Splash Fall 16
Course Catalog


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Arts

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A2267: The History of Step
Difficulty: *

Step is a form of dance that involves making beats and rhythms with only your body - a sort of body percussion dance form. Stepping finds its origins in African foot dances, primarily the "gumboot" dance in South Africa. Join us as we explore the history of step and its journey from Africa to the United States, both in the context of historically-black colleges and universities and Yale today. In this course we will both learn about step as a dance form and learn steps that the Yale Step Time (Yale's Steppin' Out) performs! The course will be led by members of the Yale step team.


Prerequisites
No previous dance experience/knowledge of step necessary.

A2243: It Ain't Over 'till the Fat Lady Sings: Opera, and Why It's Cool Full!
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Saloni Rao

A quick introduction to Opera, and why it's not as boring as you think! We'll listen to some operatic pieces that you will surely recognize, discuss some of the juiciest Operatic plot lines, and even learn a couple of familiar Opera choruses. We'll go through a brief version of the history of Opera and talk about some of the most famous Opera singers of the past and present too!

A2360: Cultivating Loneliness
Difficulty: **

We're all aware of the almost cliché divide between the behavior necessary for daily socializing and the more private characteristics of undisclosed self hood. While one's social persona (whatever form it takes) gets applied in the interpersonal circumstances of daily life, the role of one's private, vulnerable, self-examining thoughts have less apparent application.

In this seminar, we will discuss the way in which the value of one's silent life can be manifested and applied artistically rather than merely stored away until the next existential confrontation of self, in a manner that hopefully can lead to more overlap between the social self and the silent staring-at-the-ceiling-in-the-middle-of-the-night self (if they are divided in the first place).

Don't worry—this is not a class about moping! Serious conversation is intended, though.

A2235: Learn to Swing! Full!
Difficulty: *
Teachers: Suzanne Xu

Come learn to swing dance with us! Swing is a fun social dance that combines simple basic moves and flashy tricks. It is perfect for beginner and advanced dancers alike and dancing is always a nice way to get to know other students. If there is time at the end, we will also go over other dance styles that you can break out at your next party.


Prerequisites
No flip flops unless you are comfortable dancing barefoot.

A2355: Literary and Creative Nonfiction Full!
Difficulty: *
Teachers: Sofia Laguarda

Many students, even students who love to read and write, think nonfiction is a boring genre. They associate nonfiction with textbooks and homework, and they rarely seek it out themselves. I want students to leave this class understanding what makes creative nonfiction fun, interesting, and compelling. We will consider the fundamental questions of nonfiction: How do writers craft a personal identity through writing? How can they render another person or experience truthfully? What are the obstacles to a writer of creative nonfiction? We will read and discuss short examples of memoir, graphic memoir, and literary journalism. Students will also participate in creative writing exercises to craft and share their own stories with the group.

A2276: Improv with Lux Improvitas Full!

Learn new and exciting improv games and exercises with one of Yale's long-form improv troupes!

A2368: Origami Skill Swap
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Molly Mullen

One of the best ways to learn new origami models is to practice them with other folders. In this workshop, you’ll get a chance to share your favorite projects with the class and pick up some new projects from your neighbors.
Please bring (on paper or in your mind) one origami project you’d like to share. Simple models are welcome!


Prerequisites
Please bring (on paper or in your mind) one origami project you’d like to share. Simple models are welcome!

A2301: Learn to Swing!
Difficulty: *
Teachers: Suzanne Xu

Come learn to swing dance with us! Swing is a fun social dance that combines simple basic moves and flashy tricks. It is perfect for beginner and advanced dancers alike and dancing is always a nice way to get to know other students. If there is time at the end, we will also go over other dance styles that you can break out at your next party.


Prerequisites
No flip flops unless you are comfortable dancing barefoot.

A2206: Yes, and...? An Introduction to Playing the Improv Game! Full!
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Grace Pan

Ever heard of improvisational comedy? Great, now you have. How about The Game? No, not the thing you just lost, but the improv Game!

This will be a short and sweet course to the fundamentals of long-form improvisational comedy! Whose Line is it Anyway? is short-form improv, but long-form improv is where your characters come to life and you don't have to be super stressed about being super witty.

Hundreds of billions of top-level psychology doctors recommend improv as a way to make friends, maybe lose friends, and know what to do in awkward social situations.

(Also if you're a science geek, help me make really bad science puns.)

A2234: Introduction to Art History: Buddhist Art
Difficulty: *
Teachers: Elizabeth Casey

An introduction to Art History though Buddhist Art.

Learn how to 'read' Buddhist paintings and sculptures, and understand the meaning and stories behind them. We will learn about the historical life of the Buddha, and how he is represented in art throughout time.

A2295: Splash Painting Full!
Difficulty: *

Have you wondered what it was like to be an abstract artist? Have you ever gotten the urge to splash paint everywhere? If you love the oozing colors of paint, sign up for this class, and get some hands-on fun!

A2246: How To Up Your Photography Game Full!
Difficulty: *
Teachers: Ila Tyagi

We'll discuss the top 10 tips to take better pictures in general, specific techniques for making the most of a camera phone, and –– by delving into photography history –– find out why clicking a snapshot may be more important than we think.

A2379: Modular Origami! Full!
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Sophie Mori

In modular origami, we fold many modules (units) that have flaps and pockets. Then we can assemble them to create beautiful, colorful, complex three-dimensional structures!


Prerequisites
none!

A2216: Sight Singing 101
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Seth Gregson

Learn the basics of reading music through sight-singing with movable-do solfege.

A2287: Understanding and Performing Jazz Music
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Elliot Connors

Learn about the history of jazz music, improvisation, performing in various types of jazz ensembles, and the fundamentals of jazz theory, necessary for composition.


Prerequisites
Ability to read music


Engineering

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E2377: Engineering a Race Car
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Taha Ramazanoglu

Want to learn about what goes into designing and building race cars? We will cover a broad range of topics from kinematics, ergonomics, design-for-manufacturability and more! No background in Math or Physics necessary.


Prerequisites
No prerequisites other than a passion for race cars.

E2221: Intro to Robotic Mechanisms
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Connor McCann

Do you think robots are cool? Of course you do, everyone thinks robots are cool! But have you ever wondered how they really work? In this course, we'll look at two particular robot designs -- Stewart Platforms and SCARA Arms -- exploring their design principles, kinematics, and a sampling of their real-life applications. You should walk out of this course feeling comfortable with the workings of these two robots, and having gained a sense for how to approach similar problems with other robot designs.


Prerequisites
Students should come in with a basic knowledge of vector math.

E2265: Make a Motor Full!
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Milo Brandt

We will learn how electric motors work, as well as create our own simple models of a motor.


Humanities

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H2378: "The Buckley Program: The Federalist Party of Washington vs. Jefferson's Republicanism. How they Influence Modern Views of the Constitution"
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Pedro Enamorado

This talk will focus on two things:

1- The idea of a Patrician Presidency (that only experienced, non-partisan statesmen should be president).

2- How Jefferson and Washington believed they were empowered or limited by the constitution.

The conclusion will explain how people today view the presidency's relation to the constitution, and how it is influenced by and different from these ideas.


Prerequisites
Be enrolled in or have taken an American History or American Government related course.

H2213: The Buckley Program: Federalist 10
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Madeline Fortier

This course will emphasize the political philosophy and theory behind the American Founding. It will broadly cover the American Founding and the Federalist Papers, with a specific focus on Federalist 10. Within Federalist 10, we will examine Madison's portrayal of factionalism, majoritarian rule as a form of tyranny, the nature of Madisonian republicanism (as opposed to democracy), and the role of government.


Prerequisites
Read and annotate Federalist 10 (http://www.constitution.org/fed/federa10.htm) Interests in and general knowledge of US history and government

H2271: Innovations Over Time
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Julia Ding

Technology has been around since the beginning of human existence and has helped shape human culture. This broad seminar explores technologies throughout history, from the composite bows of the Mongols to the early computer, and how those advances have impacted
society and culture. Students will investigate the role of necessity in innovation and understand the role of innovation in a historical arch.


Prerequisites
N/A

H2365: Buddhist philosophy
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Qianyi Qin

An introduction to Buddhist philosophy. Topics include four noble truths, dependent origination, non-self, the aim of meditation and philosophizing in Buddhism.

H2210: Gay Pride, Gender Outlaws, and Radical Love Full!
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Gray Golding

Come learn about the LGBTQ+ world history and culture that your AP World teacher will never tell you was queer–from ancient Rome to China's Han Dynasty to the the Wild West and more.

H2222: This IS Sparta Full!
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Eli Westerman

One our most familiar images from Ancient Greece is the Spartan warrior, courageously fighting with not even a thought of surrender. Spartans like these populate the movie "300." But was this what Sparta was really like? Come and learn about Spartan history from its legendary foundation to the final surrender to the Romans.

H2289: You, Human: The Evolution and Relevance of Human Rights
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Trinh Truong

Since the end of WWII, human rights has evolved from a broad concept to an increasingly influential moral tool in confronting human suffering and injustice. However, numerous debates are still being had over what human rights are, what they include, and whether or not they can be upheld and enforced. The course will trace the different manifestations of human rights from the ancient world through today's society, examine the legal institutions and documents that have been developed to affirm and protect human rights, and consider international contemporary human rights issues of race in the United States and refugees around the globe.

H2254: Introduction to Copy Editing
Difficulty: ***
Teachers: Brett Greene

Wow your family! Impress your teachers! Spend 20 minutes thinking about whether or not to use that comma! In this course, we will explore conventions of English grammar, examine common mistakes and punctuation marks, and create a mock style guide.

H2279: The History of Hip Hop Full!
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Otis Baker

Have you ever heard of Jay Z, Kanye West, or Drake? What about Kool Herc, Grandmaster Caz, or Rakim? If you ever wanted to know where Hip Hop came from and how it has gotten to where it is today, this is for you. We will run through a comprehensive history of the genre with as much listening as we can fit in.

H2313: Politics and Action Movies
Difficulty: *
Teachers: Jack Hilder

Action movies and politics: at first glance, they might seem as far apart as two topics can get. But upon closer inspection, we can see all kinds of interesting connections. Want to know how "The Hunger Games" relates to Hillary Clinton, what "The Dark Knight" has to do with the War on Terror, and much more? Take this class to find out.

H2236: The Rwandan Genocide and the World's Silence
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Sheila Qasemi

The Rwandan Genocide began on April 7, 1994, and after 100 days close to a million people were murdered. In this course, we will explore the meaning of "genocide" and reflect on major examples of genocide in history. We will analyze the underlying causes of the Rwandan genocide, specifically focusing on the Hutu and Tutsi conflict. We will discover how many countries of the Western world, including the United States, remained largely silent. Finally, we will discuss how Rwandans are healing and forgiving one another twenty-two years later.

H2318: Extreme Landscapes: Ice, Ocean, Desert, Mountain
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Sarah Weston

This class will examine artists and writers who were fascinated by the edges of the earth, by dizzy views and dangerous terrains.

We'll focus in class on four types of extreme landscape in art and literature: ice, ocean, desert, and mountains.

ICE: The harrowing icescapes of Frederic Edwin Church, William Bradford, and Peder Balke. A 100-year-old box of photographs found in Antarctica. Herman Melville's poem about the "Aurora Borealis" alongside Frederic Edwin Church's painting of the same name. 19th century travel books detailing arctic expeditions. Interactive panoramas and magic lantern views of ice. Theatrical reconstructions of arctic expeditions.

OCEAN: Selections from Melville's "Moby Dick," along with Rockwell Kent's illustrations for the 1930 edition. Coleridge's "Rime of the Ancient Mariner" alongside Gustave Doré's illustrations. Sirens. Poetry by Nathaniel Hawthorne, Emily Dickinson, Pablo Neruda, and Walt Whitman.

DESERT: Harry Burton's photos of King Tutankhamun's tomb. Edward Curtis' photograph of Canyon de Chelly. Richard Serra's sculptures in the Qatari desert. Ivan Aivazovsky's "Pyramid at Giza" painting. Selections from Cormac McCarthy's novel "Blood Meridian." Poems by Byron, Benjamin Alire Sáenz, and Robert Browning.

MOUNTAIN: Hokusai's "Thirty-six Views of Mount Fuji" (including the famous "Great Wave" image). Frederic Church's paintings of volcanoes and mountains in South America. Ansel Adams and Carleton Watkins' views of Yosemite. Poems by Percy Bysshe Shelley, Emily Dickinson, and Marianne Moore.

What do these landscapes accomplish for the writer or the artist? Why use them? What was going on at the historical moment these artworks were produced? Does that have any bearing on the use of these landscapes? Do these landscapes provide welcomed escapism or discomfort and terror? How do these works make us feel? Are we terrified? Curious? Excited? Adventurous? What role does discomfort play in literature and art?

The Romantic period was dominated by an obsession with the notion of the "sublime"--something that terrifies yet delights, excites yet horrifies--a complex philosophical concept that we will wrap our heads around to understand the art and literature we examine.

Given that at least two of these landscapes are under a very real threat in 2016, what happens when the vast expanses of ocean and the dangerous polar ice structures become endangered--when these once terrifying, vast landscapes are under threat of becoming diminished and frail? What happens to our notions of the Sublime? And what is at stake in looking at something that is fading away?

Time permitting, we'll pick an extreme landscape (one we talked about, or another one of your choice that we didn't get a chance to mention) and begin thinking about how we would want to write about them or draw them (your choice!). How do we begin to describe or encapsulate something so big and vast? How can we look to some of the examples we've seen to help us puzzle through this dilemma?

H2366: Introduction to Spanish Language and Culture
Difficulty: **

¡Bienvenidos! This class will serve to teach basic introductory Spanish phrases. We will also be learning about aspects of Spanish culture as well!

H2260: The Trouble with Equality: Race, Mass Incarceration and Black Lives Matter Full!
Difficulty: *
Teachers: Mery Concepcion

A short lecture and open discussion about the forces that have driven race relations in America and led to phenomenons such as mass incarceration and the Black Lives Matter movement.

H2257: U.S. Presidential Assassinations: James Garfield
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Robert Scaramuccia

It’s July 2nd, 1881. President James Garfield strolls into the Baltimore and Potomac Railroad Station, accompanied only by his friend, James Blaine. Suddenly, a shot rings out. Garfield crumples to the floor severely wounded. Standing over him is Charles Guiteau, believing God wanted him to assassinate the president. As the 20th President lay on his deathbed over the next few months, the United States grappled with issues of national security, insanity, and modern medicine. A new political era rose with the sun the morning after Garfield’s death. We’ll explore this little-known drama of national loss, discovering how hurt pride, egotism, and recklessness can change the course of history.

H2359: The Buckley Program: States, Territories, and the Federal Government
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Bernard Stanford

Congress setting a minimum wage. Louisiana designing an education curriculum. American Samoa establishing a bureau to regulate the titles of tribal chiefs.

To understand any of these things, one must recognize that America is composed of many overlapping layers of governmental authority. This class will explore those layers, their history, and how they interact today.

H2270: Dialogue
Difficulty: ***
Teachers: Katherine Adams

We interrupt each other, talk past each other, forget what we were going to say, digress, etc… Sometimes we find ourselves at loggerheads due to differences in our very language or mode of expression -- esoteric disciplinary vocabularies and argumentative methods, disparities in fluency or expressiveness. Obstructions and misunderstandings like these will be our starting point for this class.

To what extent is it possible to develop an idea in tandem with someone else? What work is really getting done in an academic seminar? Can we theorize collectively? Is the structure of dialogue inherently dyadic (couples, pairs)? Where does monologue end and dialogue begin? How do ideas of dialogue condition theoretical approaches that rely heavily on language – e.g. ‘ordinary language’ philosophy? How does dialogue relate to more abstract notions of universality and subjectivity?

This class will explore these problems and questions, drawing on ideas from philosophy and literary theory.

H2373: Writing Great Video Game Characters Full!
Difficulty: *
Teachers: Robert Scaramuccia

What makes one video game character forever memorable, but another a dud? How do you create a Mario, Lara Croft, or Master Chief? We'll explore how to craft meaningful fictional characters in general, then focus on the particular challenges of making game characters that need to be both fun to play with and interesting to think about. You'll also have the chance to flesh out your own character ideas!

Our emphasis will be on how to write a great character, but we'll also touch on the visual aspects of character development.


Prerequisites
Feel free to bring character ideas or sketches if you have them!

H2317: Capturing Time: "Moving Pictures" Before Movies
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Sarah Weston

As you might know, movies have not always been the fast, action-packed, roaring technicolor fantasies that we know and enjoy today. It was only in the 1930s (and even then, selectively) that movies were shown in color, not black and white. And before that breakthrough was an era of silent film.

But what came before then? How did we develop technology to capture motion in the first place? What about sound?

In this class, we will look at a broad overview of the crazy technological innovations (mainly from 1851-1877) that led to the creation of the first "moving images."

We'll learn about stereoscopes (how people saw 3D images back in 1851), phenakistoscopes and zoetropes (early animation), kineographs (flip books), and the work of the great pioneer, Eadweard Muybridge, who is credited with creating the first ever movie.

We'll get a chance to look at some of the mini-films that these wild apparatuses created. I'm really curious to hear what you guys think about these crazy creations, and especially what your experience of time is with these objects. Does time slow down when you watch these "movies"? Does it speed up? Does your notion of time get suspended and stop altogether?

Time permitting, we will hopefully have a chance to create our own flip books or phenakistoscopes!

H2385: Literary and Creative Nonfiction
Difficulty: *
Teachers: Sofia Laguarda

Many students, even students who love to read and write, think nonfiction is a boring genre. They associate nonfiction with textbooks and homework, and they rarely seek it out themselves. I want students to leave this class understanding what makes creative nonfiction fun, interesting, and compelling. We will consider the fundamental questions of nonfiction: How do writers craft a personal identity through writing? How can they render another person or experience truthfully? What are the obstacles to a writer of creative nonfiction? We will read and discuss short examples of memoir, graphic memoir, and literary journalism. Students will also participate in creative writing exercises to craft and share their own stories with the group.

H2247: The Truth Beneath the Foreskin: The Historical, Religious and Medical Significance of Circumcision
Difficulty: *
Teachers: Grant Berland

Circumcision is the world's oldest medical procedure and has been around for thousands of years in multiple cultures, but many people don't know the social, historical, religious, and medical significance and controversies associated with it. This class will examine just the tip of the iceberg of circumcision by examining the origins of circumcision; the religious significance of circumcision in Judaism, Christianity, and other world religions; the rising and falling prevalence of circumcision from the 1700s until the present; and the scientific and medical reasons circumcision has been useful, especially in the AIDS epidemic in Africa.


Prerequisites
None

H2297: The Lyrics of Bob Dylan
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Brett Greene

In this class, we'll explore the life of the man and his lyrics and try to figure out what the Swedish Academy saw in Dylan when they gave him literature's highest honor.

H2380: Fantastic Words and Why You Won't Find Them in English Full!
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Bohan Lou, Sophie Xu

Schadenfreude, Laojia, Saudade. Many words which exist in other languages cannot be translated into an English equivalent. In this course, we will explore many examples of such words and the cultural significance behind them. At the end, we will also try to create our own English words to convey these foreign and unique concepts.


Prerequisites
None

H2361: Building Your Story: A Creative Writing Workshop
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Meghana Mysore

Explore the twists and turns of language, stimulate your creative mind with interactive writing activities, and expand your creative writing ability in a fun and collaborative environment.

H2304: Punsmithry: Building Your Verbal Arsenal Full!
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Sherry Lee

Alfred Hitchcock once said that puns are the highest form of literature. This course will explore a form of language suited for both the erudite and the street-smart, from the various classifications of puns to the evolution of wordplay throughout history. Learn the difference between badinage, riposte, and dad jokes. If you are seeking to elicit admiration and groans from your peers, or to simply ruin lives, this course is for you.


Prerequisites
A sense of humor and an appreciation for language.

H2217: Does God Exist? Full!
Difficulty: **

One of the most (in)famous arguments in all of philosophy, the ontological argument is a highly contested "proof" with a simple conclusion: that God exists. Develop your own thoughts as you learn about the major arguments for and critiques against Anselm of Canterbury's famous argument.

H2263: What Part of Our Mind Makes us Unique?
Difficulty: **

In this class, we will look at one of the age-old questions philosophers, scientists, and many others have tried to answer: What makes us who we are? That is, What part of our brain/mind/existence makes us unique, gives us personality, makes us US? This class will focus on readings and discussions of works by philosophers throughout history, such as Plato, Descartes, and Hume.

H2315: Painting Poetry
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Sarah Weston

This class will focus on the complex relationship between the two "Sister Arts"--art and poetry--from the Romantic period to the 1960s.

We will examine works of art alongside the poetry that inspired them: William Blake's illustrated books of poetry, Pre-Raphaelite painters' interpretations of poetry by Tennyson and Keats, Charles Demuth's 1923 painting after a William Carlos Williams poem, among others...

And we will also study several poems written as responses to works of art--we call this "ekphrasis" or poetry that describes a work of art. Examples here will include (scenes from) Virgil's "Aeneid," Wallace Stevens' "The Man with the Blue Guitar," Allen Ginsberg's "Cézanne's Ports," Sylvia Plath's "The Disquieting Muses," Anne Sexton's "The Starry Night," and Adrienne Rich's "Mourning Picture."

I'm really curious to hear what you think is at stake in the "translation" from one art to another--is anything lost in translation? Or does the original work seem all the richer for it?

After a discussion of all these works, students will create both a poem and a piece of artwork (you decide which comes first/which inspires which!)--each related to the other in their own complex ways.


Prerequisites
If you'd like to look over some of the poems I mentioned, to collect together some thoughts in advance, go for it! However, reading in advance is by no means necessary.

H2255: Middle English: No, it's not Shakespeare
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Brett Greene

In "Middle English: No, it's not Shakespeare," we will learn to read and pronounce Middle English, then spend time reading contemporary verse and prose with a Middle English accent.

H2312: Unfolding Chinese Philosophy
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Leland Stange

Although origami was popularized in Japan, paper-folding originated in China. We will use origami as a means of exploring basic elements of Daoism, Confucianism, and Zen Buddhism!


Prerequisites
None!

H2370: World-Building in Science Fiction and Fantasy Full!
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Molly Mullen

What do J.K. Rowling’s Ministry of Magic, Ursula Le Guin’s Hainish colonization, and Andy Weir’s Martian Hab have in common?

You may have your own answers to this question, but in this class, we’ll treat these three and others as examples of world-building: decisions a writer makes about the background of the story they’re telling. We’ll ask what makes good world-building, generate some questions about setting to use when writing, and practice using those questions for group and individual mini-stories.


Prerequisites
This class is intended for writers or for readers interested in writing. If you write stories, poems, plays, graphic novels, screenplays: welcome! If you read any of those and love thinking about why writers write the way they do: welcome to you too!

H2268: Write Me Into a Poem
Difficulty: *
Teachers: Anshu Chen

Why is it so frustrating to translate love into language? In this class, we explore two poems about the difficulties of expressing emotion and intimacy. Featuring T.S. Eliot and Adrienne Rich--and you!


Prerequisites
none

H2242: The Existential Risk of Artificial Intelligence Full!
Difficulty: *
Teachers: Saran Morgan

Machine Intelligence is rapidly improving; the development of generally intelligent systems will transform society, the economy, and global politics. The potential benefits are tremendous, but so are the potential harms, probably greater than the risks from nuclear war and climate change. Are we at risk and if we are, what can we do about it? There will be an optional, but greatly appreciated, online (or physical if requested) survey before the class.

H2285: Closing Ceremonies: Matt Croasmun
Difficulty: *

Education and the Life Worth Living:
What if education is about more than just learning important facts and figures? What if education is about more even than learning how to think? What if education is about becoming the sort of person you want to become? What would that sort of education look like and how ought we going about getting that sort of education?

H2283: Closing Ceremonies: Paul Bloom
Difficulty: *
Teachers: Splash at Yale

The Origins of Good and Evil: One of the most surprising findings from modern psychology is that even babies have a rich moral sense--they distinguish between good and bad acts and prefer good characters over bad ones. They feel compassion for others, and might even possess a primitive sense of justice. But this moral sense is narrow. Many principles that are central to adult morality, such as kindness to strangers, are the product of our intelligence and our imagination; they are not in our genes.

PAUL BLOOM is the Brooks and Suzanne Ragen Professor of Psychology at Yale. He has written for journals such as Nature and Science, and for popular outlets such as The New York Times and The New Yorker, and he teaches a very popular Introduction to Psychology course.

H2233: Logic
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Yookyung Kwak

Do you want to learn how to NEVER BE WRONG ever again? Well, this class doesn't cover that, but it will teach you the basics of logic and reasoning so that you can avoid making simple mistakes and become that much more rational! Come learn about logical fallacies, the difference between deductive and inductive reasoning, and more!


Prerequisites
None

H2259: French 101
Difficulty: *

Bonjour! In this class, we will learn the basics of conversation in French. We will cover topics such as weather, extracurricular activities/interests, and food. By the end, you'll be able to have brief conversations with each other!


Prerequisites
This course is designed for students with no prior knowledge of French

H2262: What Part of Our Mind Makes us Unique?
Difficulty: **

In this class, we will look at one of the age-old questions philosophers, scientists, and many others have tried to answer: What makes us who we are? That is, What part of our brain/mind/existence makes us unique, gives us personality, makes us US? This class will focus on readings and discussions of works by multiple philosophers throughout history, such as Plato, Descartes, and Hume.

H2266: How to Think
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Evan Linn

This class will teach you how to think. Or, more precisely, it will teach you how to examine texts critically. It will do this by using a range of techniques one typically learns in a philosophy class: drawing distinctions, uncovering (hidden) assumptions, tracing lines of inference, identifying fallacies, etc. By the end of the class, you will have developed a deeper understanding of a range of texts, and be better prepared to think and argue about stuff.


Lunch

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L2386: Lunch Period
Difficulty: None
Teachers:

Enjoy a break for lunch with your friends! Please register for at least one lunch period on each day of the program.


Math & Computer Science

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M2241: King Chickens and Proof
Difficulty: ***
Teachers: Milo Brandt

Wondered what it is mathematicians do all day? Heard of proof, but only the boring types, like "induction" and "contradiction"? We will explore the varied land of proof through difficult problems, talking about neat methods of proof in the context of chicken coup politics.

M2277: The Mathe-magic of Cards
Difficulty: ***
Teachers: Adam Zucker

Ever wanted to impress some friends with magic? Well now's your chance! In this class, we will go over some easy yet amazing self-working card tricks and the math and algorithms behind how they work. Since these tricks are self-working, no knowledge of sleight of hand is required. Cards will be provided.


Prerequisites
Knowlege of basic algebra (Pre-algebra, Algebra I)

M2258: Startups in Silicon Valley Full!
Difficulty: **

Want to know what helps today's technology companies be as successful as they are? In this class, we will look at entrepreneurship techniques used by Silicon Valley companies and other startups.

M2274: Platonic and Archimedean Solids Full!
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Milo Brandt

Tired of boring, flat geometry? Sick of looking at rectangular prisms all day? In this class, we will take a break from such boring concepts to construct models of various more interesting shapes and talk about the mathematics underpinning them.

M2354: Extreme Counting
Difficulty: **

Did you learn to count in elementary school? Ready to take your counting skills to the next level? Then join us for a whirlwind tour of introductory combinatorics!

We’ll briefly touch on the basics of combinations and counting, discussing a few classic inductive and combinatorial proofs along the way, before moving on to more exciting and challenging problems.

Topics may include, but are certainly not limited to: the binomial theorem, the inclusion-exclusion principle, generating functions, everyone’s favorite recurrence relation (Fibonacci!), and if we’re lucky, even Catalan numbers!


Prerequisites
Algebra

M2383: "Scratch"-ing Your Itch to Code
Difficulty: *

An introduction to coding using the Scratch programming language. Take this course to start making cool programming projects!

And you will never have to scratch yo head at them programmers again.


Prerequisites
No experience required, just an interest in learning how to code!

M2353: Search Algorithms: The Quest from Start to Goal
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Sophie Mori

We won't quite figure out how Google Maps gives you optimal (and usually accurate) directions so quickly, but we will cover basic graph search algorithms and some more interesting ones that involve heuristics.


Prerequisites
Programming knowledge not necessary, but come prepared to mentally process the logic behind the search methods!

M2282: Introduction to Game Theory: How to Make Smart Decisions Full!
Difficulty: **

An introduction to mathematical game theory, studying how to use logic and probability to make intelligent, rational decisions in games. Will include discussions of payoff matrices, the Prisoner's Dilemma, the role of randomness in optimal strategies, and other similar topics.


Prerequisites
Basic knowledge of algebra is important. We will be solving linear equations.

M2238: Thinking like a computer: Intro to Computational Thinking
Difficulty: **

Under the hood, your computer represents all forms of information, including text files, movies, and music, as a long string of just 0s and 1s. How is this possible?

Learn to count in binary, compress lines of text, and find one name in 4 billion with just 32 tries. All without writing a single line of code.


Prerequisites
No prior computer science/programming knowledge needed.

M2261: To Infinity and Beyond!
Difficulty: ***
Teachers: Daniel Hwang

How big is infinity? What is beyond infinity? How can you work with infinity?

We’ll be discussing different levels of infinitude, creating elegant proofs, and solving riddles with infinity to note some of the most interesting properties of infinitude.


Prerequisites
Basic Algebra

M2367: The Election Game: Paradoxes of Democracy Full!
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Rachel Lawrence

Election day is around the corner! In a democratic election like the one this year, Americans use our votes to convert individual preferences into The Democratic Will of the People. Or do we? Our election system is not without some glaring flaws (think: third party candidates who take votes away from exactly those candidates who most agree them! Polarizing candidates with high disapproval rates!) But surely there must be a better system, right? Maybe not, if Arrow's Impossibility Theorem gets anything to say about it. In this class, we'll talk about the paradoxes inherent to democratic elections, including some startling mathematical results about how there might not even be such a thing as a perfectly fair election.


Prerequisites
Don't let the math (or the politics!) scare you away -- this class will be fast-paced, but won't require any background knowledge!

M2229: The Honest Definition of a Continuous Function
Difficulty: ***
Teachers: Dan Zaharopol

Maybe you've heard that a continuous function is one you can draw without lifting your pencil off the paper. Do you really think that's the kind of definition a mathematician uses? It's all right for intuition, but it doesn't let you do any actual math with it. As a math major, the first real definition of a continuous function that you'd see is called the epsilon-delta definition, and it's much more sophisticated.

This class is meant as an introduction to what deeper mathematics is really like. We'll see how to really define continuous functions, what exactly they can and can't do, and how to prove a lot about what's going on underneath the hood. We'll even see what continuous functions would look like if we go to strange spaces that are not like the Euclidean plane at all.


Prerequisites
You should be interested in a challenge and very, very fluent with high school algebra. Beyond that, how hard the class is depends on how much experience you have with advanced math, but this can work as a good introduction for a bright high school student.

M2286: Introduction to Theoretical Computer Science
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Noah Amsel

We will review some of the foundational results about the fundamental abilities and limitations of computers. We will cover Automata, Turing machines, computability (what problems are solvable in theory), and computational complexity (what problems are solvable in practice).


Prerequisites
Familiarity with sets is recommended.

M2288: DECLASSIFIED: The History of Codebreaking
Difficulty: ***
Teachers: William Merrill

An introduction to cryptography, which is the study of making and breaking codes. Learn how generals, spies, and mathematicians have handled secrets throughout history, and try your hand at the processes of encryption and decipherment.

M2232: Intro to Probability
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Paul Fanto

How many people do you need in a room to have a 50-50 chance that two share a birthday? What is the chance that the same four lottery numbers are selected within a week of each other? The answers are higher than you think! In this class, you’ll learn the basic principles of probability and see how much you can know about random events. This class does not require any prior experience with probability or calculus.

M2357: Human Computer Full!
Difficulty: **

Carry a number from the input to the output. That's the first level in this class that will turn you into a human computer! Starting with only 2 simple commands, and ending with just 11, you will put together step-by-step instructions that will make the human computer do everything that an electronic one can.

This is an interactive, puzzle-solving class that will have you out of your seat and moving around, alternately coming up with new instructions for the human computer and being the computer itself. We will solve incremental challenges, and by the end you will not believe what can be done with a few simple instructions.

No experience with computers or programming required!

This class is inspired by award-winning indie game "Human Resource Machine."


Science

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S2371: Let it Flow: Fun with fluids
Difficulty: ***

Ever wonder why airplanes fly? How vortices work? How to simulate galactic dynamics? We're going to explore fluid mechanics, the simple physics that explains everything from the behavior of stars to oceans, plate tectonics to blood flow.


Prerequisites
A passing familiarity with physical concepts is useful, but DEFINITELY not required.

S2374: How Vaccines Work Full!
Difficulty: **

In 1796, an English physician named Edward Jenner helped revolutionize the practice of medicine through his development of the first vaccine. But how do vaccines work? This lesson will briefly introduce various parts of the immune system and discuss the role it plays in the science of vaccination, and what the benefits of vaccination are.

S2269: Fermi Analysis: The Power of Rapid Guestimation
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Jacob Marks

How many Piano-tuners are there in San Francisco? How many frisbees would fit inside the sun? How many atoms would you have to line up back-to-back to get from Dubai to Shanghai? In this course we'll learn about a powerful technique for answering such questions without any specific knowledge. Get ready to amaze your friends and family with guestimational prowess!


Prerequisites
Algebra

S2384: Chemical Reaction Mechanisms
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Dawn Chen

Why does the rate of a chemical reaction not simply depend on the amount of starting compounds present? In this class, you will learn more about reaction rates, different kinds of reaction mechanisms, how to find the rate equation using steady-state approximation and pre-equilibrum approximation, and get exposed to many cool oscillating reactions.


Prerequisites
Basics of chemical equation writing. Proficiency in algebra is recommended.

S2372: History of the Universe : Big Bang - Present
Difficulty: **

What better place to start than the beginning? Of time, that is. This course will piece together the eras of cosmic history, taking special note of the advances in astronomy, elementary particle physics, and nuclear physics that built our current knowledge of the exciting first billion years of cosmic existence.

S2307: Myco-what? An Introduction to Fungi
Difficulty: **

They can control minds, communicate across miles, mine for heavy metals, cure (and cause) disease, and are some of the oldest organisms in the world...Sound like science fiction? Welcome to the world of fungi! In this class, we’ll discuss the history of fungi, how they function in the environment, and also delve into some topics like mycorestoration and entomopathogenic fungi.

S2237: Introduction to Genetics Full!
Difficulty: **

Ever wondered why you are who you are? This course might just tell you! It covers various introductory topics in genetics including the basics of heredity (in terms of things like Punnett Squares), what genes are, how genetic information is encoded (DNA), what transcription and translation are within the Central Dogma, how gene expression functions within the body and what can occur with genetic diseases. It will also overview some applications of genetics into things like genome editing (i.e. PNA/DNA methods or CRISPR methods) to treat a genetic disease, SNP chips, and the human genome project.


Prerequisites
Basic understanding of biology

S2305: Why don't we have an HIV vaccine?
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Holly Steach

If you can get a flu vaccine that will keep you from getting sick, how come you can't get an HIV vaccine?

Since the outbreak of the HIV/AIDS epidemic in the early 1980’s researchers have faced a variety of unique challenges in the search for a vaccine or a cure. Huge strides have been made in treatments, but we still have not found a vaccine that can prevent transmission of HIV.

Come learn what normally makes a good vaccine, why HIV is particularly difficult to combat with traditional vaccine strategies, and what creative ways researchers are coming up with to fight back against HIV!


Prerequisites
some background in biology is recommended!

S2382: Your brain on language!
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Andy Zhang

Are you left-brained or right-brained? Come discover more about how the brain does language and why there are differences between the two sides. Through intros on brain function and language, we'll discuss the ways in which scientists study the brain (e.g. how those pretty 'lit-up brain' pictures are made) and connect them to the frontiers of the field today!


Prerequisites
Some language/linguistic experience preferred, but not necessary.

S2309: From Aristotle to Dark Energy: A Crash Course in Astronomy Full!
Difficulty: **

Curious about the origin of the universe? What about how the planets got their surfaces? Or this thing called dark energy? This course will cover all of that and more! That said, we will most likely NOT be covering Aristotle because he was wrong about pretty much everything when it came to astronomy.


Prerequisites
None.

S2375: Chemical Reactions Full!
Difficulty: *
Teachers: Andrew Brod

Through a series of demonstrations, we will explore the foundations of chemistry. There will be fire.

S2351: Metal Mania: Simple Models of the Material World
Difficulty: ***
Teachers: Andrew Saydjari

Why are electrical conductors always thermal conductors? What determines the properties of one material over another? While much of modern materials science appears like trial and error from the outset, this course will motivate the deep physical differences (using extremely simple models) between metals, insulators, etc. that determine a large variety of properties in the world around us.


Prerequisites
None (basics of physics: forces, velocity, etc. would be helpful, but are well explained).

S2209: Alternative Nucleic Acid Structures
Difficulty: ***
Teachers: Peter Wang

Nucleic acids, including DNA and RNA, are critical molecules in biology. Apart from their most commonly known structures and forms, there are many modified and/pr alternative forms that are important in biology and research. In this class we will go over some of the most interesting structures, from chemical groups to the helices.


Prerequisites
Basic organic chemistry, and molecular biology (e.g. what is DNA).

S2264: Brain Takeover: Parasite Manipulation Theory Full!
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Helen Beilinson

Some parasites take over the brains of their hosts and change their decision-making and their ability to control their behavior. The changed behaviors help in transmission of the parasite and don't help the host. In fact, it often ends in the host's demise. Sounds crazy? Come learn about some of the awesome examples of this happening in real life and learn why this happens and how it evolved!

S2314: Aliens?
Difficulty: *
Teachers: Jack Hilder

Is there life beyond Earth? The question may seem like it belongs only in science fiction movies, but by using principles of Astronomy, Geology, and Biology, we can actually make a fairly educated guess whether or not we're sharing the Universe. Take this class to learn how.

S2250: All that is dark: Understanding Dark Matter and Dark Energy

Ever heard of Dark Energy and Dark Matter and wondered what they are? Want to study 96% of what makes our Universe as we know it? You've come to the right place! We will understand the discovery of Dark Matter and Dark Energy, why we think they exist and how scientists measure they properties nowadays.

S2306: Nobel Experiments in Cell Biology Full!
Difficulty: ***
Teachers: Ryan Malpass

If you're interested in the experiments that shaped our present understanding of biology and the cell, this class is for you! Through a whirlwind tour of Nobel winning experiments, this class will teach you the approaches, methods, and interpretation of results from a few monumental papers in the history of cell biological research. This class will include both discussion and brief summaries of the experiments conducted. Prepare for a fast-paced, challenging, and fun class.


Prerequisites
Some coursework in biology is strongly recommended.

S2240: Why Play Nice?: Cooperation in Evolution Full!
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Milo Brandt

"Survival of the fittest" suggests that evolution is a fight, each organism vying for its own survival. Yet, in nature, we observe organisms cooperating and even making sacrifices for one another. Learn how evolution encourages cooperative behavior by playing simple games and using the lens of games to shed light on this peculiar aspect of evolution.

S2205: The Amazing Abilities of Infants Full!
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Michael Glick

Because infants cannot talk, it seems nearly impossible to understand their thinking. However, researchers have uncovered many key aspects of babies, including their built-in mechanisms for learning certain things, their moral sense (yes, they have one!) and much, much more. If you're interested in learning about key research findings related to infants, and if you want to see some truly amazing videos featuring babies, this class will be great for you.

S2208: Amino acids-- the building blocks of proteins Full!
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Peter Wang

Proteins are incredibly diverse and complex, and they serve many of the crucial functions in biology. 20 (plus some modified ones) α-amino acids are the molecules that make up proteins. In this class, we'll go over in detail the properties, functions, and other interesting things about these amino acids and some other related groups.


Prerequisites
Understanding of chemistry concepts including acid-base, polarity, chemical groups, and +/- charges; basic organic chemistry and molecular biology helpful but not required

S2310: Exploring Frontiers in Artificial Intelligence
Difficulty: **

This course will look at the current state of the field of artificial intelligence. We will be discussing some basic neuroscience as well as the "biological" algorithms that currently try to implement that knowledge. A strong background in STEM is encouraged but by no means required. If enough humanities people show up we can discuss the philosophical and ethical side of AI as well!


Prerequisites
None

S2239: Chemistry of Painting Full!
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Nasim Mirzajani

Where does color come from? What are artists' paints made of? What is done to make sure paintings last longer? What decides the consistency and opacity of different paints? What's the difference between the three different kinds of white (zinc, titanium and lead) and when should you use them? .


Prerequisites
Some basic high-school chemistry required. More fun if you have painting experience

S2249: Star Formation and Evolution

Will the Sun become a Black Hole? Or is it going to explode and become a Planetary Nebula? We will learn how to identify the life story of a star based on its mass and composition!


Miscellaneous

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X2280: Explore Hawai'i
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Stephanie Spear

Every culture has its own style of dance. Come join this class to learn a little bit about the hula, the dance of the Hawaiian people, and the Hawaiian culture! Aloha!


Prerequisites
Positive attitude and open mindedness!

X2278: How a University Works
Difficulty: *
Teachers: Daniel Hwang

You're now in charge of a university! What are the things you need to think about in order to make sure everything runs smoothly?

X2358: The Political Campaign Ad
Difficulty: *
Teachers: Bernard Stanford

The best. The worst. The craziest. This class has it all. We will examine a number of campaign ads from America and around the world, and analyze them to see how and why they are effective. I've taught this class in the past and people found it very entertaining and informative.

X2225: The Buckley Program: America's Constitution: What it is and why it matters
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Pranam Dey

What is the American Constitution? Why is it the Supreme Law of the Land? How did it come into existence? How has it changed over time? And above all, why should you care, and how does it affect you? Since 1787, Americans have lived under the rule of the Constitution and have fought and died defending it. The Constitution has shaped the course of American and even world history, and other nations have based their own constitutions on our model. During these 50 minutes, let's go over the origins and structure of the Constitution, then cover how it shaped our history and continues to guide us today and into the future.

X2293: The Splash Wizard Tournament: A Harry Potter Trivia Contest Full!
Difficulty: ***
Teachers: Hari Anbarasu

Stock up on powdered dragon claw so you can rule at this year's Splash Wizard Tournament (of Harry Potter Trivia)!

Note that the most stringent anti-cheating charms have been applied to the contest. Auto-Answer Quills are banned from the hall, as are Remembralls, Detachable Cribbing Cuffs and Self-Correcting Ink.


Prerequisites
First-year students will require: 1. Three sets of plain work robes (black) 2. One plain pointed hat (black) for day wear 3. One pair of protective gloves (dragon hide or similar) 4. One winter cloak (black, with silver fastenings) 5. Life-consuming nerdiness. Please note that all student's clothes should carry name-tags at all times. FIRST YEARS ARE NOT ALLOWED THEIR OWN BROOMSTICK.

X2219: Model College Admissions Committee
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Amy Estersohn

In this session you'll learn by doing by playing the role of an admissions officer forced to decide which one of a few model students you'd like to admit to your college.

X2231: Juggling 101 Full!
Difficulty: *
Teachers: Benjamin Krakoff

The title says it all folks, come learn to juggle.

X2316: Cheese-y Class Title Full!
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Michael Lebwohl

This class is all about cheese. We'll talk about its history, its politics, and its chemistry. By that point we'll be hungry, so we'll put all that talk into action and transform some milk into cheese right before your eyes. You'll never have to buy cheese at the store again!

If days without milk make you bleu, if you think dairy is the greater gouda, and if mac 'n cheese is your favorite meal, then this is the class for you!

X2356: Absurdity in Military Engineering
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Nathaniel Stanford

Sometimes new ideas pay off. Sometimes, they really don't. In this class, we'll explore several of the latter (and some of the former). Flying tanks? Nazi superguns? Flying aircraft carriers? We'll look at them all, how they came to be designed and built and whether they accomplished their objectives.


Prerequisites
Interest

X2227: Getting the Internship
Difficulty: ***
Teachers: Aiyana Bobrownicki

In this class, we'll discuss how to find internships, prepare for professional opportunities, and create resumes and cover letters that make you stand out. This will be a fast paced interactive workshop, so come prepared to draft and revise application materials with your peers!


Prerequisites
To participate in this class you will need to arrive with 1) a list of your past experiences to use when creating a resume 2) a short list of fields or jobs you might want to experience as an intern.

X2228: Puzzles That Make You Think
Difficulty: *
Teachers: Dan Zaharopol

A lot of people like Sudoku, and they're fun puzzles, but there's a problem with them: they're all the same. Once you learn some basic strategies, you're mostly doing the same thing over and over again. In this class, each puzzle will be new and different. You'll have to keep coming up with new strategies, developing your thinking and learning to tackle new situations. You'll learn to stretch your mind and be more creative when faced with a new problem. Join us for a fun time, solving at your own pace and going over all kinds of different challenges!

X2300: The History of Mardi Gras
Difficulty: *
Teachers: Benjamin Zollinger

Learn about the history and customs of the biggest party and most popular holiday in Louisiana. Come take part in the centuries old New Orleans celebration, We'll talk about old traditions, modern practice, and the party that hasn't stopped since 1699.

X2244: How to Win Any Argument Full!
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Sarah Joo, Brian Yu

Ever find yourself in a position where you can't seem to convince other people of your ideas? This class will explore the art of persuasive speaking, to help you convince others that you're right*. We'll talk about how construct a compelling argument, how to respond to someone else's (less compelling) argument, how to ask insightful questions, and how to present your ideas in a clear and well-articulated way. And we'll do it all through a group debate over one of the most important and unanswered questions: What is the right thing to do?

*Even if you’re not.

X2352: Beyonce vs. Nicki Minaj: Understanding Womanist Music
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Ewurama Okai

What is womanism? What are the different views within this movement? What are the similarities and/or differences between Beyonce and Nicki Minaj's representations of womanism? In this class, we are going to be exploring the historical roots of womanism and how current pop music reflects the tensions of the movement today. We will be asking questions about what traits of womanism each artist embodies, and making judgements about whether we agree or disagree with their approaches to elevating the black woman in music. This part history, part music class will hopefully allow you to understand the value of these two women in pop music today.

X2220: Psychology of Shopping
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Amy Estersohn

In this class, we'll learn about some of the common techniques that stores use to make customers more likely to buy a product. Then, you'll have a chance to apply these principles into your own designs!

X2207: Learning to Teach
Difficulty: *
Teachers: Saran Morgan

Ever been in a class where the teacher asks if everyone understands something (and not everyone does), there's a few moments of silence, and then he or she moves on? Let's learn about effective teaching techniques such as how to check for understanding, how to give and receive feedback, how to create a culture of error, how to ask the right questions, and more.

X2296: What is Life?
Difficulty: *
Teachers: Kellen Silver

Join us in discussing the nature of life, both biological and philosophical. By the end of class, we will come up with our own answer to the question: What is life?

X2363: The Buckley Program: Explaining the Rise of Trump
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Bernard Stanford

With Trump in the headlines daily, many Americans are asking themselves, "How did we get here?" Despite negative favorability ratings and near-total opposition from the Republican political establishment, Trump managed to win the nomination of one of America's two major parties. This class presents various theories, investigating Trump's background, examining media coverage rates, exploring the primary system, and more, all to try and explain how Trump made it this far.

X2369: Chocolate! Full!
Difficulty: *
Teachers: Marley Finley

Those of us who know what's up love chocolate. And it's important to know your lovers: where they come from, how they're made, their melting point, etc. Thus, it's important for those of us who know what's up and love chocolate to spend a little bit of time getting to know it.


Prerequisites
No worrisome chocolate allergy

X2273: Learn to Camp! Full!
Difficulty: ***
Teachers: Aiyana Bobrownicki

Interested in the outdoors? Learn how to set up tents, tie knots, and build a fire in this outdoor skills workshop. Come ready to ask your outdoors questions and practice new camping skills!


Prerequisites
None!

X2281: About Iceland-- a land of ice and fire Full!
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Peter Wang

How much do you know about Iceland? An European country on an island next to Greenland, Iceland is a magnificent combination of volcanic/tectonic landforms and glacial features. Iceland is also the world's top pioneer in adopting renewable energy; it is currently powered with 99.99% renewable energy, unprecedented in any other countries.
In this class we'll go over a brief overview about Icelandic landscape, culture and technology.
P.S. I was just at Iceland for a program a couple months ago, so I can definitely speak from experience for a lot of the contents!


Prerequisites
Excitement to learn about an awesome country!

X2302: The Limits of Knowledge
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Daniel Do

How do you know you're not living in a Matrix simulation? Are most of your memories false? How much of your environment do you perceive? Is there a limit to how much you can learn or comprehend? Is there anything you could ever be certain about?

In this class, we'll explore puzzles, paradoxes, and psychological phenomena that cast doubt on everything you think you know.

X2245: Take Your Time, Don't Waste Your Time
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Sarah Joo, Brian Yu

What are we supposed to do with our lives? What makes them meaningful? How should we best use our (relatively short) time on this earth? This course will attempt to explore some of these questions by looking not at philosophers whose lives and existences seem far removed from our own, but from contemporary thinkers who show us that these ideas haven’t ceased to be relevant. Learn what John Green has to say on starting over, J.K. Rowling on the power of imagination, Lin Manuel Miranda on storytelling, and so much more. We can’t promise a perfect answer, but do promise that we’ll all try to get a little closer to understanding how to “take your time, but don’t waste your time. There’s a difference."

X2275: Playlist-ing
Difficulty: *
Teachers: Xinyuan Chen

We're gonna listen to a bunch of music.

Well, more specifically, I'm going to be going over the unfathomably subjective concept of playlisting- how to make playlists for a variety of events. We'll be picking a mood or an event or something and then throwing together a quick playlist for it. Should be fun! Maybe you'll find some new favorite songs!


Prerequisites
Come ready to listen/talk about music!

X2272: Bread Worth Eating Full!
Difficulty: *
Teachers: Rachel Han

What makes bread delicious? Come learn about the bread-making techniques that give rise to different flavors, textures and dining experiences! We will discuss bread from across the world and sample a few locally made breads :)

X2364: Protest, Revolution and Repression
Difficulty: **

Do you know the difference between a revolution and a protest? How and when do governments decide to repress domestic unrest? What factors affect the outcome of repression? We will begin by exploring these questions, and then place ourselves in the shoes of the actors to explore how and why decisions to protest and repress are made.

X2308: Top Secret: Unethical Human Experiments of the 20th Century Full!
Difficulty: *
Teachers: Sarah Abdallah

From illegal drug testing, to secret chemical weapons development, to psychological torture, scientific research has long been marred by unethical practices. This course will cover the details of several infamous experiments on human subjects, what made them unethical, and how that unethicality was concealed from the general public.

Note: Contains some mildly graphic content.

X2292: Gotta Catch 'Em All: 20 Years of Pokémon Full!
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Hari Anbarasu

A look at the history of Pokémon, from Pokémon Red to Pokémon GO, and how things have changed in terms of battling, trading, and more!


Prerequisites
A basic familiarity with Pokémon. Ideally, you'll have played at least one version start to finish.

X2248: What were the most important US elections ever? Full!
Difficulty: *

The 2016 presidential election is coming up fast, and every 4 years, we hear the same phrase: "This is the most important election in a lifetime." But not every election can be the most important one, so let's investigate which ones actually were. We'll look at criteria for what makes an election historically important, make a judgement, and then predict if the 2016 election actually is as important as our candidates say it is.

X2218: Positivity: The Power of Optimism Full!
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Caitlin Dermody

Learn strategies and practice ideas to create an impact on your life!


Prerequisites
N/A

X2226: Mindfulness and Stress Tolerance Full!
Difficulty: *

Learn to identify and better manage stress through mindfulness, a simple way of thinking that anyone can do.

X2256: Urban Inequality in Games
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Robert Scaramuccia

Rapture, Los Santos, Diamond City, The Citadel—all metropolises of unimaginable decadence and pervasive poverty. Why have so many of the past decade's greatest games used beautifully-realized cities to explore themes of economic inequality and racial hierarchy? What can virtual cities teach us about the socio-economic landscapes of Los Angeles, Detroit, or New Haven? Using Bioshock Infinite's Columbia as a guiding example, we'll take a look at how video games interpret what it's like to live in a diverse, interconnected space and ask whether games can accurately reflect the world we live in (spoilers: they totally can!).

X2294: Simulation Theory
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Amanda Mei

You are reading this sentence. How did you get here reading this sentence? What decisions did you make? If you'd made any other decisions along the way, where would you be? In this class, we will start thinking about our lives as simulations, in which we make the conscious decisions that affect our reality. We will question what reality is and how we perceive it — and if we can ever know it. We'll draw on theories from a wide range of disciplines, including philosophy, psychology, literature, and science.