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Fall 2021 Augsburg Seminars

First-year students take a seminar experience (AugSem) paired with an academic course. The AugSem is designed to help you connect with a learning community and transition to Augsburg. Below are the academic courses offered within each AugSem category. (Note: LAF = Liberal Arts Foundation, which are part of Augsburg’s General Education Requirements)

AugSem Categories:

Questioning Our World: These encourage student to tackle complex issues in the world around us


CCS295 Topics: Identity, Belonging and Place – and – SOC111: City Life: Introduction to Urban Sociology–(Im)migration & Transnationality

This local immersion called “Global Twin Cities Scholars” was designed especially for first-year students who are eager to belong to an active learning community. The immersion will examine immigration and the diverse cultures within the Twin Cities. We will explore the ways people shape, transform and adapt spaces, identities, and communities when they migrate. We will focus on the most recent movement between Mexico and MN. Class sessions will be held both in-person and live on Zoom. Students who participate in this program will register for both CCS295 and SOC111. Fulfills requirements for: Social and Behavioral Science LAF (SOC111)


CCS100: Line in the Sand: History, Politics, and Pop Culture in US-Mexico Relations 

Why is the Mexico-US relationship so complicated? We’re friendly neighbors, right? Come explore for yourself the deeply connected past and intertwined future of these two countries through geography, diplomacy, language, immigration, drug-trafficking, and their representation through pop-culture (music, movies, and more!). I invite you to question everything you think you might know about Mexico and its relationship with the US and to smash stereotypes of our profoundly misunderstood neighbor. Fulfills requirements for: Humanities LAF, Cross-Cultural Studies major, Spanish major


COM120: Mass Media and Popular Culture

Facebook, Twitter, movies, television, advertisements, and music–every day we create, consume, and engage with media. This course will explore the following questions: how do the media create and shape our culture? What does a media literate society look like? What are the relationships among the media, communities, and culture? This is a required course for all communication studies majors, but would be appropriate for any students interested in how media affects our lives. Fulfills requirements for: Humanities LAF, Communication Studies major, New Media: Promotional Communication major


ENL111: Effective Writing II

What is “good writing” and what does it mean to be a “good writer”? Why and how does society lift up some voices while silencing others? How do your culture, race, gender identity, languages, and other pieces of your identity shape your writing voice? This class investigates how power and privilege shape our ideas about writing. In the process, you will learn to write confidently and effectively in your own voice by freewriting, giving and receiving feedback, and revising multiple drafts. Fulfills requirements for: Core Curriculum’s Core Skills


HIS122: Gender, Race, Class, and Democracy in the 20th Century U.S. 

You need to know two things. First, all historians start with questions. Second, everything has a history. This survey of the twentieth-century and early twenty-first-century U.S. pays special attention to democracy, class, race, and gender. It also explores the ways historians think. Students will have the opportunity to build skills even as they learn more about the subject material. Fulfills requirements for: Humanities LAF, History major

Fine Arts: The Study of Visual and Performing Arts


ART107: Drawing 

This course is an introduction to the basic fundamentals of drawing. We will explore a variety of materials and techniques such as: pencil, charcoal, ink, collage, contour line, value, perspective and measurement. While drawing is primarily from observation, we will also dive into abstraction. This is a great course for art majors, minors or anyone interested in drawing. No art experience required!Fulfills requirements for: Fine Arts LAF, Studio Art major, Graphic Design major, Art History Major, & Art Teacher Licensure 


— FULL — ART201: Introduction to Graphic Design

Explore the practice of “graphic design” through the deceptively simple process of combining image and text in order to make things easier, beautiful, and possible. Learn the fundamentals of aesthetic form and content, the cultural contributions, and history of graphic design through this project-based digital and analog course. “Design can be art. Design can be aesthetics. Design is so simple, that’s why it is so complicated.” ― Paul Rand.  Fulfills requirements for: Fine Arts LAF, Studio Art major, Graphic Design major, Creative Writing major, Communication Studies major


MUS113: Music Theory and Aural Skills I 

This is the foundational course for all music majors and music minors in which we explore the basic structures of modern pop, rock, and jazz in a global context. As the starting point for a two-year sequence, students will learn about how and why music functions in the ways that we’re used to hearing and put their developing skills into practice through a composition-based approach to learning. Required for music majors and minors, open to all interested students with a background in music. Fulfills requirements for: Any Music major


MUS130: Introduction to Music in the Fine Arts

This course examines the history of Western art music as the thread that ties culture together from the Middle Ages to the present. A “top ten of the last millennium” will provide mileposts for understanding music in social, political, and cultural context. Live performance will be a feature of this course. Evaluation of student work will include short essay papers, several quizzes, and a mid-term and final examination. Fulfills requirements for: Fine Arts LAF, Business: Music Business major


THR232: Acting

An introduction to the art of acting; this is a good start for students with theater experience, interested in exploring a Theater major or minor, and/or a desire to participate in Theater Department productions. Students will develop themselves as curious and creative artists. It is designed to help the actor integrate their body, voice, and mind into the basic concepts of acting. Students will learn through scene study and collaborative exercises how to channel their instincts and talents. Fulfills requirements for: Fine Arts LAF, Theater Major, Film Major

Professional Studies: Business and Helping Professions


HPE104: Components of Fitness Training 

Designed for students who plan to pursue health education, physical education, or exercise science, this course takes a performance-based approach for learning strength and cardiovascular training. Fulfills requirements for:  Physical or Health Education major, Exercise Science Major.


— FULL — MIS260: Problem Solving for Business

A hands-on course focused on the application of computer technology (spreadsheets, databases and data visualization) for students who want to explore a business major, including management information systems (MIS), accounting, finance, international business, management, marketing, or music business. Math Placement Group 3. Fulfills requirements for: Any Business Major


 — FULL — MKT252: Principles of Marketing 

All of us are affected by marketing every day. Marketing is how we communicate and deliver something of value—like a product, service, or idea—to people, organizations, and society. This class is a requirement for all business majors, and students will have fun trying to figure out how marketing affects purchasing decisions. Fulfills requirements for:  Any Business major, Communications Studies major


— FULL —  SWK100: Introduction to Professional Social Work 

What is the difference between helping a person and seeking social justice? A modern social welfare system provides individuals their most important human needs and fights for social justice for everyone in society. We’ll discuss how we choose a method and what we can do with our skills to advance the mission statement of Augsburg’s social work department “…to promote well-being of people in a diverse and global society.” Fulfills requirements for: Social Work major

Social and Behavioral Sciences: The Study of People, Relationships, Society, and Behavior


ENV100: Environmental Connections: Zoos

This course examines the phenomenon of zoos. We will learn about the history of zoos. We will visit both the Como Zoo and the Minnesota Zoo and learn to read them as “texts.” We will think about how animals are represented, observe how people engage with the exhibits, explore ‘behind the scenes’ operations, and ponder what, exactly, is learned through a visit to the zoo. This is a great course for any major, as zoos allow for analysis from a variety of disciplines. Let’s go to the zoo! Fulfills requirements for: Social and Behavioral Science LAF, Environmental Studies major


POL158: Introduction to Political Science

What do you most want to know about how the world works? In this course, we look closely at current events and ask questions about how things work in political systems and social movements. This course offers an introduction to political science and its tools for understanding the world we are in, as a necessary step toward knowing how to create the world we want. Fulfills requirements for: Social and Behavioral Science LAF, Political Science Major, International Relations Major


PSY100: Psychology in a Post-Pandemic World

Our society stands divided by politics, race, and religion, all of which have been amplified by a tumultuous election, a year of intense protest in pursuit of justice and equality, and a global pandemic. Psychological Science provides unique tools and perspectives to help better understand and grow from this moment in history. Students will tackle real-world problems such as ideological extremism and conspiracy belief, while developing critical skills to help thrive in a post-pandemic world. Fulfills requirements for: Social and Behavioral Science LAF


— FULL — PSY105: Principles of Psychology  — This course will be held via Zoom only —

Do you ever wonder why people are the way they are? Or how experiences and people shape our thoughts and actions? Psychology is the study of the human mind and behavior, and this course is a great fit for students interested in a psychology major or minor or who want to better understand human behavior. Fulfills requirements for: Social and Behavioral Science LAF, Psychology major


— FULL — SOC121: Introduction to Sociology

How are our social behaviors and beliefs shaped by the media, our friends, and our families? What obstacles or aids are we likely to encounter on our life’s journey? Why does inequality persist and what can we do about it? Sociology is a fascinating social science that studies group behavior and can answer these questions and more. Fulfills requirements for: Social and Behavioral Science LAF, Sociology major

STEM, Natural Sciences, Pre-Engineering, and Pre-Healthcare


BIO151+L: Introductory Biology – or – BIO152+L: Evolution, Ecology, and Diversity

Do you like the sciences, but can’t choose just one? Register for only ONE of the Biology courses with its connected AugSem – BIO 151 or 152 – it doesn’t matter which because you will take the other in the spring term! Biology is a multidisciplinary experience that opens many opportunities. You could pursue a career in teaching, biomedical sciences or biotechnology, natural resources, environmental education, or health care. You could earn a graduate degree and find a career in university teaching, basic or applied research, and public health; or enter professional programs in health sciences. Math Placement Group 3. Fulfills requirements for: Natural Science & Math Lab LAF, Biology Major, Pre-Healthcare interest


CHM115+L: General Chemistry I 

Are you a problem solver? Do you like to work with scientific equipment? Do you like to organize and analyze information? If so, you should consider studying chemistry. It is a versatile major that allows you to work in industrial, health, educational, scientific, or government fields. Augsburg chemistry grads have gone on to great things, too—including a Nobel Prize and a Rhodes Scholarship. Math Placement Group 3 Fulfills requirements for: Natural Science & Math Lab LAF, Chemistry major Biology major, Pre-Healthcare interest


CSC165+L: Introduction to Computer Programming (Python)

Have you wondered how computers can help save lives, entertain you, keep you organized, or recommend friends? Do you want to know what opportunities will open up for you with a degree in computer science or with programming skills? If so, join us in CSC165 for an introduction to programming, and an exploration of computer science and its applications. This is a required course for a Computer Science major or minor, and a Management Information Systems major. No programming experience necessary. Math Placement Group 3. Fulfills requirements for: Computer Science majors, Mathematics major, Management Information Systems major


MAT145+L: Calculus I

Like to work with numbers? Exploring careers related to mathematics or data science? Curious about infinity? Come learn about one of the greatest human intellectual achievements of all time – Calculus! This course focuses on rates of change and their application to areas such as Biology, Chemistry, Climate/Environmental Science, Computer Science, Economics, Engineering, Finance, Medicine, and Physics. Try this course out if you have taken pre-calculus, calculus, or AP Calculus. Math Placement Group 4. Fulfills requirements for: Natural Science & Math LAF, any Business major, Computer Science major, Mathematics major


PHY121+L: General Physics I

This course is for students interested in careers in physical sciences and engineering. It will focus on some exciting application of physics concepts in everyday life as well as building some useful computational and engineering tools. Students who have participated in this AugSem paired course have graduated and gone on to start careers in companies like 3M, Honeywell, Medtronic or earn graduate degrees in physics, mechanical, electrical, automotive and biomedical engineering. Math Placement Group 4. Fulfills requirements for: Natural Science & Math Lab LAF, Physics major, Pre-Engineering interest


SCI114: Exploring Science and Engineering

Interested in an exciting career in science or engineering? This AugSem will let you explore career options while having fun with science! Math Placement Group 2 or Math Placement Group 3 with advisor discussion. Fulfills requirements for: Natural Science and Mathematics (with lab) LAF