Honors Courses for Incoming Students

Honors Courses for Incoming Students

Honors Courses offer opportunities for lively interaction and independent thinking to students in the Honors Program as well as to other qualified and motivated students. The workload is not necessarily more, but it is different. See the course descriptions below for more details. All of these classes are limited to 12 or 15 students, depending on the course.  Indicate your interest in taking one or at most two of these courses on the Academic Interest Form or by contacting Dr. Lois Daly at daly@siena.edu. If you want to take one of them in the future, then choose other courses to take in the fall.

Honors ECON 101: Principles of Microeconomics

In Honors ECON101: Principles of Microeconomics, students learn about the dynamics of markets, including supply and demand, elasticity, and market structure. In addition, students in the Honors class spend significant time thinking about market failures and what policies might be appropriate in addressing them. Poverty, externalities, public goods, market concentration, and imperfect information are all discussed at length. In addition to the textbook, students are required to read Corporate Crime and Violence as well as numerous newspaper and journal articles. Participation in class discussions is emphasized.  Entering Honors students in Business will be enrolled in this class unless they already have credit for microeconomics. This course fulfills the core disciplinary requirement in social science.

ENGL 190: HNRS Great Books

ENGL190: HNRS Great Books is a student-centered course, designed for those who seek an intellectually exciting, collaborative learning experience. Instruction is conducted in seminar format, with students encouraged to take an active role in determining the direction of the class. Students will meet weekly to discuss classic literary works of the Western tradition, such as Homer’s The Odyssey, Sophocles’ Antigone, and Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, as well as contemporary works. We will draw connections among these works from different times and cultures, each depicting the conflicts between forces or order and destruction. Great Books includes a focus on writing the sophisticated literary analysis paper; there are no exams. This course fulfills the core disciplinary requirement in English; it counts toward the college honors requirements and also toward the English Honors Certificate. Entering Honors students majoring in English will be enrolled in this course.

HIST 190: HNRS Contemporary World History

HIST 190: HNRS Contemporary World History is the honors level of the core requirement in History.  The course is student centered featuring discussion, analysis of pertinent primary sources, and research. There are no exams but it does require a research project as well as several other writing exercises including primary document analyses and response papers. Generally, the course is taken by first and second year students. The course counts toward the college honors requirements and also to the History Honors Certificate. Entering Honors students majoring in History will be enrolled in this class.

PHIL 103: HNRS Reason and Argument

PHIL 103: HNRS Reason and Argument  What makes one argument acceptable and another unacceptable? What makes one inference reasonable and another unreasonable? Philosophers employ a variety of methods for studying argument and inference, and this course will introduce students to some of these methods. Students should come away from the course with a better understanding of some of the basic methods philosophers employ for studying argument and inference, along with an understanding of some of the basic philosophical issues about reason and argumentation, including issues about the nature and structure of argumentation, the relationship between reason and argumentation, and the relationship between logic and the psychology of human judgment.  This class fulfills the college’s core disciplinary requirement in Philosophy.

POSC 130: HNRS Introduction to Political Theory.

POSC130: HNRS Introduction to Political Theory. Political theory is the study of the concepts or ideas used to describe, explain, and evaluate political events and institutions. Freedom, for example, is a concept. It is also very real as an experience in our political lives as well as a value for the type of political community we assume in just democratic life. However, freedom means many different things depending on time, location, and competing visions of the just political community.  Political theory is a way of studying politics that looks at the meaning of politics in a descriptive (what is going on) and an evaluative sense (this is just or unjust). In this class we read classic and contemporary texts in political theory, novels, and see films that give us knowledge for thinking about the meaning of politics. As an Honors seminar, we are a discussion based class.  This course meets the core Franciscan Concern requirement for Social Justice.

RELG 141: HNRS Introduction to Religious Thought

RELG 141: HNRS Introduction to Religious Thought.  In this course, we will examine the Abrahamic Traditions (Judaism, Christianity, and Islam) historically, theologically, and morally. Using sacred texts and contemporary writings, we will explore the ways in which religious individuals and communities understand the divine, human experience, and the world. Like all courses in the humanities, RELG 141 seeks to improve your abilities to read, to write, and to reason. As an honors class, it does this in an enhanced atmosphere of discussion and thoughtful argumentation. This course fulfills the core disciplinary requirement in Religious Studies.

The Honors First Year Seminars

The Honors First Year Seminars are reserved for incoming Honors Fellows.

This year there are three choices: (1) The Middle Ages in the Modern World, (2) Americans, and (3) Popular Culture and the Meaning of Life. All Honors Fellows will be enrolled in one of these. Indicate your preference on the Academic Interest Form. In some cases the schedule for required courses in your major may determine which seminar you will take.


For more information on the Honors Program and/or Honors courses contact Dr. Lois Daly at daly@siena.edu