• The Jay and Jeanie Schottenstein Honors Program

  • FALL 2015 Honors Program Courses

    Please see the Class Schedule for the current semester’s offerings. A brief description of the honors courses for the coming  semester is given below.

     

    Non-Honors students interested in taking an Honors course should follow the Procedure to Take Honors Courses 

     

    Art Bible Biology Chemistry Cultures Over Time Economics
    English   First Year Writing Hebrew History Interpreting the Creative Jewish History
    Jewish Philosophy Mathematics Philosophy Physics   Political Science Psychology  
       Semitic Languages Spanish   Statistics   Sociology  

     

      

    ART

     Architecture of the Synagogue 1650H

     Prof. Glassman

     Sec 361 T 6:45 - 9:30

     

    Study the forms, materials, and structural systems of synagogues, the centers of Jewish communal life and prayer, from their beginnings in the ancient world to the present. Using the comparative method, we shall explore regional influences in addition to links between liturgy and architectural form. We shall discuss when and why structural and stylistic forms were adopted, why certain innovations were introduced, and why certain symbolic elements were expressed. Whenever possible, we shall compare synagogues to their antecedents in other traditions as well as to secular buildings. Site visits to synagogues in New York will allow us to examine materials and forms first-hand.
        

     

     BIBLE  

     

     Genesis and Literature 2010H

     Prof. Carmy

     Sec 341 T R 4:30-5:45

     

    The primary goal of this course is the study of selected topics in Bereshit, including creation, the original sin, Cain and Abel and the akeda. As in all my work, the approach is literary-theological, and we will use the entire history of Jewish Bible study, from the Second Temple period down to today. In this course, however, we shall devote substantial time to the echoes and reworking of the Biblical material in Western literature. Prominent among these are Gilgamesh Epic; Augustine, City of God; Milton, Paradise Lost; Byron, “Cain”; Unamuno, Abel Sanchez, and other modern poems and short fiction; Kierkegaard, Fear and Trembling and The Concept of Anxiety; Israeli poetry and fiction, including Amichai and A.B. Yehoshua.

    Several short writing assignments and one culminating paper.


    Psalms 2700H

    Prof. Angel

    Sec 311 T  1:05-2:45

     

    BIOLOGY   

     Topics: Stem Cells 4934H

     Prof. Peter

     Sec 461 R 6:45-8:25    

     

    Topics in Stem Cells takes a careful look at contemporary breakthroughs in stem cell research as reported in the scientific literature. Through these findings, students will be introduced to cutting-edge molecular and cellular research methods and versed in the interpretation of scientific data. Areas to be covered in this course include: embryonic stem cells and cloning, somatic and hematopoietic stem cells, and induced pluripotental stem cells and cellular reprogramming. The final portion of this course deals with ethics and legislation.


     

    CHEMISTRY    

     Chemical Analysis 1122H

     Prof. Jiang

     Sec 241 M W 4:30 - 5:45,  W 6:45-9:45

       


    CULTURES OVER TIME   

     Roman Empire in Theory and Practice 1002H

     Prof. Stenhouse

     Sec 231 M W 3:00-4:15


     This course examines various ways of understanding the figure of the Roman emperor, by focusing on the first emperor Augustus. We will consider a range of textual and visual sources for the emperor, including poems, historical accounts, ruins, and coins, and place the emergence of the emperors within Rome’s political, religious, and cultural traditions. Assessment will be by exams and a range of short papers.It differs from the regular version of this course by involving more intensive discussion of modern responses to Augustus, student presentations on particular objects and poems. It also includes a visit to see the early Roman imperial material in the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

    ECONOMICS   

     Economics of the Law 2005H

     Prof. Grivoyannis

     Sec 241 M W 4:30 - 5:45

    Economics is the most advanced of the social sciences, and the legal system contains many parallels to and overlaps with the systems that economists have studied successfully. The interaction of economics and the law since the early 1960s has changed the nature of legal scholarship, the common understanding of legal rules and institutions, and even the practice of law. Legal theory has assimilated many economic concepts, such as incentive effects, opportunity costs, risk aversion, transaction costs, free-riding, the prisoner’s dilemma and other game theoretic tools (such as Nash equilibrium and dominant strategy), asymmetric information, collective choice, open-access resource, median rule, regulatory capture, rent-seeking, credible commitment, moral hazard and adverse selection, market failure, monopoly power, price discrimination, Pareto efficiency, cost-benefit and, and so forth. As knowledge of quantitative methods diffuses, we foresee increasing use and sophistication of statistical methods in legal scholarship.

    More recently, economists have realized that effective property and contract rights are fundamental to economic growth and development and have, as a result, begun to pay attention to the effect of the legal system on the economy. This realization has opened economics to an infusion of legal concepts, such as litigation costs, property rules, liability rules, default rules, strict liability, independent judges, third-party enforcers, corruption, judgment-proof injurers, reliance damages, priority in bankruptcy, inside-trading, public firms, non-government organizations, customs, norms, internalized values, reasonable actors, and non-monetary sanctions.

    The concepts in this course will benefit both, the students who will have future careers in law and those with future careers in economics.

    Prerequisite: ECO 1011/1041

     


     

    ENGLISH    

     Shakespeare and the Arts 1003H

     Prof. Lee

     Sec 331 T R 3:00-4:15  


     This INTC core course will explore both Shakespeare’s ability to meld different genres and forms of art and later artists’ visions inspired by Shakespeare. Drawing on close reading, textual studies, genre studies, genre theory, media studies, film studies, art criticism, art history, literary studies, Shakespeare studies, influence studies, historical studies, and cultural studies, we will focus on how each medium, each genre, each form of art, and each artwork creates meanings; when we can assess an interpretation as partial, implausible, or downright impossible; and how interpreters can arrive at probable or even compelling interpretations of individual creative works within the literary, visual, and performing arts.

    Cross-listed INTC

     

     

    Writing about Illness and Medicine 1655H

     STAFF

     Sec 261 M 6:45-9:15  

     

     

    Post Modern Fiction 2083H

     Prof. Geyh

     Sec 231 M W 3:00-4:15  

     

     In the age of competing “histories from below” and from the margins, of docudramas and historical metafiction, and of technologies that render historical evidence increasingly forgeable and suspect, the traditional idea of history as an objective chronicle of the past has been challenged as never before. In this course, we’ll examine how postmodern novelists have participated in and responded to these challenges. Novels we’ll be reading may include, Zusak’s The Book Thief, Sebald’s Austerlitz, Spiegelman’s Maus, Vonnegut’s Slaughterhouse Five, Colon’s The 9/ll Report, Foer’s Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, Hamid’s The Reluctant Fundamentalist, DeLillo’s Falling Man, and McCloud’s Understanding Comics.
    Requirements: One short paper, a long paper, a midterm and a final exam.

     

     

    FIRST YEAR SEMINAR

    4 sections

     

     

    Human Behavior and Social Institutions

     Law and Society 1008H

     Prof. Kimmel   

     Sec 341 T R 4:30-5:45

     

    This course will explore social-scientific understandings of law. It explores how social change affects law and legal institutions, how legal change affects society, and the roles and institutions of the formal legal system in the United States. This will not be a class in law or legal history, and it will not teach you how to be a lawyer; it will focus on the social, political, cultural, and historical contexts of law in practice rather than legal doctrines, statutes, or decisions. We will address questions such as: What is the purpose of law? What is the relationship between laws and norms? Why do people obey the law, and why and how do we punish lawbreakers? Does the practice of law undermine or reinforce social inequality? The goal will be to understand the manner in which social scientists study law as an institution and as a profession, as well as to explain some patterns and dynamics of law in various social settings.

    Cross-listed Sociology

    HISTORY    

     International Crimes 2607H 

     Prof. Burgess   

     Sec 341 T R 4:30-5:45   

     

    This seminar explores the emergence and incidence of genocide and other crimes against humanity in the 20th century. First we will examine the history of modern international atrocity, including the mass killings of Armenians under the Ottoman Empire, atrocities of colonization, the Holocaust, and more recent examples in Cambodia, Rwanda and Darfur. Then we will consider how the international community has responded, and the emergence of international law after the Second World War.

      

    HONORS

     Thesis Seminar  

       

     

    INTERPRETING THE CREATIVE

     Shakespeare and the Arts 1003H

     Prof. Lee

     Sec 331 T R 3:00-4:15  


     This INTC core course will explore both Shakespeare’s ability to meld different genres and forms of art and later artists’ visions inspired by Shakespeare. Drawing on close reading, textual studies, genre studies, genre theory, media studies, film studies, art criticism, art history, literary studies, Shakespeare studies, influence studies, historical studies, and cultural studies, we will focus on how each medium, each genre, each form of art, and each artwork creates meanings; when we can assess an interpretation as partial, implausible, or downright impossible; and how interpreters can arrive at probable or even compelling interpretations of individual creative works within the literary, visual, and performing arts.

    Cross-listed English   

      

     

    JEWISH HISTORY

     Modern Jewish History  1400H 

     Prof. Karlip

     Sec 231  M W  3:00 - 4:15 

     


     

     Dead Sea Scrolls 3220H  

     Prof. Bernstein   

     Sec 331  T R 3:00-4:15  

     
     The Dead Sea Scrolls, arguably the most important Jewish manuscript discovery of the 20th century, cover a broad literary spectrum ranging from biblical texts, to general Second Temple literature, to uniquely sectarian texts. They also encompass a wide range of literary genres: biblical interpretation and “halakhah,” liturgy and poetry, theology and eschatology. The Qumran library is a window through which we can observe directly, without the interference of the last 2000 years, many aspects of Jewish life and thought during the Second Temple period. Careful reading of the Scrolls can inform us not only about those texts and the community or communities that produced them, but about Jewish history and beliefs, as well as the practice of Judaism, in the last centuries before the Common Era, shortly before the destruction of the Second Temple. To that end, we shall spend most of our time in the classroom reading and discussing primary texts, i.e., the Dead Sea Scrolls, in their original Hebrew (and occasional Aramaic), both those texts which have been public for over half a century, as well as those which have been “released” more recently. The assigned readings in secondary literature aid in contextualizing the texts we read and in alerting you to the diverse ways in which modern scholarship has interpreted them. The Qumran corpus as a whole will also be surveyed in English translation.

     
    LATIN

     Elementary Latin I 1101H

     Prof. Ioffe 

     Sec 261 M W  6:45-8:00    


     

    MATHEMATICS

    Problem Solving Seminar I 1401H 

    Prof. Lebow

    Sec 251 M 5:50-6:40

     

     

    Calculus I 1412H    

    Prof. Lebow   

    Sec 341  T R 4:30-5:45   


     

    Topics: Network Science 

    Professors Buldyrev/Cwilich/Gidea

    Section 

    Cross-listed Physics


    MUSIC

    Music and the Brain 1829H

    Prof. Ballan

    Section 361 T R 6:45-8:00

    Cross-listed Psychology

     

    NATURAL WORLD 

    Frontiers of Science 1002H

    Professors Barrios L./Steinhauer/Peter

    Section 


    PHILOSOPHY

    Logic 1100H 

    Prof. Johnson  

    Sec 231 M W 3:00-4:15   


     

     

    Ancient and Medieval Philosophy 2170H 

    Prof. Segal

    Sec 341 T R 4:30-5:45 

      

    PHYSICS

    General Physics I 1051H

    Prof. Cwilich 

     Sec 231 M W 3:00-4:15 M 5:50-6:40 


       

    Topics: Network Science 

    Professors Buldyrev/Cwilich/Gidea

    Section 

    Cross-listed Mathematics

     

     

    POLITICAL SCIENCE

     Religion and Politics 2176H 

     Prof. Aroosi 

     Sec 241 M W 4:30 - 5:45   

     

      In 1802, Thomas Jefferson famously wrote of a “wall of separation” between church and state. Echoing popular ideas from 17th and 18th century political philosophy, Jefferson’s phrase seems to epitomize how many have come to think of the relationship between our political and religious lives: religion is seen as a private affair, whereas the public world of politics is governed by secular, rational, laws. While there are important reasons for this divide, notably, the religious intolerance that sometimes arises when religion is politicized, a strict adherence to this idea also oversimplifies a more complex and rich understanding of their relationship. In fact, it also oversimplifies the more complex understanding that exists in the very thought of the Founders themselves, and the role that religion played in inspiring the Revolution that created America. With this in mind, this class will begin by exploring a few of this country’s founding documents, so as to better see the complexity and richness of the way the Founders thought about the relationship between religion and politics. Following this, we will turn to subsequent developments in European political philosophy, to see how philosophers in the 19th century continued to deepen our understanding of this relationship, albeit doing so at a moment that was too late to be enshrined in America’s foundational documents. Lastly, we will return to the American context, to see how these developments did in fact inspire many American political and religious thinkers. However, insofar as America's founding had already happened, these developments tended to inspire critical movements, movements that urged the United States to live up to the religiously tinged dream by which it was born.

     

     

     Israeli Political Thought 2440H 

     Prof. Bevan

     Sec 631 F 11:00-1:30   

     

     This course focuses on the process in which Israeli political identity is being created. It addresses, inter alia, the role of collective memory, the evolution of Zionist thought, the impact of immigration, the interplay of conflict and political socialization, the function and meaning of secularism in the Jewish state,
    the consideration of ethnic/religious minorities in the formation of this identity. It will also look at Israel “between West and East.” The basic text will be Anita Shapira’s Israel (Brandeis.2012), awarded the National Jewish Book Award for 2012. Students will work on projects exploring Israeli political identity and give oral presentations on these projects at the end of the semester. Guest lecturers are anticipated.

     

    PSYCHOLOGY

     Honors Experimental Psychology 2100H 

     Prof. Malka

     Sec 341 T R 4:30-5:45, R 6:00-7:45 

     

    This course provides an overview of the research methods used in psychological science, with an emphasis on experimental methods. Students will learn about the principles and pragmatics of conducting research studies to evaluate theoretically driven hypotheses about psychological phenomena. Course content will also include statistics used for analyzing data from psychological studies. Weekly labs will focus primarily on the use of statistical software to analyze data from psychological studies.

    A major component of this course is the conduct (in small groups) of an original research project. For this project, students will collect original data with human research participants, analyze the data, prepare a poster that reports the research, and prepare a paper that reports the research. The Honors version of this course involves additional readings of scholarly papers reporting empirical research, as well as additional oral and written presentations of these papers.

     

    Music and the Brain 1829H

    Prof. Ballan

    Section 361 T R 6:45-8:00

    Cross-listed Music 

     

     

    SOCIOLOGY
     

      Law and Society 1008H

     Prof. Kimmel   

     Sec 341 T R 4:30-5:45

    This course will explore social-scientific understandings of law. It explores how social change affects law and legal institutions, how legal change affects society, and the roles and institutions of the formal legal system in the United States. This will not be a class in law or legal history, and it will not teach you how to be a lawyer; it will focus on the social, political, cultural, and historical contexts of law in practice rather than legal doctrines, statutes, or decisions. We will address questions such as: What is the purpose of law? What is the relationship between laws and norms? Why do people obey the law, and why and how do we punish lawbreakers? Does the practice of law undermine or reinforce social inequality? The goal will be to understand the manner in which social scientists study law as an institution and as a profession, as well as to explain some patterns and dynamics of law in various social settings.

    Cross-listed HBSI

     

    SPANISH

    Intermediate Spanish I 1201H 

    Prof. Broitman 

    Sec 231 M W 3:00 - 4:15   

    This is the first semester of a two-semester Intermediate course. Intermediate Spanish I is designed to develop the four language skills, listening, speaking, reading, and writing in Spanish, and to deepen the students’ exposure to the variety of cultural aspects within the Hispanic world. The primary objective of both sequences is to help the students reach a level in their command of the language that would allow them to communicate proficiently both in speaking and writing. The methodology used in the course will be primarily communicative, that is, actually using what the students already know and presenting the new material in authentic contexts. The complete two-semester course is intended to present students with a variety of Spanish and Latin American literary forms and authors. In Intermediate I, students will be exposed to original texts by well-known Hispanic authors. These literary texts will be presented to the students within the context of the new vocabulary or structures that are being introduced in each particular case. During the course of the semester there will be also be cultural activities both inside and outside of YC. These activities will be related to various aspects of the Hispanic cultural life in New York City and will include visits to museums and attendance to performances of plays by Hispanic authors. Participation in these activities will be mandatory and students will be expected to prepare a brief summary of each activity with their personal impressions. To the maximum extent possible, both sequences of the course will be taught in Spanish.
    For students enrolled in the new curriculum, Intermediate Spanish I satisfies the Cultures Over Time core requirement. 
      

     

    STATISTICS

    Intro to Statistics 1021H 

    Prof. Aisenbrey 

    Sec 241 M W 4:30-5:45   

    This course provides an introduction to how we use numerical data to describe and explain the social world. Our coverage of statistical analysis starts simple and gets gradually more involved. We start with distributions of single variables, next move to relationships between pairs of variables, and conclude with statistical control and basic multivariate analysis involving three or more variables at once. In each case, we will study graphical approaches to displaying data, descriptive statistics for summarizing a body of data, and inferential statistics for generalizing beyond those data to some larger population of interest. Key ideas in statistics are common to all three areas, and will be introduced early and used often. This course will also touch on topics such as the goals of social science research and the logic involved in pursuing these goals, including conceptualization and measurement. We will also give some attention to methods of data collection, particularly surveys, but also experiments; this will occur mainly in developing examples. These forms of social science data are those most often studied with the aid of quantitative methods.

     

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