Course Descriptions (Upper Division)

Modesto A. Maidique Campus Seminars

Section


Course Title


Professors


Day and Time


U01Human Conduct and Values: KnowledgeDaniel AlvarezMonday, Wednesday, Friday
1:00 PM - 1:50PM
In the first half of the course, we will discuss the nature of human knowledge, drawing on different perspectives (Eastern and Western) and approaches (e.g. religious, philosophical, scientific, and aesthetic). In the second half, we will focus on human conduct and valuation, emphasizing some of the dominant approaches to ethics, such as naturalism, existentialism, contextualism, objectivism, and conventionalism. We will work with primary sources, including works (or brief selections) by Aristotle, Descartes, Kant, Mill, John L. Mackie, David Wiggins, Nelson Goodman, W. V. Quine, Jonathan Edwards, Saint Bonaventure, Lao Tzu, Confucius, Mahavira, the Upanishads, and the Bhagavad Gita.
U02Art as a Social LanguageJohn BaillyThursday
12:30 PM - 3:15 PM
This course is structured around the idea that visual art holds a vital role in the social and cultural dialogue surrounding controversial issues. It investigates how artists have challenged or enforced authority by creating new aesthetics. It further explores how art is used to initiate, accelerate, or prevent social change. The heart of the course is the Aesthetics & Values Research and Exhibition Project. This provides students with the opportunity to demonstrate their resourcefulness and creativity through the research, curation, and organization of an on-campus exhibition of contemporary Miami artists. After forming committees, students are responsible for coordinating all aspects of the exhibition, including selecting artists, negotiating gallery space, working with university administration, and managing local media. Students also produce a thorough research paper on their chosen artists.
U03Heady HarmonocosmsDavid BeckerMonday
4:00 PM - 6:50 PM
Imagine taking twelve particular keys of a piano (the seven white keys and five black keys from a C such as Middle C to the note before the next higher C) and placing the name of each tone assigned to these twelve piano keys onto a fascinating and obscure twelve-faced three-dimensional object so that one tone appears on each of the twelve faces in a certain arrangement. Now imagine that, of the millions of possible arrangements, the certain arrangement put into place allows the chord sequences and even melodies of a huge number of popular rhythm and blues songs to be easily visualized by traveling in a continuous path that connects the quadrilateral faces of this mysterious gem-like object. And thats not all. New songs with appealing qualities can be composed with the device. How is this possible? Embark on a journey that bridges music with geometry, and that finds manifestations of mutuality between these areas and the realms of molecular biology and animal morphogenesis.
U04When Animals Are Not Animal. When Humans Are Not Human.Gretchen ScharnaglWednesday
2:00 PM - 4:45 PM
Egyptian animal mummies mightEgyptian animal mummies might be votive offerings to the gods, a representation of a god, a beloved pet or food for the afterlife. We easily accept Goofy as a human and Pluto as a dog in the same cartoon. One of the earliest depictions of a human is a bird-headed shaman figure. This course will combine the approaches of the art studio (mark-making, observation, creativity) and the science lab (experimentation, research, investigation) to play, practice, find, create, test, experiment, act and reenact, the artistic, historic, cultural, religious and scientific depictions of animals and humans from all disciplines with examples as wide ranging as cave paintings to YouTube videos. Students will be required to participate in experimental mummification projects. There will be non-traditional and traditional research assignments weekly. We will look at animal behaviorists Konrad Lorenz and E.O. Wilson, graphic novelist Art Spiegelman, director of the Animal Mummy Project, Salima Ikram, art theorist Steve Baker, philosopher Jacques Derrida and selected contemporary artists. This class considers how we look at ourselves, how we look at animals, and how this influences how we think of both. Participation, attendance and discussion will constitute the bulk of the grade. Activities will often be collaborative and cooperative. We will have a public exhibition in the GC gallery. Whenever possible we will abandon the traditional classroom.
U05Observing Ourselves: A Primer for Life After HonorsH. Scott FingerhutMonday
3:00 PM - 5:50 PM
As you turn the corner and head toward graduation, this seminar seeks to have you slow down, be quiet, and define your character what is deeply and fundamentally true, for you, distinct from that which is true based on what others think, or expect and then, to write about it. We will accomplish this task primarily by observing ourselves honestly which is not as easy, or as pleasant, as it might appear. Our foundation text is the Bill of Rights realized and not in conjunction with the Supreme Court's vision of what is fundamentally fair, primarily in the lives of people accused of crime: how a society treats its outcasts says perhaps the most about the type of society it is, and yearns to become. In this sense, criminal law and procedure strike at the core of our studies together. But there's more. We shall also observe ourselves across contexts not purely legal contexts historical, philosophical, sociological, spiritual, temporal, musical and by doing so become attuned to "other shoes": for "while it is perfectly proper to disagree about what the Constitution requires," Justice Marshall advised, what we may not do is disgrace ourselves by interpreting the Constitution based upon "unfounded assumptions about how people live." What does it mean to "have it made"? Where is the soul? Does freedom evolve? Would you travel with Einstein's brain? Or talk dirty and influence people? Is there virtue in selfishness? Can I handle going to jail? Evolutionism or Creationism? Can I bridge the racial divide? All of this, and more, we shall consider, together, as you mark the present moment at this phenomenal crossroad in your lives.
U06Creative Non-Fiction: The Personal Essay, Oral History and Other WondersElizabeth HanlyTuesday
12:30 PM - 3:15 PM
Writing from the heart. Perhaps that is a good definition for the genre known as Creative Nonfiction. In this course, students will discover stories that only they know and find the best ways to put them down on paper. Not incidentally, students will learn to listen to other stories more closely. Assignments will be divided between personal essay and oral history projects. Students will read some of the giants of the creative non-fiction genre, including Joan Didion and James Baldwin. But the emphasis in this course is on the act of writing and the strange and wondrous moments.
U07Treating the Person, Not Only the Disease: The Psychosocial Foundations of Human Behavior and Well-BeingJose RodriguezTuesday, Thursday
11:00 AM - 12:15 PM
For the better part of a century, a disease-oriented model of treatment has dominated the medical field. In this paradigm, the medical doctor diagnosed and treated the patients bio-physiological maladies, and nothing more. Little concern was paid to the psycho-social and behavioral causes of disease. The admissions process to enter medical schools reflected this paradigm with MCAT examinations exclusively assessing applicants knowledge of biochemical principles, etc. Recent changes in the MCAT have signaled larger shifts in the admission and education of the next generation of medical doctors. Now, about half of the questions on the MCAT will deal with the psychological and social foundations of behavior. This course will attempt to provide students with a primer for that other half of the MCAT. In the fall semester, we will cover MCAT Foundation Concepts 6 & 7: Sensing the Environment, Making Sense of the Environment, Responding to the World, Individual Influences on Behavior, Social Processes that Influence Human Behavior, and Attitude and Behavior Change. In the spring semester, we will cover MCAT Foundation Concepts 8, 9, & 10: Self-Identity, Social Thinking, Social Interactions, Understanding Social Structure, Demographic Characteristics and Processes, and Social Inequality. The course will focus the above listed, within the context of specific skills: scientific reasoning and problem solving, reasoning about the design and execution of research, data-based and statistical reasoning. Activities for students to demonstrate their knowledge of the material will vary. Traditional exams that are patterned after the MCAT will be included. Additionally, reaction papers that require students to critique current medical research will also be considered. While this course will be specifically geared toward students interested in taking the MCAT, all students with an interest in the psycho-social biological foundations of human behavior are welcome. In the interdisciplinary spirit of the Honors College, this course will attempt to connect psychology, sociology, biology, and anthropology.
U08Healthcare in the US: Challenges and OpportunitiesBarbra RollerMonday, Wednesday
5:30 - 6:45 PM
This course is intended primarily for pre-med students or others planning to enter professional healthcare. It provides a comprehensive overview of the development of healthcare and the U.S. healthcare system, while providing practical opportunities including extensive case study, shadowing and/or other field experiences, and some preparation for taking the MCAT. This course has restricted enrollment.
U09BioethicsMarin GillisWednesday
11:00 AM - 1:45 PM
This course looks at how ethical issues have evolved into modern day medical practices that affect the health care practitioner today. We will examine the issues of concern and laws that govern medicine and bioethics in the US, as well as alternative medical practices on a global scale where belief systems differ from Western concepts. During the second semester, issues of life and death are examined in detail and debated, such as abortion, stem cell research, AIDS, euthanasia, humans and animals as research subjects, and organ transplants, among others. The primary research initiative involves a 5,000-word paper on one of the major issues in healthcare.
U10The Environment and SocietyCamilo RosalesMonday
11:00 AM - 1:45 PM
This course takes a comprehensive view of human relationships with the natural environment. The severity of environmental degradation in modern times has forced nations to reconsider the manner in which societies live and produce. Using a multidimensional and multidisciplinary approach, Environment and Society explores one of the most important global issues of our time.
U11Human Perception and Knowledge CreationJohn TsalikisMonday
10:00 AM - 12:45 PM
This course will explore the limits of human perception and how it affects our understanding of the world. It is a multidisciplinary course including: cultural influences on knowledge and perception, behavioral learning theories, attribution theories, causation, and limitations of human senses (Gestalt theory).
U12Exploring World Cultures and Societies through the String QuartetJason CallowayWednesday
9:00 AM - 11:45 AM
The Amernet String Quartet, Ensemble-in-Residence at the FIU School of Music, College of Architecture + The Arts, presents a truly interactive learning experience, combining lecture, discussion, and performance. The musicians will explore important events and trends in world history from the Renaissance to today through the diverse repertoire of string quartet. Each piece of music will be examined in conjunction with related works of literature and visual art as well as socio-political trends particular to the relevant historical period.
U13Walk Don't RunLeonard ElbaumWednesday
8:00 AM - 10:45 AM
Walking will be the unifying theme for an examination of aesthetics, values, and authority. Readings and/or activities will be assigned almost every week, and students will write a short paper related to the assignment. During the class session, the instructor and/or a guest will lead a discussion of the topic, and introduce the next week's assignment. Readings will be available in the library or online whenever possible. Some classes may take the form of walking tours, and/or other activities. In addition to the weekly readings, short papers, and class participation, each student will develop two term projects, which can take the form of a traditional term paper, a non-traditional format if proposed by the student and approved by the instructor. Students will be given access to the Department of Physical Therapy's Kinesiology Laboratory if they choose. Specific topics will include the anatomy, physiology and mechanics of human walking, hiking the Appalachian Trail, the Pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela, the Hajj, the March on Washington led by Dr. King in 1963, the Great Salt March led by Gandhi in 1930, the history and sociology of walks for charity, and the Americans with Disability Act.
U14Engaged Research in the Community Through Honors: Sweetwater Service Research CourseCecile HouryMonday
3:00 PM - 5:45 PM
This course will use a service-research approach to address some of the social, cultural, economic, political, environmental, educational, and health problems that the City of Sweetwater and its residents face. During the first semester, students will conduct research about community partnerships and about the City of Sweetwater. They will identify issues and, based on their majors and interests, select one to further analyze. They will then work with the professor to identify university faculty members or administrators, city officials, non-profit leaders, or corporate agents who can assist them in carrying out their analysis.
U15Global Social Entrepreneurship in HonorsRobert HackerMonday
1:00 PM - 3:45 PM
This course explores the social, economic and political complexities of social ventures with a focus on social entrepreneurship. Alternative forms of social entrepreneurship are explored in depth in order to understand the advantages and disadvantages of each business model, and their impact on communities around the globe. Using case method analysis (six Harvard Business Review cases each semester), students will examine how to address social needs by developing an entrepreneurial venture. This interdisciplinary class brings together students from various academic backgrounds and interests to find comprehensive strategies and solutions to address important issues. Lectures, case studies and readings will prepare students to analyze a social challenge, come up with a business plan for a start-up enterprise as a team, and prepare to present their strategy to potential investors. Teams can be selected to submit their business plan to a global competition partnering with the Clinton Global Initiative.
U16Ancient TechnologyJill BakerTuesday, Thursday
11:00 AM - 12:15 PM
The purpose of this class is to explore ancient engineering and technology. Thanks to archaeological excavation, monumental buildings, gates, city walls, roads, and ships have been discovered. In ancient times, these (sometimes) gigantic structures were constructed without the benefit of bulldozers, cranes, lifts, drills, or any of the modern tools with which we are familiar. So, how did the ancient people move materials and build these amazing things? This class seeks to elucidate the ingenuity of the ancient mind in order to understand their technology which in turn will help us to better understand our own and apply these, and new, ideas to the future.
U17Third World CinemaElizabeth HanlyTuesday
7:15 PM - 10:00 PM
This course will use film to examine the history, lives and circumstances of people from the so-called 'Third World.' Film makers from Africa, Asia, Latin America, and the Middle East have been making movies for decades and have developed their own cinematic visions that reflect the diversity and complexity of their experiences. Their work not only provides a visual discourse that is unique to their culture, but also marks a contrast to the way their cultures are portrayed in the West, Russia, China and Japan. We will be particularly interested in discussing questions of identity, tradition, transgression and redemption.
U18Entrepreneurship, Design and ThinkingRobert HackerMonday
9:00AM - 11:45AM
This small research seminar explores the similarities and unique features of both the design process and new business concept development. The focus is on the processes, heuristics and ways of thinking about problem solving in each discipline. Readings and course work are primarily from the writings of modern practitioners in each field. Equal time is given to both social and for-profit objectives and outcomes.
U19The Western Legal TraditionKristen A. CorpionThursday
6:20 PM - 8:30 PM
The course is designed to introduce students to the western legal tradition through a multi-disciplinary exploration of the law and legal issues. The course is structured around lectures by practitioners, thematic workshops, and field trips. The class is also intended to help students prepare for law school, including preparation for the LSAT, legal writing, and public speaking.
U20Maker City | Analysis, Critique, and Design of our Growing Urban EnvironmentTom PupoMonday
1:00 PM - 3:45 PM
The steam engine sparked the Industrial Revolution, the assembly line transformed industry, and standardized shipping catalyzed a truly global and interconnected economy. Now new ways of manufacturing are transforming our world once again. The tools to make literally anything are increasingly available to anyone. Open source electronics platforms, 3D printing technology, and community maker-spaces with sophisticated industrial tools are rewriting the rules of production to enable anyone to be a maker. This global culture has a name: The Maker Movement. Makers are solving urban challenges. The DIY ethos of making isn't limited to creating physical objects stuff. Makers are starting to re-imagine the systems that surround them. They are bringing the "maker mindset" to the complex urban challenges of health, education, food, and even citizenship. This course intends to instigate dialogue and generate ideas about how citizens are changing work, production, governance, learning, well-being, and their neighborhoods, and what this means for the future. Students are called to research and analyze how individuals, grassroots efforts, and community groups use emerging technologies and work together to solve problems in the city. Students will propose a project based on their research and MAKE an urban installation that catalyzes change.
U21Public Health / Public WorksPioneer WinterTuesday
12:30 PM - 3:15 PM
Public Health / Public Works will educate the student on the role of culture in health information and dissemination. Culture can take on many operational definitions depending on the genre, but when applied to health practice it is defined as the collective understanding of a group of healthcare consumers. This course will develop the main points of cultural awareness for the public health professional, as both a pre-requisite and stand-alone course on social awareness that will lead to improvements in social marketing stratagem. Methods discussed will include the visual / performing arts, public works campaigning, health professional laymen training (peer-to- peer health dissemination), social responsibility vs. responsibility diffusion, minority populations (i.e. LGBT populations, ethnic / racial disparities), targeting agenda-setting theory, trans-theoretical approach to behavioral change and development of health communication.
U22Who's an American Anyway? The immigrant experience in the US: from memoir to social scienceJose RodriguezTuesday, Thursday
2:00 - 3:15 PM
Since the inception of the United States, the concept of what it means to be an American has been contested. In the last hundred years, various groups that were once excluded from the American mainstream have come to dominate that mainstream. Additionally, the character and adaptation patterns of immigrants have drastically changed since the major influxes of European immigrants at the early part of the last century. What does it mean to be an American in the second decade of the 21st century? What are the processes (social, psychological, geo-political) that have created a different type of immigrant experience now from a hundred years ago? Is America a melting pot, or is there a better metaphor? To answer these, a many more questions, we will endeavor on an interdisciplinary journey through various fields of the humanities and social sciences. In the fall semester, we will focus on the experience of immigrants in their own words, through the use of memoirs. Additionally, we will investigate some of the historical and current reasons various groups of people have for coming to the US and how they develop (or not) a sense of American identity. Possible student projects include oral histories, personal memoirs, among others. In the spring semester, we will focus on the social science of demographic shifts, the psychology of adaptation and assimilation, social stratification and the creation of ethnic enclaves, as well as the science of identity development and change. Possible student projects include qualitative and quantitative projects in the various ethnically concentrated neighborhoods of Miami.
U23Leadership in Film: Theory and PracticeMayra BeersTuesday
3:30PM - 6:15PM
Leaders shape the future of our societies and our organizations. This course will provide opportunities for students to actively reflect on leadership issues by viewing cinematic portrayals of leadership situations that will prompt conversations about personal and organizational values, attitudes, and behaviors. Through the films and supplemental readings, students will be able to analyze, understand, and draw conclusions about various principles of leadership, reflect on the theoretical foundations of their views, and discuss practical applications.
U26SkunkworksWifredo FernandezThursday
9:30AM - 12:15PM
Skunkworks is a team-based course that pushes students to develop desirable, feasible and viable products or services that solve challenges about which they are passionate. The goal is to emulate the process of building a startup company. (Faculty Permission Required)
U27Diplomacy LabBrian FonsecaTuesday, Thursday
5:00PM - 6:15PM
The U.S. Department of State's Diplomacy Lab at FIU's Honors College affords students the opportunity to explore real-world challenges identified by State Department officials and work under the guidance of FIU faculty members with experience in diplomacy and international relations. Students will conduct multidisciplinary research over the course of the semester and provide the State Department with answers and actionable recommendations that support U.S foreign policy. Students will be grouped and assigned a research topic of importance to U.S. foreign policy. Throughout the semester, students will progress their research inside and outside of the classroom, engage routinely with State Department officials, and interact with subject matter experts at FIU and around the globe. The course will conclude with the submission of a final research product and a presentation to the U.S. Department of State. The Diplomacy Lab allows students to contribute directly to the policy making process, while helping the State Department tap into an underutilized reservoir of intellectual capital.
U28Grow SmartlyHortensia SampedroMonday
1:00PM - 3:45PM
Strategy, Marketing and Tactics explores the inter-relationship between three business disciplines: strategy, marketing and management. The course uses Harvard Business School cases, selected readings and a course project to develop a more practical understanding of the application of key concepts from each of these three disciplines. Students are encouraged to use the cases to test theory learned in previous courses against the realities of each case setting. The further development of skills in creativity, critical thinking and problem-solving are planned for and expected. The course project will be for each team of students (3-4 students) to analyze a problem company, such as Apple, propose a new strategy and management structure and discuss what should be the key objectives for senior management.
U29The Role of Law in Business: An Entrepreneur's GuideMichelle Alvarez RomeroWednesday
5:00 PM - 7:40 PM
Calling all entrepreneurs and future business managers! Are you a pre-med student thinking about one day opening your own practice? How will you manage such a feat? Where do you start? What sort of things should you know? What type of business structure would best suit your needs? This course will help you answer these questions and hone your critical thinking skills---helping you make confident and informed business decisions.

You will be introduced to the rules of law that govern the many aspects of business. The legal system and business policies and practices in the United States are closely related. Few aspects on how to manage a business can be accomplished without tending to various legal requirements. A basic understanding of these rules and the ethical constraints that impact business provides a framework for making sound business decisions, facilitates commercial transactions and promotes order in the marketplace. Course emphasis is on analytical problem-solving, ethical decision-making and critical thinking vis-à-vis the identification of issues and addressing of potential challenges before they become actual, expensive problems. A sample of topics to be covered include business entity selection/formation, structuring ownership/management, understanding human resources and preparing contracts.
U30Law School in a NutshellAnthony RiondaWednesday
5:00PM - 7:40PM
The course is designed to introduce students to a learning experience mirroring the 1st year of law school. Structured around lectures on core law school subjects (Constitutional Law, Contracts, & Torts), guest lectures by law faculty, and experiential learning opportunities, the course will prepare students for law school and teach with an emphasis on recreating the law school environment. The course will use the Socratic Method, law school exams, and an emphasis on legal research, writing and advocacy.
U31The Everglades: From Beginning to EndPeter MachonisFriday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
This course will provide an in-depth, hands-on study of issues concerning Everglades National Park by examining not only the Everglades eco-system and the politics surrounding its conservation, but also literature and art about the Everglades. It requires active participation from each student and can be physically challenging, since classes take place outdoors, rain or shine, and involve physical activities such as hiking, biking, canoeing, and walking through the swamp or slough slogging. Students also learn to identify South Florida flora and fauna. Class meets twice a month on Friday for the entire day at various off-campus locations (Homestead, Flamingo, Shark Valley, Big Cypress, Everglades City) and is team taught by Peter Machonis, a linguist, and Devon Graham, a tropical biologist, along with guest lecturers and rangers. In the past, we have had guests such as the photographer Clyde Butcher and the writer Carl Hiaasen. Participation is limited to 18 students.
U32Lessons in Life and LeadershipModesto MaidiqueWednesdays
Fall 2016
2:00 - 4:45 pm
Wednesdays
Spring 2017
11:00 AM - 1:45 PM
This course will examine the fundamentals of effective leadership. The course con of a combination of lectures, case discussions, and selected speakers drawn from the top business and civic leaders in Miami-Dade County. The first part of the course will consist of an intensive discussion of the literature on leadership effectiveness. Students will be provided with a list of concepts to help them better understand the role of an effective leader. They will utilize learning mediums such as the Big Five Personality Test and their life-changing crucible stories to help determine their own personal strengths and weaknesses as leaders. In the second part of the semester, students will select a leader of their choice for individual study from a list provided by the professor. Based on what they learned in class about leadership, students will analyze their selected leader and prepare and deliver a presentation on their findings for the entire class. The professor of this course, Modesto Maidique, served as the third president of FIU from 1986 to 2008. He was CEO and President of Oscient Pharmaceuticals Corp. He was the founder of Semiconductor (Linear IC) Division of Analog Devices Inc., and served as Vice President and General Manager of the company. He served as President and Chief Executive Officer of Genome Therapeutics Corporation (formerly known as Collaborative Research, Inc.). (Faculty Permission Required)
U33Miami StoriesElizabeth HanlyTuesday
4:00 PM - 6:50 PM
Stories are a map of the human heart. From time immemorial, it has been through stories that humankind has made sense of the world around them. This course sets out to explore Miami through stories. Students will tell those stories through whichever medium they chose: words, photographs, listening pods, short videos, even video games. Students will explore one question pertaining to Miami in depth each semester. The question will be of each student’s own choosing and may vary widely. A student might focus on the abstract with questions such as who might be defined as a hero in Miami or what person or community might best define resilience in Miami. Alternatively students may work with more concrete questions having to do with topics like: crime; policing; ecology and development; the city’s community of artists; the white foot/black foot immigration policy, traffic, health care, education, to name a few. Topics may have much to do with one’s major, or be a welcome change from it. In every case, topics will be limited only by imagination and understanding of our city. In every case students will answer their question by telling stories. Whatever your major, this course is designed to develop the skills to not only get to the heart of an issue but find the most effective ways to translate that into a story, whether visually or through the written word. Although the class will meet regularly, this is a course designed for those also willing and able to do considerable work on their own or in small groups.
U35Seminar on TolkienAdam GorelickTuesday
2:00 PM - 4:45 PM
This course explores the work and thought of J. R. R. Tolkien, philologist and professor of English language and literature, known to the world as the author of The Lord of the Rings and the father of fantasy fiction. Since Tolkien’s chief intellectual interest was the context and evolution of language, these fundamentally colored his creative writing as well as his theoretic ideas about myth and fairy-story. This course will (a) examine poems, essays, novels, and short stories by Tolkien himself, (b) consider his literary and spiritual influences, (3) explore the social dimension and worldview conveyed in his work, and (d) survey current scholarship in the field of Tolkien Studies. Students will employ both analytical and creative tools in completing the assignments, and they will participate in a seminar format, contributing and reporting on their individual research.
U38Biophysics of NeuroscienceJorge Riera Tuesday, Thursday
2:00 PM - 3:15 PM
This course will discuss the biophysics of neuronal computation for both biological and artificial neural networks. It will prepare students to understand the main principles by means of which our brains work and computers recognize patterns, learn/plan actions, and interact with humans from an interdisciplinary perspective. The course will provide a detailed introduction to the anatomy/physiology of excitable cells, major brain architectures and principles, and the most relevant mathematical models for neural computation from single neurons to circuits. In the Spring, students will be trained to analyze electrophysiological data. Students will be provided with software to conduct the analysis of data recorded at different FIU sites. Data sets will be analyzed and interpretation of the results will be written up in a 10-page publication.
U39Climate ChangeJuan Carlos EspinosaMonday, Wednesday
3:30 PM - 4:45 PM
This multidisciplinary course is led By Associate Dean JC Espinosa and was created by four Honors College students who will serve as peer instructors. Although the course is global in scope, the impact of climate change on South Florida will serve as the main topic. Particular focus will be given to climate change science, ethics, policy, economics/finance, and communications/media. Additional topics may be addressed based upon student interest and request. The course will feature multiple guest speakers and will require students participate in field trips and co-curricular activities related to the class.
U40The Political CycleAnthony RiondaTuesday
5:00 PM - 7:40 PM
The Political Cycle is an interactive discussion-based course focusing on the election process from the grassroots to highest levels of government. This three semester course (a total of six credits for the entire course) will be led by a series of experts in the political process. From how campaigns run, to the statistics behind polling, the impact of the media and how government works. The summer term (IDH 4905) is a pre-requisite for the fall and spring course. This non-credit course will receive a grade and count as a non-credit internship. During the summer, students will be placed with campaigns, political consultants, media outlets, or government agencies during the summer while meeting in person on a regular basis for a political boot-camp style series of sessions. During the Fall (IDH 3034 – 3 credits) the class will focus on the presidential election. Spring (IDH 3035 – 3 credits) will focus on the post-election, building of a government. A trip to Washington, DC is scheduled during the semester. The course will cover the electoral process in detail include political history, demographics, economics, sociology, and political science. Political figures and experts will serve as guest speakers including elected officials, pollsters, statisticians, historians, political scientists, sociologists, accountants, lawyers, and government officials.
U41Disruptive InnovationsHortensia SampedroWednesday
3:00 PM - 4:50 PM
How recent key innovations have disrupted their markets. It is well known that every time you take a large market and you substitute technology, you create disruption. There are three fundamental ways to achieve this: Do something differently, Do something better, Do something new. In the first two choices, the market already exists. The course would study the key concepts, utilizing cases and readings of modern day examples to develop the themes. Key concepts: How do you develop new business ideas?, Disruptive innovation with Christiansen., Competitive advantage, building on Porter., Customer experience, including mapping. The course would analyze disruptive innovations through a rigorous and chronological analysis of the following: CITI ATM, CHARLES SCHWAB, IPHONE, NETFLIX, PANDORA, KINDLE, NUCOR, TESLA, UBER/LYFT, AIR B AND B.
U42History of Medicine through ArtAmilcar CastellanoMonday
1:00 PM - 3:30 PM
This course encompasses the study of medical history as it has occurred through time portrayed in different forms of art, i.e. visual, written, performed in a global perspective thus emphasizing certain areas in this review such as: anatomy, physical diagnosis, different types of illness -with a focus on infectious diseases-; a few specialties such as: obstetrics / gynecology, surgery, and psychiatry amongst others also including selected examples of preventive medicine and therapeutic approaches; all from the perspective of the vast historical registry available to us. Sessions will include: faculty and invited speaker lectures / workshops; video / movie screenings, required readings (articles / book / novel (s), homework assignments and group projects.
U43Developing Human-Centric Skills for HealthcareJason BellWednesday
8:00 am - 9:15 am
Technical proficiency may earn you an interview, but it is the soft skills that will land you the job (and promotion). This course outlines six soft skill competencies vital for professional success: Compassion, Consciousness, Citizenship, Creativity, Collaboration and Communication. Student will explore each of these dimensions through the lens of a career in healthcare. Meeting sessions will be a combination of lectures, dialogues and experiential learning. Each semester will feature a capstone project. During the first semester students will engage in a tactile volunteerism project. During the second semester students will be assigned real world challenges facing the healthcare industry and asked to provide a novel solution. For both capstone projects students will have several weeks to progress from ideation, to business plan and finally the presentation. Upon completion of this two-semester course, students will be able to understand and appreciate the value of soft skills as it relates to their career path.
U44Values and Authority: God and Man in the "Great Conversation"Ruben Garrote Tuesday, Thursday
12:30 PM - 1:45 PM
From the dawn of history down to our own time the record of humanity's struggle to give answer to the great questions of life has taken the form of a "great conversation," whereby writers, while listening to the answers provided by their predecessors, have tried to offer their own solutions, - or to record their perplexity in the face of the difficulties encountered. This great conversation is ongoing, and it is there for us to draw near and listen to. Perhaps no question has dominated this conversation more than that which reflects on the relationship between God and Man, the problem of evil or suffering, fate and free will. In this course we will read and discuss some of the great works of the past which address themselves to this great question. "Not," as C.S. Lewis once wrote about the reading of old books, "that there is any magic about the past. People were no cleverer than they are now; they made as many mistakes as we. But not the same mistakes." We will ourselves become participants in this great conversation, reflecting and commenting on their mistakes and ours, and - why not? - offering our own solutions.
U52FeastGretchen ScharnaglMonday, Wednesday
11:00 AM - 12:15 PM
Chew on this! This course will be a tasting of food as image, a savoring of feasts as ritual, while digesting current cultural food trends and the health impacts of various dietary habits. A healthy serving of the politics, human movement, and conflicts, over which the scarcity or abundance of food has influenced, will be dished out during the year. Humans have been influenced by their food from subsistence to culinary delicacy foraging to domestication of crops and famine crises. Students will sample specific foods such as coffee, chocolate, and salt and more through readings, films, and visits to local museums. Students will present an abundant banquet of research projects on a wide range of food topics from cannibalism to food waste. In keeping with a course that includes edible art and feast as ritual, the students will cook up at least one feast per semester.
U55The Power of PlayMaikel Alendy Thursday
6:15 PM - 7:40 PM
With mobile gaming representing a multimillion dollar business and its sociological impact on health and communication by our continuous “tech-reliance”, online community development, and its implications on ADDHD; play represents a significant and quite often overlooked foundation in the smartphone Era. This course analyzes the anthropological, neurological, and business implications and significances of play. This course has no required textbook; students will evaluate course content through published journals, online articles, case studies, TED talks videos, and students will required to participate in a class mobile social-gaming platform (ie. Clash of Clans, Star Wars Commander, etc.). At the completion of this class, students will have created and performed their own TED talk, designed and presented a mobile game application, and create and carry-out an instructional game for k-5 students at Dr. Carlos J. Finlay Elementary School.
UHBInvestment Management: Theory and Application of PortfoliosTony VuThursday
2:00 PM - 3:15 PM
This course will explore the investment industry, its tools and techniques and application of theory to manage institutional financial assets. Portfolio management strategies will be examined with respect to the goals of various investment sponsors. There will be a focus on analyzing asset classes, setting asset allocation and selecting managers that fit an institution’s needs. The first semester of the course will center on portfolio construction, measurement of performance and manager evaluation. The second semester will include simulated management of the university’s $300 million operating funds portfolio and participation in the Board of Trustees investment committee meetings.
4905 sec. U05 & U06Programming for Non-ProgrammersJuan Carlos EspinosaMonday, Wednesday
3:30 PM - 4:45 PM
This course examines student expectations for the 21st Century by approaching programming as problem-solving skills that we all must use, regardless of our particular careers. Whether you study business, science, law, or the arts, honing your programming skills is crucial to your success and this course will do just that - it will teach you to program for the world (may also be taken for zero-credit.)

Online Seminars

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RVCInstinct and Decision MakingJohn TsalikisOnline
This course promises a wild ride into the hidden world of the subconscious human brain and how decisions are made without the person being aware of the underlying causes for these decisions. Subjects covered include: how emotions overwhelm rationality, the human senses beyond the typical five, subliminal perception, heuristics or shortcuts the brain uses to simplify our lives, Freud's subconscious instincts that influence human behavior, priming, schemata, semiotics, Gestalt theory, the Triune structure of the brain, and how human conscience is created among a plethora of other scientific concepts. Whether you make the decision to eat health food or a burger, buy a Toyota, or become an architect and move to Houston, this course will assist you in making more informed and hopefully rational decisions in your life. Topics will include: Gender Mainstreaming, Women and Poverty, Violence Against Women, Women and Armed Conflict, Women with Disabilities, and many others.
RVDHuman Rights: Global VisionsMary Lou PfeifferOnline
What is it to be human? What is a human right? Do we humans share equality on Earth and treat everyone with the same dignity that we wish to receive ourselves? These questions and how the claims for Human Rights fit in our lives are examined in this summer A and B two-semester fully online Honors course. By virtue of being human, one has rights or moral claims for her/his economic, social, cultural and political realities that should offer unto others morality. These human rights arose from post WWI and WWII efforts toward peace, democracy and equality emerging as the United Nations. The sanctity of life creates a need for decision-making and value judgments worldwide regarding behavior in times of war and peace including issues regarding the death penalty and gun control.
RVEThe Seven Deadly SinsMary Lou PfeifferOnline
The Seven Deadly is a course that investigates what appears as a three-letter word "sin," and its evolution into the list of the 7 deadly [capital/mortal] sins: anger, envy, gluttony, greed (avarice), lust, pride and sloth that are central to moral philosophy and human behavior. The 7 have been examined through art, music and literature for more than 1,500 years, and recently through multimedia and texts. The course explores the complexity of sin and how it affects humanity by offering a background to recognize, define and analyze the 7 deadlies from their historical roots as well as the corresponding virtues that emerged from Eastern and Western societies. Students are required to view films/DVDs throughout the course, read the electronic data, view works of art and listen to music that is posted each sin.
RVFThe Art of PersuasionPioneer WinterOnline
The Art as Persuasion fully online course focuses on the cultural and political appropriation of visual and performance art for the purposes of public conformity, propaganda, and dissent (1930-present day). Art, informed by the human experience, no matter its epoch, focus, or demographic, is wrought with dissension and counterpoint; and while scholars have learned to dig deeper and not allow insufficiency of findings to resolve into indifferent wrongness, they have also learned to not take the contradictions of our history too personally. There is no such thing as perspective-free history since those who write the history are themselves fallible - historical accuracy comes only from an honest intention. And honesty is, perhaps, out of reach for us. Keeping this in mind throughout the semester, we will examine how ambitions of power and the development of certain artistic (visual and performance) canons were mutually influenced; what rebel vs. state-sponsored art can tell us about ruling regimes and power relations; how propaganda in art affected society and historical events; and how our own preconceptions and contemporary concerns about propaganda, media, and political manipulation color our own approach to recent history and current culture.
RVGMyth and Ritual in FilmAdam GorelickOnline
This online course integrates theoretical discussions of myth and ritual (as interrelated cultural dimensions of religion) with analyses of the relatively contemporary medium of film. In each case, a collective artistic experience employs narrative form to evoke, to explain, or even to create meaning. Following the trail of 19th-century anthropology and 20th-century psychology, we will examine the binding connections between myth and ritual, and we will also seek out their secular analogues in literature and drama on our way toward film as an integrative multi-media form of cultural expression. We will explore the sociological implications of mainstream cinema (such as Spielberg, Pixar, etc.) as shared experience, film adaptations of myth versus myth-inspired storytelling, theological and political interpretations (e.g., of alien films), and much more. Online interactive features will include live discussion, video, and even some amateur film making on the part of the students.
RVHMotivation in the Virtual WorldAllen VarelaOnline
Websites, videos, audio recordings , gaming, and much more have been used individually and collectively to motivate others. This online course explores how to motivate others in a virtual environment. This is a fully-online course where students are encouraged to interact and review each others work. Students will have the opportunity to practice motivational techniques within a virtual environment and provide constructive feedback for each other. Students will learn how to inspire others through virtual, technological, and web-based techniques. Students will develop efficient models of a virtual environment.
RVJUtopiasRuben GarroteOnline
In this course, we will explore the utopian imagination by tracing its development from its ancient precursors to its flowering in modernity. Through the readings and discussions, we will address the shifts in utopian thought as it was affected by contemporary sociopolitical realities and the relationships between the utopian imagination and these realities.
RVKDigital Fairytale: An evaluation of our society in the era of social mediaMaikel AlendyOnline
This course will evaluate the disruptive technologies and movements that have shifted the way “we” currently engage our friends, family, and clients. Through participation and academic analysis students will cover the history, cultural effects, and business implications of the following topics: social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, YouTube, Vine) Smartphones & Tablets, Crowdsourcing, Advertising a product/oneself online. Students will utilize content covered in class to effectively create a trending product, movement, or idea.
RVEA-CQuestioning Authority: Protest, Disobedience, and IdentityPioneer WinterOnline
This course examines the underpinnings of culture and foundations of what commonly are held to be Western values and the way that these values have been shaped and reshaped throughout our history. Fusing equal parts performance, psychology, philosophy, and history in order to tackle the broad expanse and resulting implications of inhabiting other lives. We will focus on questions of authority, power, disobedience, freedom, social structures and democratic values, ekphrastic discovery, the self, and the LEGO Movie. These questions will also parallel discussions and lectures on the archetypal monomyth of the heros journey, using both postmodernist and existentialist readings as guides, defining art and man within their current sociocultural and political climate. Class projects include an appropriation of City As Text with focus on economic and social ramifications of art making and urban development.