Thursday, 24 April 2014

Totally Random (But Great!) Classes to Consider for Fall 2014

With Winter 2014 classes wrapping up, many returning students will be drafting potential schedules for the fall. If you’re like me, you’ll likely change your mind and make last minutes substitutions. But to help you make an informed decision, here’s a brief sample of the intriguing classes being offered in September. (Keep in mind that I'm in Arts... so these are a few of the classes that I'm currently eyeing.)

ENGL 380: Canadian Literature and Culture: Reading the Local

Image courtesy of

Prerequisites: Two 3-credit junior English courses

Edmonton’s pretty cool. And if you’ve been around for the last year, you’ll know that the rest of the city thinks so too (see #makesomethingyeg). But if you still need some convincing, this third-year English class will examine the representation of Edmonton as a complex geopolitical urban centre within literary works written by #yeg authors themselves, including Todd Babiak’s The Garneau Block

MLCS 475: X-Rated: Sex on Screen

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Prerequisites: None 

This isn’t high school anymore; you can totally talk about sex in the classroom. This course attempts to critically analyze the portrayal of sex acts on the big screen, in television, and through video along with its associated censorship and its relation to political ideology, education, pornography, and issues of race, gender, and class. You’ll likely engage in heated debates over this contentious topic, but it definitely seems like a one-of-a-kind academic experience.

C LIT 358: Great Themes of Literature and Art: Apocalypse Forever

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Prerequisites: None

Zombies have come to dominate popular culture. And along with their pervasive representation, discourses on the apocalypse and post-apocalyptic societies have entered the foreground of fan and academic cultures alike. This course will examine this phenomenon within the literary realm since the end of the Second World War. Students will examine iconic works along with themes regarding climate change and epidemics to identify the underlying concerns associated with apocalyptic writing.

PSYCO 305: Special Topics in Psychology I: Psychology of Meditation

Prerequisites: PSYCO 104 or SCI 100, and PSYCO 105

Meditation has vibrant historical origins and it continues to be a salient aspect of  contemporary yoga culture, religion, and the ‘80’s throwback movement to do as Frankie says and just “relax.” This class promises to complicate meditation in order to understand its psychological implications, how it works, and its potential benefits, among other topics. According to the course description, students are also required to engage with the mediation experience and provide personal reflections. If you’re into experimental courses and teaching methods, this course should be on your fall schedule.

FS 309: Quebec Film

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Prerequisite: FS 100

How often do you get the chance to watch films made in Quebec? Show some Alberta love to eastern Canada and learn about Quebec history and film aesthetics/developments since the 1930s. Who knows, you might also learn some French along the way.

HIST 121: Topics in Global History: Drugs in Modern History

Image courtesy of Black Poppy Mag

Prerequisites: None

A course devoted to the socio-cultural history of criminalized drugs such as marijuana and cocaine? Why not? Drugs carry significant weight in modern politics and continue to have a recurring role in the media; this course will contextualize this trend by examining the attempts to fight drug production and consumption, drug wars, and race, class, and gender within drug cultures during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.

This is only a small sample, so comment below and let us know which cool classes you’re taking in the fall semester!


About the Author

Hey! My name’s Billy – a second year arts student still scavenging through the course catalog for that perfect major. I’ve recently developed a passion for journalism, professional writing and communications and hope to grow along with the team at YouAlberta. If I’m not engrossed in the latest episode of Big Brother you’ll probably find me being too emotionally invested in The Amazing Race or laughing at inappropriate jokes on the Internet.

When not feeding my reality TV addiction or scurrying to finish my latest assigned reading, I’ll be searching our campus for the most intriguing stories about diversity, academic success and the quirks that make our university the gem that it is. As a student communicator I hope to foster a stronger sense of community and belonging by sharing sentimental and inclusive stories to tap into the shared sense of pride we all uphold – I hope you join me!


1 comment

  1. This is a great feature! I hope you'll continue it in future semesters.


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