Interdisciplinary Studies (IDS) and Nondepartmental (NDL)
Academic Catalog: 2014–2015
Interdisciplinary study at Gustavus is designed to nurture a holistic approach to the study of topics of concern to more than one of our traditional academic disciplines. This may involve interdisciplinary programs and/or interdisciplinary courses. The Gustavus Adolphus College mission statement speaks to a curriculum designed with an interdisciplinary perspective, and which balances tradition with pedagogical innovation. Interdisciplinary courses draw linkages beyond their disciplines, and often involve experiential learning, international study, service-learning, and undergraduate research.
Interdisciplinary majors and/or minors are offered in Environmental Studies; Japanese Studies; Latin American, Latino, and Caribbean Studies; Peace Studies; Russian and Eastern European Studies; and Gender, Women, and Sexuality Studies. Please refer to the separate listing for each in this bulletin.
144, 244, 344 Special Topics (1 course, 1 course 1 course) These courses, offered occasionally by guest faculty, provide an opportunity to investigate, in depth, a selected interdisciplinary topic that is not the primary subject of any of the regular catalog courses.
NDL-201 Reading Workshop (.25 course) In this course students will read and discuss two or more books, including a contemporary work of fiction or non-fiction announced in advance and a book chosen by the student. Students will publish reviews of the books they read to a book-related social network, will reflect on their own reading histories and practices, and will explore the place of books and literacy in contemporary culture.
NDL-243 Forensics (0 to 1 course) Forensics involves preparation for and participation in intercollegiate forensics tournaments. Students participate in public speaking, interpretation of literature, and/or limited preparation events. Participation requires a serious commitment of research, analysis, composition, and performance. Fall and Spring semesters.
260 Myth and Reality in African Cinema (1 course) This course examines how Africa is represented through cinema. Though the theme may vary from one year to another, generally it discusses issues such as nation building, gender relations, social and political conflict, and acculturation, among others. Students discuss, take exams, write essays, and do oral presentations. This course counts toward the African Studies minor. Spring semester, odd years.
NDL-301 Information Fluency (.5 course) This course will give students interested in going to graduate or professional school—or who simply want to know more about research—an immersion in the structure of the literature of their chosen field and exposure to research tools and collections. Students will develop an extensive literature of their chosen field. They also will keep a research log and develop and extensive literature review for a research question of their choice. Shorter projects will require students to analyze aspects of their discipline’s traditions, to compare them to traditions in other fields, and to explore the social and ethical dimensions of research. Spring semester.
399 Pre-Law Junior/Senior Seminar (.125 course) This seminar reviews critical thinking concepts and reading strategies involved in legal reasoning. Students will apply these abilities to the question types posed in the Law School Admissions Test. The course meets weekly for two hours for the first half of each semester.
Students receive four course credits plus an Interim Experience (IEX) credit.
220 Sweden Today Seminar: Tradition and Change. (1 course) This integrative course in the Semester in Sweden program assists students in shaping connections among and reflecting on the courses and on-site experiences offered in this semester program. Course content explores significant issues and events in contemporary Sweden through course materials, program activities, and personal encounters. A substantial amount of group discussion, writing, and public presentations are required, culminating in a final integrative project designed by the student with approval by the faculty leader. This course counts towards the Scandinavian Studies major. IEX, January Interim, odd years.
221 The Sami: The Indigenous People of the North (1 course) This course will enable students to learn about the Sami, the indigenous people living today mainly in the northern parts of Norway, Sweden, Finland, and on the Kola Peninsula In Russia. Students will line in Swedish Samiland for a major part of the course and, through texts ad experiential activities, will explore the historical, cultural, economic, political, and religious contexts of Sami life with guidance from on-site instructors. Attendance in early February at the Jokkmokk Winter Conference on climate change, energy, and sustainable development and at the traditional Sami Winter Market (an event that has been held annually since the early 1600s) will be significant experiences of the course. This course counts towards the Scandinavian Studies major. GLOBL, Spring semester, odd years.
222 Nordic Politics (1 course) This course for the Semester in Sweden program is an introduction to the history, culture, and politics of Sweden and the Nordic countries. Course topics include historical and economic developments, ethnic relations and national unity, the place of religion in the Swedish state, and contemporary political issues in Sweden and the Nordic region. Students will be introduced to and utilize ethnography as a social science research methodology to gather data on one aspect of the Semester in Sweden program themes. SOSCI may be met through successful completion of this course and IDS 224, Cultural Diversity in Sweden. This course counts towards the Scandinavian Studies major. Spring semester, odd years.
223 Sweden: Climate, Energy, and Environment (1 course) This course examines the current and past physical environment of Sweden and explores Swedish responses towards environmental change. A focus on recent climate change and Sweden’s response to this complex and politically contentious topic will be coupled with learning to use and examine data in assessing physical, political, and social changes that have occurred in Sweden as the climate has changed. Students will learn about the geologic forces that shaped the Swedish landscape, apply geologic principles to understand past events that have shaped the physical environment of Sweden, and learn to read the earth for evidence of previous periods of climate and other physical changes. Students will evaluate the role of natural and human activities on earth’s climate, compare Swedish and U.S. responses to address climate change, and critically examine current practices and policies in both countries. NASP, Spring semester, odd years.
224 Cultural Diversity in Sweden (1 course) In this course, students will examine the ethnic, linguistic, and cultural diversity that exists in 21st century Sweden. Over the past 50 years, Sweden has been transformed by an influx of refugees and other Immigrants attracted by the positive notions of Swedish egalitarian values and aided by Swedish immigration laws. Students will examine global migration patterns, learn about different minority cultures within Sweden, and consider questions of national identity, racism, and discrimination. Through readings, discussion, and conversations with “traditional” and “new” Swedes, students will critically engage with concepts of nationalism and social inequality. Students will be introduced to and utilize ethnography as a social science research methodology to gather data on one aspect of the Semester in Sweden program themes. Spring semester, odd years.
243 Environment, Ecology, and Livelihood (1 course) This course for the Semester in India program will expose students to typically Indian ecosystems and the strategies Indian ecologists have adopted to preserve these systems. While in India for the semester, students will identify major environmental issues through a combination of lectures, research, and field visits, and they will analyze structural conditions and international philosophies which lead to the reasons behind the issues. Students will meet with leaders, both academic and in the field, to learn first-hand about the realities of environmental problems and efforts to remedy them, such as reforestation, watershed management, herbal medicine study and preservation, and the phenomenon of the Sacred Grove. Fall semester.
245 Religion, Culture and Society in India (1 course) Students who participate in the Semester in India program will study Hinduism, Buddhism, and Islam primarily, although other significant religions in India will be presented as well. In order to understand the issues of community development which form the heart of this study abroad program, students will become familiar with the religious beliefs, symbols, and festivals as well as visit important religious centers, such as Hyderabad, Sarnath, and Varanasi. Students will also work closely throughout the program with some of the nine million Christians in India and will be expected to be able to articulate clearly how the religions and cultures of India impact the issues of development at the community level. GLOBL, Fall semester.
246 Globalization and the Ethics of Development (1 course) This course investigates issues associated with globalization, as well as the themes, models, and practices of ethical development. Specifically, students will study the national and international politics of development in the context of macroeconomic questions associated with markets and globalization. There will also be a discussion of culture in development. The course will investigate the impact of globalization on organized and unorganized labor sectors, including emerging trends and challenges facing women in the labor market, Dalits, Adivasis, fishworkers, agricultural laborers, handloom weavers, child laborers, etc. The course concludes with an investigation of the politics of health issues and the issues, challenges, and alternatives to globalization. SOSCI, Fall semester.
247 Identity, Resistance, and Liberation (1 course) This course investigates issues associated with cultural, national, and ethnic identity as related to social movements and campaigns. Students will study the literature of resistance and liberation, which typically include an investigation of questions related to oppression, change agents, and the methods of resistance. Core questions in the area of identity, resistance, and liberation typically deal with issues of violence and nonviolence, the social actor in both public and private spheres, the ëself’ as both a personal and social concept. Literature will express viewpoints from a number of perspectives, including modern, post-modern, feminist, Marxist, and liberal perspectives. Fall semester.
250 Bahasa Malaysia I (1 course) This course is specially designed to be a simple introduction to the learning of Bahasa Malaysia by foreign students. Course meets for four contact hours each week for fourteen weeks and covers the four language skills – listening, speaking, reading, and writing. The first two skills are integrated in the oral language component. At the end of the course, students should be able to speak, read, and write simple Bahasa Malaysia in daily situations. Spring semester.
251 The Malaysian Experience: Living Diversity (1 course) This course is an introduction to the history and culture of Malaysia. Course topics include historical and economic developments; the independence process; ethnic relations and national unity; the role of religion in Malaysia politics and culture; major trends in contemporary Malaysia; and Malaysia in the modern world system. Students will be introduced to and utilize ethnography as a social science research methodology to gather data on a research topic of their choice. SOSCI, Spring semester.
252 Religious Experiences of Malaysia (1 course) This course will introduce students to the diverse religious views of Malaysia. Course topics include forms of belief, religious ideas, practices, scriptures, rites and rituals, death and the afterlife, and theologies and doctrines. Students will be exposed to the religions of Malaysia in both their functional and theoretical aspect. The historical development of particular religious communities, the relations among them, and the analysis of religion in the Malaysian historical and cultural context will also be discussed. Course will include site visits to temples, mosques, and churches, as well as meetings with clergy and practitioners of various religious communities. GLOBL, Spring semester.
253 Tropical Ecology (1 course) This course provides students with hands-on experience in the Malaysian Peninsula tropical environment, particularly in biological diversity, ecology and conservation. Through lectures and field work, students will gain an understanding of the various concepts of ecology, function and interaction between the abiotic and abiotic components of an ecosystem. This will provide a broad understanding about ecological diversity together with structure and function of various tropical ecosystems in Malaysia, including tropical rain forests, mangrove swamps, coral reefs, wetlands, and agroecosystems. NASP, Spring semester.
This program is open only to Economics and Management majors.
360 Social Entrepreneurship in Context (1 course) This course introduces students to the concepts, principles, and practice of Social Entrepreneurship. In this rapidly growing field, entrepreneurs, investors, educational institutions, philanthropists, foundations, philanthropic advisors, and consulting firms aim to achieve meaningful social returns as well as sustainable or competitive financial returns through their products, services, and other business practices. Emphasis on the concepts of adaptive leadership provides a framework in which to understand global entrepreneurial solutions in education, climate change, healthcare, the environment, poverty alleviation, workforce development, International development, and other large societal issues being addressed through both for-profit and non-profit ventures. Fall semester.
361 Business and Culture in India (1 course) This course introduces students to the culture, society, and commerce of India. Students will examine economic development in India, work closely with individuals In NGOs and multinational corporations within India, and consider the social transformation occurring in this economically and culturally diverse country. Course content focuses on Indian cultural values, attitudes, and beliefs and is designed so that students experience and reflect on the complexity and ambiguity in cross cultural relationships while building cultural competency skills for workiIn a global, multicultural environment. Fall semester.
368 Internship in India (2 courses) Students complete two distinct Internships, one with a social entrepreneur/NGO or social investment bank, and the other with a transnational firm. Fall semester