May Term Course Offerings

BIOLOGY 108 (3) Goodman

ENVIRONMENTAL BIOLOGY. A consideration, based on basic biological concepts, of the processes leading to the degradation of our environment. The course includes discussions of such topics as environmental pollution by pesticides, industrial by-products, and radioactive materials; the historical background and future prospects of the population explosion; and the need for preservation of our natural resources. Prerequisite: none.


BIOLOGY 140 (3) Hargadon
BIOLOGY OF CANCER. An exploration of fundamental biological concepts underlying normal cellular and developmental processes and those that are disrupted in cancer. Topics include cell structure and function, regulation of growth, the genetic and environmental causes of cancer, cancer treatments, and the role of clinical trials. Case histories and specific cancers will be used to explore the personal and social dimensions of a cancer diagnosis. This course is intended for non-majors wishing to fulfill a science requirement and may not be counted toward the Biology major. Prerequisite: none.


CHEMISTRY 185 (3) Deifel

ENVIRONMENTAL CHEMISTRY (fulfills non-lab core science requirement).   This course is a survey of the basic concepts of chemistry as applied to current environmental issues. In the first part of the term, we will explore current issues of water, soil and air pollution. Students will develop an understanding of the reactions controlling natural chemical species in our environment and will investigate the fates of chemical species in the soil, water and air. The effect of human activity on the increased presence of pollutants in the environment will be studied in addition to how scientists are cleaning up currently polluted sites, such as through bioremediation. Later in the term, we will discuss topics concerning energy and climate change. Students will learn the basic chemical principles behind production and consumption of energy, as well as some specific chemical processes that cause pollution and are used for conservation efforts. Throughout the course, students will be expected to evaluate data and asked to make informed assessments about the issues discussed. This course is designed for non-majors. Prerequisite: none.


ECONOMICS 217 (3) Isaacs

ECONOMICS OF SPORTS. Economic analysis of individual, team, and league sports. This course focuses not only on the market structure and industrial organization of sports leagues, but also addresses the public finance issues of municipal stadium construction and the labor issues involved with free agency and salary caps. Prerequisite: Economics 101.



GVFA 101 (3) Barrus
INTRODUCTION TO AMERICAN GOVERNMENT.  A review of the theory, institutions, and practices of the national government in the United States. The constitutional basis of the federal system, the protection of civil liberties and citizenship, and the role of the people in politics are studied with frequent references to leading Supreme Court decisions and other primary sources. Prerequisite: none.


GVFA 201 (3) Barrus
AMERICAN POLITICAL THOUGHT. A survey of the ideas that have shaped American political life from the 18th century to the present. Emphasis is placed on close reading and critical interpretation of the writings of such thinkers as Jefferson, Madison, Hamilton, Lincoln, and F. D. Roosevelt, as well as contemporary writers. Prerequisite: none.


HISTORY 240 (3) Pearson

FIELD METHODS AND PRACTICE IN HISTORICAL ARCHAEOLOGY.  This course offers a hands-on introduction to basic excavation, recording, and laboratory techniques employed on historical period archaeological sites throughout the United States. The various topics covered include survey and excavation strategies, as well as the interpretation of ceramics, faunal remains, plant phytoliths and pollen deposits, and interpreting the spatial distribution of artifacts across sites and larger landscapes.  This May Term the specific location is SLATE HILL PLANTATION, THE BIRTHPLACE OF HAMPDEN-SYDNEY COLLEGE.  Prerequisite: none.


HISTORY 317 (3): Emmons

THE AMERICAN SOUTH. A study of the unique features of the Southern past which have distinguished the region from the rest of the nation. Emphasis is given to economic development, the role of race, the role of myth in the making of history, and political leadership. Prerequisite: none.


HISTORY 412 (3): Emmons

TOPICS IN RECENT AMERICAN HISTORY: “From Beats to Tweets: Popular Culture in Modern American History” This course will examine American popular culture in the post WW2 era, focusing on the links between major historical events and their impact on popular culture. Examples include: the relationship between Cold War anxiety and science fiction; the Beats’ critique of 1950s conformity; the rise of the counterculture as political protest and engine of cultural production; the “Me Decade” and ‘malaise’ of the 1970s; and the effects of the ‘culture wars’ of the late 20th century. We will also consider the rise of personal technology and the ways this has affected pop culture. The course will use a variety of readings, films, music and other media to explore the links between popular culture and American history during this era. The course is open to all with no prerequisites.


INTERDISCIPLARY STUDIES 285 (3) Deal                Students must also register for RHET. 310

Special Topics in Regional Studies in the United States: The History, Culture, and Natural Environs of the Low Country and the Sea Islands (fulfills American Studies Core requirement).  This course examines the authenticity of a particular geographic region: a place defined by both its people (and their cultural traditions) and its natural environs. During the course, students will engage in both classroom and experiential learning to enable them to discover the region’s “particularities of place” – its history, physical environment, language, cultural expressions, religious traditions, and economies in order to develop a sense of the unique attributes and contributions of the region. In so doing, students will think critically across a number of disciplines, including literature, cultural studies, environmental science, communication, anthropology, economics, history, fine arts, politics, and sociology.


A critical course component is the opportunity for students to travel and study throughout the region of focus. Much in the same way that students go abroad to experience firsthand the culture of a specific country, this immersion experience allows students, through a variety of field trips and outdoor adventure activities, the opportunity to see for themselves the region’s unique historic and cultural sites, museums, and natural environs. Too, meetings with local working residents, scholars (historians, economists, sociologists, biologists, etc.), artists (writers, storytellers, musicians, and artisans), National Park Service staff, and naturalists will enrich students’ experiences and understanding of the region.


In May Term, 2014, we will use as our exemplar the coastal regions of South Carolina, Georgia and extreme northeast Florida, known to many as the “Low Country and the Sea Islands.”  It is a region rich in history and culture, having been home to Native American people, European colonists, Spanish “invaders,” white plantation owners and African slaves (who established the Gullah-Geechee culture) wealthy millionaires, and, most recently, Hispanic, white, and African-American citizens.  Today, remnants of each group’s language, beliefs, culture, and traditions survive and contribute to the rich and varied culture of the South Carolina, Georgia, and northeast Florida coastal communities.


Requirements: **To enroll  in this course students must participate in the off-campus experience program in Georgia and South Carolina.  Contact Dr. Deal ( for information**


MATHEMATICS 121 (4) Lins

STATISTICS. Introduction to probability and statistics. Exploratory data analysis. Discrete and continuous random variables, estimation, hypothesis testing. Prerequisite: none.


MUSIC 218 (3) F. Archer

JAZZ HISTORY. This lecture course is an examination of jazz as both a musical and a sociological phenomenon. The course focuses on the musical developments that resulted in the creation of jazz, the major jazz styles from New Orleans origins to the present day, the musicians who perform jazz, and the influence the art of jazz has had on other areas of music. Attendance at a local jazz concert is required. Prerequisite: none.


PSYCHOLOGY 202 (3) Mossler

COGNITIVE PSYCHOLOGY. This course focuses on the study of human memory and mental processes. The information-processing approach is presented and described in some detail. A variety of mental activities are covered, including attention, perception, remembering, using language, reasoning, and problem-solving. Special attention is paid to the application of current research in cognitive psychology to real-life situations.  Prerequisite: Psychology 101 or 102.

PSYCHOLOGY 209 (3) Mossler
.  This course is designed to introduce students to adolescence, an important stage of human growth and development. Students begin by reviewing the major theories of adolescence, then cover some of the physical, cognitive, social, and emotional changes that occur during this stage of development.  Current research on problematic behaviors such as drug use, sexual behavior, risk taking, juvenile delinquency, and psychopathology help students explore the roles that neurological development, parents, and cultural forces play in the development of these behaviors. Finally, students develop ideas about how we might reduce or eliminate the occurrence of some of these problematic behaviors. Videotapes, web resources, and additional short readings are used to supplement the primary text in this course.  Prerequisite: Psychology 102, or permission of the instructor. 


RELIGION 103 (3) Carney
INTRODUCTION TO WORLD RELIGIONS. An introduction to the origins, development, and current meaning of several spiritual traditions. The course is designed to show the diversity of religious traditions, as well as to indicate the common questions that the various traditions address. The course begins with a consideration of the relation between religion and the human condition as we experience it. In the light of this introduction, several traditions chosen from the Jewish, Christian, Hindu, Buddhist, Confucian, Taoist, Muslim, and Native American are examined. Prerequisite: none.


RELIGION 204 (3) Carney
ISLAM. A study of the major elements of religious life and practice in the Islamic tradition: Allah, Qur'an, Prophet, worship, law, theology, mysticism. Special attention is paid to the influence of Islam on the development of European culture, the relation of Islam to the Jewish and Christian traditions, and the contemporary resurgence of Islam. Prerequisite: none.


RHETORIC 310 (3) Deal              Students must also register for INDS 285

ADVANCED PUBLIC SPEAKING. This course, which builds on the foundations students acquire in Rhetoric 210, develops advanced students' ability to create and support sound propositions of fact, value, and policy. Through a review of the five classical canons of oratory (invention, arrangement, style, memory, and delivery) and an examination of representative classical and contemporary speeches, students learn to support and refute claims; to analyze the rhetorical situation and tailor their message accordingly; to employ and evaluate scholarly evidence; to recognize and avoid fallacies in reasoning; to use appropriate, effective, coherent language; and to deliver arguments with conviction and eloquence. The presentation of an argument in a public forum is an integral component of the course. Prerequisite: Rhetoric 210.


Requirements: **To enroll  in this course students must participate in the off-campus experience program in Georgia and South Carolina.  Contact Dr. Deal ( for information**


SPANISH 201-202 (3/3) DeJong and Palmer
A continuation of the 101-102 sequence. Continued development of the four basic skills: speaking, listening comprehension, reading, and writing. Emphasis on the use of Spanish in the classroom. Prerequisite: Spanish 102, 103, or placement by the department. INTERMEDIATE SPANISH II. Emphasis on the productive skills of speaking and writing with a general grammar review. Continued practice in reading of authentic Hispanic texts, both popular and literary. Several oral presentations are required. (Please note that there are residence requirements and additional fees for this course).


SPANISH 202 (3) Amaral-Rodriguez
Emphasis on the productive skills of speaking and writing with a general grammar review. Continued practice in reading of authentic Hispanic texts, both popular and literary. Several oral presentations are required. Prerequisite: Spanish 201.


WESTERN CULTURE 102 (3) F. Archer

900-1800 C.E. Common topics and events are the Middle Ages, the rise of the nation-state, the Renaissance and the Age of Discovery, the Protestant Reformation, the Scientific Revolution, and the Enlightenment and the French Revolution. Common texts are Dante, Inferno (selections); Machiavelli, The Prince (selections); Shakespeare, The Merchant of Venice; Adam Smith, The Wealth of Nations (selections); Madison, Federalist 10; The Declaration of Independence.