Spring 2018 Advising Notes

Advising Notes for Spring 2018
Updated Jan 29, 2018

Dear Honors students,

On this page you’ll find instructions for preparing for course registration based roughly on your year in the program. We outline the basic Honors requirements, answer some FAQ’s, and list the course descriptions for the honors courses offered in Spring.  (You can also find these notes under Spring 2018 Advising Notes on our blog and we’ll update them as necessary.)

Since many Honors courses are experimental, you’ll notice that only “umbrella” course descriptions are listed on Homer, so this message (and the long-term Spring Advising Notes page on the blog at ichonors.com) is the best place to find course descriptions as well as ICC designations.

Each of you has been assigned an Honors Advisor as your key point person. If you have not yet met your honors advisor, check ichonors.com/resources and find yours based on your last name. Feel free to set up an appointment if you need guidance as you plan your coming semesters.

My basic advice for everyone is to consider taking a course that might challenge you. Honors is a great place for trying something new! Your Honors faculty often experiment with new, creative topics or ways of teaching.  With so much innovation, the results are likely to be pretty exciting!

Warmest wishes,
Alicia Swords 

Please follow the following instructions:

Seniors: If you wish to graduate with Honors, you must submit your Honors Thesis Proposal on Taskstream by October 26. Do not delay. This form requires your Honors thesis advisor’s approval and signature. 

Juniors: We will be in touch with you via email in the Spring to help you assess your progress toward completing the program. Based on your responses, your Honors advisor may require a meeting with you.

Sophomores: The Sophomore cohort meeting is the best time to get advice about your progress. Please don’t miss it. It’s this coming Tuesday October 24 at 6pm in the Honors Lounge.

First year students: Honors Director Alicia Swords will explain the Honors requirements in the First Year Seminar Common Hour on Nov. 1, and will go over the 4-year plan for Honors on Nov. 29. Most first year students would do well to take a 3-credit honors seminar in the spring if you can. If you have required classes for your major that prevent you  from taking 3 credits in Honors, it’s a good idea to be in touch with your Honors advisor. If that’s the case, some ways to make progress in Honors are to plan to do a civic engagement or global experience over the summer. Please note, though, that you are not required to meet with your Honors advisor prior to registering. Meeting with your major advisor is required.

What are the requirements for Honors?

To finish Honors you must complete the equivalent of 20 credits. The first 11 credits you must complete as HNRS coursework.  The next 9 credits you can complete as HNRS coursework or as 18 scholarly achievement points, or as combination of points and credits (2 points = 1 credit).  You also complete five categories, including a thesis, a capstone and portfolio, while maintaining a 3.0 GPA.

The resources page of the blog has a checklist that will help you keep track of the program requirements. The most accurate place to track your requirements is on Taskstream. Homer Degree Evaluation will reflect your achievements only once they have been manually evaluated on Taskstream, which takes time.

  • If you are in an Honors course now, make sure to upload an artifact in the Honors DRF on Taskstream. We recommend that you keep up with this. If you take a long pause, we will wonder if you really want to be in the Honors Program and we’ll get in touch to find out.
  • Global Engagement: Remember you can fulfill this category by either studying abroad or taking the International Scholarly Conversation (great course, offered in the spring only.  Also is designated for Diversity for ICC ). Plan ahead on this.
  • Cultural Engagement: This can be fulfilled by doing stuff on your own (see Taskstream) or by taking Cultural Encounters with Ithaca College (offered every semester).
  • Scholarly Achievement: See Taskstream or the Honors Program Checklist on the blog for clear information about how to fulfill this category. This is an 18-point category. Points can be achieved via coursework (1 credit is worth 2 points). You can also achieve points by engaging in scholarly work such as by writing papers or giving presentation outside of the classroom (e.g., conference, scholarly publications), but also by engaging in whatever is considered scholarship for your field. Check with your advisor if you have questions.
  • The Thesis: Remember you will need to do a thesis (or equivalent). Ask your major advisor about what thesis options there are in your major. Taskstream and the blog have the thesis guidelines and the thesis proposal form.
  • Civic Engagement: You can take the 1-credit Civic Engagement course to accomplish this, and there are also self-directed options via the Center for Civic Engagement.
  • Honors Capstone: Student must take the 1 credit Honors capstone course. We offer at least two sections each semester. You should take the capstone course once you have completed everything for the program except the thesis, or when you are in you last semester. Note: The Honors Capstone course does not count for the ICC capstone course.  You will have to take a separate ICC capstone course unless it is part of the capstone course in your major.

 Frequently Asked Questions:

  • Where do I find Honors Courses? In Homer, go to Class Schedule. Select Spring 2018. Under Subject select Ithaca College Honors. (Note this is listed alphabetically under I for Ithaca not H for Honors.)
  • How do I find a description of courses? They are at the bottom of this page.
  • Where do I find ICC attribute designations? The Homer class schedule is not always up to date about ICC attributes. What we expect for attributes is listed below, but we can’t guarantee these. If it is listed in Homer it is a guarantee, otherwise it is only what we are hoping to accomplish.
  • When do I register? Honors students get to register on the first day.  This year that is Tuesday, April 4 at 7:30 am.
  • I need a course override, how do I do that?  There is an electronic process for course overrides. See Electronic Override Instructions.  Please use overrides sparingly. If you’re getting worried about your schedule, check in with your advisor rather than filling out 5 overrides.
  • Where do I learn more about the registration process? Go to the registrar’s page.

 3 Credit Courses: (Full descriptions are below.)

  • Big Data, Bigger Questions
  • Chaos, Complexity and Confounding: The Challenges of Prediction (QL – ICC)
  • Cultural Encounters with Ithaca College
  • Film Festivals and Blogging: FLEFF 2018
  • International Scholarly Conversation (Diversity- ICC)
  • Philosophy and Science of Sex and Love
  • Plotting Marriage/s (crosslisted for Women and Gender Studies minor)
  • Literature of Authoritarianism (Diversity –ICC)
  • Terrorism and Insurgencies
  • The Politics of Criminal Justice in the United States
  • Women and Fairy Tales

 1 Credit Courses (Full descriptions are below.)

  • American Sign Language 1
  • Danger! Understanding Not-so-Natural Disasters
  • Honors Capstone (Everyone needs a capstone course to complete Honors. You should take the capstone course once you have completed everything for the program except the thesis, or once you’re in your last semester.)
  • Opera Immersion
  • Opportunities for Civic Engagement (Fulfills the Civic Engagement requirement)
  • Slow Read for The Underground Railroad
  • Slow Read: Kant’s Groundwork for the Metaphysics of Morals
  • Slow Read: The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood
  • Slow Read: The Iceman Cometh
  • Talking Climate Change: A Country at War with Itself
  • The Honors Tabla Lab
  • Under Construction: Politics and Protest in Contemporary Music
  • Winter Wonderland: Tracking and the Art of Seeing in Winter
  • Writing for Yourself

Course Descriptions – 3 Credit Courses

Big Data, Bigger Questions (Loop, Jill)
CRN 43238 HNRS 20049 TR 9:25-10:50

This course will explore the idea that we use data and formulas on a daily basis to make decisions between different options, but we may be looking at our “choice” in entirely the wrong way. Using “modern-day” texts from Yuval Noah Harari, Malcolm Gladwell, Cathy O’Neil and other social scientists, this course will explore why Dataism is the new religion and why blindly trusting the algorithms may be taking away human rights. The course will also explore the notion that “big data” may rule the future, but we don’t always realize what the data is. The course will ask students to research and seek answers to: How do we become free to choose? What information should we be using? When can we trust the data? How to we avoid becoming paralyzed by decision-making?

Chaos. Complexity and Confounding: The Challenges of Prediction (Conklin, Jim)
CRN 42795 HNRS 20037 TR 1:10-2:25 QL for ICC  

This course will explore the art and science of prediction, with an emphasis of how predictions are made in the context of the information explosion of recent decades. In particular we will explore, in diverse contexts, how people take their current knowledge, data and insights and transform them into predictions and forecasts. The explorations will include some insights into the science of “Big Data”, including the implications of the Butterfly Effect from Chaos Theory to the power of “updating” coming from using Bayesian tools. Central also will be the art of predictions – determining when human intelligence is better than computers at predicting. The course will also explore the failures of predictions caused by the biases and misinterpretations of the human forecasters. Throughout we will be exploring the nature of randomness. In particular we will ponder the questions “When are seemingly random events actually complex patterns?” and “When are apparent patterns actually just random coincidences?” Contexts will include predictions of weather, climate, economies, sports, politics, epidemics and many other areas. 

Cultural Encounters with Ithaca College (Flanagan, David)
CRN 42019 HNRS 150009 MWF 1:00-1:50        

Provides students with a structured platform for exploring the cultural offerings at Ithaca College. The seminar explores questions about Ithaca College culture including what it is and how it is shaped. Students will address these questions through attendance at cultural events, through writing about and discussing such events, and through background reading. Open only to students in the Ithaca College Honors Program    

Film Festivals and Blogging: FLEFF 2018 (Zimmermann, Patricia)
CRN 43244 HNRS 20051 T 6:50-9:30

Application Process:

Admission to the seminar and FLEFF blogging internship requires a short application and is competitive.

Requirements:  Must have one full year of courses at Ithaca College and at minimum sophomore standing. Students previously enrolled in the FLEFF Festivals course as FLEFF Fellows or in the Honors seminar in Participatory Cultures have priority as FLEFF blogging interns.  Overrides available for students outside the Honors program for this seminar and internship.

(Note:  students with sophomore standing through credits but who are currently in their first year as Ithaca College students are not eligible.  These students should enroll in the one-credit/P/F FLEFF Festivals that runs during the festival FLEFF Festivals GCOM 12000 CRN 43325, where they will be considered FLEFF Fellows.)

To apply:

Write no more than a one-page letter  (500 words maximum) explaining your major, GPA, your academic interests, why you are interested in participating in FLEFF 2018 as a blogging intern,  and what particular aspects of FLEFF interest you (review the FLEFF website before writing your application).   Also note if you have taken the FLEFF Festivals course or the Honors Seminar in Participatory Cultures.

Send your application letter to:  fleffblogging2018@gmail.com

Applications are now open and will close November 14.  Applicants will be notified of admission to the seminar and the internship on a rolling basis, so apply early.      

Course Description

This advanced seminar engages competitively selected students in an intensive and immersive experience in the 20th Annual Finger Lakes Environmental Film Festival (FLEFF) as bloggers and festival ambassadors. Students serves as interns for FLEFF 2018.

The course provides students with a coordinated blend of theory, history, and practice. The course works within an international and transnational focus. It explores and analyzes the histories, operations, politics, creative industries impact, and programming of festivals as a critical nodal point in the entertainment and arts industries through significant books from the scholarly literature.

This seminar provides an avenue to learn professional blogging for film festivals and arts/entertainment organizations, with students writing for the FLEFF blogs in a very public, high profile way, interviewing the festival team and festival guests.  It also provides training in learning how to be part of the staff of a festival by thoroughly learning all aspects of the history of FLEFF, its mission and vision, its financing, partnerships, programming, the current year’s programming, and current year’s goals for audience development and engagement as well as visibility.

Finally, the course probes the purpose of festivals as a place for embodied, meaningful, and significant conversations about issues of importance in the world. Blogging interns have special access to festival guests and special events and convenings.

Special notes:  bloggers need to commit to full immersion in FLEFF during FLEFF week both on and off campus.  These sessions will replace some seminar sessions post-festival as they cover required class meeting sessions. Blogging interns receive a FLEFF staff t-shirt, lanyard, and a complimentary festival pass.

International Scholarly Conversations (Wagner, Rachel)
CRN 42045 HNRS 21500 TR 1:10-2:50
Diversity for ICC

Philosophy and Science of Sex and Love (Brown, Cory)
CRN 43246 HNRS 21500 TR 2:35-3:50        

We will critically assess conventional perspectives of love and sex—perspectives based on myths, mysticism, and other transcendental ideas—and consider the value of replacing them with more progressive perspectives from the fields of evolution, sociology, psychology, and literature. I wish for students to gain an awareness of the various forces that control our attitudes about sex and love and that influence our sexual and romantic 

Plotting Marriage/s (Warburton, Jamie)
CRN 42791 HNRS 20043 MWF 11:00-11:50
Crosslisted with Women and Gender Studies (WGST)

This seminar will use religious, political, gender, sociological, popular culture, and literary based lenses to make an interdisciplinary examination of marriage. What can we learn from representations of marriage in literature and popular culture? The legal status of marriage, sex within marriage, non-monogamous or otherwise “nontraditional” marriages, or the choice to remain single? We’ll attempt to answer these questions using a variety of multimedia texts and continually blogging our responses. Students will complete an oral history with a senior citizen and create a “bridal zine.”

Literature of Authoritarianism (Ablard, Jonathan)
CRN43236 HNRS 20042 MWF 11:00-11:50
Diversity for ICC                                                                            

This course explores representations of authoritarianism in Latin American fictional literature, memoir, and film.  Writers, and later filmmakers, have addressed the problem of authoritarianism since the early republican period (1808-1821) and have produced works that have criticized and analyzed repressive political systems, but also what I will call “small authoritarianisms,” such as daily patriarchy, racism, and classism.

 Terrorism and Insurgencies Gagon, Chip)
CRN 427900 HNRS 20033 MWF 1:00-1:50

Want to learn more about terrorism? In this course we’ll explore the concept, asking what exactly is terrorism? Why do people use violence? Are terrorists madmen, religious fanatics, or are they rational? Why would someone become a suicide terrorist? How is terrorism related to insurgencies? This course explores these questions both theoretically and through specific case studies, drawing on a range of disciplines, from political science and international relations to anthropology, sociology, law, economics, philosophy, psychology, and history.

The Politics of Criminal Justice in the United States (Beachler, Don)
CRN 43239 HNRS 20050 TR 4:00-5:15

This course explores various issues related to criminal justice politics in the United States. The focus will be on two   [important issues. The longstanding and ongoing connections between criminal justice practices and the quest for racial equality in the United States will be examined in great detail. A not unrelated issue and the second focus of the course is the extraordinarily high rate of incarceration in the USA.

Women and Fairy Tales (Machan, Katharyn-Howd)
CRN 42789 HNRS 20013 MWF 3:00-3:30

“Women and Fairy Tales” offers the opportunity for challenging, truly interdisciplinary study of a body of literature long important to personal and global understanding. You will be asked to examine, question, and form your own ideas about not only the depictions of women in fairy tales, but the positive and negative effects of these characterizations—archetypes and stereotypes—on listeners and readers through the ages. You will be expected to read widely and deeply and to express the results of your scholarship through excellent expository and/or creative writing (each student’s choice) and oral communication. Along with regular short assignments, you will focus on creating a final project of at least 20 pages (one long work OR a connected collection), entering into the subject from your own career perspective and contributing to classmates’ understanding of the material. Part of the power of this course is that it scans the spectrum from erudite knowledge to accessible popular culture. Fairy tales connect, delight, inspire, and illuminate what we live and what we come to know.

Course Descriptions – 1 Credit Courses

American Sign Language 1 (Giroux, Jennifer)
CRN 43245 HNRS 23028 T 2:35-3:50  

Introduction to the linguistic features and core vocabulary needed to develop basic communicative competence in ASL. Students learn basic ASL grammar and apply this knowledge when using ASL to ask and answer questions, introduce themselves, exchange personal information, talk about family and friends, talk about surroundings, provide descriptions, and discuss activities. Discussion of deaf culture is infused throughout the course. Practicing conversations and active participation in and out of class are required. .

Danger! Understanding Not-s0-Natural Disasters (Brenner, Jake,)
CRN 42026 HNRS 23006 M 2:00-2:50   

This seminar will be an intellectual exercise grappling with the physical and social dimensions of environmental hazards. The primary learning objective is simple: understand environmental hazards, including their physical and social contexts, in new ways. A few questions we pose: Why does an earthquake, tsunami, hurricane, or drought have drastically different impacts on different places? Why are some social groups almost always more vulnerable to environmental hazards than others? How can we better mitigate environmental hazards before they occur through preparation, risk assessment, and other measures? How can we better adapt to environmental hazards after they occur through structural, behavioral, and policy actions? As these questions illustrate, our course is not just an intellectual exercise; there is also a practical upshot.

Honors Capstone (Edwards, Karen)
CRN 43282 HNRS 30000 Sec 01 W 2:00-2:50

Honors Capstone (Patrone, Tatiana)
CRN 43283 HNRS 30000 Sec 02 W 10:00-10:50        

 Honors Capstone (Stafford. Jim)
CRN 43296 HNRS 30000 Sec 03 M 11:00-11:50

 Opera Immersion (Angerhofer, Erik)
CRN 42792 HNRS 23008M 4:00-4:50  

This course explores the form of opera, including the music, drama, scenic art, technical theater, and socio-political context, through an in-depth exploration of one selected opera each semester.

Opportunities for Civic Engagement (Smith, Michael)
CRN 42794 HNRS 23018 M 10:00-10:50

This course draws on theory, research, and personal accounts to explore numerous forms of civic engagement and evaluate the opportunities and challenges each offers in working towards positive social change. This course also requires students themselves to engage in the local community and critically reflect on their experience. Students will have the opportunity to examine their own personal motivations and experiences with civic engagement, as well as gain a deeper understanding of how our social identities can influence our social change efforts.

Slow Read: Kant’s Groundwork for the Metaphysics of Morals (Patrone, Tatiana)
CRN 43242 HNRS 24017 F 10:00-10:50

Kant’s Groundwork for the Metaphysics of Morals, from the time of its publication in 1785, remains the main text in ethical theory. Kant argued that moral philosophy ought to focus on unconditional duty – what he called ‘the categorical imperative of morality’. Furthermore, understood this way, morality requires us to postulate humans’ absolute freedom – as the ability to have acted otherwise in any given situation. In this course, we will read this text in full focusing on understanding Kant’s terminology, arguments, and the place of his ethics in his broader metaphysical theory.

Slow Read: The Underground Railroad (Stafford, Jim)
CRN 43243 HNRS 24018 R 2:35-3:50 Block 1

     Colson Whitehead’s Pulitzer-prize-winning novel, The Underground Railroad, is an essential and daring narrative about race in America. Described by a New York Times reviewer as “unflinching,” and “unconstrained,” its story re-works slave narratives and historical descriptions of runaway slaves who used “the underground railroad” to reach the free North in 19th Century America. Whitehead adheres to experiences of escaped slaves with gritty realism—until the novel’s secret network of passageways and safe houses morph into an actual railroadunder the ground, through which locomotives rush with the escapees to subterranean museums, skyscrapers and modern cities. Students in the class will explore the novel’s breathtaking story, consider ways that it reclaims the telling of Black History by improvising elements of history and popular culture, and re-think today’s current events, like the Black Lives Matter Movement, from this author’s unique perspective.

Slow Read: The Handmaid’s Tale (Wagner, Rachel)
CRN 43241 HNRS 24017 M 12:00-12:50

Slow Read: Eugene O’Neill’s The Iceman Cometh (Gleitman, Claire)
CRN 43651 – HNRS 24019 – 01 W 3:00-3:50 – Block 2
In this Block II seminar, we will engage in a slow read of the American playwright Eugene O’Neill’s epic 1939 play, The Iceman Cometh. Our reading of the play will culminate with a trip to New York City to see the new Broadway production of The Iceman Cometh, starring Denzel Washington. The Iceman Cometh takes place in a New York City bar, owned by the ironically named Harry Hope, whose clientele consists largely of alcoholics, prostitutes, and other down-and-outs. While they have little to hope for, each character has a pipe dream to which s/he clings fervently, and which the “iceman” who is figured in the title views it as his appointed task to persuade them to discard. The consequences are harrowing, not least for the iceman. Although conventional wisdom will tell you that it is best to face facts in life (and, of course, to avoid drinking copious amounts of alcohol, as Harry Hope’s patrons do), O’Neill’s play asks whether it is in fact humanly possible to live without false hopes or “lying dreams.”  In this course, we will read the play, considering it as a text on the page, and then supplement our understanding of it by seeing it performed in New York City, with Denzel Washington in the role of Hickey (aka the iceman) and directed by George C. Wolfe.

Talking Climate Change: A country at war with Itself (Dremock, Fae)
CRN 4237 HNRS 23026 TR 1:10-2:25 – Block 1

This course is a reading and discussion seminar on the public debates in the United States on the issue of climate change.

The Honors Tabla Lab (Nuttall, Denise)
CRN 43247 HNRS 23029 TR 3:00-3:50 – Block 1

Learning Indian cultural ways of life through learning to play tabla. This is a hands-on course in ethnomusicology where students are expected to engage in the learning of a musical instrument (percussion) from Hindustani or Indian classical music as an anthropological and musicological field of inquiry. It is a music lab based course requiring no previous musical background. Each class will revolve around tabla instruction, listening exercises and discussions of Indian cultural traditions which are ‘at play’ in the learning of any Indian performance form.

Under Construction: Politics and Protest in Contemporary Music (Bleicher, Elizabeth) CRN 43240 HNRS 23037 M 3:00-3:50

As we are currently experiencing a renaissance in political and protest music, this course is an inquiry into the power of contemporary music to intervene in issues of race, class, gender and political, economic and social injustices. Using the music and videos of artists such as Macklemore and Ryan Lewis, Kendrick Lamar, Nas, Pink, Dixie Chicks, Eminem, Nikki Minaj, Katy Perry, Cardi B, Brad Paisley and others, we will analyze lyrics, images, performances and public response to them. In so doing we can study the cultural work these artifacts are performing, and counter the refusal to engage with the content embedded in the claim, “It’s only a song.”

Winter Wonderland: Tracking and the Art of Seeing in Winter (Hamilton, Jason)
CRN 42047 HNRS 23007 T 2:35-5:15 

Take a long hard look at the ground. Say “goodbye”. You will never see the ground in the same way again! Every day, every hour, and every minute a new story is being written on the earth and you are launching a lifelong journey in learning how to read these stories. Learning the ancient art of tracking is a process, not a goal. And in this process, you will learn as much about yourself as the landscape and creatures you are tracking.

Writing for Yourself (Machan, Katharyn-Howd)
CRN 42793 HNRS 23013 R 5:25 – 6:15 

A course designed to lead students to the further exploration and discovery of the importance of words in their lives and how to shape them with significance and power. As an advanced course, it is primarily a workshop and discussion center, informed by a shared commitment to creating new poetry and prose and learning from offering and listening to thoughtful responses about it.