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Session I Course Descriptions

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

In 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.

Textbook
Thank You for Arguing by Jay Heinrichs

Instructor
Jay Self, Professor and Chair of Communication, Truman State University.  B.A.Communication, Truman State University; M.S. Communication in Human Relations Texas Christian University, Ph.D. Communication Studies , University of Kansas

 

American History Through Sport

Whether you are an avid competitor, a diehard fan, or someone who just refers to it all as “sportsball,” competitive athletics loom large in American society. With larger than life personalities, labor disputes, battles over civil rights & equality, conflicts between superstition and science, and fights over maintaining tradition or embracing change, sport history is American history.

This course will study topics in American history through the lens of sport covering topics such as: European and Colonial origins of American sporting culture, Urbanization & the growth of organized games, Protest & Resistance on and off the field, Olympic Games & Cold War Politics, Sport & American Identity, and much, much more!

Students will read on a wide array of topics in sport, participate in competitive debates over topics in sport history, compete with each other in historical games (both games that survived to the modern era and those that did not), and conduct research over an American Sport History topic of their choosing.

Textbook
TBA

Instructor
Matthew Kennedy, Instructor of History, Kirksville High School. B.S. History; M.A.E. History/Social Science, Truman State University

 

An “Animated” Course

An Animated Course is an introduction and exploration of traditional cell frame animation. Drawing and sketching skills are recommended. Fundamentals of cartooning, character development and storyboarding will be explored and experienced. Photographic and claymation animation techniques are also topics for this course. Students will use Apple computers utilizing Adobe Photoshop and Apple iMovie in addition to their own Smart Phones to prepare and upload their animated creations to YouTube.

The class will be watching a documentary movie about animator Chuck Jones and his long career animating Loony Tunes characters for Warner Brothers. Chuck will impart vital animation tips and secrets. Yes, we will watch some classic cartoons in addition to viewing the summer’s best animation offering at the local theater.

Students should be confident in drawing and/or interested in making their drawings and characters come to life.

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

Badges
This course awards digital badges for completion of certain competencies.

Textbook

Animation 1: Learn to Animate Cartoons Step by Step by Preston J. Blair

Instructor

Rusty Nelson, Professor of Art, Visual Communications. B.F.A. Fort Hays State University; M.F.A. Kansas State University.

 

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

This 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.

Textbook
Signs of the Times by Edgar H. Shroyer

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

 

Exploring the Film Soundtrack: The Role and Aesthetics of Movie Music

How do film composers influence the audience’s emotional response, and in what ways do they create music that elicits a particular location or time period? How do they balance the music with dialogue? This course will provide an overview of the development of movie music from the early improvised organ playing of musicians like Fats Waller for silent films, to more recent music from the biggest composers in Hollywood, including Bernard Herrmann, John Williams, Hans Zimmer, Danny Elfman, Max Steiner, James Horner, Alan Silvestri, James Newton Howard, and Howard Shore.

We will investigate how the specific musical elements of melody, harmony, counterpoint, tempo, rhythm, and orchestration can be used to enhance scenes that deal with themes such as romance, sadness, chase, horror, magic, and fantasy. Field trips will be taken to the Truman television/radio station and the Kirksville movie theater for a class screening of a new release. Students will give presentations on film music composers, create their own film music trivia board game, and draw an original cartoon strip using the material discussed in class. As a final project, using GarageBand music software, students will compose their own soundtrack to an original movie that they record throughout the session.

Badges
This course awards digital badges for completion of certain competencies.

Textbook
Film Music: A Very Short Introduction by Kathryn Kalinak

Instructor
Jesse Krebs, Professor of Music, Music Department, Truman State University. B.M.E., University of North Carolina at Greensboro; M.M., University of North Texas; D.M., Florida State University

 

Genetics 101: The ABCs of DNA

Did you know you are 50% genetically similar to a banana?  All living organisms from the simplest bacteria to more complex organisms like humans use the same genetic material to pass on their traits – DNA.  DNA is the molecule of life.  But what exactly is DNA and how does it make you, you and a fly a fly?

In this course you will learn the basics of DNA and heredity, and then dive deeper to understand how DNA is used to create a fully functional organism.  We will also explore new technologies in DNA editing that are making our hopes of changing disease-causing mutations in DNA a reality.  We will discuss the science behind these techniques and then discuss some of the ethical and moral issues they raise.  Finally, we will investigate the ethics and laws surrounding genetics such as do you own your own genes, who is allowed to have access to your genetic code, and what are your legal rights concerning your genetics?

Our learning in the classroom will be supplemented by many activities in the lab.  We will learn about and use many biotech tools and molecular genetic techniques.  Activities will include extracting DNA from strawberries, analyzing DNA from a crime scene, and investigating your own genetics to name a few!

 

Enrollment limited to 24 students

Badges
This course awards digital badges for completion of certain competencies.

Textbook
The Cartoon Guide to Genetics by Larry Gonick and Mark Wheelis

Instructor
Sarah Berke, Assistant Professor of Biology, Biology Department, Truman State University. BA Biology and Psychology from Augustana College in Rock Island, IL. Ph.D. Neuroscience from University of Iowa in Iowa City, IA

 

German Language and Culture

This course introduces students to first-semester college German and the rich cultural heritage of German-speaking countries. Students will develop skills in speaking, listening, reading, and writing via the “immersion method.”  Every morning session will be conducted as much as possible auf Deutsch: the teacher, preceptors, and students will all communicate in German.  By the end of the three-week session, this intensive approach to language learning will allow students to navigate the German Sprachraum. You should be able to find your way around town, order a meal in a restaurant (and pay for it), and get what you need at the grocery store.

Afternoon sessions will be conducted in English and devoted to German culture. We will touch on German art and history, from the first mentions by Roman writers, through the Dark Ages, the High Middle Ages and into the present. Other activities will include a field trip to a part of Missouri where German was until quite recently the local language, and adventures in cooking and other aspects of daily life.

Textbook
TBA

Instructor
Adam Davis, Professor of English, Truman State University.  B.A., M.A. University of Michigan, Ph.D. University of Missouri

 

In Focus: The Art and Practice of Filmmaking

The course will introduce students to filmmaking as both an art and a practice for directors and audiences alike, along with its ability to broadly create and share culture, while also providing a robust platform for individual expression. Through readings and screenings of both classic and contemporary cinema, students will analyze the original “grammar” of film—from its early development to the incorporation of new technologies. Students will write sample scenes and dialogue, casting their classmates as actors to help grasp how actors and directors transform words on a page to visual storytelling onscreen. They will also learn how directors make technical choices to affect audiences’ reactions through the tools of lighting, costuming, music, set design, and editing. Finally, using smart phones and user-friendly editing systems, students will experiment with the basics of shooting and editing video to gain first-hand knowledge about the effects of particular techniques. From learning how to “block” a shot to using close-ups and particular angles, students will study the choices that directors make to encourage audiences to experience a range of emotions and to imagine meaningful connections.

Course fee for supplies is $65.00.

Textbook
TBA

Instructor

Marilyn Yaquinto, Professor Emerita, Communication and Cultural Studies, Truman State University. PhD. Bowling Green State University; M.A. University of Michigan; B.A. University of Michigan

 

The Brilliant Biotechnologist! Superpower: Genetic Manipulation for the Future

Can anyone guarantee that the children (that includes you!) of today will lead a happy and healthy adult life in a clean, self-sustaining environment in a peaceful world? A Biotechnologist can, and her/his secret is in a four-letter code! Come, join me in deciphering this code, and check out for yourself why she/he is so sure about solving global problems! While Biotechnology is a sophisticated science that exploits the versatility and the unlimited potential of Recombinant DNA technology, it is also fun to explore and fascinating to learn. What’s more, you can do anything with that knowledge: Solve crimes. End starvation. Protect endangered species and ecosystems. Develop ways to detect, study and cure diseases. And so on…

This course is designed to introduce the students to the basics of Molecular Biology, and help them delineate how these concepts and techniques are applicable in the ever-expanding medical, food, and environmental fields. In addition to formal lectures and a lab component, it will also include group discussions/ projects and debates.

You are curious. You are creative. You ask a lot of ‘What if’ questions. You are motivated to use science to improve the society. You have ‘outrageous’ or seemingly impractical ideas but you are not afraid of ethical experimentation to test those ideas. If this describes you, you and I will have a splendid time during the course! So, go on, give it a whirl!

Textbook
TBA

Instructor

Bharathi Aravamudan, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Biology, Truman State University

 

Why We Fight: An Historical Perspective of Crusades and Jihad

We 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