2012-13 First-Year Seminars

AA. Career = Degree x Experience. You can find the path to your perfect career! Selecting a major is but one part of the process. Your liberal arts degree can be greatly enhanced by internships, volunteer service activities, and more. Making “smart” choices from your very first semester will help to ensure success in your chosen career. Develop the essential skills needed to survive and succeed in today’s job market. Make the Bethany curriculum and graduation requirements work in your favor by selecting courses and core requirements that develop specific job skills that employers seek. Discover how joining clubs and organizations on campus can help you develop lifelong friendships while building a winning resume.Closed
(Kathy Furbee, Professor of Social Work and Director of the Social Work Program)
BB. Being a “Super Cool” You. This seminar is an introduction to the process of identity formation. According to Erik Erikson, late adolescence and early adulthood is the period of identity confusion and a time of self discovery. Past experiences and future goals help guide us to become the person we are. Through selected readings, interpersonal interactions, and self-exploratory activities and writing, students will gain a better understanding of the qualities that make them unique and what affiliates them with others. Existential questions, such as Who Am I? and What is the meaning of my life? will be explored. Closed
(Kelly Schuller, Assistant Professor of Psychology)
CC. From Atom Girl to the X-Men: Superhero Science. Will a human ever “leap tall buildings in a single bound?” Can a human ever have Wolverine’s adamantine claws? Have you ever wondered how Mystique shape-shifts? Would a lab accident turn you into the Hulk or give you “spidey-sense?” What is the superhero or supervillian’s power that you would like to have? This seminar will discuss the science or lack of science behind many of the most famous superheroes and supervillians. Since science and technology is constantly advancing, the seminar will predict what kind of characters and powers will be imagined in the future.
(Lisa Reilly, Assistant Professor of Chemistry) Closed
DD. Heroes and Villains. The course will study the archetype of the Hero, Heroine, and Villain as represented through ancient history till today. We will read excerpts of literature and drama, examine the visual representations of Heroes and Villains in fine art, and watch films that represent the same concepts. The students will complete research projects as they develop their ideas and definitions of the perfect Hero and perfect Villain.
(Tracie Duncan,Associate Professor of Theatre and Director of Technical Theatre) Closed
EE. Human Struggle through Sports.Through the mediums of Literature and films, this seminar explores the way in which men and women struggle through sports. Topics such as aging athletes, ethical decisions making, competition, success, and even death will be explored through the eyes of the athlete, fans, and the general sports enthusiast. Closed
(Jan Forsty, Assistant Professor of Physical Education, Associate Director of Intercollegiate Athletics and Recreation, Head Softball Coach and Head Women’s Tennis Coach)
FF. Leadership: A Journey, not a Destination.The aim of this course is to examine leadership styles and practical application skill development within a variety of organizations. The class format will include individual, small group and class assignments. Closed
(Matthew Payment, Visiting Assistant Professor in Physical Education)
GG. Psychology of Fairy Tales.This course will explore a variety of psychological themes present in fairy tales. Students will read a selection of fairy tales from around the world, view movie adaptations of fairy tales, and write their own fairy tale. Themes to be explored include morality, pro-social and anti-social behavior, romantic love, and archetypes. Closed
(Katrina Cooper, Associate Professor of Psychology and Director of First Year Studies)
HH. Happiness 101: Philosophies of Happiness. This seminar is an attempt to identify, describe and implement habits of body and mind that can lead to increased happiness. Using Tal Ben-Sharar's Happier as a starting point, students will identify through critical thought, reading and writing, a personal practice of eudemonia. Student will also read Barry Schwarz's The Paradox of Choice in addition to researching the topic of happiness from the standpoint of eminent thinkers of the student's choosing. Closed
(Luke Hardt, Associate Professor of Theatre, Director of the Bethany College Theatre and Chair of the Department of Visual and Performing Arts)
II. Who Owns You: Ethical Issues in Bio-Medical Research. Henrietta Lacks, who was a poor black farmer, had cancer cells taken without her knowledge in 1951. Those cells went on to become one of the most important tools in modern medical research, leading to the development of the polio vaccine, advancements in chemotherapy, cloning and in vitro fertilization. Despite their importance and the launching a multimillion dollar industry, Henrietta Lacks’ contribution to science was unknown for more than 20 years, her family lived in poverty and Lacks herself was buried in an unmarked grave. In this course, students will explore the complication ethical issues surrounding biomedical research, including issues of informed consent, the use of embryonic stem cells in biomedical research, tissue ownership, and concerns related to genetic testing using the New York Times best seller book “The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks” by Rebecca Skloot as a platform for discussion. Students will also explore issues of poverty and racism in biomedical research and explore major historic events that brought to light key ethical principles that should underlie research endeavors, including: the Nuremberg War Crime Trials following WWII and the Tuskegee Syphilis Studies of the 1950-1970’s. Closed
(Jennifer Franko, Assistant Professor of Biology)
JJ. Science and Pseudoscience.This seminar is an exploration of the wide variety phenomena that are at the borderline of mainstream science and the sometimes outrageous claims of the popular and tabloid press. In the seminar, students learn to decide for themselves which claims merit further study and which are too ridiculous to believe. Phrenology, homeopathic medicine, spirits, UFOs, water dowsing, psychokinesis, fortune telling, big foot, sea serpents, astrology, and spontaneous human combustion are the kinds of subjects investigated. Readings and videos provide the basis for discussions, essays and an oral report. Closed
(John Burns, Professor of Biology)
KK. Stress, Coping and Health. This seminar is intended to teach freshmen about the link between stress and mental as well as physical health. Initial discussions will focus on the effects of stress on anxiety, depression, cardiovascular function, and susceptibility to disease. After that, discussion will focus on ways to cope with stress. Coping techniques for everyday stresses will include humor, social support, exercise and developing a positive self image. The seminar will also emphasize coping styles specific for the college experience including time management, open communication, conflict resolution, using on-campus resources and developing effective studying techniques to deal with such issues as adjusting to college-level academics, dealing with separation from home and adjusting to a new environment. Students will be graded on attendance, seminar participation and weekly self-reflection papers. Any student is welcome to take this seminar, but the anxious student may benefit the most. Closed
(Mark Affeltranger, Associate Professor of Psychology and Chair of the Department of Psychology)
LL. The Beatles and Their Times. This seminar engages the student in a study of music, popular culture, and history through the phenomenon of the Beatles. Our examination involves listening to music, viewing DVDs, research, writing, discussion and special projects tailored to student interests. An objective of this course is to understand and appreciate the dramatic paradigm shift in popular culture during the 1960s and its ramifications, both musically and sociologically for its own time and beyond. Closed
(Pandel Collaros, Associate Professor of Music and Director of the Jazz-Rock Ensemble)
MM. Sports Information and Broadcasting. This is a First Year Seminar course for those who show an interest in sports and sports broadcasting. The course will integrate writing, copying, and production skills with varsity sports at Bethany College. We will use historical research, written and oral exercises; actual game day broadcasts on radio/TV or web will be communicative outcomes of this seminar. Closed
(Jay Libby, Assistant Professor of Communications)
NN. Hearth Surgery. This seminar examines the increasing need for efficient use of wood and wood products for cooking and heating throughout the globe. Students will examine differences between traditional “three-stone fires,” traditional and modern wood “stoves,” and recent development of Rocket Stove technology. Classes will include manufacture and use of a variety of stoves, including alcohol camp stoves, Rocket Stoves, sawdust stoves, and larger wood and coal-fired heating stoves. In this manner, students will be introduced to the growing interest in efficient stove design and construction. This course will include a service-learning component, as student-constructed stoves will be provided to missionaries in developing nations. Readings, writings, and discussions will examine the effects of wood-fired appliances on tradition, deforestation, and poverty in developing nations, while examining the historical and modern uses of stoves in Europe and the United States. Closed
(Amanda Stewart, Associate Professor of Biology and Director of Equine Studies)