related to the 2020 presidential election. Says Prof. Sinclair: “Learning about American politics side-by-side with a consequential presidential election, a national conversation about race, and an enormous public health and economic crisis ought to be about as engaging as politics can get.  I am looking forward to seeing how my students take what they have learned over the course of the term and turn it into a piece of analysis focused on what’s next.”

In both of these courses, students will have an opportunity to engage directly with the debates surrounding the most important issues of our day.

In Introduction to American Politics, students will focus their final papers on the strategic choices available to one of the two major American political parties to navigate the environment defined by the new election results.  This assignment will build off a semester-long exercise in bringing the technology of 1800 and 2020 together: writing letters to intellectual collaborators (in the fashion of John Adams, “to explain ourselves to each other”) about politics, and then reflecting on them in small online conversations.

Public Policy Process
In Public Policy Process, students will implement a similar final project, but one focused on advancing particular policy changes.

Professor Peter Uvin
Alt Perspectives on Development
Students in Prof. Peter Uvin’s new course Alt Perspectives on Development will identify a conception and practice of development that is non-dominant at the international level—Buddhism or Islam and development, for example, or development as happiness—and prepare a virtual class for their peers, complete with asynchronous materials and synchronous discussion prompts.

Philosophy

Professor Rima Basu
Philosophy: Belief, Evidence, and Agency
This is the advanced seminar for philosophy majors. The goal of this class is to both provide the theoretical background in an area of philosophy and to prepare students to make their own original contribution to that area of philosophy through a final research paper. This serves as training for writing a thesis.  

 Prof. Basu will host a guest speaker approximately every week to visit the class to workshop new work, as well as discuss with students the writing and research process. These discussions will demystify that process, allowing students to see work that’s in development (rather than just polished journal articles), and speak to the authors they read. In addition, students will also be able to gauge hot topics in the field and focus on those where themselves can make contributions.    

Interdisciplinary seminar: Structural Injustice 
The purpose of this course is to investigate the degree to which the soil of society has been poisoned—as Toni Morrison writes at the end of her novel, “The Bluest Eye”: “The soil is bad for certain kinds of flowers”—making it impossible for some to flourish. Specifically, we will interrogate the ways that structural and institutional forces perpetuate inequality in the absence of any overt ill-will or prejudice.  

 This course will be a year-long CR/NC course, and students must apply for permission to enroll. The course will be structured around readings to provide the theoretical foundation for thinking about structural injustice. In addition to guest speakers, the course will also employ roleplaying games that take place in worlds that are both alike and unlike our own, to get students to think creatively about how structural injustices arise and the consequences of various interventions. Much of the curriculum will be designed as a team collaboration to address the interdisciplinary needs of all the students.   

The skills students will develop will vary based on their final projects, which can range from documentaries to artwork to podcasts and beyond. Their imaginations are the limit. What will remain in common amongst all is a deeper understanding and ability to articulate the structural sources of the modern-problems of racism and injustice and thinking creatively about successful interventions.  

Freshman Humanities Seminar: Evil
“I structure my Freshman Humanities Seminar in the style in the style of a tabletop roleplaying game, e.g., Dungeons and Dragons. After all, how best to explore the concepts of good and evil if not through a game?” said Prof. Rima Basu. 

Every student fills out a character sheet at the start of the semester, and it gets updated each time their stats improve and they level up. “I don’t assume familiarity with any of the mechanics of a role-playing game, but the framework of skills, XP, and levelling up is a familiar one,” Basu continues. “Such a structure offers more freedom with respect to what assignments and what type of assignments students complete. Instead of final papers students have in the past created podcasts, explainer videos, rap battles between philosophers, artwork, etc. As the professor (or the DM in the D&D analogy), I set the structure and put some obstacles in their path, but like in a roleplaying game, how you overcome those obstacles is up to you and limited only by what you can imagine (within reason, i.e., within the mechanics of the world).” 

Professor Amy Kind
Experience
Prof. Amy Kind introduces a variety of new components to her Experience class. Several of the authors whose articles students read will serve as virtual guest speakers during the weekly class meetings.  Outside of those meetings, students will be creating vlogs and group projects, and will be offered the opportunity to develop and submit a creative project in place of a final paper.

Psychological Science

Professor Jennifer Feitosa, director of the METRICS Lab
Statistics for Psychologists
Prof. Jennifer Feitosa teaches Statistics for Psychologists and will utilize a flipped classroom design to provide more resources to students and spend more time on complex problem-solving. Prof. Feitosa will incorporate small group exercises to encourage peer learning and community building and draw upon continuous monitoring to assess learning outcomes, challenges, and overall reactions to the course. Specifically, Prof. Feitosa plans to schedule informal learning opportunities, utilize Zoom polls, and hold extra office hours for one-on-one meetings. 

Organizational Psychology (Spring) 
In Prof. Jennifer Feitosa’s Organizational Psychology class, she will organize a virtual panel of industrial and organizational psychologists in the field to discuss their careers. In addition, Prof. Feitosa will manage a team-applied project to diagnose specific organizations. Students have the opportunity to collect data, evaluate organization’s needs, and provide real-world recommendations to address the challenges they are facing. This applied project is a comprehensive demonstration of the knowledge students learned in the course, including teamwork and translation of science.

Diverse Teams at Work Seminar (Spring) 
In her Diverse Teams at Work seminar, Prof. Feitosa will employ collaborative software tools and video production apps to forge and maintain connections with students. She has already leveraged from these tools when CMC went virtual for the Spring semester. In addition, students will collaborate virtually with students from other schools in an effort to mirror how teams function in the real world. She will draw from her research in team and diversity science to implement strategies throughout the course (e.g., peer feedback, parsing out cultural differences, etc.)

Professor Shana Levin
Directed Research in Psychology
Confronting Prejudice and Discrimination: Psychology Research in Action

Psychology Professor Shana Levin’s new directed research course, Confronting Prejudice and Discrimination: Psychology Research in Action, helps students become well-versed in the theory, research, and practice of confronting prejudice and discrimination. Students will debate key findings in the literature, and design their own research proposal to test novel research questions. Throughout the semester, Prof. Levin will discuss the important new book Confronting Prejudice and Discrimination: The Science of Changing Minds and Behaviors (Mallett & Monteith, Eds., 2019).

Modern Languages & Literatures

Professor Bassam Frangieh
Introductory Modern Standard Arabic
Prof. Bassam Frangieh will invite guest speakers from the region or currently residing outside of the Arab world. Many have spent years living and working in the Middle East. Students will learn Arabic and major aspects of the Arabic morphology, syntax, and grammar through conversations and engaging training. Once the Arabic basic elements are covered, classic Arabic films, songs, iconic music videos, and Qur`anic recitations will be screened and discussed via Zoom. Guest speakers will include religious practitioners, poets, novelists, and media anchors—thus the Arabic culture is reflected through the language. The classes are dynamic, engaging, and interesting. 

Professor Marie-Claude Thomas
Intermediate Arabic
This course aims at building a solid foundation to master the Arabic language. Prof. Marie-Claude Thomas assigns students to keep a personal portfolio of writing samples, built over the course of the semester to demonstrate scholarly understanding of culture, politics, and current events.

Professor Norman Valencia
Intermediate Portuguese 
Students will travel to Brazil with Prof. Norman Valencia as their guide via YouTube videos from vloggers, travel shows, and newscasts. Materials, in original Portuguese language, will help students with different accents and cultural expressions from a diversity of regions in Brazil. By the end of the class, students will produce their own videos in Portuguese and use simple video editing tools on a Brazilian cultural expression of their preference.  

Religious Studies

Professor Gary Gilbert
Israel, Zionism and the Jewish States
Prof. Gary Gilbert will invite students to participate in a series of simulations based on actual historical events, such as The First Zionist Congress and the political and military deliberations that led up to 1967 (Six Day) War. Based on a reading of publicly available archival materials, students will recreate these seminal moments in the history of Israel.  “The decision-making exercises are designed to give everyone a better sense of the important figures in these discussions, their respective positions, and the complex issues they addressed,” Gilbert said.

Jewish Civilizations
Student teams will develop content for a website on Medieval and modern Jewish communities around the world.  Each team will be assigned to a specific location of long-standing importance in Jewish history (e.g., Barcelona, Berlin, Prague, Vilna, Warsaw, Krakow, Amsterdam, New York, Los Angeles, Tel Aviv).  The website will trace the history of a particular Jewish community, provide short biographies on important communal figures, and describe the important communal institutions and buildings. “Students will be required to engage not only with general Jewish ideas and practices,” said Gilbert, “but with specific Jewish lives and how those lives negotiated not only the intricacies of Jewish tradition, but also the broader political and social realms in which they lived.”

Professor Daniel Michon
Freshman Humanities Seminar: Religion and Modernity
Prof. Daniel Michon will deploy Camtasia and OneNote for readings and annotations in his First-Year Humanities Seminar. Students will develop questions and share them via OneNote. Prof. Michon plans to host two class sessions to go over readings and discuss them together.

Mathematical Sciences

Professor Sarah Cannon
Discrete Mathematics
In Prof. Sarah Cannon’s Discrete Mathematics course, she plans to employ a partially flipped classroom. Students will watch a short video before class (likely on Edpuzzle, so they have to answer questions as they go along to make sure they’re engaged), and then class time will be spent working through examples first as a class and then in breakout groups.  She is also considering adding an extra optional problem session on Fridays where students can meet and get started on next week’s homework together – since working on homework with classmates is one of the best ways to learn, and meeting classmates will be hard virtually, she is hoping that this will help get some of those homework collaborations started.

Professor Mark Huber
Probability
Prof. Mark Huber writes that “One tool I will be using in my classes is Whiteboard.fi.  This is the modern-day computer equivalent of the historic school slate board.  It gives each participant in the class a small whiteboard that they can type or draw upon.  It is perfect for mathematics courses where it is necessary to draw figures to explain one’s answer. Students can see their own board and mine. As the instructor, I can see everyone’s boards in order to better gauge how much of the class is following the lesson.”

In his Probability class, Prof. Huber writes, ”it is very helpful to get a tactile feel for the mathematics through the use of dice or playing cards.  Fortunately, the gamers of the world have long been building software systems to play games remotely. I will be using one such system, roll20.net, which allows students to connect and play games. With this software, it is possible for an entire class of students to see dice being thrown and cards being dealt in ways that help students internalize probabilistic facts. As the class progresses, we will move to more advanced simulation using R Studio, modern software for data science that is widely used in the field today.”

Professor Chiu-Yen Kao
Linear Algebra with Computing
Image Processing
In Prof. Chiu-Yen Kao’s courses (Linear Algebra with Computing and Image Processing) students tailor their final projects based on their interests, learn approaches to solve math problems, and make a short simulation movie. Instead of the final exam, there will be a final presentation where students discuss final projects and movies.

Professor Samuel Nelson
Multivariable Calculus
In Prof. Samuel Nelson’s Multivariable Calculus classes this Fall, traditional exams will be replaced with essays, in which students select and write their own explanations and examples of key course concepts. This shifts the focus away from rote memorization, encouraging students to take ownership of the concepts and offers the chance to be creative in showing their understanding of mathematical concepts.

Professor Jeho Park
Advanced Projects in Data Science
Our “Advanced Projects in Data Science” course, taught by Prof. Jeho Park together with multiple faculty, is a project-based course that allows teams of students to experience with real-world problems in data science. Leveraging and developing computational, statistical, and domain expertise, students work directly with industry clients (businesses, non-profit agencies, and public agencies) for their data project in a remote working environment. Students will also develop soft skills that are often not fully utilized in traditional courses, such as professional communication and writing, project management, teamwork, and ethics in data science, through a series of virtual client meetings and online seminars/workshops.

Note: Advanced Projects in Data Science (DS180) serves as the capstone experience for the Data Science Major and Data Science Sequence. 

Professor Robert Valenza
Calculus
Legendary Prof. Robert Valenza has brought the joy of learning Calculus to thousands of students. He describes his “non-innovative innovation” through the use of technology: “The major initiative in my courses–Math 30 (Calculus I) and Math 171 (Abstract Algebra)–is to bring about the experience of a real classroom taught in my usual style for my remote students. Both courses are naturally and, for the most part, necessarily lectures given at a blackboard. To preserve this, our IT staff is installing a tracking camera and two special displays in Davidson Hall so that I can develop the mathematics on the boards, with the students taking notes and asking questions, as usual. One of the displays will show all of the students attending remotely, allowing me to read their faces and thus to anticipate questions and points that need reinforcement; the other will show a view of what the remote attendees are seeing, so that I can be sure that the blackboard material is properly visible. I expect that this intensely technological approach to some thoroughly vetted course designs will allow me to teach in what is for me the most direct and effective mode: live lecture with immediate student participation.”

Co-Curricular
Physical Education

Coach Gina Oaks Garcia
HIIT: High Intensity Interval Training 
Our great PE faculty will also use technology smartly. Coach Gina Oaks Garcia writes about her HIIT course: “The online model of my High Intensity Interval Training classes will consist of mostly body weight movement exercises. Some of the workouts can be used with light weights if a student chooses to implement weight or has access to them. We will do a high amount of reps in short amounts of time to get the heart rate up and cardiovascular endurance going. We rest as needed however get right back into action. The movements are based off of a timer and has built in rest periods throughout the workouts. You will be sweaty and feel amazing once you conclude each workout. The workouts will be done in a small area through multiple platforms. Zoom will be the most used platform. The students will be receiving the workouts prior to class starting.” Many PE classes will follow this model. Take care of your body.

Kravis Lab for Social Impact

Gemma Bulos, Director of Social Innovation and Impact and Scott Sherman, Senior Director of Social Innovation & Co-Curricular Programming

The Kravis Lab for Social Impact offers the following programs this fall:

  • TRANSFORMING ADVERSITY INTO STRENGTH– During this global pandemic, all of us face significant unprecedented challenges. How do we grow stronger and more resilient during these uncertain stressful times? This 8-week program trains students to develop and strengthen these essential life skills. As a co-curricular initiative, students will learn and apply evidence-based tools emerging from the best scientific and academic research, as well as receive personalized mentorship, coaching, tutoring, and peer-to-peer learning. Designed specifically for 1st year students, this experiential learning opportunity helps them navigate their entry to college and set meaningful goals for their college career.
  • DEVELOPING MEANINGFUL CONNECTIONS, AND EFFECTIVE AND INFLUENTIAL COMMUNICATION – This eight-week co-curricular program trains students in key relational skills they need to succeed in college and in life. As technology, artificial intelligence and automation become more pervasive, human capacities such as social and emotional learning, empathy, and transformative communication will be key attributes students will need to be build strong relationships and be competitive in the future of work. Currently we are intending to offer this to sophomores and upperclassmen.
  • SOCIAL INNOVATION AND COMMUNITY IMPACT – This eight-week program trains students to become creative problem-solvers. This is specifically for students who want to use their education to do good in the world and finding, supporting and/or implementing innovative ideas and strategies to solve the world’s most pressing problems. Students will be applying what they learn to real-world situations, helping organizations locally and globally to maximize their social impact.
Center for Writing and Public Discourse

The First-Year Writing Associates program will pair specially trained CWPD consultants (“Writing Associates”) with FHS and FWS courses. These students – selected both for their skill and experience as writers and tutors and for their interest in helping first-year students improve as writers – will provide one-on-one peer mentorship and feedback to students enrolled in FHS and FWS courses. Writing Associates represent a wide range of disciplines, including STEM fields, the Humanities, and the Social Sciences and they will receive special training enabling them to offer more targeted feedback to FHS/FWS students. Our Writing Associates will promote peer learning and interaction in a remote setting and give first-year students a lasting connection to an important academic success resource on campus. The tips and strategies they share will prepare our students write effectively in different disciplines and contexts, and those skills will be relevant in the fall and, of course, in the future.

Appel Fellowship

The Appel Fellowship provides first-year students up to $3500 for domestic projects and up to $5000 for international projects to support purposeful, independent experiences that culminate in a meaningful writing project. This Fellowship asks students to engage in independent writing projects that have the potential to be life-transforming.