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Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

Nancy L Kool
B CUSP 134
Bothell Campus

Interdisciplinary Writing

Offers an interdisciplinary approach to composition, including generating a compelling topic; the articulation of a thesis; the development of supporting evidence; the ability to draw conclusions from the evidence, clear organization of the essay, correct mechanics; awareness of audience, and knowledge of resources for research. Prerequisite: may not be taken for credit if previously earned a minimum grade of 2.0 B CUSP 101, B CUSP 114, or ENGL 131. Offered: AWSp.

Class description

Course title: "Happiness" This course will explore the questions, What is happiness?, and What constitutes human well-being – individual, relational, and social? We’ll move from intimate and personal definitions to a global, multicultural perspective. Along the way we’ll engage with food and our relationship to it and questions about the relationship of status and wealth to longevity; the importance of material comforts and possessions; and, ultimately, the question of why some societies are happier than others. Students will engage, through discussion and writing, with readings in a range of disciplines and genres, as well as photographs and documentary films. Ultimately, each student will develop his or her own reflection on the definition of individual happiness and collective, social well-being. As a writing course, the primary focus will be on the CUSP learning goal of communication as a "reflective and creative process of oral, performative, written, and multimedia expression."

Student learning goals

As a writing course, the primary focus will be on the CUSP learning goal of communication as a "reflective and creative process of oral, performative, written, and multimedia expression."

General method of instruction

Class will be participatory, with the instructor facilitating but lecturing as little as possible. Students will learn through their own inquiry, through engagement with the readings and images, and through group work -- as well as through a process of writing and revising to clarify your ideas.

Recommended preparation

Class assignments and grading

There will be 3 formal essays; more or less daily written responses, ranging from personal journal writing to pre-writing in preparation for the essays. Essay #1 (2-3 pp.) will be centered on food and relationships, both intimate and social; sources for this essay will include poetry, a Michael Pollard article on the beef industry, and an excerpt from a book on the "100-mile diet" developed here in the Northwest.

Essay #2 (4-5 pp.) will involve the analysis of a photograph of one of the many families (and their worldly possessions)included in the book _Material World_. For this essay students will also learn about economic and non-economic measures of happiness in use around the world and read excerpts from the book _The Status Syndrome_.

Essay #3 (~3 pp.) concludes the quarter with a reflection on what makes for a happy person in a happy society. Writers will have quite a bit of leeway here to choose their own "take," topics, and sources.

In Essay #3 (~3 pp.)


The information above is intended to be helpful in choosing courses. Because the instructor may further develop his/her plans for this course, its characteristics are subject to change without notice. In most cases, the official course syllabus will be distributed on the first day of class.
Last Update by Nancy L Kool
Date: 01/27/2011