Skip to main content

A list of Grinnell’s Summer 2020 classes (#1061)

Topics/tags: Grinnell

This summer, for the first time in my Grinnell career, Grinnell is offering a set of summer classes. I don’t know if we had summer classes in the distant past, but these are definitely the first set of online summer classes we’ve offered.

Why are we doing so? I am not privy to all of the high-level discussions, but the primary reasons appear to be to offer a chance for students to recover from the chaos of spring and to give students trapped in the US (including on campus) something to do. And those are the only students eligible to take the classes.

You can read a bit more in the memo.

As an academic advisor, I want to be able to talk to [1] my advisees about these courses. But I find the organization of the courses a bit hard to parse. I can find the list easily enough [2], but I’d like to see the courses along with their descriptions. And I’d like to clarify when each course is offered. So here goes. I hope others also find this list [3] of use.

Summer Term I: May 31 through July 10

ECN-226-01: Economics of Innovation (4 cr.) - Graham, B.

An examination of the role of innovation in the economy. Topics include the process of innovation, drivers of innovation, intellectual property, the impact of innovation on firms, labor, economic growth, and inequality, and innovation policy. Not intended for students who have taken ECN 280 or 282. Prerequisite: ECN-111.

ENG-195-01: Encountering Shakespeare (2 cr.) - Garrison, J.

This course is designed for both students with no prior knowledge of Shakespeare’s work as well as those who are beloved fans (and everyone in between!). We will examine some of the playwright’s most meaningful encounters: between and among friends, enemies, lovers, long-lost siblings, ghosts, fairies, and foreigners. In doing so, we will develop skills and vocabulary in order to closely analyze language, to discuss performance, and to explore what drives human relations. Our focus will be on studying the plays as they were meant to be experienced: on stage! Right now, many theatres are making available live recordings of the most recent and exciting productions of Shakespeare’s work. We will watch these productions alongside reading the texts as we explore what has kept the playwright’s work thriving for centuries. Prerequisite: none.

ENV-295-01: ST: History of Infectious Diseases (2 cr.) - Campbell, D.

Description not yet available.

HIS-223-01: Health and Medicine in American History (4 cr.) - Lewis, C.

This course examines the history of medical care in America from the colonial period through the 20th century. Students consider how social factors, as well as personal, political, and professional agendas, influenced medical knowledge and practice. Students explore the constructed meanings of disease and health, and the individuals, technologies, and scientific discoveries that shaped them. Special attention is given to themes of public health, personal agency, and professional authority. Prerequisite: HIS-100 or second-year standing (waived for summer 2020).

PHI-264-01: Political Theory II (4 cr.) - Meehan, M.J.
POL-264-01: Political Theory II (4 cr.) - Meehan, M.J.

A study of the central themes and concepts articulated by political theorists since Machiavelli. Focus will be on theories of human nature, social relationships, conceptions of justice, and the operations of power. May be repeated once for credit when content changes. Prerequisite: Philosophy 111 or Political Science 101 (waived for summer 2020).

Summer Term II: July 13 through August 21

ANT-210-01: Illness, Healing and Culture (4 cr.) - Tapias, M.

This course examines beliefs about illness, healing, and the body across cultures. We will examine how the body, illness, health, and medicine are shaped not only by cultural values, but also by social, political, and historical factors. The class will draw attention to how biomedicine is only one among many culturally constructed systems of medicine. Prerequisite: Anthropology 104 (waived for summer 2020).

EDU-295-01: ST: Education, Race, and Critical Geography (2 cr.) - Jones, S.

Special Topic: Education, Race, and Critical Geography. This course will focus on education and critical race theory, offering a primer on critical race geography, spatial analysis, data visualization, and educational studies. Prerequisite: None

GLS-295-01: Young Adult (Problem) Novel (2 cr.) - Herold, K.
HUM-295-01: Young Adult (Problem) Novel (2 cr.) - Herold, K.

This course focuses on realistic fiction, or the problem novel, written and published for teenagers beginning in the mid 20th century. We consider its models in Seventeenth Summer, The Catcher in the Rye, and I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, its further development in The Outsiders, The Chocolate War, and the works of Paul Zindel and Judy Blume, the popularization of the genre in the 1990s and the first decade of the new millennium, and finally more recent works that feature intersectionality as their thematic core. As a point of comparison, in the final week of the course, we will read excerpts from recent Russian YA fiction. Are the concerns of teenagers presented universally to readers of different cultures? Or do national or cultural mores take precedence when writing for teens? Prerequisite: None.

Full Summer Term: May 31 through August 21

CSC-151-01: Functional Problem Solving w/lab (4 cr.) - Osera, P.M.

An introduction to the basic ideas of computer science, including recursion, abstraction, scope and binding, modularity, the design and analysis of algorithms, and the fundamentals of programming in a high-level, functional language. In this section, we will ground our study of functional problem-solving in approaches related to the digital humanities, investigating ways in which computing changes the ways in which people write and analyze texts. In particular, we will examine models of documents, develop dynamic narratives, and design algorithms and visualizations that help us explore and analyze corpora and individual texts. Prerequisite: None.

ECN-111-01: Introduction to Economics (4 cr.) - Montgomery, M.

A survey of the basic concepts and methods of analysis used in economics. Application to such policy problems as economic recession, inflation, regulation of industry, poverty and income distribution, financial crises, pollution, and trade restrictions. Prerequisite: none.

PHY-116-01: The Universe and Its Structure (4 cr.) - Breen, B.

Descriptive astronomy, covering the tools and methods of astronomy, the solar system, the stars, and the structure of the galaxy and the universe. Prerequisite: none.

THD-115-01: Theatrical Design & Technology (4 cr.) - Thomas, J.

A hands-on, experiential introduction to the design elements of theatre and dance production. Topics include a history of western theatre architecture and stage forms, scene painting, properties, lighting, sound, drafting, make-up, and costuming. Emphasis is placed upon the design and implementation of theatrical scenes from a variety of historic eras and the analysis of the ways in which the design elements influence performance style. Prerequisite: none.

SUMMER 2020 Notes for Distance Learning Adaptation: Over the last 20 years, live performance has relied more and more upon digital media and distance collaborations. During the Summer 2020 session, THD 115 will provide students an introduction to the creation of design and technical elements used in live performance. Essential course units include sound editing and mixing, lighting console programming, mask-making, and projection design/systems in individual and small-group collaborations. Students will learn the foundations of technical drafting/drawing in scale, construction techniques, and electrical systems. Content from this class is directly applicable to the creation, design, and implementation of digital performances and is well-suited for online teaching. We will utilize these experiential components to provide a foundation for the study of how design elements, space/architecture, time, and digital media influence performance style.

It looks like we’ve arranged some of Grinnell’s heaviest hitters to teach some of these courses. I like the mix of standard topics and special topics. I like that a few courses that regularly over-enroll are included. I will say no more about the specifics.

Tomorrow (or tonight, since this is a morning musing), I may write more about other issues associated with Grinnell’s first summer semester in recent memory.

[1] Email with?

[2] Go to the search schedule of courses page, select the summer term and the online location, click Submit.

[3] These lists?

Version 1.0 released 2020-05-03 .

Version 1.1.1 of 2020-05-06.