Honors Courses

Honors courses are offered in every fall and spring semester. Honors courses have section numbers containing the letter H. Honors courses are more challenging, involve more discussion and debate, often (if not always) require longer  and more in-depth research papers and oral presentations by students. Honors courses are most certainly more demanding, usually involving more reading and preparation.

Any student in the Honors Program or with at least a 3.5 grade point average may enroll in an Honors course. Students who do not meet either of these criteria may request permission of the instructor to enroll in an Honors course.

Fall 2018 Courses

AN 206-HO People and the Environment (I) — Tuesdays and Thursdays 1:00–2:30 pm

Discussions of our environmental relations are now common as many are concerned with renewable energy, conservation of natural resources, and food supplies. In order to inform discussions of our current condition, the class surveys ecological method and theory and examines the ways in which people throughout the world relate to the environment. Participants examine the practices of people who live by hunting and gathering, horticulture, fishing, herding, and agriculture within the context of human biology, culture and archaeology. These materials will provide insights into other means of subsistence and offer a qualitative yardstick against which our own practices can be evaluated. Offered as needed. May be used to fulfill the minor in Environmental Studies.

Contact information (chair of Department of Anthropology): celeste.gagnon@wagner.edu

AR 105-HO Drawing I — Prof. Murphy — Thursdays 1:00–4:00 pm

The development of skills in the representation of objects and the figure in terms of line, space, composition, and value. Emphasis is placed on basic drawing techniques and interpretative qualities of various media.

A comment from the instructor: Although it is a class designed for absolute beginners, the Honors section of Drawing I attempts to challenge the student by assigning a writing component where the student reflects on how the class topics are utilized by both contemporary artists and artists of the past. We will include field trips to view art to help facilitate this process.

Contact information: bmurphy@wagner.edu

AS 108-HO Astronomy: Stars and Galaxies — Prof. Kozak — Tuesdays and Thursdays 9:40–11:10 am

This course in astronomy is given for both science and non-science majors, and is multidisciplinary. One aspect deals with astrobiology – the evolution of our solar system, the formation of the earth, and the sequence of events leading up to the evolution of our own species. These topics serve as a model in the quest for discovering extrasolar planets, as well as extraterrestrial life. Another aspect of the course deals with astrophysics- the application of the theories of Newton and Einstein in studying the life cycle of stars, as well as the formation of galaxies. Included will be a discussion of black holes and the future possibility of time travel. The final aspect of this course will deal with cosmology- the big bang theory of how the universe began, as well as the possibility of a multiverse consisting of an infinite number of universes existing in space-time. The most recent research will be explored, including that with high-speed particle accelerators, the existence of the Higgs boson, and the LIGO experiments with colliding black holes proving gravity waves exist. Lectures will be supplemented by slides, science and science fiction film clips, and recent articles from newspapers and magazines. Students will be required to do research at the Rose Planetarium of the American Museum of Natural History in Manhattan.

A comment from the instructor: This honors course differs from the non-honors section because students in this course will be required to select either a science book, science fiction novel, or a periodical from a selected bibliography given by the instructor. This assignment will count as a lecture exam, giving the honor student an enriched experience with the possibility of earning a higher course grade than if the student were not enrolled in the honors section. In addition, the instructor, currently serving his fourteenth year as a Solar System Ambassador for NASA, will supplement all lectures with the most up to date information on stars and galaxies. The instructor has taught this course for the past eleven years and finds it just as exciting and interesting as the students taking the course.

Contact information: hkozak@wagner.edu

CH 211-HO Organic Chemistry I — Dr. DeCicco — Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays 10:10–11:10 am

Three hours of lecture and three hours of laboratory weekly in each course. A presentation of the fundamental principles of organic chemistry in which the mechanisms of organic reactions are stressed. The nomenclature, structure, synthesis, reactions, and properties of the principal classes of organic compounds are described. The fundamental principles of qualitative organic analysis are presented.

A comment by the instructor: This course will cover topics more quickly than a regular section of Organic Chemistry, and less time will be spent reviewing fundamental concepts from General Chemistry. Students will be expected to read through portions of the textbook before the material is covered in class. This will allow for a deeper exploration of topics that are presented, and will provide students with the opportunity to analyze, discuss, and work through more challenging problems in class. Students will also be required to attend two of the three science seminar series presentations during the semester, which will count towards their participation grade in the course.

Prerequisite: CH 112 General Chemistry II

Contact information: rdecicco@wagner.edu

EN 203-HO / RE 203-HO Spiritual Quest in Literature — Prof. Kaelber — Tuesdays 6:00-8:50 pm

An examination of some major pieces of fiction concerned with heroes on a search for meaning and purpose in their lives? Their search often leads them far from traditional religious beliefs.

Cross-listed as English 203 and Religion 203.

Contact information: wkaelber@wagner.edu

HI 260-HO Darwin, Marx, Freud and Picasso — President Guarasci and Prof. Rappaport — Mondays 6:00–9:00 pm

Darwin, Marx, Freud and Picasso changed the world. Their ideas, methods and techniques affected the way we understand, practice and study: biology, medicine, human evolution, human societies, human minds and cultures. Their insights and theories changed our language and have led to social revolutions. In this course we will explore Darwin, Marx, Freud and Picasso’s basic insights and theories. We will carefully read and discuss significant portions of their work as well as some interpretive texts. The class will be run as a seminar combining lectures and class discussions but the emphasis will be on the latter. There will be a required class trip to the American Museum of Natural History and to the Museum of Modern Art, and we will use films and documentaries as supplementary material.

Contact information: guarasci@wagner.edu, grappapo@wagner.edu

PS 101-HO Introduction to Psychology — Prof. Nolan — Mondays and Wednesdays 11:20 am – 12:50 pm

This Honors section of Introduction to Psychology is a survey course dealing with the major fields of psychology, including learning, perception, memory, motivation, development, social behavior, disorders of psychological functioning, and physiology of behavior. An introduction to the methodology, frameworks, and principles of contemporary scientific psychology is provided in a discussion-based format with hands-on demonstrations and student presentations.

Contact information: lnolan@wagner.edu

SPC 103-HO Public Speaking — Prof. Tennenbaum — Tuesdays and Thursdays 2:40–4:10 pm

A hands-on, practical approach to the study and practice of effective oral communication. Through a series of speaking assignments students will develop strategies to assist them in organizing their thoughts and overcoming performance anxiety on their way to becoming effective speakers. Different types of speeches will be covered including informative, demonstrative and persuasive. The course also includes preparation for special occasion speeches (awards, honors, ceremonies, weddings, etc.) as well as one-on-one situations. The primary goal of the class is to create relaxed, confident speakers who can be comfortable in any situation, whether formal or socially casual.

Contact information: michael.tennenbaum@wagner.edu

Honors Courses Offered in Previous Semesters

Spring Semester 2018

Fall Semester 2017

Spring Semester 2017

Fall Semester 2016

Spring Semester 2016

Fall Semester 2015

Spring Semester 2015

If you have questions about honors courses, please feel welcome to contact the Director of the Honors Program, Dr. Amy Eshleman (esh@wagner.edu).


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