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Fall Courses 2016

August 24, 2016

Students entering their sophomore year or later are invited to explore the history of Presidential elections in the U.S., analyze the causes of climate change, or consider what it means to be human in these featured fall courses!


Medical Journalism (COM 400.001 / COM 673.001)
Hybrid CBL Class
Community Partner: TBD

Medical Journalism will teach students how to research and write articles about health and medicine for news organizations and the public relations field. The course will also provide students with the knowledge of the differences between good science and bad and the pressures scientists, doctors, researchers, companies and universities are under to get media attention.

This 3.0 credit class, taught by Karen Cristiano, MA, is open to junior and senior communication majors and will meet Tuesdays, 12:30 – 1:50 p.m. Location: Pearlstein Business Center 206.

Law, Power, Authority (PSCI T280.001)
Side-by-Side CBL Course
Community Partner: Curran-Fromhold Correctional Facility

This class will ask students to explore how individuals and communities think about the relationships between law, power and authority. Students will reflect on life experiences, fiction and non-fiction sources to explore when law, power and authority are legitimate, and how we should act when they are not.

This class will be taught by Rose Corrigan, PhD, and is open to all students above freshman level. Class will meet on Thursdays from 1 – 3:50 p.m. at the Curran-Fromhold Correctional Facility. The course is part of Drexel’s Inside-Out program, which brings Drexel students to local correctional facilities to take classes alongside incarcerated individuals. Permission of instructor is required for registration. Students will need to register and complete additional paperwork prior to the start of the course. Please email Lauren Farmer ( for more information.


Systematic Biology (ENVS 312.001)

This is an introduction to systematic biology. The primary tasks of systematics are 1) the discovery, description and classification of biodiversity to construct a general reference system for life on Earth; 2) the reconstruction of the “tree of life”: the descent relationships among units of biodiversity at multiple hierarchic levels from genes to phyla; and 3) the application of reconstructions of decent relationships to the study of evolution. Phylogenetic systematics  related to units of biodiversity at the species level and above will be emphasized.

This 3.0 credit class, ta­ught by Gary Rosenberg, PhD, is open to environmental science, biology and engineering majors with prerequisite ENVS 202, BIO 126 or BIO 141. Lecture meets Wednesdays, 4 Р5:50 p.m., in PISB 105, with lab following from 6 Р7:50 p.m. in PISB 215.

Ornithology & Ornithology Lab (ENVS 352.001 & ENVS T380.062)

Birds are among the most ubiquitous, diverse and charismatic animals, and there is a great deal known about their biology through the contributions of both professional ornithologists and citizen scientists alike. This course will touch on a variety of topics including evolution, ecology, behavior, conservation and biological diversity of birds.

This is a 5.0 credit course with lab (lecture may be taken without lab) taught by Jason Weckstein, PhD. Open to environmental science and biology majors with prerequisite BIO 126 or ENVS 230. Lecture meets Tuesdays and Thursdays, 9:30 – 10:50 a.m., and lab meets Wednesdays, 9 a.m. – 12:50 p.m. Location: The Academy of Natural Sciences

Entomology & Entomology Lab (ENVS 393.001 & ENVS 394.064)

All life on Earth depends on insects, for more reasons than most people realize. This course will explore major topics in the field of entomology. Students will review the most significant aspects of insect biology, including pollination and other insect-plant interactions, insect mediated nutrient recycling, impacts of insects on medicine and agriculture, and more. During this course, students will learn about the major insect orders and families and how to identify these groups. Lastly, there will be a discussion of the ways in which the world can conserve our much-needed insect diversity.

This 5.0 credit class, taught by Daniel Duran, PhD, is open to all students with BIO 124 prerequisite. Lecture meets Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, 10 - 10:50 a.m., in PISB 109. Lab meets Mondays, 11 a.m. - 2:50 p.m., in PISB 204.

Plant-Animal Interactions (ENVS 315.001 / ENVS 515.001)

Have you wondered how a butterfly can identify the specific plant species that its caterpillar will feed upon? Are you concerned about the decline of pollinators? Plant-animal interactions present us with dazzling natural histories and amazing examples of adaptation and co-evolution. They are also key determinants of ecosystem functions. This course will be a survey of the diversity of plant-animal interactions, the multidisciplinary approaches used to understand their ecology and evolution, and their importance to ecosystem services that sustain human societies.

This is 3.0 credit course, taught by Tatyana Livshultz, PhD, is open to undergraduate students who have completed BIO 124, and graduate students majoring in environmental science or biology, or by permission of the professor. It will meet on Tuesdays and Thursdays, 6:30 – 7:50 p.m. Location: PISB 109.


How To Run a Student Newspaper (COM T380.001)

Student newspapers face special challenges including censorship, budget deficits and mismanagement. This course is designed for the staff of a student newspaper and specifically answers the question, “How to run a student newspaper and turn a profit without getting sued?” Other questions of interest include:

  • What is the nature of a student newspaper?
  • How are student newspapers managed?
  • Who are the various stakeholders in a student newspaper’s community?
  • What particular and unique kinds of management, editorial and financial concerns do student newspapers confront?

This 3.0 credit class, taught by Natalie Shaak, is open to all students and will meet Tuesdays and Thursdays, 12:30 – 1:50 pm. Location: Peck Problem Solving & Research Center 105.


The History of Drexel (HIST T180.001)

This course surveys the 125-year history of Drexel University. Topics will include A.J. Drexel and the founding of the Drexel Institute, the early days at Drexel, student life, history of engineering, business and other disciplines, the history of Powelton Village and Mantua, and the future of Drexel going into the 21st century. Guest speakers will discuss their contributions to the forthcoming volume “Building Drexel: A University and Its City.”

This 1.0 credit class, taught by Scott Knowles, PhD, is open to all students above freshman level. Class will meet Thursdays, 12 - 12:50 p.m. Location: Pearlstein Business Center 308.

American History (HIST T180.002)

This course is an introduction to the history and geography of America. Students will use historical images and texts to examine a few important events in American history in order to gain insight into the culture and politics of the modern United States and its place in the world.

This 4.0 credit class, taught by Jonson Miller, PhD, is open to all students above freshman level. This course is designed for students for whom English is a second language. Class will meet Tuesdays and Thursdays, 2 – 3:50 p.m. Location: Drexel One Plaza GL 33.

History of the U.S. Elections (HIST T280.001)

2016 promises to be a historic election — this courses places the 2016 race into historical context, looking at key Presidential election cycles going back to the early days of the nation. This team-taught course will expose students to historical analysis and writing, and will allow for in-depth comparison of current events to historical trends in Presidential elections.

This 4.0 credit class, taught by Scott Knowles, PhD, is open to all students above freshman level. Class will meet Tuesdays and Thursdays, 4 – 5:50 p.m. Location: Drexel One Plaza GL 13.


Rivers of Exploration (UNIV 241.002)

Exploring rivers has been an important part of human history and the way people use water. This co-taught course will weave together the history and science of river exploration in the United States and elsewhere. Students will examine how rivers were the primary means of exploring in pre-industrial times, focusing on the ways that scientific exploration played a major role in these journeys of discovery. By examining the transition from the era of discovery and exploration to present day scientific investigation of rivers, students will also study how the future of rivers and water resources is tied to an understanding of the dynamic changes taking place due to urbanization and climate change.

The course will take advantage of Philadelphia’s proximity to the Delaware and Schuylkill River system. Students will do research using extensive record of aquatic studies at the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel, as well as other archives and institutions in Philadelphia. Guest lectures will include contemporary river explorers, aquatic biologists, historians, and environmental ecologists.

This 3.0 credit class, taught by Lloyd Ackert, PhD, and Rick McCourt, PhD, will meet Wednesdays, 6 – 8:50 p.m. Location: PISB 106.


Islam & Judaism: Law & Religion (JUDA T280.001 / PSCI T280.002)

Islam and Judaism have emphasized traditions of law during the history of their religious development. Students will explore debates regarding the interpretation of scriptures and the philosophy of legal traditions. Through comparison, students will appreciate the dialogue between these religions and the place of Islamic and Jewish law in contemporary political discourse in the United States and around the world.

This X.0 credit class, taught by Marc Herman, will meet Mondays and Wednesdays, 10-11:50 a.m., location TBD.


Neuroethics (PHIL T380.001)

Day by day, advances in neuroscience are telling us more and more about the human brain. But science cannot answer moral and ethical questions. It can, however, impact them. This course will explore the meaning of topics like self-deception, personal identity, free will, and moral responsibility given what we currently know about the brain. We will also discuss questions about the current practice of neuroscience, especially as it is applied to medical (the use of SSRIs as “mood brighteners”) and military (the use of brain implants to enhance soldier performance) uses.

This 3.0 credit course, taught by Stacey Ake, PhD, is open to all undergraduate students above the freshman level. The class will meet Tuesdays and Thursdays, 3:30 – 4:50 p.m. Location: Alumni Engineering Labs 279.

Seminar in Ancient Philosophy (PHIL 421.001)

In this class, students will study and discuss some of the leading philosophers and philosophical schools of Western antiquity. This is a writing-intensive course.

This 3.0 credit course, taught by Jacques Catudal, PhD, is open to undergraduate students who have completed two 200-level (or higher) philosophy courses. Prerequisites may be waived for interested students. The class will meet Mondays and Wednesdays, 12:30 – 1:50 p.m. Location: MacAlister 5060.

Feminist Philosophies (PHIL 481.001 / SCTS 580.001 / WGST T480.001)

In this course, students will consider questions about what it means to be human, gendered or sexed, object or subject, male or female, knowing or known. Students will begin by looking at texts by major figures from the history of philosophy that pertain to “women” as a category, as well as some feminist readings of these texts. Moving from there, they will engage with more contemporary feminist philosophers and the topics that move them, including but not limited to the oppression of women, feminist epistemology, getting “the vote,” sexuality, body dimorphism, maternity, care and disability. Feminism is not one discipline of thought but many, and in this course students will seek to become competent in the plurality of voices that make up the choir.

This 3.0 credit course, taught by Patricia Grosse, PhD, is open to graduate students and undergraduates who have completed two 200-level (or higher) philosophy courses. Prerequisites may be waived for interested students. Course may be taken to fulfill the PHIL461 Contemporary Philosophy requirement for philosophy minors and majors. This is a writing-intensive course. The class will meet Tuesdays and Thursdays, 2 – 3:20 p.m. Location: MacAlister 4016.


Introduction to the Politics of Science, Technology and Medicine (PSCI T180.001)

This course introduces approaches to studying the politics of science, technology and medicine. These include critical analyses of science and technology policies, studies of health movements and organizations, and the uses of expert testimony in legal proceedings.

This 4.0 credit class will be co-taught by Chloe Silverman, PhD, and Ali Kenner, PhD, and is open to all students above freshman level. Class will meet Mondays and Wednesdays, 10 – 11:50 a.m. Location: Pearlstein Business Center 303.

Political Economy of Climate Change (PSCI T480.001 / ENVP 552.001)

Climate change is one of the most debated issues in recent decades. It is increasingly accepted that climate change is one of the major threats for the stability and development of human society. Without going into the depths of geoscience and historical climatology, this course analyzes the evidence of climate change, the causes of it, the politics of controversies about climate change, and the proposals to deal with it.

This 3.0 credit class, taught by Jose Tapia, PhD,is open to all students above freshman level. Class will meet Wednesdays, 6 - 8:50 pm. Location: MacAlister 4016.


Global Health Matters (SOC T280.001)

This course introduces students to a sociological understanding of international health, healing and medicine from individual experiences in local contexts to global practices. Students will also locate health and health care within particular cultural, social, historical and political circumstances. Topics include structural violence; global pharmaceuticals; the commodification of bodies, organ trafficking and organ transplantation; pregnancy and reproduction.

This 4.0 credit class, taught by Susan Bell, PhD, will meet Tuesdays and Thursdays, 4 - 5:50 p.m. Location: Peck Problem Solving & Research Center 107.

Biomedicine + Race, Gender and Sex (SOC T380.001)

This special topics seminar examines how race, gender and sex has — and continues to — matter in biomedicine. Students will take an intersectional perspective to explore how race, sex and gender have been central to the construction and treatment of disease in U.S. medicine. Throughout the course, particular attention will be given to the differential experiences of racial, gender and sexual minorities in the U.S. biomedical system. Topics to be addressed include: racial and gender disparities in disease and health care outcomes; how biomedical research, practice and policy makes identities and differences; disease and the politics of race, sex and gender; immigrants’ experiences in U.S. health care; and the molecularization of race in molecular genetics.

This 4.0 credit class, taught by Kevin M. Moseby, PhD, will meet Mondays and Wednesdays, 10 - 11:50 a.m. Location: Drexel One Plaza 007. This seminar is designed for students who have already taken SOC 101, Introduction to Sociology, and/or SOC 235, Sociology of Health & Illness.

Urban Sociology (SOC 240.001)

This course provides an overview of the contemporary process of urban change and of key problems and policy issues. Urban Sociology will concentrate on five concerns: the evolution of urban economics; life and culture in the city today; race, ethnicity, gender and class of urban populations; urban politics and social forces; and new directions in urban development.

This 4.0 credit class, taught by Claire Herbert, PhD, will meet Tuesdays and Thursdays, 10 - 11:50 a.m. Location: Peck Problem Solving & Research Center 214.


The Peer Reader in Context (WRIT 210.001 [WI])

This writing intensive course focuses on explorations of students’ own literacy practices while preparing them, if they choose, to tutor in the Drexel Writing Center (DWC). Each week, students will engage in autobiographical explorations and examine writing center theory and practice. Because having an understanding of who you are (and are becoming) as a reader and a writer is essential to your tutoring practice, The Peer Reader in Context is as much an exploration of your own reading and writing as it is an introduction to writing center work. Of course, during the term these lines will often overlap or blur. After successful completion of the course, students may apply to become a DWC Peer Reader.

This 3.0 credit course, taught by Scott Warnock, PhD, is open to undergraduate students who have completed English 101 and 102 with a minimum grade of C, and will meet Tuesday and Thursday, 11 a.m. – 12:20 p.m. Location: TBD.

Literary Editing and Publishing (WRIT 310.001)

This course will give students insight into what goes into editing and publishing, specifically a journal, magazine or anthology. Students will be given an overview of where we are today in the publishing world, including present day concerns, and will be taught the skills required to create and copyedit a publication. Much of the course will be a hands-on learning experience with a publishable document to show at the end of the term.

This 3.0 credit class, taught by Henry Israeli, is open to all students who have completed the First Year Writing Series. It will meet Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, 1 – 1:50 p.m. Location: Peck Problem Solving & Research Center 111.