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Honors Colloquia


Colloquia classes are rigorous, upper-division Honors offerings that challenge students to think critically about the world around them. The classes focus heavily on student interaction, requiring students to engage in discussions with their professors and peers.

The heart of the Honors curriculum, colloquia classes ask students to look beyond their major requirements and to study topics that will broaden their views of the world. Course topics change every semester so students often have the option to take courses that compliment their majors or ones on topics that simply interest them.
A benefit of the Honors 392 classes is that they allow students to study subjects without first taking prerequisites. For example, in the spring of 2014, students interested in ancient Greece were able to take a class on Ancient Greek Medicine and Magic without taking a series of Western Civilization classes beforehand. 

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Every spring semester, one colloquia class offers a travel component, allowing students to travel abroad the following summer. Past classes have traveled to Oxford University, Athens, and Rome. Though there are increased course fees for these classes, the Honors College helps students seek out funding assistance to help with travel costs.

Course Examples

Past Courses

  • The Great Depression: A Multi-Disciplinary Examination
    Professors, Robert Simms, Larry Reynolds and Social Dan Huff
  • The US & India: Lessons from History
    Professor, Dr. Mohan Limaye
  • Big Trouble: Economic and Social Dynamics of the American Industrial Revolution
    Professors Dan Huff (Social Work) and Larry Reynolds (Economics)
  • Creativity and Innovation
    Professors John Gardner (Engineering) and Nancy Napier (International Business)
  • Democracy: Diplomatic Relations, and Global Business
    Professors Ross Burkhart (Political Science) and Mohan Limaye (Marketing)
  • Ecology and American Indian Philosophy
    Professors David Greegor (Biology) and Tzo-Nah (Native American Studies)
  • Environmental Science, Politics and the Law
    Professors John Freemouth (Political Science) and Walter Whelen (Environmental Studies)
  • Heath and Human Ecology
    Professors Nick Casner (History) and Gary Shook (Health Studies)
  • Ethnographic Media: Representing Culture Through Film and Video
    Professors Peter Lutze (Communication) and Bob McCarl (Anthropology)
  • Justice, Expediency, and the Rhetoric of War
    Professors Alan Brinton (Philosophy) and Greg Raymond (Honors)
  • Modernity and Tradition in Africa
    Professors Peter Buhler (History) and David Christensen (retired Foreign Service Officer)
  • Modern Irish Drama
    Professors Leslie Durham (Theatre Arts) and Helen Lojek (English)
  • Peasants, Revolutionaries, and Entrepreneurs: Life in Rural China
    Professors Peter Lichtenstein (Economics) and Shelton Woods (History)
  • Plato as Literature
    Professors Sean O’Grady (English) and Larry Kincaid (History)
  • Sexual Identities in American Society
    Professors Jill Gill (History) and Virginia Husting (Sociology)
  • Social and Economic Aspects of the American Industrial Revolution
    Professors Dan Huff (Social Work) and Larry Reynolds (Economics)
  • The Entrepreneurial Society
    Professors Norris Krueger (Management) and Robert Shepard (Business)
  • The Grand Tour: A Journey Through the Arts of the 18th Century
    Professors James Cook (Music) and Jan Widmayer (English)
  • The Middle East: Literature and History
    Professors Marcy Newman (English) and Michael Zirinski (History)
  • The Millennium
    Professors Peter Buhler (History) and James Hadden (English)
  • Women of the West in History and Literature
    Professors Rena Sanderson (English) and Sandra Schackel (History)
  • Work and Culture in a Global Environment
    Professors Carol Martin (English) and Nancy Napier (International Business)
  • Yellowstone: Nature and Culture in America
    Professors John Freemuth (Political Science) and Sean O’Grady (English)

Current Courses

Skills: Educational Traditions and Workforce Needs

Instructor: Eric Landrum
Throughout this course we examine the tensions and alignments between the goals of higher education and the needs of the workforce, from the perspectives of college graduate satisfaction and business/industry success. Students will explore the importance of skills, self-reflect on their current skill levels, and concentrate on how they will demonstrate their own skills in the college-to-career transition.

Language and Mind

Instructor: Michal Temkin Martinez
Language is a unique human tool that is unlike any other organism’s communicative function. The human brain, in its capacity to produce and process language, is largely responsible for this. In this course, we look at the physiological, physical, and mental properties of speech sounds.

Architecture and Infrastructure of Ancient Rome

Instructor: Annal Frenz
Rome is justly famous for its engineering feats and its monumental structures, but typically when we study Ancient Rome we only give a nod to their technology and quickly focus on Roman politics and power plays, with the occasional look at gladiators and games. This course will focus on the technologies that allowed Rome to grow, both from the technical perspective of how the Romans built their infrastructure but also from the cultural perspective of how and why those infrastructures fulfilled the needs of Roman society.

The Everyday Use and Mis-Use of Data and Statistics

Instructor: Donna Llewellyn
The Use of Data- how to take complex question and break them down in order to start modeling them and estimate their solutions – what numbers do you need to start to answer these kinds of questions, where do you get those number, and what do you do with them. Collecting data- how much is enough? The Mis-Use of Data – how do pollsters, advertising and marketing agents, and other mis-use basic statistics and other data to make their points? We will read about and study the darker side of statistics. This class will be interactive and taught as a joint inquiry investigation into the topics listed. Students will do projects studying these topics as they relate to their own academic or personal interests.