16 Courses For Spring 2016 At Tufts
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Politics and Activism

16 Courses For Spring 2016 At Tufts

The ultimate guide for helping you register for classes.

16 Courses For Spring 2016 At Tufts

It's the middle of midterm season. Before you know it, this semester will be over. That means it's time to start thinking about registering for classes. I've compiled a list of some of my peers' and my favorite classes at Tufts to help make the registration process easier.

Before diving into the list, I just want to say a few reminders. College is a time for you to learn how you learn best and learn what you motivates you to learn. It is also a time for you to push yourself and explore topics outside your major. Take classes that will give you hands on experiences, rather than just traditional lectures. Look into taking smaller group seminar courses and special topics courses in your major. When you get your syllabus, ask yourself: Is this what I want to learn and spend my time doing?

Lastly, this list was meant to be applicable to all different kinds of majors. If you notice in the list below I did not mention any particular race or ethnic studies class. This is because there is no one course to blindly recommend to everyone. Each person is different in terms of what they hope to learn and gain from these kinds of courses. I highly recommend taking a class on race and/or ethnic studies. These classes will help you gain a fuller picture of "America." It will engage you with the outside world. You will learn about the importance of narratives and stories, especially the stories of people who are often silenced.

And now for 16 courses recommended for you to take Spring 2016...

(All course descriptions are taken from SIS.)

1. Intro to Acting - DR 10

"A basic course in acting aimed at enhancing self-confidence, oral expression, and creativity. Emphasis on concentration, motivation, and improvisation, and what it means to create a character and speak before an audience. Limit of eighteen students per section."

Why you should take it: You get to work on your public speaking in a comfortable space. Since this isn't your traditional lecture class, you actually get the chance to know all of the people in your class. Plus, you get to explore different sides of yourself.

Requirements it satisfies: Arts

2. Environmental Justice and World Literature - ENV/ENG/PJS 160

"An examination of contemporary world literature in relation to environmental justice concerns. Works by Helena María Viramontes, Gloria Naylor, Karen Tei Yamashita, Ken Saro-Wiwa, Jamaica Kincaid, Amitava Ghosh, with particular attention to issues of environmental racism, ecofeminism, environmental imperialism, and urban ecologies. Emphasis on the role of literature and the arts in social change, including practical strategies for activism. ENG 1, 2 required or fulfillment of college writing requirement. Recommended that the student already have taken either ENG 20,21,22, or 23. Recommendations: ENG 1, 2 required or fulfillment of college writing requirement. Recommended that the student already have taken either ENG 20,21,22, or 23."

Why you should take it: You get to learn about a topic that is not normally discussed in our society - a topic that should be talked about. You can really apply what you learn in this class. At the end of the class, you work together with all your classmates to create a class action project. A past class action worked to eliminate the trays in the dining hall because they were wasting water to clean them. Now, there are no trays in our dining halls.

Requirements it satisfies: Humanities; World Civilization

3. Social Justice and Young Adult Fiction - EXP 6

"This is a course about the intersections in social justice education and Young Adult (YA) fiction. Students will be introduced (or re-introduced) to the genre through reading notable and culturally relevant YA texts through a social justice lens. Students will apply critical race theory, feminist theory, literary theory, and theories of social justice to the texts and will examine the pedagogical strategies of teaching social justice through YA fiction. This course invites students to examine the pedagogy of social justice while creating opportunities to think, read, and write critically about YA fiction."

*Ex-College courses are not released until December. However, this course is often offered.

Why you should take it: You get to remember what it's like to enjoy reading for class. Moreover, you must take an Ex-College class before you graduate.

4. Philanthropy, Nonprofits, and Community - EXP 46

"Students will learn about different styles of philanthropy and effective nonprofit management; how to think about and evaluate impact as a philanthropist; how to run a community project; how to read nonprofit financials and assess nonprofit organizational health and potential; sources of philanthropic news, and thinking; and trends in philanthropy and nonprofit management. Students will design their own process for requesting grant proposals and evaluating applications. The process of selecting grant recipients will bring students very close to the local community. A number of community philanthropists and nonprofit leaders will join our class discussions, offering the opportunity to learn directly from those in the field."

*Ex-College courses are not released until December. However, this course is often offered.

Why you should take it: Again, you must take an Ex-College. If your passionate about working in nonprofits, this class is perfect for you. You get to interact and learn about communities around Tufts. With your peers you apply what you learn in the classroom to award $25,000 to local nonprofits.

5. Gospel Choir - MUS 72

"Selected repertory of choral works from the African American tradition of religious music. No prerequisite or previous musical experience necessary. One-half course credit."

Why you should take it: It's just a great way to end your week. The class puts what you are doing into perspective. Singing together and just being present together with a group of people - what's not to like? Last year, some members even performed for First Lady Michelle Obama.

Requirements it satisfies: Arts (.5)

6. Women of Byzantium: Empresses Saints & Scholars - HIST 157/CLS 110

"Examination of the themes of political legitimacy, spirituality, education, gender roles, the spread of Byzantine culture, and the evolution of Christian theology through a careful study of the lives of various women of the Byzantine world. This will include examination of the lives of women of the Byzantine Empire, Southeastern Europe, Russia, Western Europe, the kingdoms of Armenia and the Ottoman Empire."

Why you should take it: Professor Proctor is a highly regarded teacher at Tufts. He has an overall quality rating of 5.0 on ratemyprofessors.com. Even if you are not a fan of history, this class will make you enjoy it.

Requirements it satisfies: Humanities; Social Sciences; World Civilization

7. Health Care in America - CH 2

"Problems and issues encountered in the planning, organization, and regulation of health services. Health policy formation and its implications for service delivery. Health care financing; health insurance; the changing role of physicians; technology; poverty and health; the mix of planning, regulation, and competitive strategies; and consumer organizations. Problems of implementation and administration; federal, state, and local interests."

Why you should take it: The material is SUPER important. With all the discussion on the Affordable Care Act, the course work is very relevant. Some, however, might argue the class lecture itself is not as interesting as the reading material required for class.

Requirements it satisfies: Social Sciences

8. School and Society - ED 1

"Role and purpose of schooling in the United States. Focus on the desegregation and resegregation of schools in the last fifty years; proposals for school reform."

Why you should take it: This is important history to know. The readings and discussions are very relatable since we all went through and are going through the education system. At the end of the semester you get the chance to design your own high school.

Requires it satisfies: Social Sciences

9. Psychology of Music - MUS 59/PSY 80

"Examination of a wide range of topics in the psychology of music: music perception; music cognition; music aesthetics; music and emotions; the influence of music on human behavior; the nature and measurement of musical abilities; music education; and child development."

Why you should take it: Doesn't the title of the class just sound awesome? The class can sometimes be more work than you want, but you get to learn about really interesting topics. Professor Patel runs the Music Cognition Lab here at Tufts. Taking his class is great If you are interested in doing lab research with him.

Requirements it satisfies: Arts; Social Sciences

10. Abnormal Psychology - PSY 12

"An introduction to the field of mental and behavioral disorders, emphasizing the relationship between normal and abnormal processes. Empirical and experimental findings relevant to abnormal behavior will be presented. Recommendations: PSY 1 or 9 or junior/senior standing."

Why you should take it: It's cool to think about how we learn. This is a great 10-Level course for psychology majors. Also, the class meets just once a week.

Requirements it satisfies: Social Sciences

11. World of Japanese Anime - JPN 81

"The themes, directors, and imagery of Japanese animation (anime). Analysis of animation as a medium. Study of major themes--elegiac, carnival-esque, and apocalyptic. From prewar military propaganda to the contemporary work of Satoshi Kon, Hayao Miyazaki, Mamoru Oshii and Katsuhiro Otomo. the anime industry and the spread of anime worldwide. A consideration of otaku culture. Taught in English."

Why you should take it: You get to explore and study anime created by some of the greatest directors. One of my personal favorites is Miyazaki who made some of my childhood favorite movies like Kiki's Delivery Service and Spirited Away.

Requirements it satisfies: Arts; World Civilization

12. Promoting Positive Youth Development - CD 85

"Introduction to theory and research about using developmental science within community settings to promote positive development among children and adolescents. Focal topic varies each semester -- for example, building civil society through community-based child development programs, promoting positive development of teenage mothers and their infants, or promoting healthy alternatives to interpersonal, family and community violence. Recommendations: CD 1 and one additional Child Development course or permission of instructor."

Why you should take it: Like most classes in the Child Studies and Human Development Department, this class provides extremely useful information. You learn the kinds of things that will be especially important later on if you choose to raise or family or if you choose to interact with children and adolescents in any capacity.

13. Media and Society - SOC 40

"Social and economic organization of the mass media of communication. Effects on content. Themes of mass culture. Social composition of the audience. Effects of the media on the audience. Topics such as television, films, the press, books, magazines, and advertising."

Why you should take it: What's cooling than thinking about how media affects you?

Requirements it satisfies: Social Sciences

14. Entrepreneurial Marketing - ELS 105

"This course focuses on institutional and product marketing methods used by start-up to medium-sized companies. After an overview of basic marketing principles, the course will cover the spectrum from day-to-day marketing activities of the entrepreneurial business to positioning and strategy. Students will learn to analyze, formulate, and implement marketing strategies, explore concepts for understanding customer behavior and creating entrepreneurial marketing strategy, and learn the fundamentals of market research, pricing, and reaching and selling to customers."

Why you should take it: There are great networking opportunities in class - arguably one of the most important skills to learn in college. You also get the chance to learn all about how companies make decisions and how you are influenced by their marketing decisions.

Requirements it satisfies: Social Sciences

15. Creative Writing: Poetry - ENG 6

"A course open to all interested students who want practice and instruction in a poetry workshop situation. Open to all who have satisfied the College Writing Requirement. Each section limited to ten students."

Why you should take it: Poetry is a great way to unwind your thoughts. You get the chance to write what you want to write about, which is a nice change of pace from some other classes. The small class size also helps you get to form personal connections with your classmates. Highly recommended to take it with Gosztyla.

16. Public Opinion in US Democracy - PS 108

"Addresses the impact of public opinion in the United States on the political process and vice versa. Emphasis is on the linkage between U.S. citizens and the democratic process. Examines what public opinion is and debates about how it can be measured. Topics include the nature of attitude formation, stability and change; the role of the media in opinion-formation; the link between attitudes and behavior; group differences in opinions; how elites influence mass opinions; political inequality; polarization; and the relationship between public opinion and policy outcomes. Requires the completion of any PS foundation course (PS 11, 21, 41, 42, or 61)."

Why you should take it: It's a pretty exciting time for learning this material with the presidential elections happening in 2016. This class will help you better understand the presidential debates and your role in public policy.

Requirements it satisfies: Social Sciences

The classes above showcase how many wonderful courses there are at Tufts. Sometimes it's a little hard to find them. Sometimes they are not always offered every semester.

Here are some more recommended classes and professors...

Classes to keep on your radar:

1. Linguistic Approaches to Second Language Acquisition - ED 114/GER 114/LING 114/ML 114

2. Observing Theory in Action - ED 11

3. Music, Art, and Culture in Paris and Vienna from the Turn of the Twentieth Century to the First World War - MUS 30

4. Cognitive Psychology - PSY 28 (recommended with Professor Taylor)

5. Psychology & Law - PSY 133

Professors you should take at least one class with:

1. Sam Sommers

2. Katherine Vecitis

3. Vickie Sullivan

4. David Proctor

5. Consuelo Cruz

6. Saskia Stoessel

7. Any of the professors who teach PE and DNC classes.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

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