Introductory Special Topics (190’s and 290’s)–Fall 2020

Fall 2020 Offerings

Courses numbered in the 190’s and 290’s focus on a particular topic and are offered only once or twice. These courses are taught at an introductory or intermediate level; specific prerequisites (if any) are noted in the course descriptions.

Please consult WebAdvisor for the days, times, and locations of these sections.

ARAB 290, Levantine Colloquial Arabic: Jordanian and Palestinian
Short Title: Levantine Colloquial Arabic
Professor S. Alkyam
Credits: 4
This is an introductory course to a specific variety of Arabic, i.e. Levantine Arabic. By focusing on the three overreaching groups of dialectical variations Jordanian, Palestinian Urban, and Palestinian/Jordanian Rural dialects, students develop listening/speaking and conversational skills in spoken Arabic at a beginning-level proficiency. Throughout the semester, students develop their speaking skills to talk about the following topics: self, family, relatives, friends, hobbies, daily activities, surroundings (home, school, city, country, etc.). Moreover, students acquire basic conversational skills in certain social occasions such as: exchanging pleasantries; asking for, offering, accepting, and rejecting things.
Prerequisites: ARAB 110 or the equivalent

COMJ 290, Critical Race Theory
Professor Moore Roberson
Credits: 4
An examination of the relationship between race, racism, and power within a United States context. The
course studies the history of Critical Race Theory (CRT) in law and traces its' influence across various
academic and non-academic fields. Student analyze interdisciplinary scholarship in the fields of education,
law, and history to identify the overwhelming presence of racism in mass culture. Students learn about
different theoretical approaches related to CRT including whiteness studies, race and educational policy, and
critical race feminism. Students will participate in a community engagement project that will help them
translate theory to practice.
Prerequisites: COMJ 160 or EDUC 100 or BLKST 100

ECON 190, Introduction to Bloomberg Terminals
Professors Bianco and Michaelides
Credits: 2
An interactive introduction to financial market analysis using a mix of Bloomberg modules and in-class software-based exercises. Students will be exposed to key properties of financial data and applications. Upon completion, students will be well suited to obtain their Bloomberg certification and be better prepared for careers in financial institutions. This will be taught as a seven-week course. Must be taken Credit/No Credit.
Prerequisites: None

ECON 191, Essential Skills for a Data-Driven World
Short Title: Skills for a Data-Driven World
Professor K. Bender
Credits: 2
A hands-on practicum on the real-world tools and methods students across all disciplines need to succeed in today’s data-driven world. Through guided in-class exercises, students will learn to identify appropriate data for the question or task at hand, clean and format the data, and assemble multiple datasets. Students will gain experience with Microsoft Excel and Stata, which they can apply in their senior comps, include on their CVs, and demonstrate to potential employers with a completed class assignment. Students will also have the opportunity to use the Bloomberg Terminals, if they choose. This will be taught as a seven-week course.
Prerequisites: None

ECON 192, Topics in Taxation
Professor J. Waugh
Credits: 4
An examination of the theory, history and applications of an assortment of taxes including personal, corporate, partnership, state, local, payroll, as well as sales and use taxes. The course also serves as a foundation for those wanting to take ECON 501: Meadville Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) Internship, where many of the concepts covered in the course will be put into practice.
Prerequisites: None

HIST 190, Law and Democracy in ancient Greece
Short Title: Law and Democracy in Greece
Professor Herrman
Credits: 4
An examination of legal and political ideals and practices in ancient Greece, with a particular focus on classical Athens, the birthplace of democracy. Topics include the emergence of the concept of justice in archaic Greece, the institutional structure of the political system in classical Athens, and attitudes towards politics and justice as reflected in drama and philosophy. Special attention is paid to the rule of law and the role of the courts, with close studies of prosecution and defense speeches from Athenian trials.
Prerequisites: None

History 191, Women and Gender in Rome
Professor R. Orttung
Credits: 4
An investigation into the presentation and performance of gender roles and sexuality in the Greco-Roman world, in particular the Roman Empire of the first to fifth centuries CE. Students learn to appreciate the challenges of studying social categories—women and men who defy traditional gender roles—sidelined or misrepresented in the literary and historical record, from the Imperial family to sex workers and slaves. Through careful comparison of literary, documentary and medical texts to visual representations and archaeological evidence, such as recent studies in ancient skeletal DNA, students assess traditional assumptions concerning gender attributes and roles in Roman society.
Prerequisites: None

LS 190, College Success as a Student of Color
Professor Perez-Johnston
1 Credit
An investigation of how identity affects navigation through white spaces. Life at a predominantly white institution does not mean that students of color have to give up who they are. Topics include acculturation vs. cultural assimilation; stereotypes and their meanings; why the perception of “acting white” exists; explorations of identity and intersectionality; and shifts within identity and what that means throughout a student’s college career. This will be taught as a seven-week course. Must be taken Credit/No Credit.
Prerequisites: None
Module A

LS 191, 1st gen guide to thriving in the 1st year
Professor Perez-Johnston
1 Credit
An investigation into the challenges faced by first-generation college students. Students engage in discussions focusing on navigating the first year of college and becoming “campus experts” to help build confidence in their academic, social, and emotional abilities, and to create their sense of belonging on a college campus. Discussion topics include imposter syndrome, college vocabulary, available resources, the challenges and promises of coming to college, family influence, personal choice, and what success means in higher education. This will be taught as a seven-week course. Must be taken Credit/No Credit.
Prerequisites: None
Module B

RELST 190, Black Faith and Thought
Professor Delgado
4 Credits
An introductory survey of the Black religious experience in the United States from the early twentieth century to the present. Students explore the doctrines, traditions, and practices of prominent and obscure Black religious leaders, movements, and organizations. The exploration includes an examination of how Black faith and thought has evolved to offer critical religio-cultural and religio-racial responses to contemporary socio-political issues and challenges faced by the Black community in the US (e.g., race, gender, sexuality, social reform).