Courses

Courses for the holistic student.

SNF Paideia designated courses, designed and taught by faculty from all of Penn’s twelve Schools, aim to examine the theory and practice of dialogue across differences and to apply a dialogue lens to issues of citizenship, community service, or individual and community wellness. Open to all Penn undergraduates, SNF Paideia designated courses are noted on student transcripts. In addition, the Program identifies and recommends other courses offered at Penn that focus on wellness, service, citizenship, and dialogue. Read more about Paideia designated and recommended courses below.

Penn students on the lawn

Fall 2022

English 0300

First Year Seminar: Medieval Worlds

Instructor(s)

  • Emily Steiner

Semester

Fall 2022

We pride ourselves on thinking globally and having at our fingertips information about people, places, and times. How did people before c.1500 imagine the whole world? What did it mean for them to think big?

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COMM 0026

Fellows Proseminar II

Instructor(s)

  • Lia Howard
  • Leah Seppanen Anderson

Semester

Fall 2022

In the SNF Paideia Fellows Proseminar II, Fellows engage in deeper exploration of the themes of dialogue, citizenship, wellness, and service, especially considering potential connections with their chosen major.

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COMM 0025

Fellows Proseminar I

Instructor(s)

  • Leah Seppanen Anderson
  • Lia Howard

Semester

Fall 2022

The SNF Paideia Fellows Proseminar I introduces sophomore Fellows to academic research and practice related to dialogue across difference. The course also explores the relationship between robust, civil dialogue and citizenship, wellness, and service. We engage diverse perspectives on the purpose of higher education, the role of dialogue in learning and communities, the nature of citizenship, the value of civility, and the relationship between individual and community wellness.

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EDUC 2551

Mindfulness and Human Development

Instructor(s)

  • Elizabeth Mackenzie

Semester

Fall 2022

This course will introduce the student to the many ways in which mindfulness is currently being implemented to support the health and success of students of all ages.  Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR), in particular, which utilizes secularized practices from Asian and South Asian traditions for the remediation of various health concerns, has revolutionized behavioral medicine, and the scientific evaluation of MBSR has shed new light on the bio-mechanical pathways linking mind and body.

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FNAR 3160 / ENGL 1250-401 / GSWS 0860-401 / FNAR 5064-401

Is This Really Happening? Performance and Contemporary Political Horizons

Instructor(s)

  • Sharon Hayes
  • Brooke O'Harra

Semester

Fall 2022

This class addresses the meeting points inside of and between a range of resistant performance practices with a focus on artists using performance to address political and social encounters in the contemporary moment.

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PSCI 3991-303

The Future of Conservatism and the GOP

Instructor(s)

  • Deirdre Martinez
  • Evan McMullin

Semester

Fall 2022

This course will explore both the roots and the evolution of conservative thought by engaging directly with prominent leaders on the right. Multiple group projects will allow students to think creatively and have lively discussions with faculty and each other.

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PSCI 3991 - 302

Democracy and Disagreement

Instructor(s)

  • Ian MacMullen

Semester

Fall 2022

When and how can we justify using the power of the government to force our fellow citizens to follow rules with which they disagree?

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PSYC 3400

Seminar in Positive Psychology: Positive Education

Instructor(s)

  • Caroline Connolly

Semester

Fall 2022

This seminar will synthesize research about preserving and promoting well-being amongst students, while they simultaneously pursue traditional educational outcomes. Positive Psychology is an upper-level seminar.

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URBS 3140 / SOCI 2960

Participatory Cities

Instructor(s)

  • Marisa Denker

Semester

Fall 2022

What is a participatory city? What has that term meant in the past, what does it mean now, and what will it mean going forward? Against the backdrop of increasing inequality and inequity, and the rise in a search for solutions, what role can citizens play in co-creating more just cities and neighborhoods? How can citizens be engaged in the decision making processes about the places where we live, work, and play? And most importantly, how can we work to make sure that all kinds of voices are meaningfully included, and that historically muted voices are elevated to help pave a better path forward?

Designated as an Academically Based Community Service (ABCS) course.

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COMM 2991-302

Good Talk: The Purpose, Practice, and Representation of Dialogue across Difference

Instructor(s)

  • Sarah Ropp

Semester

Fall 2022

This course is an exploration of dialogue across difference through three lenses: theoretical, practical, and representational. Rather than prescribe a particular model of what dialogue should look like and accomplish, the course exposes students to a diverse range of ideas and narratives related to dialogue. By the end of the course, you’ll have begun to develop and practice your own working theory and model of dialogue that is relevant to your values and goals and meaningful to the kinds of work you are most invested in doing.

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COMM 3280-301

Drawing the Blue Line: Police and Power in American Popular Culture

Instructor(s)

  • Murali Balaji

Semester

Fall 2022

The police are one of the most heavily imagined institutions in American popular culture. From Cagney and Lacey to Colors, Law & Order, The Wire and The Watchmen, evolving depictions of law enforcement help us to understand larger socio-cultural shifts that have occurred from the post-1968 riots to the dawn of the Black Lives Matter movement in the mid-2010s and police abolition in the early 2020s.

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COMM 4460 - 301

Media Industries and Nationalism

Instructor(s)

  • Murali Balaji

Semester

Fall 2022

Media institutions have long played a central role in constructing national identity, particularly in the era of nation-states. As globalization increases, media industries have also helped countries project their national identities – and nationalism – for both domestic and international audiences. With contemporary nationalist movements in the spotlight, this course examines how media institutions and cultural industries help to shape nationalism while framing in-group/out-group dynamics for audiences.

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ENGL 2145

Failure to Communicate

Instructor(s)

  • Carlin Romano

Semester

Fall 2022

The phrase “failure to communicate” became iconic in American English from the 1967 film “Cool Hand Luke,” in which Paul Newman played a convict who refuses to listen or follow orders. The film raised questions about the multiple ways we understand “failure to communicate” and its consequences. Is it sometimes a decision to resist a presumption, a premise, an interpretation, an argument, a directive from authority? Is it at other times simply a mechanical failure?

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EDUC 2500

Nature RX

Instructor(s)

  • Elizabeth Mackenzie

Semester

Fall 2022

This course is designed to introduce students to an emerging field, one that explores the connections between nature and human health. A growing body of literature suggests that exposure to natural settings supports human health in a variety of ways. The healing powers of nature appear to be demonstrable scientifically, with research studies spanning various aspects of social, mental, and physical health. The course also invites students to consider the ways in which humans can contribute to the healing of ecosystems. Contemplative practices (e.g., meditation, journaling) will be woven throughout. The course will be linked to the Nature Rx@Penn Program, with opportunities for active and experiential learning.

 

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SNF Paideia designated courses will be noted on a student’s transcript.

Preceptorial

Racism and
Anti-Racism in Contemporary America

A unique series of interdisciplinary conversations among leading scholars and practitioners drawn from a wide range of fields. Each conversation focuses on the ways in which institutional racism is deeply embedded in different parts of our economic, political, social, and cultural systems.

Racism and Anti-Racism in Contemporary America
Protestor holding up Black Lives Matter poster

Register for classes.

Find the SNF Paideia Program designated courses on PennInTouch by choosing “Designated SNF Paideia Program Course” under the Program menu.

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