Take Five: Refreshing course options for spring semester

Putting together the perfect schedule is never a painless feat. You have to consider heaps of requirements and prerequisites, all while taking recommendations from advisers, friends and parents.

Sometimes the key is finding a balance between education and entertainment. Of course you’re at St. Thomas to learn, but who says you can’t enjoy yourself at the same time? Fortunately, the university offers a wealth of leisurely courses that can serve as a nice change of pace between more rigorous offerings.

Whether you’re trying to fill electives or just looking for some extra credits, consider these interesting and refreshing course options for spring semester.

Beginning golf (PHED 487)

Previous semesters of physical education 487 have offered boot camp classes and golf for female beginners. This spring, students of all genders have the option to study the basics of golf for two credits. Taught by Tyrone Stenzel, St. Thomas’ strength coach, this class meets three times a week at 10:55 a.m.

Science of natural disasters (GEOL 114)

Tornadoes, earthquakes and tsunamis take center stage in this introductory geology course. By studying internal and external earth processes, students will learn all about the causes and effects of our planet’s most devastating disasters. Taken with a lab, geology 114 can earn students four credits and is offered from 5:30-7 p.m. Monday and Wednesday this spring.

History of film (THTR 260)

This four-credit course, taught by local filmmaker Jim Snapko, takes a look at the rise of film in popular culture, starting in 16th-century Italy with the invention of the camera obscura. Students in theater 260 will study films independently and in class, working toward the beginning of Hollywood and talkies. History of film meets from 6-9 p.m. on Thursday this spring.

Music performance studies (MUSP 111-266)

For one credit a semester, students have the chance to take music lessons, either individually or in a group, from professors here at St. Thomas. Instruments offered vary from piano to violin, guitar to bassoon, African drumming to digital music recording and everything in between. Students decide on lesson times after registration, with plenty of flexible options.

Two-dimensional design (ART 1000)

Available through the ACTC program at St. Catherine, two-dimensional design serves as an introductory course to design and other basic elements of visual art. The course, which students can take for four credits, typically meets twice a week for about 2.5 hours. In addition to studio work, Art 1000 students will visit local galleries, attend image-based lectures and undertake critical writing assignments.

Grant Goerke can be reached at gdgoerke@stthomas.edu

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