If you’re heading abroad you’re hopefully looking to take some unique classes that you may not find at your home University. At USAC, we work hard to integrate a variety of class options for students including courses that are taught by Visiting Professors. Visiting Professors are U.S. teachers who head abroad to one of USAC’s program locations to teach a class overseas.
Dr. Richard Penglase, Loyola University Chicago
Ben Penglase is a cultural anthropologist at Loyola University Chicago. He recently published Living with Insecurity in a Brazilian Favela. He has won Loyola’s Master Teacher and Master Researcher awards. He was also a researcher for Human Rights Watch. He practices Brazilian jiu-jitsu and has paraded in Rio’s Carnival.
People and Culture of Brazil
ANTH, 200-level, 3 credits
An introduction to contemporary Brazil, with a focus on the urban experience, race, gender, inequality, and mobilization for social justice. Specific case studies might examine daily life in favelas (poor neighborhoods), middle-class life under economic crisis, popular religion and rural social movements. The class will also examine some of Brazil’s most famous national features such as carnival, samba, and soccer.
Human Rights in Latin America
ANTH, 300-level, 3 credits
This course explores human rights in Latin America. It will examine how the idea of human rights and institutions that promote human rights developed, why human rights abuses have occurred, the effects abuses have had, and how Latin Americans have responded. A specific case might examine issues such as torture during the military dictatorship in Argentina, civil war in Guatemala, inequality, and violence in Brazil, and indigenous rights, children’s right and women’s rights throughout the region.
Dr. Louis Marvick, University of Nevada, Reno
Louis Marvick (Ph.D. Columbia University, 1983) is a Professor in the Department of World Languages and Literatures. His research focus is on the relationship of music to poetry in the late nineteenth century. In recent years he has published a novel, The ‘Star’ Ushak, and a collection of uncanny stories, Dissonant Intervals.
The Modern World
HIST/SOC, 200-level, 3 credits
This course will increase students’ understanding of the forces that have shaped Western civilization from the Renaissance to the present day. The focus is primarily European and includes developments in many areas: literature, the arts, and sciences, political and social theory and practice, public and private life. In order to give a living face to this vast subject, we will move at every phase from a general outline of motives, events, and ideas to specific texts and instances. In Lyon, the course will be enhanced by visits to sites of cultural and historical interest.
Survey of French Literature I
FREN, 300-level, 3 credits
In this course, students will read and analyze French literature from the Middle Ages to the 18th Century. We will study selections of prose, poetry, drama, and essays, paying special attention to authors from Lyon and the broader region in order to take advantage of the study abroad experience. In-class time is highly participatory and includes presentations of material by the professor using a variety of media, student presentations, discussions, individual and group work, videos, film excerpts, and student performances of theatrical works.
Prof. Irina Kappler-Crookston, University of Idaho
Prof. Kappler-Crookston, former chair, Spanish Instructor, and academic study abroad advisor for the Department of Modern Languages and Cultures has taught language, literature, and culture courses at the University of Idaho for nearly 30 years. She studied, lived, and worked in Italy, France, Spain, Mexico, and Ecuador before and after arriving at the University of Idaho where she received many services and teaching awards including the Idaho Foreign Language Teacher of the Year Award and the University of Idaho Advisor of the Year Award. She has taught multiple times for USAC in San Sebastián, Bilbao, Torino, Pau, and Madrid.
COM, 300-level, 3 credits
The purpose of this course is to develop the skills necessary to build and maintain positive communication and relationships across cultures. Students will explore the definition, nature, and manifestation of culture while examining their own values, traditions, and beliefs. Through active In-class and out-of-class activities, students will learn about the similarities and differences in communication behaviors and explore language usage, nonverbal style, and perceptions in order to see how they influence face-to-face communication between individuals of different cultures in the United States, Europe, and the rest of the world. Course benefits: knowledge about diverse communication and observation practices will enhance your ability to study, work, and live in any culture of the world.
WLL/FILM, 300-level, 3 credits
In this class, students will watch contemporary movies in the original from France, Germany, Italy, England, Poland, Bulgaria and Spain language with English subtitles that addresses issues such as traditions, religion, family, gender roles, politics, and national identity. The objective of the course is to help students analyze and examine the socio-cultural, political, and historical themes in post-war European movies to better understand the various cultures that make up the European Union. Through the figure of women protagonists in these films, this cultural analysis will specifically focus on the role of women in diverse European societies and historical settings.
Dr. Elspeth Whitney, University of Nevada, Las Vegas
Elspeth Whitney (Ph.D. City University of New York) teaches medieval history, the history of sexuality, and early modern history at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. In 1997, she taught at the University of Reading (UK). She is the recipient of a Distinguished Teacher Award (2008) and in 2012 taught in the USAC program at the Universidad del País Vasco in San Sebastián, Spain. She has published in the field of medieval science and technology, as well as gender studies.
Women in Early Modern Europe
HIST, 300-level, 3 credits
This course explores the social, economic, political, and cultural roles of women in late medieval and early Europe, with special attention to Italy. We will examine women’s roles within the family, as well as their influence as artists, consumers, heads of state, businesswomen, and workers. We will also look at the lives of important Italian female figures, including the mystic St. Catherine of Siena, the poetry and courtesan Veronica Franco, and artists Artemisia Gentilleschi and Isotta Nogarola. No prerequisites.
Italian History: Italy in the Medieval Era
HIST, 400-level, 3 credits
“The Middle Ages: no more than a transition age between the splendor of the Hellenistic-Roman civilization and the magnificence of the Renaissance?” Modern historians do not agree with this negative opinion of the thousand-year period between the 5th and 15th centuries. Far from being a “dark age”, it was an important age when Roman, German and Christian cultures mixed with each other and produced a new civilization, from which we can see some of the fundamental roots of modern European history. This course will examine the main historical events of the age, giving an overview of its society, economy, politics, and culture. Guided trips around Viterbo will encourage students to take advantage of their experience living in a typical medieval city. Taught in English.
Dr. Karen Christian, California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo
Karen Christian (Ph.D., UC-Irvine) has taught Spanish language, Hispanic literature and culture, theater, and ethnic studies at Cal Poly-San Luis Obispo since 2003. She has directed study programs in Mexico, and her passion for international travel led her to Cuba, Central America, Venezuela, Europe, and Australia, including conference presentations in Mexico, Costa Rica, and Germany.
History and Culture of Spain through Music
HIST/MUS/WLL, 300-level, 3 credits, taught in Spanish
In this interdisciplinary course, we will explore how the music of Spain reflects the cultural and historical contexts in which it was created and performed. Through sound recordings, videos, readings, and discussion, we will delve into connections between historical events and movements – conquest, migration, religion, politics – and musical expression. Through our study of music from Islamic, Jewish, and Christian traditions, musical styles that characterize Spain’s distinct regions and ethnic minorities, and contemporary popular music, we will gain a deeper understanding of the richness, diversity, and complexity of Spanish history. Prerequisite for History and Culture of Spain through Music: four semesters of college Spanish (Track III and above).
Literature of Diaspora in Spain and the Americas
WLL, 400-level, 3 credits, taught in Spanish
Diaspora – the movement of groups of people for reasons beyond their control – is a political, historical, and cultural phenomenon that has significantly impacted Spain and the Americas. In this course, we will study contemporary literary works that deal with inward and outward flows of citizens in these regions, with emphasis on the African, Jewish, and Caribbean diasporas. We will discuss historical, political, and cultural factors that influenced these migrations, and we will explore the ways in which writers weave together memory and imagination to represent the intense experiences associated with diaspora. Prerequisite for Literature of Diaspora in Spain and the Americas: four semesters of college Spanish (Track III and above)
Prof. David Fenimore, University of Nevada, Reno
Described as “one of UNR’s most beloved professors,” David Fenimore has received the College of Liberal Arts Teaching Award, the University Distinguished Academic Advisor Award, and the Fitzgerald Distinguished Professorship in the Humanities. He has published a book and numerous articles on Western American literature and recently served as president of the Western Literature Association.
BUS/COM/ENG, 300-level, 3 credits
This course includes practical techniques and best practices of multimedia business communication including memos; proposals; manuals; advertising copy; resumes; email; layout & design of documents, websites, and slides; individual and team presentations using PowerPoint. Consistent practice of copyediting skills. International differences in formatting, emphasis, and layout.
The Art and Science of Storytelling
BUS/COM/ENG/MKT, 400-level, 3 credits
Practical experience in creating and delivering oral narrative, based on time-tested patterns and techniques of folktale telling. The role of storytelling skills in creating effective narratives for business marketing and political campaigns, as well as workplace team-building. Students study selected excerpts from international folktale collections, observe professional storytellers in action via audio and video links as well as live guest performances, and tell four short tales in class, including one personal story.
Prof. Thomas Grothe, California State University, Chico
Professor Grothe teaches Communication Studies at California State University, Chico, where he won the first annual students’ choice award for Teacher of the Year in 2008. His emphasis is in cross-cultural communication teaching and training, and he recently helped found a non-profit organization to educate rural villagers in Burkina Faso.
COM, 300-level, 3 credits
This course will provide an understanding of the dynamics of intercultural communication. Emphasis will be placed on communication perceptions, self-awareness, and worldviews. Students will develop recognition of their own cultural communication style and the way it differs from other cultures. By examining barriers to intercultural communication, such as ethnocentrism and stereotyping, students will develop cultural sensitivity and become more competent in communicating interculturally. Emphasis will be on the culture(s) of the host country.
Gender and Communication
COM, 300-level, 3 credits
This course introduces students to gender-related communication; integrating theory and practice in order to heighten awareness of the importance of gender as a communication variable. Emphasis on perception, verbal, nonverbal similarities and differences are examined in interpersonal, small group, and public settings, with emphasis on the host culture.
Thailand: Chiang Mai
Dr. Jiemin Bao, University of Nevada, Las Vegas
Dr. Jiemin Bao attended UC Berkeley as an international student with a full scholarship in 1987. In summer 1988, she joined a study abroad program in Chiang Mai. That experience has influenced my research trajectory ever since and enabled her to win several prestigious academic fellowships, and become a professor and author.
Signifying Identities: Gender and Ethnicity
ANTH, 400-level, 3 credits
This course approaches identity formation as a social and cultural process by bringing together the many dimensions of gender and ethnicity. Our primary aim will be to examine how we are self-making and being made—how identities are constructed, felt, communicated, and negotiated in everyday life. Identities, therefore, are not only analyzed at the collective and individual level but also are examined along with the lines of social categories and agency. The course will make use of group discussions and YouTube videos in addition to our readings and lectures. Prerequisite: Anthropology 101.
Food and Identity
ANTH, 400-level, 3 credits
This course explores how food plays an important role in our socialization, health, gender relations, and identity construction. Food sustains us and gives meaning and order to our lives. Culture influences what, where, when, how, and even why we eat. Students are required to keep a three-day food diary into which they record all the food that they consume. Together we will explore how these foods relate to where you are where you are going, where you live, your gender, your health, and even your faith.
Prerequisite: Anthropology 101.
To register for one of these classes email firstname.lastname@example.org