August 27 - December 14, 2012
This course will involve an examination of diversity including ethnic, racial, gender, age and other factors which impact the culture of interaction in the workplace. Readings, lecture, videos, interactive exercises and student experience will illustrate topics and lead to a better understanding of the origins and ongoing existence of multiculturalism within the contexts of domestic and global work settings.
Catalog Description: May be repeated to a maximum of 6 semester hours.
Judith Calleja (3 credit hours)
The perennial culture wars raging in the USA are expressed in many areas of society. One area of attack is the opposition by the Religious Right to the teaching of evolution in public schools. Since before the famous "Scopes Monkey Trial" in 1925, school boards and legislatures have tried to eliminate, add equal doses of creationism to, or water down the coverage of evolution. They have targeted evolution as a cause for many of their perceived "social evils," don't understand science, and cannot separate evolution from "Social Darwinism."
This course will introduce students to the history of the controversy, define the opposition, and explain where each side gets their ideas and what they believe. We will then explore philosophy of science in enough detail to be able to separate a scientific question from a non-scientific question. A preliminary survey of primarily biological evolution will provide students with the necessary information to counter creationist arguments. This course is designed to give students the ability to not only defend evolution but, more importantly, attack non-scientific intrusions into the public school system. It is not a course in biological evolution but complementary, and can be taken by any upper-level undergraduate with an interest in science and society.
Catalog Description: Evolutionary theory and tenets of present-day anti-evolutionists with emphasis on providing students with the skills to articulate the theory of evolution as it applies to the biological sciences. Not designed as a substitute for a formal course in evolutionary theory. Recommended for students pursuing careers in secondary science education.
Ronald Toth (3 credit hours)
Catalog Description: Introductory study of factors determining aggregate income, employment, and general price level. Such factors include roles of government, the banking system, and international monetary relations. Sophomore standing recommended unless student is majoring or minoring in economics.
Tammy Batson (3 credit hours)
This course is a study of economics with a heart, a normative approach. It covers concepts in economics leading to understanding of equity, efficiency, and welfare. Students will be able to understand how different forms of economic activities, policies, and methods of government resource allocations will be affecting the well-being of different groups of people and businesses. How income and resource distribution in society, as well as understanding of poverty, discrimination, equity, and efficiency effects of government programs will be explored.
Catalog Description: Topics of current importance to consumers, resource owners, business, and government. May be repeated once as topics change. PRQ: ECON 260 and ECON 261.
Sowjanya Dharmasankar (3 credit hours)
Catalog Description: Descriptions of static economic models by means of elementary calculus and matrix algebra; application and interpretation of the general linear model in economics. PRQ: MATH 211 or MATH 229; ECON 260 and ECON 261. CRQ: ECON 393A.
Susan Porter-Hudak (3 credit hours)
Though maps have been used by civilizations for well over 5,000 years, practically all aspects of mapping today involve computers – from the collection of real-world data by GPS or satellites, to drafting and printing. Rather than study the history of maps and mapping, we will instead study the concept of maps as tools of modern communication and visualization. This course is also the starting point for NIU’s certificate of undergraduate study in GIS (in addition to applying toward the B.G.S.) and is required for several further courses in geography. Mandatory introductory face-to-face class meeting.
Catalog Description, GEOG 256: Introduction to maps as models of our earth, tools of visualization, and forms of graphic communication. Use of satellite and aerial imagery, land surveying, and geographic information systems in map production. Thematic maps and how they are used. Map design for informational and persuasive purposes. Two hours of lecture, two hours of laboratory.
Catalog Description, GEOG 556: For graduate students with little formal background in mapping. Maps as models, tools of visualization, and forms of graphic communication. Processes of map production, including imagery and surveying. Principles of map design.
Staff (3 credit hours)
This course is intended to provide the student with a broader understanding of water and its importance to our lives and earth’s complex environment. We will consider issues facing water such as whether the supply of water will continue, how man-made developments have altered water availability, how pollution has eroded this natural resource, and where/how we can restore our water resources. Relevant video clips, online tutorials, and supplemental readings will be used throughout the course to provide examples of water-related issues affecting northern Illinois, other regions of the U.S., as well as various countries around the world.
Catalog Description: Evaluation of water as a resource; its availability, distribution, use, and quality. Operation of the hydrologic cycle and relationships between surface water and the soil, groundwater, and atmosphere. Human impacts on water resources and the management of water-related hazards, including flooding, drought, and the spread of disease. Lecture and field experience.
Sharon Ashley (3 credit hours)
Examination of fundamentals of atmospheric phenomena with an emphasis on understanding concepts and processes behind severe manifestations of weather and climate. Physical aspects of extratropical cyclones, winter weather phenomena, thunderstorm phenomena, tropical weather systems, and large-scale longer-term weather events are analyzed. Case studies are employed to investigate human, economic, and environmental consequences of extreme weather and climate events.
Catalog Description: Examination of fundamentals of atmospheric phenomena with an emphasis on understanding concepts and processes behind severe manifestations of weather and climate. Physical aspects of extratropical cyclones, winter weather phenomena, thunderstorm phenomena, tropical weather systems, and large-scale, longer-term weather events are analyzed. Case studies are employed to investigate human, economic, and environmental consequences of extreme weather and climate events.
Sharon Ashley (3 credit hours)
Have you ever asked yourself, “Where in the world am I?” GEOG 359 may help you answer that question with an introductory study into the principles of Geographic Information Systems (GIS). In this online course, we develop skills in GIS, its components, and how it applies to our surrounding environment. This course is a primer for those who are interested in learning more about the dynamic and ever-changing world of GIS and its career applications.
Catalog Description, GEOG 359: Study of the fundamental principles of Geographic Information Systems (GIS). Emphasis on the development of these systems, their components and their integration into mainstream geography. Two hours of lecture, two hours of laboratory. PRQ: GEOG 256 or consent of department. Catalog Description, GEOG 557: For graduate students with little formal background in GIS or computer mapping. Principles, components, and uses of geographic information systems. PRQ: GEOG 552 or GEOG 556, or consent of department.
Phil Young (3 credit hours)
Are hazards the same globally? Understanding of tropical hazards is essential in order to mitigate the losses in property and life these systems produce. Traditional approaches to hazard assessment cast hazards as static and linear, assuming only one causal factor. During the past half-century, however, it has come to light that natural hazards and the technological hazards that accompany them are not problems that can be solved in isolation. Many losses—rather than stemming from unexpected events—are the predictable result of interactions among three major systems: the physical environment, the social and demographic characteristics of the community that experience them, and the components of the built environment. Natural hazards do not exist independently of society because these perils are defined, reshaped, and redirected by human actions. This course in tropical environmental hazards will focus on these complex interactions between earth surface systems and the physical and social environment by examining Southeast Asia.
Catalog Description, GEOG 408: Examination of natural hazards focusing on Southeast Asia. Tsunamis, monsoons, typhoons, flooding, droughts, and urban hazards are explored. Interactions among the following three major systems are analyzed with respect to shaping these hazards: the physical environment, social and demographic characteristics, and components of the built environment. PRQ: GEOG 101 or GEOG 105 or GEOG 306 or GEOL 120 or consent of the department.
Catalog Description, GEOG 508: Examination of natural hazards focusing on Southeast Asia. Tsunamis, monsoons, typhoons, flooding, droughts, and urban hazards are explored. Interactions among three major systems are analyzed with respect to shaping these hazards: the physical environment, social and demographic characteristics, and components of the built environment.
Mace Bentley (3 credit hours)
Land Use Planning/Regional Planning is a course designed to study the processes and policies concerning land development decisions. Mapping and GIS decision-making techniques are applied to the analysis of urban growth and land-use patterns at global, national, state, regional, and local scales. Hands-on exercises developed for Google Earth and other GIS software incorporate land, environmental, demographic, and business information to demonstrate typical planning scenarios. In addition to applying towards the B.G.S., this class also counts toward NIU’s certificate of undergraduate study in Geographic Information Systems (GIS).
Catalog Description, GEOG 455: Study of processes and policies in land use and land development decisions. Mapping and GIS decision-making techniques applied to the analysis of land-use patterns and management conflicts at national, state, regional, and local government scales. Lecture, laboratory, and field experience.
Catalog Description, GEOG 659: Geographic basis and practice of regional mapping, GIS, and spatial decision processes applied to land-use, social services, transportation, and environmental management concerns. Problems of integrating land, transportation, and environmental management over a multijurisdictional geography.
Richard Greene (3 credit hours)
What are the essential building blocks required to create an effective Geographic Information System? This online course will use GIS software for the creation, manipulation, and presentation of data. The methodology will be a blended set of lessons and exercises which will include design, data capture, quality control, data management, and 3D. Students enrolled in the Homeland Security Program, GIS Certificate, or B.G.S. degree plan may be interested in taking this course
Catalog Description, GEOG 468: Problems and techniques of GIS prototype development. Emphasis on GIS development and spatial database management for public sector applications such as land parcel mapping, emergency services, facilities management, and homeland security. The processes of design and production, editing and quality control, and final implementation of an operational product are stressed through applied projects. PRQ: GEOG 359 and consent of department.
Catalog Description, GEOG 568: Problems and techniques of GIS prototype development. Emphasis on GIS development and spatial database management for public sector applications such as land parcel mapping, emergency services, facilities management, and homeland security. The processes of design and production, editing and quality control, and final implementation of an operational product are stressed through applied projects. PRQ: GEOG 557 and consent of department.
Phil Young (3 credit hours)
From ancient ruins to its ruinous experiment with democracy and recent thaw, Burma manages to hold the world’s interest and attention. In our course, we will look closely at the history of and scholarship on Burma to make sense of this fascinating and diverse Southeast Asian country. Through primary and secondary source material, our focus will be on two main periods/events: the British colonial era and the democracy struggle as epitomized by Aung San Suu Kyi.
Catalog Description: History and culture of Burma from prehistoric times to the present.
Eric Jones (3 credit hours)
This is a course on the United States Congress and is intended to familiarize students with practical aspects of the functioning of Congress, but also acquaint students with some of the major modern academic debates about the effectiveness of the U.S. legislature. Students successfully completing the course will gain an appreciation for the multifarious institutions that make up the U.S. Congress; pros and cons of specific institutional arrangements; will improve their social science related vocabulary; and become more familiar with the way laws are made (or not made) today.
Catalog Description: Principles, organization, procedures, and activities of the U.S. Congress. Topics include elections, legislators and their districts, legislative committees, party leadership positions, and legislative-executive relations. Recommended: At least sophomore standing.
Scot Schraugnagel (3 credit hours)
Baseball is America’s national pastime. But it is much more than just a game. In this course we will use baseball as a case study of how law and politics function in America. The course is designed for both the baseball novice as well as the expert and we particularly welcome those who are new to the game. Why? Because the course is not really about baseball per se. Instead, we will examine how baseball has been reflective of broader legal and political issues such as gambling and drugs, race and sex discrimination, and business-labor relations and how baseball has come to be the only “business” in America with a constitutional exemption from anti-trust laws. We will explore these and other themes through readings, discussions, and films.
Catalog Description: Examination and analysis of the enduring questions of importance for the legal system. Problems illustrating the intersection of law, morality, and politics are set in the context of contemporary issues. Specific focus of the course changes each semester. May be repeated once as topic changes. Recommended: At least sophomore standing.
Artmus Ward (3 credit hours)
This course will focus on major forms of atypical development in childhood and adolescence. These include developmental and learning problems (e.g., autism, mental retardation), disorders of behaviors (e.g., ADHD and oppositional disorder), and disorders of emotion (e.g., anxiety and depression). You will learn about the defining characteristics, associated features, possible causes, theoretical formulations, research evidence, and current approaches to intervention and prevention for these disorders. The course will be experiential in nature and involve engaging class discussions relating to present topics concerning childhood psychological disorders.
Catalog Description: Disturbances in children involving intellectual, emotional, and expressive behaviors as well as selected therapeutic procedures and their relationship to psychological theories and research. PRQ: At least sophomore standing and PSYC 102, or consent of department.
Phil Krasula (3 credit hours)
Introduction to basic concepts in statistical methods including probability, theoretical and empirical distributions, estimation, tests of hypotheses, linear regression and correlation, and single classification analysis of variance procedures. Not available for credit toward the major in mathematical sciences. Not used in major GPA calculation for mathematical sciences majors.
Catalog Description: Introduction to basic concepts in statistical methods including probability, theoretical and empirical distributions, estimation, tests of hypotheses, linear regression and correlation, and single classification analysis of variance procedures. Not available for credit toward the major in mathematical sciences. Not used in major GPA calculation for mathematical sciences majors. PRQ: MATH 206 or MATH 210 or MATH 211 or MATH 229.
Claudine Myers (3 credit hours)
This course will be an interdisciplinary Women’s/Gender Studies course that focuses on India, Bangladesh, and Pakistan. The rationale for choosing these countries is that the idea of “woman” has been co-opted in ideological clashes among diverse entities that have strategic interests in the region, yet few of these stakeholders are genuinely committed to either feminism or women’s human rights. Although similar problems exist in many parts of the world, it is made especially visible by a unique confluence of factors in India, Bangladesh, and Pakistan.
An interdisciplinary approach that draws on content, research, and teaching associated with ethnography, anthropology, literary studies, science, sociology, economics, and development studies will be used to identify and analyze these complex contexts. Guest speakers will supplement the information offered in the course texts.
Catalog Description, WOMS 430: May be repeated to a maximum of 6 semester hours as topic changes. PRQ: Junior or senior standing or consent of director.
Catalog Description, WOMS 530: May be repeated to a maximum of 6 semester hours as topic changes, but only 3 semester hours may be applied toward the certificate of graduate study in women’s studies.
Colette Morrow (3 credit hours)