New courses to be offered next year

Jamison Guice, Campus Carrier Staff Writer

In the upcoming semesters, many departments are planning on integrating new courses into the curriculum. The two departments that are introducing new courses include the Psychology and Fine Arts department. 

The department chair of Psychology, Alan Hughes, will teach the course Human Motivation (PSY 444) during Block B of the summer. This course is seminar-focused and students from all majors are encouraged to enroll in the class. 

Hughes describes human motivation as the actions behind love, sexuality, and aggression. He says his teaching method will allow students to see the different perspectives from different psychologists. By straying away from traditional textbooks, Hughes says that he hopes for his methods to impart on students the importance of seeing different scholarly lenses when looking at a problem.

“Psychology is not, in any shape or form, just one thing. There is no grand theory that says, ‘this explains everything,’” Hughes said. 

Using this outlook, Hughes says that his conversation-based classroom will benefit from all majors. From different perspectives, everyone can participate in a conversation that will contribute to a group knowledge. The balanced conversation he desires for his class can be reached through a set of steps described as ‘Change, Challenge, and Compliment.’ 

The Human Motivation (PSY 444) course will not be offered as a foundation, but instead as a class that can be taken for a student’s deepening of knowledge and interest. Hughes says that the result of the class will be learning how psychology can be an interdisciplinary answer to questions, such as human behavior.

The Fine Arts department will be introducing a Song Writing (MUS 228) and Beginner Guitar Methods (MUS 132) class. The courses will begin in the fall semester of 2018-2019. Sean Thrower, Berry’s Professor of Guitar, will teach both courses. 

Thrower says that the song writing class will be structured to a variety of styles, genres, and instruments. The students will learn to break down and analyze songs, dissect popular songs, and learn about the lyrical elements. By applying these methods, the students will be able to learn why certain sounds and songs are appealing to them. 

Thrower says that the knowledge of playing an instrument is not a necessity for the course. By allowing a broad range of students to be able to apply for the class, he hopes that more be able to explore their interest in music and grow a foundation for writing. 

Song Writing (MUS 228) is being offered for the first time at Berry College so Thrower sees fall semester as a trial run for the class. He says that depending on the efficiency of the skill-set and technique that the class is able to yield, the department will further decide on the its future. 

“This is a way for beginner students that have little or no experience in guitar to get some instruction in the classroom,” Thrower said.

The Beginner Guitar Methods (MUS 132) allows students to learn from the professor but also from one another. While Berry offers guitar classes, MUS 132 focuses on the beginning steps that can be integral for first-time players.

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