Discovery Seminars - Fall 2017

Small, engaging one-credit classes for first-year students in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences at Arizona State University. 

Are you ready to start your journey?

College is a time for exploration, self-discovery and personal reflection. Start your Sun Devil journey with a Discovery Seminar - a small, engaging one-credit course designed exclusively for first-year students. These courses offer an array of benefits for students, including:

Explore the seminars

What are the Big Ideas of Life and Politics? An Introduction to the new School of Civic and Economic Thought and Leadership
Susan Kells, Academic-Success / Communication Coordinator- School of Civic and Economic Thought and Leadership

Liberty, democracy, citizenship, constitution, market economy, equality, justice, statesmanship— those are just some of the big ideas we will explore with readings, discussions, and mini-seminars lead by faculty guest speakers. For students who are passionate about politics and economics, and interested in leadership in all walks of life.

Session C
T 3:00-3:50 PM, PVW 163
SLN: 86539

Social Embeddedness 101: Making Your Mark on the Community
Jennifer Hightower, Vice President of Student Services-

Two hallmarks of the New American University include ASU’s commitment to “social embeddedness” and ability to foster change in the larger community. Driving social transformation is connected to the knowledge of and relationships we have with the communities we serve. In this seminar, we’ll explore the concepts of civic leadership, community service and social entrepreneurship through a series of discussions, field trips and service projects. You’ll have a chance to explore some of the communities surrounding our campus, learn about high impact projects and initiatives at ASU that are changing the world, and advance your leadership skills and experiences by developing a creative solution to serve a local community in need.

Session C
T 4:30-5:20 PM, DISCVRY 120
SLN: 86510

Unlock Your Potential: Discover and Develop Your Strengths
Grace Fama, Assistant Director of First-year Programs- College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

Want to be successful in college and beyond? The key to your success already exists within you – you just need to unlock and identify your natural talents! Using the StrengthsFinder assessment, we’ll discover your top strengths and how you can use them to achieve academic, career and personal excellence.

Session C
W 4:10-5:00 PM, PVW 159
SLN: 86533

Sociology of Summer Camp
Paul LePore, Associate Dean for Student and Academic Programs- College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

Each year, more than 11,000,000 kids (and adults) attend one of the 12,000 summer camps operating in the U.S. Camps are a big business, grossing more than $2.8 billion annually and employing more than 1.5 million staffers. Lots of famous people were former campers – Bob Dylan, Julia Roberts, Mark Zuckerberg and Denzel Washington, just to name a few! For many, summer camp provides some of the most poignant memories from childhood and adolescence. 

So why do camps “work” and how might you look at what happens at camp to understand and enhance how other complex organizations operate? Using a sociological lens, we’ll explore the history of camps in the U.S., watch some classic camp movies, learn key social science research skills (so we can interview people about their camp experiences) and culminate our course with a weekend camp trip in the valley.

Session C
W 4:10-5:00 PM, PVW 163
SLN: 89835

Leadership Matters
Mark Adaoag, Assistant Director of Recruitment and Outreach-

Who comes to mind when you first hear the word "leader?" What makes a great leader? How can you be a more effective leader? Through this course, you'll explore your own leadership style, develop and hone your leadership skills, and discover how it relates to your college experience and professional career. We'll also take a closer look at leadership past, present and future.

Session C
T 4:30-5:20 PM, LL 274
SLN: 86507

Drugs, Needles and People
Phillip Scharf, Senior Director of Retention and Advising- College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

So, you want to be a doctor? Have you ever thought about going into health care? Are you curious what medical school and careers in health care might look like? Come find out first-hand what you need to do as undergraduate to be prepared for a successful career in medicine and other health care professions. We will tour medical school facilities, interact with current health care professionals, acquire skills to be prepared for the MCAT (the medical school entrance exam) and learn from current ASU upperclassmen who are on the journey to medical school. Gain the insights you need to become a successful candidate for a career in medicine.

Session C
M 4:10-5:00 PM, PVW 159
SLN: 86537

How Leadership, Negotiating, Decision-Making and Team-Building Will Define Your Future
James Klemaszewski, Instructor- School of Molecular Sciences

Your success depends on your ability with and understanding of high-value skills. Award-winning Arizona business leader Todd Belfer teams with student-success oriented Jim Klemaszewski to help you unlock your potential in any discipline. Launch faster and further than your peers as you develop these valuable skills.

Session C
F 3:05-3:55 PM, PVW 163
SLN: 89838

Outside Science: Energy, the Environment and You
Gary Cabirac, Lecturer- School of Molecular Sciences

You’ll learn about all sorts of science through a mix of indoor and outdoor activities, including hikes, field trips and camping. (We know some cool places in Arizona!) You’ll meet some interesting people who are doing amazing things at ASU and discover important relationships between science, Arizona and you!

Session C
F 4:10-5 PM, PVW 159
SLN: 86532

The Power of the Past: The Archaeology of the Past in the Present
Christopher Morehart, Assistant Professor- School of Human Evolution and Social Change

In this class, we’ll focus on one major theme: how the past is a major component to contemporary issues. We’ll center specifically on how people have used, benefited from or manipulated the past and its archaeological remains to engage in contemporary (or historically recent) struggles and agendas.

Session C
W 3:05-3:55 PM, PVW 163
SLN: 89837

Laws, Suits and Lawsuits
Mary Nadarski, Assistant Director of Pre-Professional Advising- College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

In this seminar, you’ll discover the field of law and explore what you need to prepare for law school. From learning the fundamental skills for a successful legal career to conquering the competitive admission process, you’ll know what it takes to pursue a fulfilling career in law. 

Session C
M 4:10-5:00 PM, PVW 163
SLN: 89834

Communicate and Connect: Exploring Diversity through Communication
Denise Bodman, Principle Lecturer- School of Social and Family Dynamics

Virginia Satir, noted author, therapist and scholar, wrote, “Once a human being has arrived on this earth, communication is the largest single factor determining what kinds of relationships [one] makes with others and what happens to [one] in the world.” Success in school, work and life depends on the ability to effectively communicate and connect with others, including people who are different from us in terms of gender, race, sexual orientation, ability, religion, political ideology, economic circumstance, age and culture. In this seminar, we’ll engage in a variety of hands-on activities, experiences and conversations (including with community leaders) and you should expect to grow in listening and questioning skills, critical thinking, and understanding of self and others. This seminar intersects psychology, sociology, communications and diversity science.

Session C
M 5:15-6:05 PM, LL 274
SLN: 89839

Bob Marley and Reggae: Get Up, Stand Up for Your Rights
David Hinds, Associate Professor- School of Social Transformation

Bob Marley is the Caribbean's most popular reggae artiste. While the reggae sound is evident in his music, it’s his lyrics which have elevated him to hero-genius status. This seminar introduces students to the influences on Marley and explores his lyrics as political critique and expression.

Session C
TH 4:30-5:20, DISCVRY 120
SLN: 86511

Life in the 22nd Century: Comparing Scientific Trends with Science Fiction
Kenro Kusumi, Professor and Associate Dean- School of Life Sciences and College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

In this course, we’ll compare scientific trends with their exploration in science fiction, including genome editing, life extension, regenerative medicine, cloning, cybernetics, artificial intelligence, collective and networked societies, climate change, de-extinction, exobiology, pandemic disease and biological warfare. Discussion will focus on distinguishing the “science” in science fiction and unexplored research trends.

Session A
M 4:10-6:00 PM, DISCVRY 120
SLN: 86534

Arizona Journey Stories
Elizabeth Larson, Senior Lecturer- School of Geographical Sciences and Urban Planning

In this short course, we’ll take walking, light rail and short driving tours of iconic structures and places, and new up-and-coming places in and around Tempe, the East Valley and Phoenix. Our communities have gone through an historic progression in terms of human migration and economic transformation, and we’ll see some fine examples of ‘where we came from and where we are going’ first-hand.

Session B
W 2:00-3:50 PM, PVW 159
SLN: 89811

The Spartan Experience
Sarah Bolmarcich, Lecturer- School of International Letters and Cultures

Ancient Sparta still fascinates us today. How did the Spartans live and how did they achieve their great military success? Students will walk in their footsteps and experience key moments in the lives of the ancient Spartans.

Session B
W 4:10-6:00 PM, DISCVRY 120
SLN: 89829

*A session duration: August 17 to October 6
*B session duration: October 11 to December 1
*C session duration: August 17 to December 1