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, and 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 with at least a 3.5 grade point average may enroll in an Honors course. Students who do not meet this criterion may request permission of the instructor to enroll in an Honors course.

Spring 2022 Honors Courses

AH 326-HL / EN 310-HL / FR 310-HL Cities and Perversities: Literature in Turn of Century Paris, Vienna, Berlin — Dr. Morowitz and Dr. Urbanc — Tuesdays and Thursdays 2:40–4:10 pm

This team-taught ILC focuses on the art and literature in the fin-de-siècle in three major European centers: Paris, Vienna, and Berlin. The works of the period are studied in relation to issues of national identity and as a response to the shock of metropolitan life. We will discuss attitudes toward sexuality, the rise of the crowd, alienation, the impact of psychoanalysis, escapism, and withdrawal to the interior. Readings include some of the major literary works of the period by authors such as Arthur Rimbaud, Marcel Proust, Stefan Zweig, Lou Andreas-Salomé, Robert Walser, and Thomas Mann. Artistic movements studied include Symbolism, Expressionism, Art Nouveau and artists such as Toulouse-Lautrec, Gauguin, Klimt, Schiele and Vuillard. We will also study the interrelation between paintings, sculpture, architecture, design, and the popular arts in this period.The course attempts to understand the shared visual and literary language of turn-of-the-century Europe, while illuminating the special contributions of each city. The course includes museum visits, films, special lectures, and shared readings and assignments.

The course number a student selects will determine the Knowledge Area granted for this Honors ILC:

  • Arts (A) course if taken as AH 326


  • Humanities (H) if taken as EN 310 or FR 310


This ILC provides the following Key Skills:

  • practice/exposure Intercultural Understanding (U)
  • practice/exposure Creativity (C)
  • intensive Critical Reading and Analysis (RR)


Contact: lmorowit@wagner.edu and kurbanc@wagner.edu


CH 221-HL Scientific Computing — Prof. Sharma — Tuesdays and Thursdays 9:40–11:10 am


PH 203-HL Ethics and Society — Prof. Donovan — Tuesdays and Thursdays 9:40–11:10 am

This Honors ILC combines philosophy and computing to explore the social and moral issues surrounding firearm possession, use, and abuse in the United States. The philosophical discussions will be augmented by researching and analyzing data through programming in the Wolfram programming language. Students will learn exploratory data analysis, functional programming, and visual data representation to support their philosophical arguments. The course will have a strong research component and the entire class will participate in a research project.

Students must choose to take the course for Chemistry credit or Philosophy credit.

Enrolling in this Honors course as CH 221 counts as a Mathematics and Science (M) course in the Knowledge Areas.

Enrolling in this Honors course as PH 203 counts as a Humanities (H) course in the Knowledge Areas.

This ILC provides the following Key Skills:

  • intensive Technological Competency (TT)
  • practice/exposure Critical Reading (R)
  • practice/exposure Oral Communication (O)


Contact: aksharma@wagner.edu and sdonovan@wagner.edu

HI 236-HL History of the Civil Rights Movement — Prof. Reynolds — Tuesdays and Thursdays 11:20–12:50


TH 229-HL Devised Theatre — Prof. McCarthy — Tuesdays and Thursdays 11:20–12:50

This collaborative, team-taught, one-unit history and theatre ILC will examine the modern Civil Rights Movement and create theatre performance pieces appropriate to ideas associated with the national fight for racial equality for African Americans in the 1950s, 60s and 70s. The course will run as a colloquium and acting workshop in which historic texts and artistic works are read, shown, discussed and dismantled. We will discover truths about American history, the individual creative process in relation to the evolution of student ideas. Students will be asked to risk not knowing in order to discover. The course texts will include historic research materials related to students’ projects as well as selected readings, speeches, and archival films. Course materials will include—but not be limited to—props, costumes, and set pieces necessary for works.

Students must choose to take the course for History credit or Theatre credit.

Enrolling in this Honors course as HI 236 counts as a Humanities (H) course in the Knowledge Areas and provides the following Key Skills:

  • intensive Intercultural Understanding (UU)
  • intensive Information Literacy (LL)
  • practice/exposure Written Communication (WC)


Enrolling in this Honors course as TH 229 counts as an Arts (A) course in the Knowledge Areas and provides an intensive Creativity Key Skill (CC).

Contact: rita.reynolds@wagner.edu and theresa.mccarthy@wagner.edu

NR 224-HL Nutrition & Health — Mondays and Wednesdays 8:00–9:30

This intermediate learning community (ILC), intended for Nursing majors, includes an option for an Honors section of NR 224 Nutrition & Health, offered every fall and spring semester.

This ILC looks at the cellular nutrition of eukaryotes (humans) vs. the nutrition of prokaryotes (bacteria). The ILC also covers the similarities and differences in the structure, function and role of carbohydrates, proteins, lipids, vitamins and trace elements in humans and bacteria.  Finally, it looks at the immunological aspects of nutrition across the human life span compared to the immunological aspects in disease prevention.

Students may take any section of MI 200 (concurrently or as a prerequisite).

The Honors section of NR 224 offers a more challenging approach to the study of Nutrition & Health by requiring an additional research paper and a public presentation (such as at a health fair, to another class, or in a workshop).

NR 224 provides the following Key Skill:

  • practice/exposure Information Literacy (L)

AN 306-HO Introduction to Digital Spatial Technology — Prof. Mullenite — Mondays and Wednesday 1:00–2:30

This class is an introduction to Geographic Information Software (GIS) and geomatics, the method and theory of collecting, managing, and using spatially referenced data. Geomatics is a transformative technology which is shaping the ways in which researchers from across the social, natural and physical sciences manage and combine multi-disciplinary data. Students will learn to find and make appropriate selection of pre-existing sets of data from public depositories. After an introduction to the basic methods of manipulating demographic, topographic and environmental information, students will develop and present a small project of their own design. Working with big data and complex computer programs can be difficult. However, careful control of the scope of project and practical considerations of available data will help produce successful projects. Offered as required. May be used to fulfill major and minor in Environmental Studies and Civic Engagement minor.

This Honors course can be counted as a Social Science course (S) in the Knowledge Areas, and it provides the following Key Skills:

  • intensive Intercultural Understanding (UU)
  • intensive Technological Competency (TT)
  • practice/exposure Information Literacy (L)


Contact: joshua.mullenite@wagner.edu


EN 332-HO Pirates, Puritans, and the Revolutionary Atlantic World — Prof. Thomas — Mondays and Wednesdays 11:20–12:50

Reading literature from colonial America, Europe, the Caribbean, and Africa from a comparative trans-Atlantic perspective, students will study a multiplicity of voices and literary figures such as pirates, puritan ministers, economists, adventurers, statesmen, journalists, and slaves. For the world we live in today, the eighteenth century was a foundational moment when three of the most significant documents for American culture and economics were written: the Declaration of Independence, the U.S. Constitution, and Adam Smith’s Wealth of Nations. Students will critically examine the unique literary culture of that time. This course is intended to be of general interest not only to English majors and future high school teachers, but also to majors in Economics, History, Political Science, and Business.

This Honors course can be counted as a Humanities course (H) in the Knowledge Areas, and it provides the following Key Skills:

  • intensive Intercultural Understanding (UU)
  • intensive Critical Reading (RR)
  • practice/exposure Written Communication (WC)


Contact: steven.thomas@wagner.edu


HI 273-HO Environmental History of New York City — Prof. Palfreyman — Tuesdays and Thursdays 11:20–12:50

Living in New York today, outside of a few parks, it can be difficult to find the things we usually associate with “nature:” forests, mountains, wildlife, wetlands and marshes, and the like. Indeed, if anything, this city seems to be defined by a lack of the “environment.” But New York is, and always has been, shaped by the distinctive set of natural, geographical, and biological features that surround us. This course examines these environmental forces: New York was born as a water city. How will our future be affected by the threats of climate change and rising seas? Where have New Yorkers found the food, drinking water, and clean air we need, and how have we gotten rid of the garbage we don’t want? What about the city’s non-human residents – from the horses and pigs of the nineteenth century, to the pigeons, rats, and bedbugs of today? This course will demonstrate that “city” and “environment” are not antithetical terms, but rather that New York’s past and future are inseparably tied to the place in which we live.

This Honors course can be counted as a Humanities course (H) in the Knowledge Areas, and it provides the following Key Skills:

  • intensive Critical Reading (RR)
  • practice/exposure Information Literacy (L)
  • practice/exposure Written Communication (WC)


Contact: brett.palfreyman@wagner.edu


HI 330-HO Imperialism and Its Legacy — Prof. Weintrob — Mondays and Wednesdays 11:20–12:50

This Honors course option focuses on the construction of a modern sense of national, racial, and ethnic identity that resulted from the conquest of three-quarters of the globe by Europe and the U.S. Imperialism found expression in poetry and power relations, the literary canon and the military cannon. How did these technological, economic, and cultural exchanges contribute to the exceptional creativity and devastating violence of the twentieth century? Why did sexuality and gender roles become part of the marketing of Empire in advertisements, films (like Tarzan) and children’s literature? Did the “civilizing mission,” economic, or political interests motivate the U.S. annexation of Hawaii or the British raj in India? We also compare and contrast examples of nationalist resistance and its legacy in such cases as Irish rebellion, Gandhi’s campaign for non-violence, African independence movements, the partition of the Middle East, and Vietnam.

Contact: lrweintr@wagner.edu

MA 108-HO Statistics for Business — Prof. Shahvar — Tuesdays and Thursdays 2:40–4:10 pm

The Honors section of Statistics for Business is tailored to further challenge Honors students who are interested in a major related to business administration (Accounting, Finance, Management, or Marketing). The course focuses on techniques of descriptive and sampling statistics including regression, normal and t-distributions, hypothesis testing, estimation, and trend analysis. Applications focus on economics and business.

Students who have taken MA 109 or plan to take MA 109 may not earn credit for both MA 108 and MA 109.

This Honors course can be counted as a Mathematics and Science course (M) in the Knowledge Areas, and it provides a practice/exposure Key Skill in Quantitative Thinking (Q).


Contact: zshahvar@wagner.edu


MK 301-H Consumer Behavior — Prof. Barretta — Mondays and Wednesdays 11:20–12:50

Consumer Behavior is at the core of understanding contemporary marketing, for both Business -to-Consumer and Business-to-Business organizations. This course presents a study of theories related to consumer behavior, including understanding consumer desires/needs/attitudes/beliefs, and cultural, family and reference-group influences.  This area of marketing borrows theory from other disciplines, particularly psychology and sociology, to help explain consumers’ attitudes and behaviors. Students taking the honors section of Consumer Behavior will have the opportunity to explore some of these theories in greater depth, and how they are applied in a marketing setting.

This Honors course provides a practice/exposure Key Skill in Oral Communication (O).


Contact: paul.barretta@wagner.edu


PS 209 / RE 209 Is Religion “Man-made?” — Prof. Kaelber — Tuesdays 6:00–9:00 pm

Are religious “truths” divinely given or are they created by human beings? We will unravel this issue by approaching the question from various perspectives. We will consider, for example, the psychological approach of Sigmund Freud as well as the materialistic approach of Karl Marx. We will also consider the way in which Christian beliefs, in particular, are conditioned by cultural and political circumstances. We begin by examining religious predictions regarding the “end of the world” and why people continue to hold these beliefs even when they are proven to be untrue. We conclude with the powerful play “Equus” about a teenage boy who creates his own religion.

Students must choose to take this Honors course as a Social Science course (PS 209) or a Humanities course (RE 209) in the Knowledge Areas.

The course provides the following Key Skills:

  • intensive Intercultural Understanding (UU)
  • practice/exposure Creativity (C)
  • practice/exposure Critical Reading and Analysis (R)


Contact: wkaelber@wagner.edu

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

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.

This Honors course provides the following Key Skill:

  • intensive Oral Communication (OO)

Contact: michael.tennenbaum@wagner.edu


Honors Courses Offered in Previous Semesters


Fall Semester 2021

Spring Semester 2021

Fall Semester 2020

Spring Semester 2020

Fall Semester 2019

Spring Semester 2019

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


Antium Font. Textbooks available on Reserve