Past Special Topics Courses

Spring 2015 GT Honors Program Elective Courses

ARCH 4823 HP                  All Roads Lead to Rome: Roman Values and Architectural Culture                                                   Laura Hollengreen          MF 12-1:30

This course will look at the ancient Roman world through the lens of architecture, one of the Romans’ greatest and most enduring legacies.  Treating the Roman world in its full chronological extent (from the Republic through the Empire) and its full geographical reach (from northern England and Germany to North Africa, and from Gibraltar to Syria), we will investigate how the Romans adapted forms of Greek and Etruscan religious, civic, and domestic architecture; created enduring forms of urban design and popular amenities such as stadia and colossea; devised impressively effective infrastructure at urban and imperial scale, much of it still in use a millennium or more later; innovated in the fields of building materials (concrete), structures (vaulting), and systems (hydraulic engineering; and fostered a recognizably Roman civilization across Europe with impact far beyond.  Each student will complete a substantial research project on a major Roman building, seen in interdisciplinary perspective.                                                     Cap:10 HP (10 other)/free

EAS 3110 HP                      A Balance of Power:  Energy, Environment & Society                                                                           Kim Cobb                                MW 3-4

Anthropogenic global warming and energy security concerns have made the search for affordable low-carbon energies a local, national, and international priority. The path towards alternative energy infrastructures for the 21st century requires careful consideration of economic, environmental, technological, and political factors. This interdisciplinary seminar-style course will blend current events, guest speakers, lively discussion, and a diverse array of literature to separate fact from fiction in the heated debate concerning our nation's climate and energy future. The main student activity will be a semester-long ‘Carbon Reduction Challenge,’ wherein student teams compete to reduce carbon footprints by the semester’s end.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Cap:20 HP/free

ECE 2803 HP                      Predicting the Future                                                                                                                                        Joe Hughes                                MW 3-4:30

Predicting the future has been the creative inspiration for artistic endeavors ranging from Jetsons cartoons to science fiction novels, movies, and television shows to paintings depicting apocalyptic end-times.  On a very practical level, predictions (often called projections or forecasts) regarding population shifts or advances in technology drive decisions on billions of dollars in research spending, infrastructure development, and financial investments.  And, vocal political controversies rage over predictions of future climate change and water shortages.  This course will examine the full range of attempts to predict the future -- artistic, technical, and political -- by looking at past predictions (both successful and failed) and even making some predictions of our own.  Course activities such as readings, videos, presentations, and projects will allow students to explore the topic in relation to their individual majors and personal interests.                                                                                                                                                                                Cap: 20 HP/TCES for some majors

ECE 2813 HP                      How We See the World:  Optics & Devices                                                                                 John Buck                             MWF 11-12

Optics has become an indispensable part of today’s technology.  The purpose of this course is to describe the optical principles that are used in several important applications. These include, for example, optical fiber communication, digital imaging and displays, lasers, and microscopy. The course begins with light itself – how we describe it, how we measure it, and why it is useful.   Next we explore ways in which light is put to use in technology, within the broad areas of illumination, imaging, communication, and precision measurement.   Most of these discussions will be in the form of case studies, in which specifications on a particular optical device will be presented, followed by a discussion in detail on their meaning.   Optical equipment demonstrations will occur in the classroom and in visits to the laboratory.  Discussions of current research in optics are interwoven throughout the semester; these involve guest speakers from various optics disciplines on campus.                                                                        Cap: 20 HP/TCES for some majors

MATH 2803 HP                 Bridge to Mathematics                                                                                                                                     Anton Leykin                                T 3-6

No, this is not a pre-math remedial course: "bridge" is a popular card game. We will learn how to play and then play.  Studying parts of combinatorics and probability theory relevant to the game should help us play bridge better.  We will split time between theory (both bridge and math) and practice (play and discussion). Bridge puzzles, math puzzles, mini-tournaments, post-game analysis—all will be components of this course.                                                                                                                                Cap: 20 HP/TCES for some majors

ME 3141 HP                        Cutting Edge Technologies                                                                                                                             David Ku                                TR 4:30-6

This seminar-style course investigates the background and primary sources of advanced engineering technologies.  The goal is for students to gain a familiarity with some of the most advanced research addressing major technological challenges of today.  We will discuss journal papers on Tuesdays in a lay-friendly manner to get beyond the math.  Thursdays will consist of guest speakers that will include distinguished GT faculty and researchers from around the world, invited to present their work to a non-technical audience.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     Cap: 10HP(10TM)/free

PSYC 2803 HP                    Leveraging Social Networks                                                                                                                           Leslie DeChurch                              R 12-3

Social networks have come to play an increasingly important role in all aspects of our lives.  There is widespread agreement that the ability to grow, nurture, and leverage networks will differentiate leaders in 21st century organizations.  This course provides you with the concepts, insights, and techniques that will give you a competitive edge as you discover, diagnose and design your social networks.  These principles vary depending on your desire to explore innovations, engage in entrepreneurship, exploit existing resources, implement change, or mobilize for strategic partnerships.  The course will identify the optimal principles in these diverse contexts using a set of case studies, review articles, as well as computer-based visual-analytic demonstrations.                                                                                                                                                                                            Cap: 20 HP/free

 

PUBP 4813 HP                   It’s Real:  The Science & Policy of Climate Change                                                                 Alice Favero                         TR 1:30-3

Climate change is a difficult, contentious, and important issue. It will perhaps be the defining environmental issue of the 21st century. It is a global problem requiring unprecedented international cooperation and interdisciplinary investigation.  This course aims to address the whole complexity of climate change as an issue, by bringing together the science of climate change, the analysis of impacts, and the strategies to reduce emissions. Natural sciences, engineering, economics and public policy will blend into one course. Students will be actively engaged in exploring the scientific and economic issues underlying the threat of global climate change, and the institutions engaged in negotiating an international response. Then, we will understand why it is difficult to reach a global agreement on climate change by reviewing the history of climate negotiation. Finally, we will discuss possible future developments of current negotiations.                                                                                                                                                  Cap:13 HP/7G/free

RUSS 3813 HP                    Modifying the Human Species: Expts in Russ. and Eur. Fiction and Film                                          Dina Khapaeva                             TR 3-4:30

The course addresses the imaginary experiments that Russian and European writers and film directors conducted upon their protagonists trying to perfect or modify the human nature through scientific investigation. We will focus on the nature of these experiments, the imaginary goals and tools that writers and producers put together for the task. The social and moral outcomes intended by the writers and film directors and those they did not anticipate will be in the center of our attention.  The course will highlight cross-cultural differences in the projects of improving human nature in European and Russian fiction. This analysis will enable students to see how these experiments influenced our contemporary understanding of human nature and the exceptionality of human beings. Finally, we will examine the impact of these ideas on the contemporary political and aesthetic debates, including human and animal rights, post-humanism and transhumanism.  All readings and assignments are in English.                                  Cap: 20 HP/free

                                               

CASE Studies:  Connecting Academic and Societal Experience

The purpose of these courses is to create opportunities for Georgia Tech undergraduates to develop meaningful research and service relationships with partners external to Georgia Tech, whether in Atlanta or elsewhere—preferably non-profit, community-based organizations, that work, as Georgia Tech itself aspires to do, to improve the human condition.                                                                                                                                                                      

 

CP 4813 HP                         Urban Sustainability: Planning for a Better Atlanta                                                Anna Kim                                                             T 1-4

This course is an applied and interactive overview of homeless and housing in America, with a focus on how structural and legal changes since WWII have shaped US cities. Planning-specific problems of study include community development, economic development, housing, urban/suburban sprawl, and racial segregation. Throughout the semester we will apply theories of culture, consumption and inequality to our study of urban spaces. The last part of the course will evaluate various strategies for building a more socially just and sustainable Atlanta, including local and national social movements, community organizing, and civic engagement.                                                                  Cap: 20 HP/free

 

HTS 2813 HP                      Near Peer Mentioning: An Experience in Urban Education                                  Carol Subino Sullivan & Chris Burke     TR 9:30-11

This course challenges students to engage in near-peer mentoring while examining how race, poverty, and other socioeconomic dynamics have shaped the educational opportunities available in historically segregated and economically distressed urban communities.  We will work with students at two Atlanta public high schools in Atlanta’s Westside.  Each Georgia Tech student will be paired with one high school student.  The pairs will meet at least once a week and spend the semester working towards goals that help prepare the student for college.  In addition to mentoring, Georgia Tech students will study the socioeconomic issues that affect urban education through readings, classwork and projects and apply these insights to bring an enriched and informed perspective to their mentoring work.  Through direct service and intentional relationships with high school students, Tech students will share their experiences while expanding their own understanding of educational disparities that persist in urban communities.          Cap: 20 HP/free

Fall 2014 GT Honors Program Elective Courses

APPH 4803 HP                       Epidemiology: Do Cell Phones Give You Brain Cancer                   Steven Girardot                          WF 3 – 4:30

The field of epidemiology is considered the core science of public health and is technically defined as “the study of the distribution and determinants of health-related states or events in human populations and the application of this study to the prevention and control of health problems.”  While its origins are rooted in infectious disease (such as the epidemiologist depicted in the movie Contagion), modern day epidemiologic methods are used to study a wide range of acute and chronic diseases and other conditions.  This seminar course will introduce fundamental methods and concepts in epidemiology.  Students will also examine case studies as well as hear from guest speakers from organizations like the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).  Students will complete a group project where they will propose a research study to address a specific hypothesis that they generate.  No prior coursework in statistics, health, or medicine is necessary.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Cap: 20

CE 4803 HP                Boulevard of Broken Sidewalks                                                         Randy Guensler                             TR 12 – 1:30

Explore how sidewalks as transportation infrastructure affect urban life.  This course couples literature review and class discussion with field research and data analysis to explore the importance of sidewalks within the context of planning, engineering, and public policy.  You will investigate sidewalk conditions, usage, and accessibility issues using the City of Atlanta as an urban laboratory by collecting data on sidewalk conditions and conducting manual and automated pedestrian counts.  We will focus on accessibility and equity in transportation while also learning about trip making and transportation mode choice modeling methods.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Cap: 20

COA 4803 HP                Working Outside Your Comfort Zone:  Designing With People              Sabir Khan                             TR 12-1:30   

A workshop/seminar that explores community engagement, participatory process, humanitarian design, social entrepreneurship, and "service learning".  The class will analyze specific examples of such projects as well as theoretical issues to grapple with the myriad challenges -- political, personal, social, professional, etc. -- that working with and for "others" raises.  Each student will develop preparatory material -- a dossier of background information, larger questions, suggested practices, etc -- for students who are already involved in or wish to take on such projects.                                                                                         Cap: 10

COE 3002 HP             Intro to Microelectronics & the Nanotechnology Revolution          John Cressler                         TR 4:30-6     (TECH OR TM Credit)

This course will expose students with little or no ECE background to a high-level understanding of the microelectronics and nanotechnology revolution and its global impact on both technology and society. Engineering, management, and science students generally comprise the class, which by its nature is highly interdisciplinary in its appeal.                                                                                                                                                                                               Cap: 15

HTS 4843 HP             The Pursuit of Happiness                                                       Doug Flamming                                  TR 1:30 – 3

The most famous phrase in the American Declaration of Independence -- "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness" -- has become so ubiquitous that few people pause to think about it.  But consider that phrase with care.  Think especially about "the pursuit of happiness."  What do those words mean to you?  What DID they mean to Jefferson when he wrote them in 1776?   Why did the American Founders consider "the pursuit of happiness" to be a perfectly logical follow-up to "life" and "liberty"?  Why did they think that "Nature and Nature's God" had "endowed" human beings with an "inalienable right" to this "pursuit of happiness"?  What was the pursuit of happiness all about?  Where, indeed, did the idea of Happiness come from, and how did its meaning change over time?  In this course, we will explore the long and winding history of a big and influential idea -- the idea of Happiness --from antiquity to the smiley face.                          Cap: 20

INTA 3803 HP                           Georgia during the Civil War                                                        Sy Goodman/ Jackie Royster            TR 3-4:30p

The Civil War brought more death, destruction, and hardship to Georgia and Georgians than all of America’s other conflicts combined. Black and white, rich and poor, men and women, old and young, free and enslaved – everyone had a huge stake in its course and outcome as in no other conflict. During this period Georgia became the industrial, transportation, and arsenal hub of the Confederacy. Its people and products appeared on every front. What did or did not happen during Sherman’s visit 150 years ago?  The Civil War was also the first war with a sizeable literate population.  People across all sorts of identities documented their experiences through letters, memoirs, and other literate genres.  They created a treasure trove for understanding the war and its impacts and consequences.  At the end of the war, infrastructures and human relationships had to be invented, reconstructed, and transformed to rebuild the state and the South.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Cap: 20

INTA 4830 HP                       What makes us safe? The Nature of National Security                    Jarrod Hayes                         MWF 11-12

In the post-September-11th world, the concept of security has taken on renewed importance.  In the United States, the discourses of security permeate everyday life.  But we rarely stop to think about what security is, and how security varies within and across societies.   This course will challenge you to critically examine the concept of security and the role it plays in society.  To that end, the course has two central goals.  The first is to explore the national security concerns and perspectives for the major countries and regions of the world.  The second is to understand the connection between alternative constructions of national security and the security policies of nation-states.  This course will fundamentally change your understanding of national security.   Cap: 15

SPAN 3260 HP                       Identity in Hispanic Literature                                                              Kelly Comfort                                    TR 9:30-11     (HUM Credit)

This is a discussion-based course with a unique thematic structure.  Divided into five units on—existential(ist) identity; racial, ethnic, cultural, and national identity; gender and class identity; temporal and spatial identity; and sexual and political identity—the selected literary works span more than a century of Latin American literature and include 17 texts from 6 genres.  The authors treated in the course come from nine different Spanish-speaking countries and include such iconic writers as Martí, Borges, Cortázar, García Márquez, Fuentes, Puig, and Allende.  Students will learn the necessary social and historical context for the works examined, engage in literary and cultural analysis, and write comparative essays and creative fiction.  Combining philosophic inquiry, literary studies, critical theory, and Latin American history—this course promises to open your eyes to one of the world’s richest and most innovative literary traditions. Cap: 20

Spring 2014 GT Honors Program Elective Courses

HTS 2013 HP       ^*Modern America: The Art and Science of Baseball                                             Greg Nobles                          AF 104                   TR 3-4:30

Baseball is much more than a game played on a diamond.  Since the second half of the nineteenth century, it has occupied a central place in American culture as a seemingly unending source of legend, memory, and myth.  It has also generated more scientific and statistical analysis than any other sport anywhere.  This course explores the place of baseball in the arts—embracing painting, poetry, fiction, film, and song—and in the social sciences—examining at such issues as urban/rural society, economic impact, and race.  Along the way, the course will also look into “inside baseball,” the statistics and strategy that keep the game a lively topic of discussion, even passion, when the actual season is over and the “Hot Stove League” begins.  On the whole, the course addresses one major topic: What makes baseball the best game ever invented?                                                                                                                                                                                                            Cap: 20 HP

 

LCC 3823 HP      *Buzz, GP Burdell, Old Gold: An Ethnographic Study of GT                               Cara Appel-Silbaugh                                          R 1:35-4:25

What is culture? What do you know about the cultures you interact with daily at Tech? In this interactive and engaging course students will be challenged to engage in an ethnographic study of Georgia Tech. Students will form small groups to conduct observations, interviews, and document analysis to understand a particular subculture of the Institute. The class as a whole will then analyze the data collected to look for specific themes. This course will expose students to a different type of research methodology and methods. By the end of the semester students will gain an increased, in depth knowledge about their campus community.         Cap: 20 HP

 

LDC 3308 HP      +*Walking                                                                                                                            T. Hugh Crawford               AF104                    TR 9:30

As parents know well, walking is the first major step an infant takes in that whole complicated process of growing up, yet after those first tentative steps are transformed into a confident stride, most people spend little time reflecting on just how walking functions (or does not function) in our culture: how we mark out and even make the world we live in through our own wayfaring.  This seminar will take walking as its topic, looking at poetry, novels, and film, but also environmental writing, history, archaeology, sociology, biology, geography, cartography and political science--in other words, walking will become our university. We will take a broad range of perspectives including questions of accessibility and mobility, the practices of hiking, and walking in the city. Projects will be drawn from the material studied, personal experiences on the ground (as it were), and will be wildly inventive.                                                                                                                                         Cap: 9

ECE 2803 HP       *Great Achievements and Grand Challenges                                                             Joe Hughes                                                           MW 3-4:30

At the start of this century a competition was held to name the Greatest Engineering Achievements of the 20th Century.  A few years later a similar effort identified fourteen Grand Challenges for this century that are “both achievable and sustainable to help people and the planet thrive.”  While these past accomplishments and current challenges (including environmentally-friendly energy sources, urban infrastructure, better medicines, and secure cyberspace) involve technological advances, the contribution of science, computing, public policy, and politics are equally important to success of these efforts.  This course provides an opportunity for student of ALL MAJORS to explore the interaction of technology and society, including socially-responsible engineering; implications of technological dependence; political, economic, and social factors; risks and ethical decision making; and limitations of technology.  Course readings, assignments, and projects will allow students to explore the social context of engineering and solutions for our world’s grand challenges in relation to their individual majors and interests.                               Cap: 20 HP
 

COA 4803 HP      *Working Outside Your Comfort Zone:  Designing With People                         Sabir Khan                                                            TR 12-1:30          

A workshop/seminar that explores community engagement, participatory process, humanitarian design, social entrepreneurship, and "service learning".  The class will analyze specific examples of such projects as well as theoretical issues to grapple with the myriad challenges -- political, personal, social, professional, etc. -- that working with and for "others" raises.  Each student will develop preparatory material -- a dossier of background information, larger questions, suggested practices, etc -- for students who are already involved in or wish to take on such projects.                                                                                                                           Cap: 15

                                                                                                                                       

ME 3141 HP        *Cutting-Edge Technologies                                                                                           David Ku                                                               T R 4:30-6

This seminar-style course investigates the background and primary sources of advanced engineering technologies.  The goal is for students to gain a familiarity with some of the most advanced research addressing major technological challenges of today.  We will discuss journal papers on Tuesdays in a lay-friendly manner to get beyond the math.  Thursdays will consist of guest speakers that will include distinguished GT faculty and researchers from around the world, invited to present their work to a non-technical audience.                                                                                                                                                                                                     Cap: 11 HP

 

CASE studies:  Connecting Academic and Societal Experience

The purpose of these courses is to create opportunities for Georgia Tech undergraduates to develop meaningful research and service relationships with partners external to Georgia Tech, whether in Atlanta or elsewhere—preferably non-profit, community-based organizations, that work, as Georgia Tech itself aspires to do, to improve the human condition. 

 

HTS 3008 HPC  ^*Near Peer Mentoring: An experience in Urban Education                  Chris Burke &  Carol Sullivan           AF104                    TR 12-1:30

This course challenges students to examine how race, poverty, gender, and other socioeconomic dynamics have shaped the educational opportunities available in historically segregated and economically distressed urban communities.  It further invites students to inquire how these social circumstances have influenced the possibilities that young people from these communities imagine for their futures.  We will focus on two Atlanta single gender high schools in Atlanta’s near Westside communities: Coretta Scott King Young Women’s Leadership Academy for girls and BEST Academy for boys.  Through direct service and intentional relationships with the high schools, Tech students will seek to help H.S. students (1) prepare for getting into college and being successful there and (2) value higher education as a means of improving the quality of their lives.                                                                                                                                                                                 Cap: 20 HP

 

EAS 2803 HPC    *Sunlight to Shadow:  Trees and the City                                                                    Monica Halka                      AF104                    F 1:35-4:25

When you think of a city, what’s the first thing that comes to mind?  Probably not “forest,” but many urban problems—such as smog and elevated summer temperatures—could be alleviated if people would get into that mindset.  Trees minimize the heat island effect, halt soil erosion, absorb air pollutants, and harbor native birds.  Atlanta’s numerous fruit trees provide food that can be distributed to the city’s needy.  In partnership with Trees Atlanta, this course will explore these aspects—and more—of what our urban forest does for our extended community and what we can do to help both thrive.  Scientific, economic, social, and environmental aspects will be explored.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Cap: 20 HP

CRP 4813 HPC    *Urban Studies:  Seeking Social Justice and Sustainability in the City               Anna Kim                                                             M 3-6 p

This course is an applied and interactive overview of urban planning theory, and how social and economic differences impact the geography of the city. We will focus on histories of urban form and social theory as a framework for city planning. Planning-specific problems of study include community development, inequitable development, housing, sprawl, and segregation from a critical race perspective. Throughout the semester we will apply theories of culture, consumption and inequality to urban spaces. The last part of the course will evaluate various strategies for sustainable cities, and social justice. The readings are a guide to understanding local communities, and all assignments require application of theories to real life problems in neighborhoods of students’ choosing.                                              Cap: 20 HP

 

Fall 2013 GT Honors Program Elective Courses

CHEM 2803 HP                                 The Origin of Life and Early Evolution                                                     Nick Hud                                               TR 9:30-11          

This course will cover theories pertaining to our current understanding of the origin of life and early evolution. An intrinsically interdisciplinary topic, this class will include material as varied as the use of atmospheric physics to model the early Earth, to the use of genetics to map evolution and the tree of life. In addition to the introduction of important concepts in biology, chemistry and physics (i.e. evolution, thermodynamic stability), students will be shown how our current scientific knowledge in these disciplines places limits on possible scenarios for the origin of life.  CHEM 1315 or 2311 highly recommended as a pre- or co-requisite for this course.  Students in this course must sign waiver for videotaping of the class.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Cap: 20 HP

 

PHIL 3127 HP                                    Science, Technology, and Human Values:                                   Roberta Berry                                      MWF 1-2

                                                                                Biotechnology Law, Policy & Ethics      

Students will engage in an interdisciplinary, problem-solving, active-learning approach to understanding and designing policy resolutions for complex and contentious legal, ethical, and policy problems posed by biotechnologies. Students will work in teams with facilitators who will support the problem-based learning (PBL) process. Problem areas may include: neurotechnologies, human enhancement, gene patenting, forensic DNA identification, genetically modified foods. The course will develop topical knowledge as well as problem-solving skills and will include both individual and team assignments.                                                                                                                                                    Cap: 20 HP

 

INTA 2803 HP                                    The Meaning of Global Citizenship                                                              Vicki Birchfield/ Amy Henry                 W 12-3  

This course explores the meaning of global citizenship as it has evolved in scholarly debates as well as how it is “practiced” by individuals and “institutionalized” by universities, corporations and other organizations that deploy the concept as a strategic goal or a set of value commitments. The course will be anchored by a survey of the relevant concepts, theories and analytical tools from the Social Sciences and Humanities, that enable students to think critically and systematically about our subject matter, particularly as it is bound up with complex constructs such as national identity, globalization and the causes and consequences of human migration. Concepts and tools from Intercultural Communication and Social Psychology are also drawn upon to facilitate an active investigation of perception, values, and problem-solving approaches, all which differ in patterned ways across cultures, and exert tremendous influence on how we define global citizenship.                                                                A. French 104                                                                       Cap: 20 HP

 

PUBP/CS/AE 2803 HP                     Crafting an Interdisciplinary Major                                                            Richard Barke                                      R 12-3

In this course you will study interdisciplinary problems in depth and learn about the challenges of approaching a problem or question from multiple perspectives. Students will develop a personal strategy for learning, using Georgia Tech and other resources, that meets their interests and passions. Students in the future X-Degree program will be required to enroll in later versions of this course to research and propose their personalized programs. You might take this course to explore becoming an X-Degree student in 2014-15. In this semester, however, you are asked only to be an eager guinea pig by exploring a chosen topic in interdisciplinary detail.  You will gain a deeper understanding of significant problems and complex issues, learn how to think across disciplines in a nonlinear way that avoids traditional shallowness and arrogance, and learn how to relate and communicate your academic interests to the everyday concerns of the public.                                                                                                                                                                                Cap: 20 HP

COE 3002 HP                                     Intro to Microelectronics & the Nanotechnology Revolution                John Cressler                                        TR 4:30-6

This course will expose students with little or no ECE background to a high-level understanding of the microelectronics and nanotechnology revolution and its global impact on both technology and society. Engineering, management, and science students generally comprise the class, which by its nature is highly interdisciplinary in its appeal. 

  Cap: 15 HP/15 TM

 

MATH 2803 HP                                 Number Theory and Cryptography                                                              Matt Baker                                           TR 12-1:30

This course will be an introduction to number theory and its applications to modern cryptography.  Number theory, one of the oldest branches of  mathematics, is about the endlessly fascinating properties of integers.  The backbone of the course will be modular (``clock'') arithmetic, which we will apply to calendar calculations (“What day of the week was March 17, 1903?”), music theory (the circle of fifths), security and randomness (how to flip a coin over the telephone), and the mathematics of card shuffling (magic tricks included!).  We will learn how number theory is used in public key cryptography to securely transmit information over the internet: this leads naturally to discussions of factoring, primality testing, and the discrete logarithm problem.                                                                                                                                                     Cap: 10 HP/10 NTC

 

PSYCH 2803 HP                                Mindfulness: The Practice and Science of Contemplation                      Paul Verhaeghen                                 TR 9:30-11

Mindfulness means engaging with life as it unfolds, that is being ‘here’ ‘now’. Much research suggests that engaging in mindfulness helps decrease stress and anxiety, and promotes well-being. In this class, we will tackle the theory, science and practice of meditation and other contemplative techniques aimed at increasing mindfulness, building on and from existing programs in Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction and Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy. The class has both a practical component (i.e., we will experientially investigate a number of contemplative techniques, starting with meditation, that is, we will sit, breathe, pay attention, and reflect on that), and a theoretical/scientific component, where we will discuss the Buddhist underpinnings of mindfulness programs, the psychology and neuroscience of attention, the psychology and neuroscience of the stress response, contemplative science, the psychology of happiness, and the effects of mindfulness on brain and behavior.  There is no prerequisite, but there is a strict co-requisite: The commitment to devote 20 minutes a day, each day, to meditation for the duration of the course.             A. French 104                                                       Cap:12

CASE Studies:  Connecting Academic and Societal Experience

The purpose of these courses is to create opportunities for Georgia Tech undergraduates to develop meaningful research and service relationships with partners external to Georgia Tech, whether in Atlanta or elsewhere—preferably non-profit, community-based organizations, that work to improve the human condition.

                                                                                                                                                                                                               

LCC 2803 HP                                      Women and Home in Multiethnic Women’s Literature                          Kathryn Meehan                                 TR 1:30-3

This course will explore concepts of “home” in multiethnic women’s writing, including poetry, essays, and short fiction.  Through the interdisciplinary lens of cultural studies, we will consider gender, race, and class in the assigned texts and their contexts.  We will examine the literary canon and representations of privileged and marginalized women in the texts.  The service learning component of the course will include volunteer hours at the Atlanta Day Shelter for Women and Children.  We will explore connections between the texts we study and the role of the Day Shelter in local community.                                                                                                                                                                    Cap: 20 HP

 

ECE 2883 HPC                                   Changing the World, One Digital Design Project at a Time                   Tom Collins                                          MW 4:30-6

Increasingly, everyday objects have embedded intelligence – not just things like smart phones, which have full-fledged computers in them, but also devices like digital light switches, pedometers, webcams, and remote sensors, just to name a few. The applications for such devices have barely been touched, and ideas can come from a range of disciplines.  What smart thing would you like to have in your pocket?  What would be a great educational aid for children?  What sensor could help us understand climate change?  What might prevent a vulnerable person from becoming a crime victim? The resources of the Digital Design Laboratory will be available to work on the conception, design, and implementation of your ideas.  You will work in a team where different members have different strengths.  But even if you know nothing about digital logic when you start, you will learn that and more in interactive sessions with faculty and peers.                                                                                A. French 104                                                       Cap: 20 HP

HTS 2813 HPC                                   Semester in the City: Engaging English Avenue        Sheri Davis-Faulkner/Chris Burke    TR 3-4:30

This mind-on/hands-on service-learning course invites students to explore how an urban neighborhood works – and equally important, to begin working in that neighborhood.  We will focus on the English Avenue community, just adjacent to the west side of Georgia Tech, a neighborhood facing serious challenges but also developing significant strategies for change.  Looking at English Avenue from a variety of perspectives – historical, social, political, economic, and environmental, among others – we will seek to understand the community on its own terms, but also study it within the larger context of the city of Atlanta.                                                                                                                          Cap: 20 HP

BIOL 2803 HPC                                 Communicating Science to the Public                                                          Jennifer Leavey                                   TR 8-9:30

In this course students will have the opportunity to design exciting hands-on science demonstrations for a general audience, to be presented at the inaugural Atlanta Science Festival Expo Day, March 29, 2014, in Centennial Park.  Students will learn the fundamentals of informal science education and methods of assessing learning and will do in depth research about a science topic of their choosing.  After creating the demonstrations, students will evaluate how effective they are by getting feedback from their peers, members of the Atlanta Science Festival Program Committee, and local school children.   This feedback will allow students to revise their demonstrations and make the Georgia Tech contribution to the Atlanta Science Festival truly spectacular.                                                                                                                                                                                        Cap: 20 HP

Spring 2013 GT Honors Program Elective Courses

                                                                                                                                                                                   

CHEM 2803 HP         Bright and Smart:  Organic Materials for Electronics and Photonics                     Jean-Luc Bredas             T R 9:30-11

This course will introduce highly-motivated undergraduate students to the emerging field of organic electronics and photonics via an understanding of the electronic and optical properties of organic materials provided—namely by carrying out simple but informative molecular modeling calculations and simulations.  The course highlights an interdisciplinary approach to these organic materials. Each of the topics will include elements related to the chemical, optical, and/or electrical properties of the materials, their characterization, their device fabrication, and their current or expected applications in the market place.       Cap: 20 HP

 

HTS 3813 HP             Witness to a Changing Conscience: Writing and Personal Transformation            Ken Knoespel/ Bruce McEver                     T 3-6

This seminar is devoted to the study of writers whose works have shaped our discourse of what it means to truly be a human being in the world of others.  After considering a cluster of seminal writing often referred to as ‘confessions,’ we will turn our attention to writing that witnesses to fundamental transformations in individual moral consciousness in a world rapidly being transformed by scientific and technological development.  Students will write three short papers. Since the course will be run as seminar, students will also be expected to give regular presentations on assigned readings in class.  It is also assumed that students will meet regularly with the course instructors.                                                                                                                                                       Cap: 15 HP (15 XL)??

HTS 3823 HP             From Spymaster to Spy-Tech                                                Kristie Macrakis                                   TR 1:30-3

This course will follow the historical development, culture, and socio-political constructs of some of the most important technological devices, techniques, and methods used in conducting espionage.  Topics include planes, satellites, submarines, the CIA's LSD experiments, agent technology, and the post-9/11 assessment of American spy technology.                                                                                                                                                                                    Cap: 20 HP

INTA 4803 HP                       Global Food Politics                                                   Barbara Lynch                                                 M W 12-1:30

This interdisciplinary course offers a historical introduction to our contemporary global food system with an emphasis on food producers in the global south.  Topics include the history of plant and animal domestication; land tenure and “traditional” farming and pastoral systems in Latin America, Africa and Asia; fishing and fish farming in SE Asia and Latin America; the rise and spread of plantation agriculture in the Caribbean and Asia; agricultural modernization, the Green Revolution and the gene revolution; the rise of global agribusiness enterprises; sustainable agriculture and food movements in Europe and South America; and an introduction to the work of international agricultural organizations like the FAO and the Centers for International Agricultural Research.  Students will engage in small group projects on the evolution of Georgia’s food system.                                                                                                                                  Cap: 20 HP

ECE 4833 HP             Solving the “Grand Challenges” - Science, Engineering, and Beyond           Joseph L.A. Hughes                                    M W 4:30-6

Environmentally-friendly energy sources, access to clean water, urban infrastructure, and secure cyberspace are among 14 Grand Challenges identified in 2008 as “both achievable and sustainable to help people and the planet thrive.” But the solutions to these challenges will require more than just engineering:  science, computing, public policy, and political considerations are equally important. This seminar will use the Grand Challenges as examples and motivation as we explore the interaction of technology and society. Topical areas include the relationship between science and engineering; socially-responsible engineering; implications of technological dependence; political, economic, and social factors; risks and ethical decision making; and limitations of technology. Course readings, assignments, and projects will be designed to allow students from all majors to explore the social context of engineering and solutions for our world’s grand challenges in relation to their individual majors and interests.                                                                                                               Cap: 20 HP

PSYC 2803 HP                       Leveraging Social Networks                                                  Leslie DeChurch                                  R 12-3

Social networks have come to play an increasingly important role in all aspects of our lives.  There is widespread agreement that the ability to grow, nurture, and leverage networks will differentiate leaders in 21st century organizations.  This course provides you with the concepts, insights, and techniques that will give you a competitive edge as you discover, diagnose and design your social networks.  These principles vary depending on your desire to explore innovations, engage in entrepreneurship, exploit existing resources, implement change, or mobilize for strategic partnerships.  The course will identify the optimal principles in these diverse contexts using a set of case studies, review articles, as well as computer-based visual-analytic demonstrations.                                         Cap: 20 HP

 

BC 2803 HP                A New Job Every Day:  Managing the Built Environment                           Kathy Roper                                        M 3-6

This course will explore facility management—from understanding building users to planning, design, construction, occupancy, operations, management and re-use—each day in the world of a facility management professional is different.  The course will focus on two primary issues after a broad overview of this multi-disciplinary field which requires strong skills in many fields.  Students will delve into research, discussions and presentations to explain the value of sustainable buildings, from a materials and use perspective, as well as from the value and financial management perspective.                                                         Cap: 20 HP

                                   

CASE Studies:  Connecting Academic and Societal Experience

The purpose of these courses is to create opportunities for Georgia Tech undergraduates to develop meaningful research and service relationships with partners external to Georgia Tech, whether in Atlanta or elsewhere—preferably non-profit, community-based organizations, that work, as Georgia Tech itself aspires to do, to improve the human condition. 

                                                                                                                                                           

HTS 2813 HPC                       Urban Education: Near Peer Mentoring Immersion            Carol Sullivan & Chris Burke               TR 9:30-11

This course challenges students to examine how race, poverty, gender, and other socioeconomic dynamics have shaped the educational opportunities available in historically segregated and economically distressed urban communities.  It further invites students to inquire how these social circumstances have influenced the possibilities that young people from these communities imagine for their futures.  We will focus on two public charter schools in Atlanta’s near Westside communities: Coretta Scott King Young Women’s Leadership Academy for girls and BEST Academy for boys.  Through direct service and intentional relationships with high schools, Tech students will seek to help H.S. students (1) prepare for getting into college and being successful there and (2) value higher education as a means of improving the quality of their lives.                                                                                                                             Cap: 30 HP

MGT 4803 HPC                     Leadership for Positive Change                                 Lalita Kaligotla                                                M 3-4:30*

The Honors Program section of this course will be combined with the Capstone experiential learning section that is offered for students pursuing the Management Track of the Minor in Leadership Studies.  This course is designed to provide students the opportunity to develop leadership skills and to test competencies gained through classroom learning in a project-based setting.  The instructor will identify team projects that will help build the capacity of a social enterprise.  The project should enable demonstration of the cumulative learning and growth of the student-team’s leadership skills, and increase awareness of facilitators and barriers to implementation of ideas and social innovations in real world organizations. In addition, students should also be able to demonstrate their critical, creative and analytical thinking abilities in addressing the challenge, designing a context specific solution and implementing it.  *This is a 3-credit-hour course that will require extensive out-of-classroom meeting and project implementation.                                                                                                                                    Cap: 15 HP

Fall 2012 GT Honors Program Elective Courses

 

COC 3803 HP                        Engineering your Life for a 21st Century World                  Merrick Furst & Andy Fleming            W 3-6

This course will help students take charge of their lives in more effective and satisfying ways.  Through experimentation and practice with leading edge principles and frameworks related to entrepreneurship and human development—and immersion in an intensive mentoring environment—students will learn how to deliberately shape their lives to (1) create value, (2) connect with others, and (3) develop themselves.  Students will be expected to construct and conduct experiments every week related to these objectives and to share their results and learning with fellow students, the professors, and select guest-speakers/mentors.  Additionally, students will complete selected readings, write two short reflection papers, and make a final “public” presentation to which they may invite guests.                                                                                                                        

 

COE 3002 HP             Intro to Microelectronics & the Nanotechnology Revolution                      John Cressler                           TR 4:30-6

This course will expose UG students with little or no ECE background to a high-level understanding of the microelectronics and nanotechnology revolution and its global impact on both technology and society.  Engineering, management, and science students will comprise the class, and by its nature it will be highly interdisciplinary in its appeal.                                                                                                            

 

ECE 2803 HP             How Does SIRI Know? Audio & Video Processing                          David Anderson                      TR 9:30-11

"Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic." (- Arthur C. Clark)  Are smart-phones magic?  Smart-phones are the meeting place of art, science, engineering, psychology, business, and entertainment.  Although much of the improvement in handheld processing is a result of advances in semiconductor technology, many of the breakthroughs in science that have enabled our handheld multimedia revolution are founded in a study of how we hear and see and speak and other, equally important advances, are a result of improved algorithms for manipulating sound and images. We will explore the science, art, and magic behind smart-phones: speech recognition, music compression, image and video cameras and playback, and even phone calls.                                                                                                                                                

 

GRMN 4813 HP         The Burden of the Past                                                                       Frank Pilipp                             MW 5-6:30

In this course, The Burden of the Past: Memory, Accountability, and Soul-Searching in German and American Film, students will examine recent films (of the past two decades) from Germany as well as some from the U.S. about historical events that have had an impact that contemporary society continues to try to come to terms with. The Holocaust, slavery,  the expropriation of native Americans, the deprivation of civil and women’s rights have not only been of utmost historical significance but also long-standing topics in film and literature that still cause public debates and controversies today.                                                                                                                                                                                 

INTA 4803 HP                       Democracy 2.0                                                                                               Peter Brecke                         TR 3-4:30

This course is about governance.  It starts with the premise that governance should be thought of as a particular organizational technology that functions to provide things that we as members of a society would like to have.  These things include security, freedom, prosperity, social mobility, justice, and participation.  The course is about how to improve the technology.  The course begins by exploring the emergence of governance about 5000 BCE and the forms it has taken moving towards the modern era.  We will focus on democracy and the different types of democracies that societies have developed.  Then we shift to designing a better form of democratic governance.  As an example, we will explore a particular form called Democracy 2.0 that has built into it the capability to change—and hopefully improve—our governmental structures, so that our system of governance functions better than it does now.                                                                                                                                         

 

 

PHIL 3127 (PUBP 4803) HP             Biotechnology Law, Policy, and Ethics                                  Roberta Berry                          MW 3-4:30     

This course examines challenging issues in biotechnology law, policy & ethics through multi-disciplinary course readings. The course employs an active-learning, seminar-style approach, with panels of students assigned to write and present short papers addressing the class readings. Class discussion centers on the papers presented each class. Issues addressed may include neuroimaging technologies, brain-machine interface technologies, nanotechnologies, human cloning, human genetic engineering, patenting of genes/life, genetically modified foods, DNA identification for forensic and other purposes, synthetic biology and the creation of cellular machines. All course readings will be posted on electronic reserves or available on the Web; there will be no assigned text.                                                                                                                                   

PSY 2803 HP                                      Psychology of Creativity and the Arts                                  Paul Verhaeghen                        TR 9:30-11

This course is meant to provide an overview on what ‘scientific’ psychology can tell us about the creative person and the creative process. You will soon learn that we know some important things, but that we seem to know very little about what probably most interests you: where does my own creativity come from, and what can I do to become more creative? This is clearly not a DIY-creativity-enhancement course (and you will learn why it isn’t). In a way, this class is a journey without end and a quest without answers, but we may glean some (hopefully) interesting vistas along the way. The main goal is not to bombard you with tidbits of information (though that will happen) but to get you thinking, critically, about the creative process in general and maybe your own creativity in particular. At the least, the course should provide you with the insight that creativity is hard to fathom, and give you a sense of how awesome and strange your own creativity and that of other people really is.                        

                                                                                                                       

New Category:   CASE studies:  Connecting Academic and Societal Experience

The purpose of these courses is to create opportunities for Georgia Tech undergraduates to develop meaningful research and service relationships with partners external to Georgia Tech, whether in Atlanta or elsewhere—preferably non-profit, community-based organizations, that work, as Georgia Tech itself aspires to do, to improve the human condition. 

 

HTS 2803 HPC           Semester in the City:  Engaging English Avenue                  Greg Nobles & Chris Burke                 TR 3-4:30

This mind-on/hands-on service-learning course invites students to explore how an urban neighborhood works – and equally important, to begin working in that neighborhood.  We will focus on the English Avenue community, just adjacent to the west side of Georgia Tech, a neighborhood facing serious challenges but also developing significant strategies for change.  Looking at English Avenue from a variety of perspectives – historical, social, political, economic, and environmental, among others – we will seek to understand the community on its own terms, but also study it within the larger context of the city of Atlanta.                                                                                                                                                          

 

EAS 2803 HPC           The Urban Forest                                                                               Monica Halka                          TR 1:30-3

When you think of a city, what’s the first thing that comes to mind?  Probably not “forest,” but many urban problems—such as smog and elevated summer temperatures—could be alleviated if people would get into that mindset.  Trees minimize the heat island effect and halt soil erosion.  They absorb air pollutants and harbor native birds.  Atlanta’s numerous fruit trees provide food that can be distributed to the city’s needy.  In partnership with Trees Atlanta, this course will explore these aspects—and more—of what our urban forest does for our extended community and what we can do to help both thrive.  Scientific, economic, social, and environmental aspects will be explored. 

 

Spring 2012 GT Honors Program Elective Courses                                                                                                                 

LCC 3226 HP You Don’t Know Moby Dick:            Melville and 19th-Cent. Technology   Hugh Crawford                                                T R 9:30-11

Herman Melville's classic novel is much more than a ripping seafaring yarn; it is also a compendium of nineteenth-century technologies. We will use a studio model for humanities education to explore Moby-Dick, alternating between discussions of the text (and some related materials), and working in the studio devising forms of mediation, making models from a range of materials, and perhaps fabricating full-scale artifacts—all with an eye toward a fuller understanding of both material practices and concepts about hands-on learning. Students’ focus on various materials and practices will determine the overall trajectory of the class, but we will likely do a little carpentry and maybe even some blacksmithing.

COA 4803 HP                        Design Think Design Do:  Exploring Design Across Disciplines       Sabir Kahn et al                                                T R 1:30-3
What is design?  How does one do it?  Is doing design similar to doing science? Or engineering? Or art?  Or is design its own thing?  An activity and a mindset that approaches the world with its own goals, tools, and procedures?  We will explore these questions by doing design—short deep dives and extended engagements with a range of problems—and by taking design apart—careful, considered, and speculative unpacking of a wide range of exemplary designs.  We will immerse you into design within, across, and in-between the disciplines and majors that exist across campus.  In the process you will see how design may both humanize technology and help us take on complex problems that cross scales and systems. Our goal for you is to help you develop design literacy and agency—both an awareness of and an ability to participate in the challenges, pleasures, and possibilities of doing and thinking design.  Our goal for ourselves is to test, develop, and co-design a course that would be the portal into the interdisciplinary design minor being developed for students at Tech.  Help us answer:  What should be in our collective design tool-set?

INTA 4830 HP                       What makes us safe? The Nature of National Security                    Jarrod Hayes                                        T R 3-4:30
In the post-September-11th world, the concept of security has taken on renewed importance.  In the United States, the discourses of security permeate everyday life.  But we rarely stop to think about what security is, and how security varies within and across societies.   This course will challenge you to critically examine the concept of security and the role it plays in society.  To that end, the course has two central goals.  The first is to explore the national security concerns and perspectives for the major countries and regions of the world.  The second is to understand the connection between alternative constructions of national security and the security policies of nation-states.  This course will fundamentally change your understanding of national security.  

HTS 3813 HP             Witness to a Changing Conscience: Writing and Personal Transformation            Ken Knoespel/ Bruce McEver                     R 3-6
This seminar is devoted to the study of writers whose works have shaped our discourse of what it means to truly be a human being in the world of others.  After considering a cluster of seminal writing often referred to as ‘confessions,’ we will turn our attention to writing that witnesses to fundamental transformations in individual moral consciousness in a world rapidly being transformed by scientific and technological development. Students will write three short papers. Since the course will be run as seminar, students will also be expected to give regular presentations on assigned readings in class.  It is also assumed that students will meet regularly with the course instructors.  

ISYE 4803 HP                        Gridlock:  Extremism in American Politics                                       Craig Tovey                                         M W 12-1:30
If you are interested in U.S. politics and the future of our country, this course is for you.  The U.S. Congress is more polarized by extreme views than it has been in 100 years.  The results are legislative gridlock, the postponement of meaningful decisions, and an all-time low public approval of Congress of 14%.  But the U.S. population is not nearly as polarized.  Why are the views of the majority of U.S. citizens not represented in Congress?  What can we do about it?  We will use legislative roll-call and polling data to quantify the extremism of Congress compared to the U.S. population, and find reasons why they differ.  Then you, working singly or in small teams, will suggest cures for polarization.  We will hold mock-debates to critique, refine, and improve these cures.  Course participants should be capable of both analytical and creative thinking, and able to hold their own in group discussions and debates.                     

ME 3141 HP               Cutting-Edge Technologies                                                                David Ku                                             T R 4:30-6
This seminar-style course investigates the background and primary sources of advanced engineering technologies.  The goal is for students to gain a familiarity with some of the most advanced research addressing major technological challenges of today.  We will discuss journal papers on Tuesdays in a lay-friendly manner to get beyond the math.  Thursdays will consist of guest speakers that will include distinguished GT faculty and researchers from around the world, invited to present their work to a non-technical audience.                                                 

LCC 3823 HP2           All the Live-Long Day:  Literature about Livelihood                                   Catherine Murray-Rust                             T R 1:30-3
Adults spend most of their waking hours at work, but little is written about what work means to those who do it every day. Do people view their work as a job, a career, a calling? Is it possible or even desirable as many Americans believe to separate one’s personal life from one’s work life?  Do younger people have different connections to work than previous generations? Through reading such books as Studs Terkel’s Working, and Joshua Ferris’s Then We Came to the End, students in the class will explore these questions and many more. Writing assignments will include short essays. Students will learn how to conduct informational and longer interviews with people who work in a variety of occupations from humble to high-status. They will present their interview reports in an open forum at the end of the semester.

AE 2803 HP                Aerospace Sci/Tech Policy:  The Role of NASA in the 21st Century            Robert Braun                                       T R 9:30-11
This course will address the importance of technology innovation and the integration of technical, budgetary and policy issues in the framing of the U.S. civilian aerospace economy. Course material will cover the challenges and fundamental physics of aerospace engineering, the historical development of aerospace capabilities, and budgetary and policy aspects of this sector. There are no pre-requisites for this class. Students will be expected to review and understand current-events aerospace literature, and will develop a significant technology policy paper and debate its merits. Students will also interact with invited professionals from the aerospace technology and policy. The class will participate in aerospace Congressional visits week in Washington, DC.

EAS 2803 HP              A Balance of Power: Energy, Environment & Society                                 Kim Cobb                                            T R 3-4:30
Anthropogenic global warming and energy security concerns have made the search for affordable low-carbon energies a local, national, and international priority. The path towards alternative energy infrastructures for the 21st century requires careful consideration of economic, environmental, technological, and political factors. This interdisciplinary seminar-style course will blend current events, guest speakers, lively discussion, and a diverse array of literature to separate fact from fiction in the heated debate concerning our nation's climate and energy future. The main student activity will be a semester-long ‘Carbon Reduction Challenge,’ wherein student teams compete to reduce carbon footprints by the semester’s end.                                                                                                                                                                                            

LCC 3823 HP1           Harry Potter and the False Dichotomy of Good & Evil                   Monica Halka                                      T R 1:30-3    At first glance, the Harry Potter saga seems to incorporate well-defined camps of good-doers and evil-doers. As in: Dumbledore=Good; Voldemort=Bad.  Closer scrutiny, however, reveals that things are not quite so clear-cut. As such, this recent, wildly popular literature serves as an ideal springboard for exploring the most ancient of intellectual conflicts.  Students will attempt to parse the meaning of good and evil in various contexts and timeframes.  Through the lens of J.K. Rowling’s narrative, we will explore notions from world religions and Buddhist philosophy to the Salem witch hunts, WMD’s, and the mask of the psychopath.  What is good?  What is evil?  How do we know?  Where do we draw the line?         

 

 

Fall 2011 GT Honors Program Elective Courses                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

ARCH 4803 HP    The Physics and Metaphysics of Premodern Architecture     Laura Hollengreen                       R 1:35-4:25        
This course will present students with an opportunity to investigate key built works of the past as exemplars ofmaterial and structural innovation, often realized at overwhelming and mystifying scale; of calculated environmental response; and of meaning production. It will charge them with defining a “poetics” of architecture in various periods of the past, such that they elucidate the successful linkage of physical achievement in built form and metaphysical significance in cultural interpretation that marks all great works. Together, the works studied will allow the class to formulate and test a proposition about the dialectic of tangible and intangible in what we call “architecture”. There will be a range of building types and cultures included.

COE 3002 HP             Intro to Microelectronics & the Nanotechnology Revolution        John Cressler             T R 4:30-6
This course will expose undergraduate students with little or no ECE background to a high-level understanding of the microelectronics and nanotechnology revolution and its global impact on both technology and society.  Engineering, management, and science students will comprise the class, and by its nature it will be highly interdisciplinary in its appeal.

HTS 3803 HP     Georgia Tech: The Making of a Modern University           Greg Nobles & Randy McDow        T R 3-4:30
How did Georgia Tech get to be the way it is today?  How—and how well—does the Institute operate?  What is Tech’s impact on the world, the nation, and the immediate neighborhood?  Where is it going in the future, and who will determine how to get it there?  To answer these and many other questions, this course will look at the development of Georgia Tech over time, beginning in its earliest days in the 1880s and focusing particularly the past fifty years, since 1961.  In doing so we will meet up close and personally with some of Tech’s main movers and shakers—senior administrators in the Carnegie Building and the six colleges, significant figures in research, teaching, sports, and campus life—and some of the behind-the-scenes people who help get things done.  Along the way we’ll raise questions about what Tech means to its students, alumni, professors, and other employees and, above all, what we hope it will mean to you in the future.                  

ISYE 4803 HP    The Use and Misuse of Data                                  Donna Llewellyn and David Goldsman           T R 1:30-3
We will investigate two main topics in this course:  1. The Use of Data – how to take complex questions and break them down in order to start modeling them and estimating their solutions.  One example might be the question:  “Is it worth spending the extra money to buy a hybrid or alternative fuel car?”  Or “How many doctors and staff should be on call at a local hospital on any given night?” – what numbers do you need to start to answer these kinds of questions, where do you get those numbers, and what do you do with them?  If you need to collect data, how much is enough?  2.  The Misuse of Data – how do pollsters, advertising and marketing agents, and others misuse basic statistics and other data to make their points?  We will read the book “Proofiness” and study the darker side of statistics.  This class will be interactive and taught as a joint inquiry investigation into the topics listed.  Students will do projects studying these topics as they relate to their own academic or personal interests. 

LCC 3803 HP    Coffee, Tea, & Chocolate:  Why They’re So Good, Why They’re So Bad       Monica Halka      T R 1:30-3
This course will explore the science, technology, economics, and cultural legacy of these three legal and delicious, but addictive substances.  The history of human craving for these products—worth billions of dollars in imports to the United States annually—is rife with mystery and intrigue.  Students will have the opportunity to read about and discuss such questions as:  Is chocolate really beneficial to your health? What was the role of tea in the Boston Tea Party?  Why does coffee smell so good?  What does anything have to do with the price of tea in China?  There will be tastings.

MATH 4803 HP         Combinatorial Game Theory                                     Tom Morley                             MWF 9-10
Combinatorial games are two player games without chance moves (shuffling, dice, etc.). They are often encountered in mathematical puzzles, but they are also of interest in computational complexity and applications. They also provide the foundation for the surreal numbers.  In this course we will study combinatorial games, starting with Nim and Hackenbush, and include take away games, chomp, ordinal numbers and infinitesimals. There are many open conjectures, and we will explore these computationally.                                

PSY 2803 HP              Psychology of Creativity and the Arts                                  Paul Verhaeghen                      T R 9:30-11
This course is meant to provide an overview on what ‘scientific’ psychology can tell us about the creative person and the creative process. You will soon learn that we know some important things, but that we seem to know very little about what probably most interests you: where does my own creativity come from, and what can I do to become more creative? This is clearly not a DIY-creativity-enhancement course (and you will learn why it isn’t). In a way, this class is a journey without end and a quest without answers, but we may gleam some (hopefully) interesting vistas along the way. The main goal is not to bombard you with tidbits of information (though that will happen) but to get you thinking, critically, about the creative process in general and maybe your own creativity in particular. At the least, the course should provide you with the insight that creativity is hard to fathom, and give you a sense of how awesome and strange your own creativity and that of other people really is.

 

Spring 2011 GT Honors Program Elective Courses                                                                                                   

 

CS 4475 HP                Computational Photography                                                                          Irfan Essa                    TR 1:30-3

This course will explore perceptual and technical aspects of pictures, and more precisely the capture and depiction of reality on a 2D medium. The scientific, perceptual, and artistic principles behind image-making and image-capturing will be emphasized.  We will primarily focus on how computation and related technologies have completely transformed the process and workflow of photography.  Overall, students will use photography to learn technical aspects of computer vision and image processing, in addition to basic photography techniques. Group and individual projects will be assigned for students to capture content on campus and around Atlanta and use them in their projects.            

 

CHEM 2803 HP         Bright and Smart: Organic Materials for Electronics and Photonics                      Jean-Luc Bredas TR 9:30-11

This course is intended to introduce highly-motivated undergraduate students to the emerging field of organic electronics and photonics, via an understanding of the electronic and optical properties of organic materials provided namely by carrying out simple but informative molecular modeling calculations and simulations.  The course highlights an interdisciplinary approach to these organic materials. Each of the topics will include elements related to the chemical, optical, and/or electrical properties of the materials, their characterization, their device fabrication, and their current or expected applications in the market place.                                                                                                                         

 

COE 3002 HP             Introduction to Microelectronics & the Nanotechnology Revolution                      John Cressler                        TR 4:30-6

This course will expose students with little or no ECE background to a high-level understanding of the microelectronics and nanotechnology revolution and its global impact on both technology and society.  Engineering, management, and science students will comprise the class, and by its nature it will be highly interdisciplinary in its appeal.                                                                                                                

 

ECE 2803 HP             Learning from Disasters:   Exploring Society/Technology Interactions      Joseph Hughes               MW 4:30-6                                                                                               
Major disasters – like the Gulf oil well explosion, the Minneapolis bridge collapse, and the devastation of Hurricane Katrina – remind us of modern society's dependence on technology and of the potential for human calamity when technology fails. This course will use failures, disasters, and current issues (e.g., energy independence, Gulf Coast reconstruction, climate change) to motivate the study of both technical and social implications of technological dependence. The seminar will span and integrate technical and humanistic topics, including interactions among political, economic, and social factors; models for risks and ethical decision making; and understanding the limitations of technology. Students will read books and articles from both technical and non-technical perspectives, explore specific issues independently and in groups, write formal and informal papers, and complete a group project. This seminar should help students understand how the social context of technology relates to their individual majors and interests, whether technical or non-technical.                                                                                                             

 

ECE 2813 HP             Technology and Learning: Past, Present and Future                                                David Schimmel           W   3-6

From the monolith in Arthur C. Clarke’s 2001: A Space Odyssey to the use of clickers in lecture, from the invention of the printing press to the innovative use of video games in K-12 education, technology has had and continues to have a profound impact on how we think about and go about teaching and learning—both in formal settings and through our entire lives. Technologies such as simulators, visualization tools, online learning, search engines, collaboration tools, smart boards, calculators, smart phones, and podcasts, to name but a few, all have the potential to disrupt teaching and learning in a myriad of ways. This course will explore intentional and unintentional impacts of technology on learning.  We’ll read widely:  from the educational technology literature, from the popular press on innovations in education, and from relevant science fiction and futurist writings.  We will also bring our own experience, creativity, and critical thinking to bear.  We will discuss and debate the merits of existing approaches, and propose and defend our novel ideas.                                                                                                                          

 

HTS 3803 HP             Spytech:  Devices and Methods in the Service of Espionage                         Kristie Macrakis            TR 1:30-3

This course will follow the historical development, culture, and socio-political constructs of some of the most important technological devices, techniques, and methods used in conducting espionage.  Topics include planes, satellites, submarines, the CIA's LSD experiments, agent technology, and the post-9/11 assessment of American spy technology.                                                                                   

 

LCC 3234 HP             Notions of Creativity: Creative Writing as Engineering                              Karen Head                 TR 1:30-3

This course will focus for half the term on poetry, with the other half-term focusing on fiction. Students will create an online “journal” for their final project to emphasize issues relating to editing and publication. The overall aim is to connect notions of creativity with the work students do in their major fields, as well as to offer a more general outlet for creative endeavors.                                                           

 

PHYS 4803 HP           The Atomic Age                                                                                              Monica Halka              TR 1:30-3

This course will explore the science, culture, and psychology associated with the most dangerous weapon ever invented, as well as the spin-off into nuclear power.  Readings will include professional scientific journals, popular science articles, and the novel “Los Alamos.”  Films, plays, and White House recordings will be presented and discussed.  Students will learn how to build a thermonuclear device.  Guest speakers will be invited to explain current issues in nonproliferation.  Students will actually learn to pronounce “thermonuclear” and “nonproliferation.”  There will be physics.

 

 

 

Fall 2010 GT Honors Program Elective Courses                                                                                             

CHEM 2803 HP1       Science of Alternative Energy                       Thomas Orlando                                              MWF 11-12    
This course will give a general overview of the most popular alternative energy sources which are currently being used or developed to help relieve the world dependence on fossil fuels.  The basic scientific principles governing the current and future approaches in solar photovoltaics, fuel cells, biomass conversion, nuclear energy and wind power will be presented. Though the course will focus on the basic principles and fundamental science underpinning the current advancements in energy technologies, there will also be an emphasis on understanding the efficiency and general sustainability issues associated with the most popular alternate energy options.  Due to the interdisciplinary nature of the topic, the course will involve multiple instructors from across the College of Sciences. 

CS 4001 HP                Big Ideas about Living and How Computing is Affecting Them                   Colin Potts       T R 1:30-3 
This course introduces students to ethical and professional issues associated with the introduction and deployment of computing and information technology. We will concentrate on several fundamental philosophical questions that are raised by new technology, such as the following:  What is moral agency? When we say that an agent decides to perform an action and is responsible for it, what does that mean, and could this ever be said about a robot or a command and control system? If not, why not?  What is property, and why are owners entitled to it? When we say that downloading media files without copyright owners’ permission is “theft”, what does this mean and what should the sanctions be? Do we have privileged rights over knowledge about ourselves? What are the appropriate trade-offs between the interests of public safety and privacy?

GRMN 4813 HP         The Burden of the Past                                   Frank Pilipp                                                     T R 12-1:30
In this course, The Burden of the Past: Memory, Accountability, and Soul-Searching in German and American Film, students will examine recent films (of the past two decades) from Germany as well as some from the U.S. about historical events that have had an impact that contemporary society continues to try to come to terms with. The Holocaust, slavery,  the expropriation of native Americans, the deprivation of civil and women’s rights have not only been of utmost historical significance but also long-standing topics in film and literature that still cause public debates and controversies today.

HTS 2803 HP             Semester in the City                                       Greg Nobles and Andrea Ashmore                  T R 1:30-3
This mind-on/hands-on service-learning course invites students to explore how an urban neighborhood works – and equally important, to begin working in that neighborhood.  We will focus on the English Avenue community, just adjacent to the west side of Georgia Tech, a neighborhood facing serious challenges but also developing significant strategies for change.  Looking at English Avenue from a variety of perspectives – historical, social, political, economic, and environmental, among others – we will seek to understand the community on its own terms, but also study it within the larger context of the city of Atlanta.                                                          

HTS 3803 HP             Revolution & Reform in East Asia                Hanchao Lu                                                     T R 1:30-3
The course will examine the major revolutions and reforms since the 19th century that have brought China, Japan, and Korea to their respective status in the world today.  The extraordinary revolutions and reforms in these countries, including some ongoing events such as the transformation of China from communism to capitalism, not only affected the lives of millions of people in the area but also had profound impact on the geopolitical map of the world.  This Elective course will help intellectually active students prepare for the increasingly diversified world that they are bound to enter.

MTH 4803 HP            The Study of Efficiency in Nature                  John McCuan & Maria Westdickenberg          T R 12-1:30
This course explores the history, elementary mathematical principles, and philosophical considerations associated with variational methods and thinking.  The calculus of variations can be used to explain many physical problems in which the function to be optimized is immediately evident:  soap films minimize the area of certain surfaces; the distance one can travel on a tank of gas can be maximized by choosing the correct regime of acceleration and deceleration.  There are other problems which are less obvious but for which, surprisingly, the theory also provides an explanation:  Why does a reflected beam of light leave a mirror at the same angle as the incoming beam?  Why is Newton's Second Law of Motion true?  In each case, an explanation can be given on the basis that some "variational function" is being optimized.  This kind of thinking has provided an aesthetic principle which has profoundly molded our notion of beauty and truth in science.

PST 3127 HP              Biotechnology Law, Policy, and Ethics          Roberta Berry                                                  T R 1:30-3
This course examines challenging issues in biotechnology law, policy & ethics through multi-disciplinary course readings. The course employs an active-learning, seminar-style approach, with panels of students assigned to write and present short papers addressing the class readings. Class discussion centers on the papers presented each class. Issues addressed may include neuroimaging technologies, brain-machine interface technologies, nanotechnologies, human cloning, human genetic engineering, patenting of genes/life, genetically modified foods, DNA identification for forensic and other purposes, synthetic biology and the creation of cellular machines. All course readings will be posted on electronic reserves or available on the Web; there will be no assigned text.

PSY 2803 HP              Psychology of Creativity and the Arts          Paul Verhaeghen                                              T R 9:30-11
This course is meant to provide and overview on what ‘scientific’ psychology can tell us about the creative person and the creative process. You will soon learn that we know some important things, but that we seem to know very little about what probably most interests you: where does my own creativity come from, and what can I do to become more creative? This is clearly not a DIY-creativity-enhancement course (and you will learn why it isn’t). In a way, this class is a journey without end and a quest without answers, but we may gleam some (hopefully) interesting vistas along the way. The main goal is not to bombard you with tidbits of information (though that will happen) but to get you thinking, critically, about the creative process in general and maybe your own creativity in particular. At the least, the course should provide you with the insight that creativity is hard to fathom, and give you a sense of how awesome and strange your own creativity and that of other people really is.

 

Fall 2009 GT Honors Program Elective Courses         

 

BIO 4740  HP             Biologically Inspired Design                                                  Jeanette Yen                            TR 1:30-3 

In this course, we teach biologically-inspired design as an innovative tool utilizing design strategies observed in natural systems as stimuli for novel inventions, to increase biological understanding through the use of quantitative analyses, and to provide a model for practicing interdisciplinary exchange between biology and engineering. We examine evolutionary adaptation as a source for engineering design inspiration, utilizing principles of scaling, adaptability, and robust multifunctionality that characterize biological systems. Students will learn about a variety of biomimetic methods and ongoing research projects. 

 

COE 3002 HP Intro to Microelectronics & the Nanotechnology Revolution          John Cressler                           TR 4:30-6

This course will expose UG students with little or no ECE background to a high-level understanding of the microelectronics and nanotechnology revolution and its global impact on both technology and society.  Engineering, management, and science students will comprise the class, and by its nature it will be highly interdisciplinary in its appeal.            

 

CHEM 4803 HP         The Art of Talking Science                                                                Paul Houston                           TR 3-4:30

This course will examine exciting scientific research programs ongoing in the College of Sciences through interviews, lab visits, and presentations.  Students will delve into modern scientific research, develop their skills in interviewing, and develop writing and presentation skills, all within a scientific format.  Students will explore communication methods that make complex scientific topics accessible to the general public.  The end goal is to have an article for publication, for example, in the Technique or SciTech, or an article, podcast or video for inclusion on the College of Sciences web page.                             

 

PHY 2803 HP             Optical Illusions: A Study of Light and Perception               Monica Halka                          TR 1:30-3

The world we think we see is not the world that exists.  For example, the human eye perceives only a tiny range of wavelengths in the electromagnetic spectrum.  Color is not the same to everyone.  And our brains interpret what we see in strange ways.  This interdisciplinary course will blend current events, guest speakers, lively discussion, and a diverse array of literature and demonstrations to elucidate the curious nature of light and our interaction with it.                              

 

HTS 2803 HP             Semester in the City: Engaging English Ave.                        Greg Nobles and Andrea Ashmore            TR 1:30-3       

This mind-on/hands-on service-learning course invites students to explore how an urban neighborhood works – and equally important, to begin working in that neighborhood.  We will focus on the English Avenue community, just adjacent to the west side of Georgia Tech, a neighborhood facing serious challenges but also developing significant strategies for change.  Looking at English Avenue from a variety of perspectives – historical, social, political, economic, and environmental, among others – we will seek to understand the community on its own terms, but also study it within the larger context of the city of Atlanta.                                  

 

LCC 3823 HP             Thoreau’s House                                                                                Hugh Crawford                        TR 9:30-11

In this course we will build a full-scale version of Thoreau’s hut (using the materials, tools and practices he could or would have used) to develop a critical, technical, and historical understanding of the task Thoreau set himself—to build by hand his own home.  We will also explore 19th century discourse surrounding country architecture, gardening, etc. in relation to the construction of a “rural retreat”; the use of the tools necessary for such a practice; the relationship between tools, hands, and mind as articulated by Thoreau; a range of historical texts on handicraft; the work on hands and knowledge production currently being carried out by scholars working in cognitive science and related fields; and the role Thoreau plays in current articulations of sustainable living and minor architecture. 

 

INTA 4803 HP           Latin American Identity and Politics                                     Kirk Bowman                          TR 8-9:30

Who are you?  What is your primary identity?  Why?  This seminar analyzes the formation of identity in Latin America.  We will start with the major theories of identity formation in Europe based on the myths of ancestral home, on the power of imagined communities through language and communication, and the power of war to shape identity.  We will identify the multiple domains in Latin America that are not explained very convincingly by those theories and will explore alternative explanations of sports (largely soccer in the Southern Cone), music, and other cultural markers.  Much of the course will focus on soccer as the potent force that both creates and divides national identity.  Each student will produce a research project that explores the formation and endurance of identity in individual countries and present findings to the class.  Dr. Bowman was named 2008 Georgia Professor of the Year by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching and the Council for Advancement and Support of Education.      

 

Fall 2008 GT Honors Program Elective Courses         

INTA   4803 HP          The Sleeping Giant Awakens:  Dissecting the Rise of China Fei-Ling Wang             T   3-6 pm
This course is an in-depth investigation of the rise of China, an epic development that represents great opportunities and serious challenges to the world. Is China already a world leader in technology and manufacturing? Can China become a new superpower without being a democracy? Are Chinese objectives and values compatible with that of the Americans’? Will the United States thrive in peace and prosperity with China as the co-pilot or even the new world leader?  To answer these and many other questions, we will first examine the basics by utilizing multimedia materials. Based on group research activities, we will have student-led in-class discussions dissecting the various aspects of the rise of China and its implications, ranging from assessing China’s engineering and management capabilities, analyzing Beijing’s strengths and weaknesses, to reviewing Chinese soft power in culture and popular arts.

HTS 4813 HP              Selective Scholarships Seminar                                                          Greg Nobles & Paul Hurst            T Th 3-4:30
This three-credit course is designed to offer a challenging but supportive structure for those students pursuing one or more of the most prominent scholarship opportunities – Rhodes, Marshall, Gates, Truman, Fulbright, Goldwater, and the like.  Recognizing that the application process takes a considerable amount of time and preparation, we are creating a context for doing the necessary work in concert with other students and faculty mentors and, equally important, providing the deadlines and discipline that will help everyone get everything done.  By the end of the semester, students should have developed not only the written portfolio but also the practical skills that will put them in a good position for the formal application process.

ISYE 4803 HP Mathematical Modeling of Election Issues                                        Joel Sokol                                MW 3-4:30
In this course, we will discuss three types of election-related mathematical models.  First, we will discuss some of the issues in the fall 2008 election using mathematical models rather than rhetoric to point out the important philosophical tradeoffs.  Second, we will discuss mathematical models of how voters choose their preferred candidate(s), and consider the implications for candidate selection in general.  Third, we will discuss some different types of voting systems and their relative advantages/disadvantages.  The amount of time spent on each topic and the depth of coverage will depend on the interests and background of the students who take the course.

HTS 4843 HP              The Pursuit of Happiness                                                                   Doug Flamming                       T Th 9:30-11
Jefferson's famous phrase in the Declaration of Independence -- "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness" -- has become so ubiquitous in American culture that few people pause to consider its meaning.  The words "the pursuit of happiness" slip off the American tongue with scarcely a thought.  And yet the idea of "the pursuit of happiness" warrants serious consideration.  For starters, it seems a rather odd thing for Jefferson to have put in a revolutionary document.  What did he mean by the "pursuit of happiness," and why did the other founders consider it a perfectly logical follow-up to "life" and "liberty"?  Why did they all agree that "Nature and Nature's God" had "endowed" human beings with an "inalienable right" to this "pursuit of happiness"?  What was the pursuit of happiness all about?  Equally important, how has the concept changed over time?  Just last week I saw a T.V. commercial that uses the "pursuit of happiness" line to promote the purchase of a luxury automobile. 

LCC 3833 HP              Disability Studies: Literature, Film, and Service Learning   Hugh Crawford                        MWF  2 – 3
This course is designed to provide an introduction to the field of Disability Studies through examining theoretical texts, literature and film, and through service learning opportunities. Some of the authors we will read include Flannery O'Connor, William Faulkner, Katherine Dunn, Georges Canguilhem (on The Normal and the Pathological), Michel Foucault, Sander Gilman, and the photography of August Sander.  Films will include Shakespeare's Richard III, The Elephant Man, The Children of a Lesser God, and  Blindsight.  The course will include field trips to work with disabled athletes and to examine adaptive technologies and architectural design. In addition to service opportunities, students in the seminar will take several tests and do a seminar project.

COE 3002 HP              Intro to Microelectronics & the Nanotechnology Revolution          John Cressler                           T Th 4:30-6
This course will expose UG students with little or no ECE background to a high-level understanding of the microelectronics and nanotechnology revolution and its global impact on both technology and society.  Engineering, management, and science students will comprise the class, and by its nature it will be highly interdisciplinary in its appeal.

MATH 4803 HP          Combinatorial Game Theory                                                 Tom Morley                             MWF 9           
Combinatorial games are two player games without chance moves (shuffling, dice, etc.). They are often encountered in mathematical puzzles, but they are also of interest in comutational complexity and applications. They also provide the foundation for the surreal numbers.  In this course we will study combinatorial games, starting with Nim and Hackenbush, and include take away games, chomp, ordinal numbers and infinatesimals. There are many open conjectures, and we will explore these computationally.                                                         Corequisite:  MATH 1502

ISYE    4803 HP          Duality: An Interdisciplinary Exploration                                        Craig Tovey                             T Th 2 - 3:30
Duality is a phenomenon that arises in fields including algebra, geometry, calculus, economics, biology, industrial engineering, and music. The aim of this seminar is to open your eyes, forever, to the wonders, beauties, and uses of duality.  We will explore duality in many of its guises:  lines and points in Euclidean geometry, regular polyhedra, the selfish gene in evolutionary biology, counterpoint, Lagrange multipliers, two-person zero-sum games, vacancy chains, Little’s law, matrix multiplication, and others.