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Washington State University

Courses in the Honors College

Please note: this list is incomplete and will be updated with new information as it is received. If you have questions about the following courses, please contact

A wide variety of course topics are available to Honors College students. Please check back often, as changes may occur until the semester begins. Need an appointment with an Honors College advisor? Stop by the Honors College main office in Elmina White Honors Hall 130 or phone 509-335-4505. NOTE: Advising will be offered by email or telephone ONLY to students currently studying abroad.

Course descriptions are intended to provide general information about the scope of the class, the name of the faculty member teaching it, credits, and texts. All descriptions are posted as soon as possible the semester preceding so students can consider their options and plan accordingly with their Honors College academic advisor. Listings from previous semesters are located at the bottom of this page.

Summer 2016

HONORS 370.1 – 3 units
M,TU,W,TH,F 9-10:15am | Honors 142 | May 9-June 17
Case Study: Global Issues in Social Science
Instructor: Karen Phoenix
Course Prerequisite: HONORS 270 or ECONS 198

History of Urbanization in Global Perspective
This class will explore history of the “city,” from below the ground to the tallest buildings and everything in-between. In case studies that focus on different cities around the world and at different times in history, we will explore topics such as: architecture; urban planning and regulation of growth; transportation networks; public health policy; infrastructure; racial and class segregation within cities; and urban memorials to past events.

Students will also select a city and engage in a research project about how some aspect of the city changed over time. For example, student might choose to research topics such as: What was the role of public spaces as sites of protest in Paris? How did the creation of skyscrapers and new architectural materials shape the daily life of the white collar worker in Chicago? How have people in Berlin memorialized World War II as they rebuilt the city after the war? In diving into these questions, you will build skills in researching the current literature on the topic, and you will also develop skills in finding and incorporating archival materials into your research. Your project will culminate in a paper and a presentation to your classmates.

A note about foreign languages: You are welcome to research a city where the majority of the sources are in a foreign language if you speak that language-there are sources (such as newspapers) available online for many countries. However, if you do not feel comfortable researching in a foreign language, you are also welcome to select a city within the US to examine, or to do research in historical English-language newspapers that are available in some cities.

Required texts:

HONORS 380.1 – 3 units
M,TU,W,TH,F 12-1 :15pm | Honors 142 | May 9-June 17
Case Study: Global Issues in the Arts and Humanities
Kim Burwick
Course Prerequisite: HONORS 280

Ghostly Companions from Post-War Europe: Image, Melancholy and Collective Memory in the Work of W.G. Sebald
In this course, we will focus acutely on the work of W.G. Sebald (specifically Austerlitz), as we investigate how this virtuoso of the literary world came to reestablish the novel as a medley of travelogue, biography, photo-journalism and art history. Technically classified as “witness literature,” Sebald humanizes and complicates the search for a post-war identity that is both collectively and individually true to the parameters of melancholy. In this class, we will study archetypal reactions to black and white photography, Holocaust narratives, and memory as an archeological construct.

Required texts:

HONORS 390.1 – 3 units
M,TU,W,TH,F 12-1 :15pm | Honors 142 | May 9-June 17
Case Study: Global Issues in Science
Instructor: Carla Meighan

Course Prerequisite: HONORS 290, SCIENCE 299, CHEM 116, MATH 182, PHYSICS 205, or PHYSICS 206

Move Think Focus
“Any man could, if he were so inclined, be the sculptor of his own brain”
– Santiago Ramon y Cajal, Advice for a young Investigator

Our nervous systems continue to change every moment throughout our lives. This change is brought about by movement of our bodies, active and passive thought, and attention to our inner and outer environments. In neuroscience, we refer to this process as nervous system plasticity. How does physical training in movement (i.e. playing instruments, dance, gymnastics, etc) change the nervous system?

Required texts:

Current and Previous Semesters

Information about courses from previous semesters is also available: Spring 2023, Fall 2022, Summer 2022, Spring 2022, Fall 2021, Summer 2021, Spring 2021, Fall and Summer 2020, Spring 2020,Fall 2019, Summer 2019, Spring 2019, Summer 2018, Fall 2018, Summer 2018, Spring 2018, Fall 2017, Spring 2017, Summer 2016, Fall 2016, Spring 2016.