CLA Freshman Seminars

A freshman seminar is a small, discussion-oriented class that is designed just for first-year students across the University. The seminars cover a variety of fascinating topics in the arts, behavioral sciences, global issues, politics and culture, and more. Seminars are offered both fall and spring semesters.

What to Expect in a Freshman Seminar

  • A small class (15-20 students) of first-year students where it is easy to talk, participate, and engage in class discussions
  • A professor who is an expert in the subject matter who has created the course specifically for first-year students
  • An opportunity to work with faculty who will introduce you to a variety of new research and creative topics

Freshman Seminar Courses

A History of the Drug Wars

All About Music: Its Meaning, Reality, Communication, and Embodiment

America in Crisis

Analysis of the Intersection of Communication and Sport

Arab Spain: Then and Now

Arguing with Authority: The Past, Present, and Future of Higher Education 

Art Laboratory: A Place to Play

Asian Americans in the First Person 

Attending (to) Theater 

Autobiography through History/History through Autobiography

Beyond Sounds and Words: Social Communication Across the Lifespan

Black Reality in Television 

Brain Science, Drugs and Society

Brexit and Decolonization: Empire, Race, and Belonging in the 21st Century

Changing Human Adaptations

Chicana/o-Latina/o Studies: History, Culture & Identity

College, Sex, and Society

Contemporary Latino Drama: Human Rights and Theater

Cultural Heritage and Environmental Change in Gullah/Geechee Nation 

Cultures of Resentment: Understanding the Politics of Hate in the 2000s

Cyborg Ethics and Digital Selves

Dictatorship and Violence in Central Asia and Afghanistan

Food, Wine, and Sport in the Creation of French Identity

Freaks and Aliens: Race, Gender, and Sex in Science Fiction

From “O Brother Where Art Thou?” to “12 Years a Slave”: American Cinema and American Roots Music 

From Fashion to Fashioning a World: Magazines and Literacy

From the Tea Party to 9/11: Historical Memory in the United States

Globalizing the “Middle Ages”

Guitar Heroes

Homer’s Odyssey and Politics

Hop-Hop as Academic Inquiry

Humor and Laughter in Interaction

Invented Languages

Language, Food, and Identity

Living Well with the Dead: Afterlives and Ethics in Contemporary Culture 

Living with Innovation 

Magazines and New Media

Making Minnesota

Media Emotions

Music in Nazi Germany

Music, Language and the Brain

Natural and Artificial

New York of the 1970s: Punk, Hip-Hop, and Salsa

Our Monsters, Ourselves

Performing Latina/o/x Identities: Media, Art, and Popular Culture

Place Matters: Seeing the Mississippi

Political Discussion and Deliberation in the 2016 Election

Politics of Hunger: Food, Development, and Cold-War Politics

Politics, Arts, and Propaganda: A Century of Film in Berlin

Psychological Perspectives of Women at Work

Race in Everyday Space

Representation in the Time of Pandemics: Culture and Politics from AIDS to COVID-19

Say Something, Make Something: Transforming Language in Visual Art

Silencing the Gods: Divine and Human in the Hebrew Bible

Social and Cultural History of Blacks in Sports

Sounds of Social Justice

Space and Time: from Aristotle to Einstein 

Sports, Reason, and Society

The American Digital Revolution: Music, Media, and Gaming in American Culture

The Art and Science of Persuasion

The Border Crossed Us: Latinx Life and Justice in the City

The Color of Music 

The Dragon Slayer in Epic and Film

The Freshman 15: Stress and Health Management for Students

The Great Actresses and Divas of Theatre, Films, Opera and Musicals

The Immigrant and the Refugee 

The Politics of Hunger: Food Security, Aid & Diplomacy

The Psychology of Design: Smart Products, Graphics, & Logos

The Symbolic Meanings of Money and Property

The U.S. Role in the World

The Worlds We Have Made: Some of Us Are Already Living in a Dystopia/After the Apocalypse 

This is Your Brain on Drugs

Trauma and the White Racial Frame: Disrupting Whiteness and White Body Supremacy in Everyday Life 

Urban Love, Fear, and Uprising

Violence against Women in Opera

What is the Human Mind

What’s So Great About Classical Music?

Whites, Whiteness, and Racism

Winning People Over: The Art and Science of Persuasion

Woman, Rage, and Politics

Words at Work 

World War II Revisited: Britain at War