Thursday, May 15, 2014

A Favorite Class This Year...


Cyber Politics, co-taught by Political Science's Adrienne Christiansen and Computer Science's Shilad Sen, would have to be my favorite class I took this spring.  It was my first co-taught course which made for a very exciting semester with engaging and varied readings, interesting papers and group projects, in addition to having two sources of expertise to learn from inside and outside the classroom.  I enjoyed Cyber Politics so much that this fall I'm hoping to take the Computer Science introductory course-- something I never thought I'd do!

- Morgan Hearne

Transitional Justice with Nadya Nedelsky (INTL 352-01) was my favorite class this year. Professor Nedelsky ran the class so we always did lots of small, engaging, scenario-based activities, and built up our understanding of the topic in a beautifully structured way. Beyond that, learning about how nations address, or fail to address, human rights abuses is fascinating, and our final paper at the end had so much flexibility, allowing us to study anything.

- William Theriac

I loved when my classes would get me out into the Twin Cities.  In Urban Social Geography, we explored New Urbanist neighborhoods and had the chance to volunteer for a nonprofit of our choice in the area.  In Theater and Performance in the Twin Cities, we went to see plays at local theaters on the weekends and reflect on the shows in class.  And in Intro to International Studies: Literature and Global Studies, I did a project studying globalization at the Cub Foods grocery store!  All of these assignments were great opportunities to get to know the area, and to connect my surroundings and routines with the bigger concepts I was learning in class.

- Elena Lindstrom

Humanitarianism in World Politics: As a biology major and a premed student, I sometimes get caught up in my love of science. This class allowed me the opportunity to delve deeply into political science and internationalism. I was challenged to think about things in a very different way and was able to use some of my love of debate and conversation that sometimes I miss in my science classes. I was able to apply so much of the content into many of the public health and medical care discussions I think about routinely. Opportunities like these make me realize how lucky I am to go to a liberal arts school and especially Macalester that allow and encourage me to take courses outside of my discipline and comfort zone.

- Lucy Westerfield

One of my favorite classes was Elementary Particle Physics.  It was utter confusion as eight physics students tried to keep up with some extremely confusing math.  We sweated and struggled through long complicated equations for homework, only to get them wrong. Despite that, we learned a ton about elementary particle systems in general, and neutrinos/particle accelerators on Fridays.  After this, I don't think quantum physics'll be too hard.

- Ian Gallmeister

My favorite class, also my first-year course, was POLI 120 - International Politics. The class centered around theoretical perspectives in international relations. It introduced me to a diverse set of theories, perspectives, and narratives and greater developed my critical reasoning skills. The best aspect of the class was its discussion-based format; the professor would begin the discussion with a question and the class would then continue to pilot itself, allowing us students to take a firm grasp of what and how they learned.

- Noah Nieting