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Session I Course Descriptions

Advocacy, Argument, and Persuasion:
Classical Rhetoric in Contemporary Times

debate 2In a culture of 24-hour news, larger-than-life pundits and a blurring of the line between news and commentary, rhetoric and argumentation are a way of life in modern America. Argument now occurs in settings such as the halls of Congress, evening news talk shows, popular sports programming, and local city councils. Advocacy, in the form of advertising, is everywhere.  As consumers of media and participants in an increasingly adversarial culture, learning the critical principles and practices of advocacy and persuasion provides a basis for informed involvement in the world around us.

This course utilizes a perspective rooted in classical rhetorical theory as a mode of critical thinking and public involvement to study the processes of argumentation and persuasion in various interpersonal, political, academic and pop culture settings. Students will begin by engaging theories rooted in the classical rhetoric of the Greeks and Romans and evolve through contemporary models of argument. As a complement to this discussion of argumentation theories, students will employ various models of debate as a means to practice the ideas they learn.  Students will engage in argument by participating in visual argument, in-class debates, political debates and even humor to test their skills. Finally, lessons learned in all settings will be utilized as a framework from which to engage political discourses and persuasive popular media campaigns.

Badges
This course awards digital badges for completion of certain competencies.  Check here for more information.

Textbook
Thank You for Arguing

Instructor
Jay Self, Associate Professor of Communication, Truman State University.  B.A., Truman State University; M.S. Texas Christian University, Ph.D., University of Kansas


Can You Say That With Your Hands?  An Introduction to American Sign Language and Deaf Culture

signThis course will introduce students to manual communication skills utilized by the Deaf community.   In addition the course will provide insight into the diversity of individuals using manual communication in their unique culture. As a result of this course, students will learn to communicate in conversational situations utilizing finger spelling and American Sign Language.   Students will play word games, role play scenarios, interpret poems or songs and present a children’s book in sign language.  Students will experience communication barriers that will give them a greater understanding of the importance common communication systems.  Videos, lectures and learning opportunities will give insight into the pride of Deaf individuals, the history of Deaf culture and how technology is changing Deaf communities.

This course would be appropriate for individuals investigating numerous careers including Sign Language Interpreters, Audiology, Deaf Education, Speech/Language Pathology, and Special Education.

Badges
This course awards digital badges for completion of certain competencies.  Check here for more information.

Textbook
Learning American Sign Language, 2nd Ed; Levels I & II – Beginning & Intermediate

Instructor
Sheila Garlock, Assistant Professor of Communication Disorders, Truman State University.  B.S.E., Truman State University; M.A., Truman State University.


Clay Castles and Medieval Mugs

na_sw_potteryCeramics is the process of introducing clay to heat in order to make it permanently hard. Potters have been using the ceramic process for thousands of years to make both functional and sculptural objects. In this class, students will learn basic handbuilding ceramics techniques including coiling, slab building and working with solid forms to create sculptural castles and creatures that might live in or near them. We will also explore the basics of throwing on the potter’s wheel in order to make a personalized mug or tankard. During this course, students will learn a variety of techniques to glaze and decorate the surface of their castle and creatures, learn about safe practices when working with clay and glazes, talk about basic firing considerations and help load and fire their work.

No prior experience with clay is necessary.

Enrollment limited to 20 students.  Course fee for supplies and materials is $25.00.

Badges
This course awards digital badges for completion of certain competencies.  Check here for more information.

Textbook
No textbook required.

Instructor
Wynne Wilbur, Professor of Art, Ceramics, Truman State University.  BA, Bethany College (Kansas); MA, Emporia State University; MFA, University of Florida.


Computers in Art and Design

Computer DesignExplore how the computer has been integrated into the image-making processes by incorporating traditional art processes such as drawing and markers with modern Graphic Design software. Learn how professional artists, designers, and illustrators utilize the power of Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Illustrator, and other software to create digital artwork and enhance images to create digital graphics such as maps, posters, and postcards. The basic features of Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator will be explored through tutorials and original artwork will be produced when techniques are mastered. By the end of the course, students will have a digital and print portfolio consisting of several projects. Students will also utilize digital cameras, scanners, and output to laser/inkjet printers. Quad-Core Intel Macintosh computers (the industry standard platform) power this exploration into the realm of digital imagery.

Enrollment limited to 20 students. Course fee for class supplies and materials is $65.00.

Badges
This course awards digital badges for completion of certain competencies.  Check here for more information.

Textbook
No textbook required.

Instructor
Matthew Derezinski, Associate Professor of Art, Visual Communications, Truman State University. B.F.A., Visual Communications, Kansas State University. M.F.A., Visual Communications, Kansas State University.


Introduction to Chemistry

Science and Chemistry Icons

The course will introduce you to the scientific process by exploring several concepts in chemistry in the context of contemporary environmental and societal issues.  A broad range of topics will be explored throughout the session, including the atom and atomic structure, molecules and chemical bonding, chemical nomenclature, writing and balancing chemical equations, the mole and molarity, and the relationship between chemical structure and function. You will participate in several laboratory experiences in which you will learn to work safely in the laboratory and make careful observations of chemical reactions and phenomena in order to draw useful conclusions from your experiments.

A component of the course involves inquiry based learning, as you will conduct an environmental study of local streams and/or lakes by collecting samples and analyzing them using different techniques.  Other experiments include determination of citric acid in fruit juice, exploring chemical reactions of inorganic compounds, paper and column chromatography characterization of food coloring, analysis of artificial blood, the study of dyes through the making of tie dye T-shirts, as well as a peer group project to develop and perform a demo show.

Textbook
The Cartoon Guide to Chemistry and a course packet which includes laboratory experiments and supporting materials for the lecture.

Instructor
Brian Lamp, Professor and Chair of Chemistry, Truman State University.  B.A. Augustana University (SD), Ph.D. Iowa State University


Psychology Through Science Fiction

brain2Would we be happier if we could take pills that made us smarter?  Could you fall in love with a robot? Would we go crazy if we were prevented from dreaming?  This course uses science fiction to raise many questions like these, and psychology to provide possible answers. While we use science fiction to introduce the topics, the main goal is to explore the vast world of psychology. Students will learn about experimental design, states of consciousness, how the brain directs behavior, how stable personality is, and many, many other subtopics within psychology.

Psychologists learn by performing experiments, and we will demonstrate some classic findings in class.  But some experiments we’d like to do just can’t be done on this planet. Others would be unethical, because psychologists do not deliberately cause harm.  This is where science fiction comes in.  It poses questions about what life would be like in very different circumstances.  In other words, science fiction scenarios are often just psychological thought experiments.

During class, we will read several science fiction stories and watch science fiction television episodes and movies.  Then we will do activities, demonstrations, and have discussions that uncover the psychological concepts within the science fiction tales. For example, students will take personality and IQ tests that challenge their understanding of what it would be like to be smarter and more outgoing.  We will test our memory and perceptual abilities. Students will practice speaking, writing, and internet search skills. Throughout the course, we will talk about robots, aliens, computer chips inserted into brains, and other truly weird stuff.  But by the end of the course, you may conclude that we – humans – are more amazing than anything our imaginations can dream up.

Textbooks
50 Short Science Fiction Stories; 50 Myths of Popular Psychology

Instructor
Karen Vittengl, Professor of Psychology, Truman State University.  B.A., Hanover College; M.A., Ph.D., University of Nebraska-Lincoln.


The Science of Secrecy

Crypt clip 2Can you keep a secret a secret?

Suppose you need to get an important message to your best friend Remington, but you are afraid that your arch-nemesis, Sly (a master of cryptanalysis!) might try to intercept the message and read it for his own evil purposes.  How can you encode your message so that Sly will not be able to decipher it?  What if your friend Natasha, who lives far away, needs to get a secret message to you?  How can you provide her with a method to encode her letter so that you will be able to decipher it, but no one else will, even people who know how Natasha encoded the message?

In this course we will study the mathematics of cryptology as we look at the most famous methods of encryption dating back two thousand years to the age of Caesar right up through high-tech applications for securing communication on the internet.  Students will have opportunities to make and break many of the codes we study.  We will discuss dramatic historical events in which cryptography played a key role, including the breaking of the German Enigma code in World War II.  Along the way we will see how methods of cryptanalysis were used to interpret Egyptian hieroglyphics, and we will study unusual methods of encryption, such as the use of the Navajo language during World War II.  We will also consider First Amendment issues raised by attempts to limit the use of the virtually unbreakable codes we have available to us today.

Textbooks
Cryptological Mathematics ; The Code Book: The Science of Secrecy from Ancient Egypt to Quantum Cryptography 

Instructor
Anthony Vazzana, Professor of Mathematics, Truman State University.  B.S., University of Notre Dame; M.S., Ph.D., University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.


Theatre: Onstage and Off

acting 2This course introduces the many facets of theatre from basic acting techniques to theatrical designs.  We will explore principles in the art of acting, engaging students in a variety of valuable pursuits of practical application to every other study in life: cooperative discipline and trust, freeing the imagination, “inhabiting” great ideas, appreciating alternative views, gaining confidence in public communication, and, most importantly, greater physical, vocal, and personal self-awareness.  Our work will include reading and discussion in theory and technique from Stanislovski and more recent masters but will emphasize active workshop learning through extended series of improvisations, physical and vocal imitations and character analysis.  In addition, students will research the many design elements needed to produce a play; scenery, lighting, costumes and make-up.  The best way to learn and understand what it takes to do theatre is by doing!  So, not only will you study theatre, you will be involved in a full-scale production with scenery, lights, sound, costumes and make-up performed onstage to your peers!

Badges
This course awards digital badges for completion of certain competencies.  Check here for more information.

Supplies
Make-up Kit (The Truman Bookstore will have this available for purchase with the textbooks at check-in.)

Textbook
A course packet prepared by the professor.

Instructor
Ronald M. Rybkowski, Professor of Theatre, Truman State University.  B.A., Whittier College; M.F.A., California State University, Fullerton


The Human Lab

humanThe human body is the most amazing machine on the planet.  It is a complex arrangement of interdependent systems that is powerful, adaptive…and is made to move.  Through examining the systems of the human body and how they interact with the environment you will explore the wonder of movement and its relationship to health.

This course is designed to teach students about the human body, specifically related to movement. Students examine the basic structure of the human body; the skeletal system, the muscular system and cardiovascular system and visit a human cadaver lab.  Expanding on that knowledge students explore other bodily systems and how they relate to health and physical activity.  A specific emphasis will be placed on disease prevention through physical activity and include Heartsaver First Aid and CPR.  Although there will be some lecture-based content, much of the course will be laboratory activities requiring student participation to learn basic concepts related to motor learning, exercise physiology, biomechanics, and health.

The major project of the class consists of groups of students working together to develop a movement or health related research question, designing the study, collecting and interpreting the data and sharing the results as oral and poster presentations.

Textbook
TBA

Instructor
Evonne Bird, Instructor of Health and Exercise Sciences, Truman State University.  B. S. Eastern Montana College; M.S. Texas Tech University


Why We Fight: A Historical Perspective of Crusades and Jihad

war-peace-2-aWe explore the ideology and history of war from antiquity to the present.  We begin by considering the ideas in On Aggression, an influential work by the Nobel Prize-winning zoologist, Konrad Lorenz. We then look at reasons to fight beginning with Homer’s Illiad—a tale of war that both entertained and educated ancient Greece. A radically different form of combat confronts us in the 9th-century conversion literature, The Heliand. We next discuss the 12th-century Song of the Nibelungs, the heroic epic that advocates a Germanic warrior ethos tempered by a knightly code of honor. In the same century, the Islamic jihad of Saladin retakes the Holy city of Jerusalem city. We examine his motives and justification for fighting.  We compare them with the aims of the Ottoman Empire, the Islamic superpower of the 15th, 16th and 17th centuries whose expansion culminated in the blockade of Vienna. Finally, we explore the reasons to fight during the First and Second World Wars. The course concludes with an inquiry about how our course might relate to contemporary events in the 21st century.

Textbooks
On Aggression; Iliad; The Heliand: The Old Saxon Gospel; The Song of the Nibelungs; All Quiet on the Western Front

Instructor
Ernst Hintz, Professor of German, Truman State University.  B.A. Fordham University, M.A Ruprecht-Karl Universität Heidelberg, Ph.D. University of Wisconsin-Madison