Honors

These sections of BGSU 1910 are reserved for students in the Honors College only.

Zen And The Art Of Everyday Life

Section: 1001-76000
Tuesdays, 9:30-10:20AM

This seminar will examine a variety of contemplative practices through the lens of Zen Buddhism – its historical development in China and Japan, and its influence on the arts and on the practice of everyday life. We will examine literature, poetry and haiku, music, and calligraphy, amongst other things, and also explore Zen as a daily practice or “Way” for everyday living itself.

Zen has been described as a “special transmission outside [the] scriptures, not founded on words or letters”; our goal in this seminar is not only to try to understand Zen on an intellectual level, but also to practice it as an expression of fully realized human life. The course has a strong practical component, as we will trace Zen practice through the arts as well as everyday activities such as eating, breathing, or walking. Each class session will begin with a brief period of sitting meditation (in Japanese, zazen), and students will have other opportunities to connect with mindfulness or meditation practices on campus. Through written and verbal engagement with the practical and theoretical components of the course, students will be asked to identify their own response to contemplative practice. The seminar is not discipline-specific, but might be of interest to students who desire to cultivate a reflective, mindful approach to their lives and work.

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Dr. Simon Morgan-Russell

Position: Professor/Dean of the Honors College
Email: smorgan@bgsu.edu
Address: 024J Founders

As a Professor of English, Dr. Morgan-Russell has taught a variety of different courses during his tenure at BGSU, including World Literature and the Honors College’s HNRS 2020: Critical Thinking about Great Ideas, courses that consider literature, art, and philosophy in their historical and cultural contexts. He also taught a version of this course as a semester-long, one-credit HNRS 4000 seminar three times over the past several years. He has a scholarly interest in contemplative pedagogy and its transformative possibilities for undergraduate education, and he incorporates some of its techniques in other courses that he teaches. Although this seminar is not a course in religious studies, Dr. Morgan-Russell's own longstanding Zen practice informs its content and pedagogical approach.

Reading Harry Potter In The New America

Section: 1002-76782
Fridays, 9:30-10:45AM

In this section of BGSU 1910, enrolled students will read/re-read all seven books of the Harry Potter series, as well as select pieces of popular commentary and/or academic criticism, and will engage with their faculty member in discussions about how the books speak to the lived experiences of Americans in the twenty-first century.

Some parallels that might be examined include (but are not limited to):

• The corruption within The Ministry of Magic and the wizarding educational systems and similarities to/differences with threats that currently face higher education (e.g., loosening of Title IX, challenges to academic freedom, demands for trigger warnings and safe spaces, etc.)

• Voldemort’s platform of racial purity and similarities to/differences with the many social and political schisms that currently divide Americans along lines of race/ethnicity, class, gender, sex, sexual orientation, etc.

• The rise of the Dark Lord and his followers throughout the final books of the series and similarities to/differences with the emergence of various oppressive governmental figures and/or regimes both at home and abroad

• The Death Eaters and similarities to/differences with various terrorist groups

• Azkaban and similarities to/differences with conditions in the American prison systems (both private and public)

At the heart of these discussions, will be the question: What lessons does the Harry Potter series have to teach twenty-first-century Americans about being both more responsible community members and better “neighbors” in a politically divisive world?

As a capstone for the course, students will collaboratively research, select, and undertake one literacy project (e.g., book drive, dictionary project, Books for Babies, Reading Buddies, school supply drive, Newspapers in Education, Mini- Library/Bookmobile Project, etc.) that benefits a specific local or/and global community.

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Dr. Heath Diehl

Position: Lecturer
Honors College
Email: williad@bgsu.edu
Address: 024G Founders

Dr. Heath A. Diehl began teaching at BGSU in 1995, when he enrolled in the accelerated Ph.D. program in English. He earned his Ph.D. in English (specializing in theatre and performance) in 2000 and since that time has taught for the General Studies Writing Program, the Department of English, and the Honors College. He has taught two special topics Honors seminars on topics related to this proposed BGSU 1910 course (i.e., HNRS 3000: How to Read Harry Potter Like a Professor, Spring 2012; and HNRS 4000: Demystifying the Deathly Hallows, Spring 2008). He also has taught a variety of literature courses for the Department of English and a total of 19 different special topics Honors seminars on a wide range of topics focused on literature and popular culture. Between Fall 2011 and spring 2014, Heath taught the Presidential Honors curriculum, which included a significant service learning component throughout the four courses. Heath’s research agenda/program dovetails with the focus and pedagogical standpoint of this proposed course in its strong emphasis on understanding social justice issues through the lens of cultural artifacts.

The Art And Science Of Origami

Section: 1003-76783
Wednesdays, 2:30-4:20PM

Origami is the art of paper folding (from the Japanese ori, meaning “to fold”, and kami, “paper”). The modern rules of origami are simple—one square of paper, no cutting, no gluing. But from this simple formula people have created beautiful and complex works of art, and applied the folding and collapsing techniques to solve problems and develop innovations in the fields of science, architecture, fashion, medicine, and more. In this 8-week course, students will learn to fold a variety of origami models from squares (no experience necessary), and learn all of the practicalities of folding (selecting the right paper, choosing a folding technique, reading diagrams, etc.).

Students will also explore (through readings, videos, discussions, and written reflection) the application of the principles of origami to various fields of study, from art and education to science, math, and technology. At the conclusion of this course, students will have the skills to fold a variety of origami models for fun and relaxation, and new ideas about the ways in which these newly-acquired origami skills can be applied to other areas of interest, both academic and personal.

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Rob Snyder

Position: Assistant Professor and First Year Experience Coordinator - University Libraries
Email: robjsny@bgsu.edu
Address: 152 Jerome Library

Rob Snyder is an Assistant Professor and First Year Experience Coordinator/Librarian in the University Libraries at BGSU. His research interests are related to the role of the academic library in first-year initiatives and instruction. In addition to being a librarian, he is also an origami artist. Rob has designed over 75 original origami models, had pieces accepted in art shows and juried exhibitions, and have had several origami model diagrams of his work published in the proceedings of the Origami USA and British Origami societies. Rob has also had original model diagrams published in two books edited by renowned origami author Nick Robinson, with more to appear in the next year in at least three in-press books. He has taught his origami designs at a national convention, and has also conducted several workshops at BGSU related to origami (including stress-relief and mindfulness components) for various student groups and learning communities. For more information about Rob's work, please see http://robsnyder1.wixsite.com/robsnyderorigami.

Come Dream With Me: What If Business Ethics Were The Ethics Of A Good Person?

Section: 1004-76785
Thursdays, 9:30-10:20AM

What do we mean when we say “be ethical”?  Does our mind have any necessary role to play when we think about being ethical? Are lists of “should’s” a mockery of our abilities as thinking organisms? Does context matter when asking “Should I do X or Y?” Why is there a category of ethics called “business ethics”? What are the effects on trust and community of knowing that businesses try to earn profits and obtain those profits from the rest of us? What is the basic vocabulary we use to discuss ethics? What is the relationship between the published core values of individual corporations and ethics? How can knowledge of business ethics make each of us a better consumer and citizen?

 

Students in this course will conduct interviews, read Jackall’s Moral Mazes: The World of Corporate Managers, and watch videos addressing the many significant questions arising from the differences in how we think about acting ethically as a thoughtful human being and acting ethically as a businessperson. In the process, students will acquire alternative ways of thinking about what it means to be a good person. 

 

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Dr. M Niel Browne

Position: Senior Lecturer
Honors College
Email: nbrown2@bgsu.edu
Address: 024H Founders

As a teacher interested in business ethics and ethics in general, Dr. Browne has authored a business ethics textbook, chapters about business ethics in 8 books, and multiple professional legal, business, and economic journal articles that provide a background for this course.

"Wild Mind And A Disciplined Eye": Creativity, Risk, And Problem Solving

Section: 1005-76787
Tuesdays, 8:30-9:20AM

Future success in any profession will largely depend upon how well you respond to unstructured problems and novel situations. Dorothy Parker (author, poet, satirist) defined creativity as having a “wild mind” and “disciplined eye”. This course explores the important role of creativity, risk, and problem solving through a series of activities, experiments, and projects.

What is creativity? How do we develop creativity? What role do risk and problem solving play in creative activity? How do we become more creative, open to risk, and effective problem solvers? Each student will explore and document their exploration of these questions by creating a personal blog.

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Dr. Julie Matuga

Position: Associate Vice Provost for Institutional Effectiveness
Email: jmatuga@bgsu.edu
Address: 230 McFall Center

Dr. Julie Matuga is an Associate Professor of Educational Psychology and is currently the Associate Vice Provost for Institutional Effectiveness at BGSU. She is a former K-12 art teacher and earned her Ph.D. in Educational Psychology: Learning, Cognition, and Instruction from Indiana University, Bloomington. Her research interests include assessment and evaluation in higher education, self-regulation, private speech (how children talk to themselves), and the development of creativity.

Don't Stress Out, Chill Out

Section: 1006-76809
Tuesdays, 2:30-3:20PM

Many of us are highly motivated and work-driven, but the cost of being so productive is stress. In this 15-weeks section of 1910 Honors, we will investigate the causes of stress using critical thinking, reading, and writing skills.

We will use evidence from reputable sources, such as medical doctor Herbert Benson as well as new anchors Dan Harris and Anderson Cooper, to assess our stress levels. Then we will explore healthy strategies for mindfully dealing with stress, such as practicing meditation, yoga, breathing, and other focusing techniques. Finally, we will practice written reflection regarding our journey to help us become more present in our lives.

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Amadna Rzicznek

Position: Lecturer - General Studies and Writing
Email: amcguir@bgsu.edu
Address: 442 East Hall

Amanda McGuire Rzicznek is a full-time lecture in the General Studies Writing Program. In addition to teaching writing for the past eleven years, she is a certified yoga instructor and dedicated yoga student. Her goal is to intersect writing and yoga, which she has done in her teaching of GSW 1120 Honors themed course about relaxation techniques. Additionally, she has presented on the topic of contemplative pedagogy at the Lilly Conference and will present at the upcoming 2017 Conference on College Composition and Communication. She is co-facilitator for the CFE’s Contemplative Pedagogy Learning Community. Her recent publication in winter 2016 issue of BG Health illustrates her devotion to both of these fields.

Critical Thinking About Disabilities

Section: 1007-76823
Thursdays, 2:30-3:45PM

This course will engage students around the issues faced by those living with or supporting others with disabilities.

We live in a culture that supports people with disabilities, but there are limited resources to help them. How do we determine what services and accommodations to provide people with disabilities? How do we include people with disabilities in decision making? This class will explore issues like these through the lens of Critical Thinking. Students will engage with adults with disabilities, parents of children with disabilities, and community groups to address current controversies. 

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Dr. Tim Brackenbury

Position: Associate Professor - Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders
Email: tbracke@bgsu.edu
Address: 200 Health and Human Services Building

Dr. Tim Brackenbury is an associate professor and speech-language pathologist. His teaching and research addresses the language acquisition of young children and how to help those with language learning problems.  He is an Honors faculty member and the M. Neil Browne Professor.

Data Science In A World Of Big Data

Section: 1008-76844
Thursdays, 9:30-10:20AM

The purpose of this seminar is to introduce how big data is transforming how we currently live, and then to provide an introduction to how data scientists work with a variety of different types of data.

There will be discussions of material from the book Big Data: A Revolution That Will Transform How We Live, Work, and Think by by Mayer-Schönberger and Cukier. There may be several invited speakers on different applications of “big data”. Also we will introduce some data explorations using the R software in the Data Science classroom in Library 140. The students would be given an opportunity to learn and present some aspect of “big data”.

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Dr. Jim Albert

Position: Professor - Department of Math and Statistics
Email: albert@bgsu.edu
Address: 407 Math Science Building

Jim Albert is a statistician and one of the developers of the new Data Science specialization at BGSU. His research interests include statistics education and the application of statistical thinking in sports. He has taught several honors seminars and one 1910 seminar on statistics in sports.

The Refugee Crisis

Section: 1009-76845
Tuesdays, 11:30-12:20PM

This course will engage students with one of the key global ethical and political issues of our time—the refugee crisis that has been ongoing since 2015.

What are the roots of the current crisis? How have similar crises been handled in the past? What approaches are various state and non-state actors currently utilizing? These questions and more will guide our investigation into this topic as we also explore what it means to be Americans and global citizens in the 21st century. During the course, we will read and discuss select non-fiction and fiction texts on the topic as well as conduct an off-campus event with US Together, a refugee-aid organization with an office in Toledo.

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Jay Jones

Position: Lecturer - General Studies and Writing
Email: hwjones@bgsu.edu
Address: 335 East Hall

Jay Jones is a lecturer in the General Studies Writing program with research interests in composition theory, critical thinking pedagogy, and literary studies. In addition, he served as a U.S. Peace Corps volunteer in Morocco from 1995-97, teaching at Muhammed V University in Rabat. Over the past year, his family has volunteered with US Together as a host family linked with refugee families newly arrived to the Toledo area. 

What's Your Opinion? Researching, Writing, And Publishing Your Own Op-Ed

Section: 1010-76851
Thursdays, 11:30-12:20AM

The course will focus on students researching an issue that is being covered by a local or regional newspaper, with the ultimate goal of students writing, and submitting for publication, their own editorial on the issue.  The course would begin with students researching a current, ongoing issue, something local, something from their hometown area, something in a specific region that is of interest to them, or an issue related to their desired major. 

The course will begin with analysis of editorials and op-ed sections of newspapers to familiarize students with the genre and its place in the history of public discourse. The research process will involve teaching students how to use the university library and various databases along with web resources to access information about their issue, maybe even a road trip, in order to engage directly in the discourse about the issue. There will be some preliminary assignments related to summarizing, analyzing, and responding to their research and then a final assignment requiring students to write their own editorial on the issue and sending it to a news source for publication. There is a possibility for a guest speaker, an editor or reporter, to give students some perspective on how to research an ongoing issue and what it takes for editorials to be published. Presenting and/or sharing their editorials would also be part of the course in some fashion, as time would allow. Students will leave this course with a greater sense of belonging and investment in a community as well as practical research and writing skills that would translate to a variety of courses. The opportunity to gain a publication credit as a first year undergraduate student would also be a practical resume builder for students.

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Michael Schulz

Position: Lecturer - General Studies and Writing
Email: mschulz@bgsu.edu
Address: 321 East Hall

Michael Schulz has taught at Bowling Green State University since 1999, first as a Graduate Assistant where he taught GSW 1110 and 1120, as well as a creative writing workshop ENG 2090.  He has been a full time Instructor in the General Studies Writing Program at BGSU since 2001 and was promoted to Lecturer in May 2014. Michael regularly teaches all levels of composition, GSW 1100, 1110, and 1120, and has also taught Cultural Pluralism in the United States (ACS 2500) in the American Culture Studies program and Introduction to Critical Thinking (HNRS 2010) and Critical Thinking about Great Ideas (HNRS 2020) for the Honors College.

Hunting Viruses: Bacterial Viruses And The Fundamentals Of Life

Section: 1013-76880
Tuesdays, 9:30-10:45AM

In 1944, the Nobel laureate Erwin Schrödinger stepped briefly away from quantum physics to pen “What is Life?” – a physical consideration of living systems. This short work spoke deeply to a number of young physicists who, disturbed by the military applications of their research, turned their interests and efforts to biology. As skilled experimentalists, they addressed “simple” models with elegant questions. In particular, the viruses that infect bacteria (“phage”) provided a model that in the mid 20th century yielded fundamental insights into the molecular underpinnings of the basic processes of life. This course will use the “simple” model of bacterial viruses to explore the basic processes of living systems.

Weekly exercises with those initial isolates (supplemented with ongoing studies from my laboratory) will highlight key features of living systems including: energy, growth, reproduction, evolution, and environmental responses. Together, these experiences will establish a foundation upon which information from future coursework and life experiences can be integrated into a conceptual framework that supports the growth of molecular fluency and informed citizenship.

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Dr. Ray Larsen

Position: Associate Professor - Department of Biological Sciences
Email: larsera@bgsu.edu
Address: 431 Life Science Building

Dr. Ray Larsen has spent most of his professional career considering how proteins mediate the essential processes of life. To this end, his laboratory has long focused on iron uptake systems in bacteria as model for protein structure and function. Knowing there were viruses that pirated these systems to infect cells, several years ago they began to ask questions about the interactions between these viruses and the iron transport proteins. The “answers” they got were interesting, but as is the nature of science, more interesting were the questions these “answers” raised. Years have passed, they have sought and discovered new viruses that raised yet more questions – and on it goes…joyfully, with numerous undergraduates from several programs and colleges contributing to the effort.

Hamilton, History, And Contemporary Culture

Section: 1014-76883
Tuesdays, 1:00-1:50PM

The Broadway hit Hamilton: An American Musical has become a major cultural phenomenon. Its cast album has gone multi-platinum, its actors have become stars and its touring company has lifted theater ticket sales across the country. It has been the subject of countless internet memes and mash-ups, and its creator, Lin-Manuel Miranda, won the Pulitzer Prize, a MacArthur "genius" grant, and has been the toast of late-night talk shows. How much of Hamilton is history, and how much is embellishment? Why is it so popular, and what can we learn about American culture from the Hamilton craze?

In this class, students will get their shot to consider this compelling and fun work of history, music, and drama. In addition to investigating and discussing the show’s interpretation of history, its place in Broadway, its use of hip-hop, students will get to tell their own stories through mash-ups and raps invoking the American past and present.

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Dr. Andrew Schocket

Position: Professor - Department of History
Email: aschock@bgsu.edu
Address: 102 East Hall

A Professor of History and American Culture Studies, Andrew M. Schocket’s most recent book, Fighting over the Founders: How We Remember the American Revolution, analyzes how the nation’s founding is portrayed in politics, public history, on TV and in movies, and by reenactors as a way to contest what America means and what it means to be American. He also has two forthcoming publications specifically about Hamilton. Plus, his daughters know all the words—and so does he.

Popular Music And Politics Around The World

Section: 1012-76873
Mondays, 2:30-3:20PM

Popular music can be a powerful tool for political mobilization and the creation and maintenance of political identities. This course will explore the relationship between popular music and politics from a variety of perspectives in an international context.

This course will investigate how popular music has been used in struggles by minority groups resisting cultural assimilation, such as the role that Catalan music has played in resisting Spanish hegemony. At the same time, the globalization of popular music creates a melange of musical styles but also threatens traditional genres. The course will consider how political elites try to promote and protect local popular music using policies such as quotas on radio content. In addition, the course will examine how international conflicts play out in popular music, such as in the annual Eurovision contest.

Scott-Piroth

Scott Piroth

Position: Senior Lecturer - Department of Political Science
Email: spiroth@bgsu.edu
Address: 122 Williams Hall

Scott Piroth is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Political Science. He teaches courses in Comparative Politics and in Canadian Studies. His primary research focus has been on the politics of nationalism in advanced industrialized societies and has written extensively on the secessionist movement in Quebec. He has published articles and presented papers on the role that French-language popular music has played in sustaining a distinctive Quebecois identity and supporting nationalist political mobilization in Quebec. He is currently researching the similar role played by Catalan-language popular music in Catalonia, a region of Spain with a similar secessionist movement.

What is an american? Exploring the early nationalist idealism 

Section: 1011-76865
Tuesdays, 8:30-10:20AM

American Exceptionalism (“we are different from every other nation—and better”) is a current and historical phenomenon that has its roots in the early broadsides, treatises, and political documents from the revolution through the Civil War. This seminar will explore the origins and necessity of American Exceptionalism primarily in the Early Nationalist period, and we will work in primary historical artifacts from 1800 to 1830, to understand how certain ideas were useful to their time and to understand how they are being applied in our time. 

Each week, we will read an essay or essay-length selection from critical thinkers in and around the early nationalist period (Madison, Hamilton, Adams, Jefferson, Webster, Emerson, Thoreau and others), examine articulations of exceptionalism in American landscape art that reflects this concept of America. You will be asked to participate in every class discussion and to produce an essay applying the “originalist” concept to a critique of today’s conception of America.

Raymond-Craig

Raymond Craig

Position: Dean, College of Arts and Sciences
Email: racraig@bgsu.edu
Address: 205 Administration Building

Honest Dialogue after the end of "facts" : Institutions and inequality

Section: 1015-76886
Wednesdays, 10:30-11:20AM

This first year seminar will engage with some key introductory readings about “facts,” mediated publics and public spheres, and democracy to build a theoretical foundation for the semester’s projects. We will discuss these in scheduled meetings. Beyond these readings/discussions, the students will be involved in three key undertakings for the Fall 2017 semester.

Students will participate in an evaluation of Spring 2017 events, thinking about their successes and shortcomings. They will write short critical position papers on these events and share them with each other for discussion. Lectures will also include connected media products (e.g. podcasts or WBGU-FM radio public affairs hours) that will help to encourage broader discussion on campus and around the community. The students will participate in the creation of those products. 

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Dr. Clayton Rosati

Position: Associate Professor - Department of Media Production and Studies
Email: crosati@bgsu.edu
Address: 308 Kuhlin Center

Dr. Rosati is a cultural and economic geographer who studies media industries and cultural power, the role of media in urban political economy, poverty, and development communication. Dr. Rosati teaches courses on media literacy, critical cultural theory, contemporary problems in media policy, and electronic surveillance and privacy.