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STCC HONORS: Colloquia

About Honors Colloquia

About Honors Colloquia

STCC Honors Program Course Competencies for all Colloquia and Seminars:

Investigate a topic using an interdisciplinary approach.

  1. Student demonstrates ability to evaluate a topic.
  2. Student uses ability to analyze a topic in various and appropriate contexts, including social, historical, political, scientific, and artistic.

Conduct independent scholarly research

  1. Student demonstrates a strong knowledge of the research process.
  2. Student demonstrates familiarity with appropriate methods and sources for research, including the library, the Internet, as well as other appropriate sources.

Synthesize information from various sources

  1. Student demonstrates ability to compile research material.
  2. Student demonstrates ability to evaluate research materials.
  3. Student demonstrates ability to apply in writing and discussions information acquired through research and other methods

Development of critical thinking skills appropriate to an Honors Course

  1. Student uses clear logical patterns of thinking, argumentation, and questioning.
  2. Student is able to discern different points of view.

‚Äč*Please note: The course offering will vary from semester to semester and year to year. Each semester there will be a listing of the specific Honors Colloquia and Seminars being offered. No honors colloquia are offered during the summer.  See our Honors Colloquia courses and current offerings in the current semester class schedule.

Honors Seminars

HNR-200 - PHILOSOPHY OF SCIENCE  3 credits

This Honors science seminar will focus on historical trends in science, great thinkers in the world of science, and science and technology in the modern age. Supplementary sources such as the Ascent of Man, Connections, Carl Sagan and Nova may be used. An integral component of this seminar will be logic, critical thinking, analytical thinking and data collection and analysis. Students will be encouraged to become involved in their own original research projects.

Mass Transfer Block: Credits earned in this course are counted towards the MassTransfer Block Humanities and Fine Arts requirements.

HNR-201 - HISTORY OF INFORMATION  3 credits

Honors students will explore the history of information, from the appearance of the first written record over 5,000 years ago to the digital world of today. The organization of information and the investigation of the range of library holdings and digital resources will be addressed and will naturally lead to an examination of the research process (which was the focus of the previous version of the course). Students will be introduced to print, non-print, and electronic sources as well as best practices in research investigation. That is, how to locate and evaluate the best information on selected topics. Required course activities will include guest lectures, library visits, and team and individual projects (including a treasure hunt, oral presentations, and written assignments). Curiosity, persistence, and a sense of humor are prerequisites. Offered in the Spring Semester.

Mass Transfer Block: Credits earned in this course are counted towards the MassTransfer Block Humanities and Fine Arts requirements.

HNR-205 - THE COMIC SPIRIT  3 credits

The Comic Spirit: Perspectives on Humor and Laughter, an Honors Program seminar, offers students a broad-based inquiry into the related concepts of comedy, humor and laughter. It approaches these subjects from a mostly literary (and mostly Western) perspective with close study of comic drama and fiction, but the course will also consider film and television, cartoons, philosophy, psychology, sociology, and the physiology of laughter. The goal of the course is to help students reach fuller and more complete answers to the questions: What is humor? What makes people laugh? What makes something funny? Who decides? This course is restricted to students in the Honors Program.

Prerequisite(s): ENG-102 

Mass Transfer Block: Credits earned in this course are counted towards the MassTransfer Block Humanities and Fine Arts requirements.

HNR-206 - INVENTION TO MARKET  3 credits

This honors course provides direct theoretical and practical expertise in invention, innovation and entrepreneurship. It will utilize the E -Team concept to promote, enhance and support innovation through the use of guest speakers, workshops,lectures, field trips, laboratory experiments,professional advice and group dynamics. E -Teams will be comprised of students from a variety of disciplines that include business and technology. Student projects, centered on real-life designs and ideas will be discussed and evaluated by the E-teams. Emphasis is given to the students' creativity and ingenuity culminating in a marketable innovation. Areas of special interest are: safety, adaptive (universal) design, comprehensive application, flexibility and environmental impact. Visits to various area businesses may also be a part of this course.

Mass Transfer Block: Credits earned in this course are counted towards the MassTransfer Block Humanities and Fine Arts requirements.

HNR-208 - SEEING BEYOND SEEING  3 credits

Meaningful art, in any medium, can be a life-altering experience, but developing an open mind as to what constitutes art requires practice. This course will challenge the preconceived ideas of art that we form from childhood to adulthood by pushing students to expand their own views of art, and reexamining the critical question of what art is. Through numerous field trips to local and regional museums and galleries, students will explore and investigate how they see and experience art. We will probe the social, cultural, economic, and political meanings found in art and photography, and carefully consider the important role of the contemporary artist and photographer and how they help form our pervasive visual culture today. Students will be expected to engage in philosophical and theoretical discussions during weekly seminars. Assignments will include short readings and written response papers, a midterm paper, and final research project with a public presentation component. No previous art experience is necessary.

Mass Transfer Block: Credits earned in this course are counted towards the MassTransfer Block Humanities and Fine Arts requirements.

HNR-209 - THE SCIENCE OF SEX & SEXUALITY  3 credits

Human sexuality has been taboo for many years in virtually all cultures. This course aims to peek under the sheets in the most intimate of settings. Through the use of anatomy, physiology, endocrinology, neuroscience, psychology, and sociology, we will delve into the difference between genetic XX and XY, the observable male vs. female, and the mental masculine vs. feminine. Do sex and gender equate? How does sexuality play into this? Can science explain what it means to be transgendered? This course will take us through the human journey starting with embryonic development of the genitalia, moving to the development of the male/female brain, through secondary sexual development during puberty, into development of sperm and egg, the mechanics of intercourse, and end with fertilization of the next generation.

Mass Transfer Block: Credits earned in this course are counted towards the MassTransfer Block Humanities and Fine Arts requirement.

HNR-210 - PICTURING ATROCITY: IMAGES OF WAR & ITS AFTERMATH  3 credits

Everyone living today has experienced a world with war and photography. This course will investigate how images of war have changed the social and political narrative since the birth of photography in 1839. Students will gain a deep understanding of the visual impact that images of war have had on society through the ages, and will analyze the moral and ethical dilemmas associated with this kind of representation as it has moved from the still photograph to the moving image. We will probe the historical and cultural meanings found in images of atrocity, and the important role curators, scholars, journalists and photographers play in helping form our global worldview. Students will read the work of Susan Sontag, Ariella Azoulay, James Young, Georges Didi-Huberman, Marita Sturken, Tom Junod, among others, and will be expected to engage in philosophical and theoretical discussions during weekly seminars. Assignments will include written response papers to weekly readings, a midterm paper, and final research project with a public presentation component. Course activities will include guest speakers who are presently working in the field, trips to 9/11 Museum and Memorial in NYC and area photography exhibits, where students will explore and investigate how they see experience representations of tragedy.

Mass Transfer Block: Credits earned in this course are counted towards the MassTransfer Block Humanities and Fine Arts requirement.

HNR-211 - PROJECT MANAGEMENT  3 credits

This Honors course will present an interdisciplinary viewpoint on Project Management methodology. Students will be introduced to the concepts of Project Management including, but not limited to, the four phases of project life cycle, as well as the key components of the project management process. Students will learn about different types of project management methodologies and see how each is applied in practice. Leading change fundamentals, based on Kotter's change model, will also be discussed. Additionally, students will gain an understanding of matrix management and conflict resolution strategies. Problem solving, decision making, and negotiation techniques will also be covered to hone students' critical reasoning skills. Students will be able to immediately apply the concepts learned in this course by analyzing case studies, performing hands on simulation exercises, and planning their own projects while following the correct methodology. Ultimately, this course will provide students with comprehensive Project Management principles that can be applied to any field.

HNR-212 - DYSTOPIA: SCIENCE, FEAR AND THE ARTS  3 credits

Science and art just can't seem to get along! Throughout history, stories of fallen societies due to advances in technology have scared societies from embracing new technologies. Why are the arts so afraid of these breakthroughs? This course aims to answer this question. Through various aspects of art, Dystopia attempts to understand why, as a society, we are so skeptical, so fearful of science. This interdisciplinary course will attempt to explain the historical breakthroughs of science that we so often feared at the same time by the societies that they were meant to help. Selections may include Aldous Huxley's Brave New World and the Eugenics movement of the early 20th century, The Island, as a result of human cloning, and Pink Floyd's The Wall, as a reaction to increasing automation.

Mass Transfer Block: Mass Transfer Block: Credits earned in this course are counted towards the MassTransfer Block Humanities and Fine Arts requirements.

HNR-213 - CREATIVE ART OF STRUCTURES  3 credits

Learn how to interpret and understand the built environment through technical, visual, and social analysis and critique of towers, bridges, tall buildings, and vaulted roof structures. Creative Art of Structures is a historical survey of structural engineering through the lens of design excellence. The world's most iconic structures will be studied from engineering, architectural, cultural, and social perspectives and structural engineering will be presented as an art form rather than just a technical endeavor. Open to all students - no engineering background is necessary.

Prerequisite(s):  ENG 101, MAT 087 (minimum grade C-) or placement at Algebra II on the math placement test.

Mass Transfer Block: Credits earned in this course are counted towards the MassTransfer Block Humanities and Fine Arts requirement.

HNR-214 - HUMAN FLOW: UNDERSTANDING THE GLOBAL REFUGEE CRISIS  3 credits

The history of human migration is as long as the history of mankind, and people moving from one place to another is either voluntary or involuntary. Today the world is experiencing the greatest human migration since the end of World War II in 1945. Why? In this honors course, students focus on the involuntary movement of people due to war, famine and ethnic cleansing, to name a few factors, in modern and contemporary times. Students examine the historical context of the current global refugee crisis, analyze the last one hundred years of immigration policy in the United States, and grapple with the complex issues associated with terms like migrant, refugee and displaced persons. Students engage in philosophical and theoretical discussions during weekly seminars.

Mass Transfer Block: Credits earned in this course are counted towards the MassTransfer Block Humanities and Fine Arts requirements.

HNR-215 - THE PSYCHOLOGY OF LOVE  3 credits

The Psychology of Love will explore, in detail, the phenomenon labeled "Love." The student will develop an understanding of how Love motivates actions in sexuality, work, relationships, human development, and spiritually. This course will take a scholarly, yet humanistic, approach to studying how love shapes elements of psychology, sociology, and anthropology. Various theories from both historic and current leaders in the field will be examined. Learning through self-discovery and personal insight is emphasized.

Mass Transfer Block: Credits earned in this course are counted towards the MassTransfer Block Behavioral and Social Sciences requirements.

HNR-270 - HONORS INDEPENDENT STUDY  3 credits

This directed study is an independent study that a student initiates with a professor. Projects for advanced individual study by special arrangement with the instructor and approval of the Department and School Chairpersons. Students are expected to demonstrate willingness and ability to work on their own with minimal assistance.

HNR-290 - HONORS ELECTIVE  3 credits