Get online and get outside this summer!

Get online and get outside this summer!

Our online BISC 11a: Biodiversity Connections class will help you do both!

Photo of a lake, small island, trees, mountain, sky, and buildings representing bio-diversity

If you are looking to complete your Brandeis School of Science graduation requirement then check out BISC 11a: Biodiversity Connections.  (BISC 11a is open to any college student or degree recipient with an interest in the subject matter.  The course is also open to select high school students.)
This online course will help you discover the natural world by doing citizen science (via iNaturalist.org) in tandem with an exploration of ecology and evolution. So, if you are curious about the natural world and want to explore nature (from anywhere in the world), then this course is a great opportunity for you to get outside and discover local biodiversity.

Photo of a young woman working on her course work in a city park

BISC 11a is taught by Prof. Colleen Hitchcock of the Biology Department and Environmental Studies Program and is designed to promote local exploration of biodiversity through citizen science while you learn the fundamentals of ecology and evolution. Throughout the 10-week course you’ll have a chance to delve into the basics of biodiversity science and make contributions to biodiversity research by using a digital camera or cell phone to capture data about the biodiversity you interact with every day.
Biodiversity Connections is an entry-level science course designed to satisfy the School of Science graduation requirement and there are no prerequisites to this course! (The Science graduation requirement needs to be completed by all Brandeis students – not just students majoring in the Sciences!) 
Enrolled students will discover how everyone can make scientific contributions through citizen science and will use citizen science research to complement the scientific topics explored in each week’s online discussions. So get outside and explore the natural world regardless of if your summer is being spent in an urban center, suburb, or remote natural location while completing this online summer course.

Click here to learn more about online courses at Brandeis and how online classes are conducted!

Photo of a an ariel view of a city with busy highways and green spaces teeming with biodiversity.

BIOL 26A: Plant Biology – Offered Online this Summer!

Photo of Caladium Plant LeavesHave you ever thought about the overwhelming amount of diversity that surrounds us in our everyday lives?  Have you ever considered that most of this macroscopic diversity comes from the Plant Kingdom?  Are you interested in taking a Biology elective, but concerned that you are going to be away from campus this summer?

For the first time ever, the Biology department is offering BIOL 26A: Plant Biology – a BIOL elective course completely in an online format.  Professor of Biology, Melissa Kosinski-Collins, will be offering this online course over 10 weeks this summer (June 4-Aug. 12).  Professor Kosinski-Collins teaches the introductory biology lab courses at Brandeis and specializes her approach to teaching cater to all types of learnings in active learning exercises.

Plant Biology is a mid-level course will build on the foundational knowledge of introductory biology to take students on an adventure through the molecular and cellular basis of plants.  Enrolled students will experience at-home labs, readings and exercises to participate in both a hands-on and virtual tour of the plant kingdom from anywhere in the world.  This course will pay special attention to agricultural practices and policies central to the U.S. produce farming industry.

Click here to learn more about online classes at Brandeis and how the courses are conducted!

Online Courses

This summer Brandeis will be offering nearly a dozen courses in a variety of subject areas that are taught entirelyonline. If you have reliable internet access this summer, you can make progress toward your degree from anywhere in the world.

Best of all, most Brandeis online summer classes are “asynchronous” – which simply means that you don’t have to be online in front of your computer and webcam at set days and times each week. Instead, students have common course deadlines for completing the readings, submitting assignments, critiquing peer work, posting original contributions to online discussion forums, and replying to classmates. Use this flexibility to balance your summer work, family commitments, and social life.

Here are just some of the benefits to taking an online class at Brandeis this summer:

Learn wherever you want
Since there are no physical class meetings, you can work on your class from anywhere you want: at home in pajamas; by the pool; on vacation; waiting for a bus, plane, or train; at your favorite coffee shop; on a treadmill at the gym; or at your summer job when work is slow.

Learn whenever you want
Some folks are early risers and at their best in the morning. Others are night owls and do their best work after the sun goes down. With an online class, you can choose when you want to work on your class… as long as you are meeting those common course deadlines. So you can work when you are at your best.

Present your best work
In most classes, you will use discussion forums to interact with the material and your classmates. If you have ever hesitated to speak out in class, an online class is an ideal place to let your voice be heard. You can organize your thoughts, research the points you want to make, and rework your argument, all before you hit “submit.” By the end of the class, you’ll find that you are not only more adept in your chosen subject area, but that you have also honed your writing skills.

Small classes
Most online Brandeis summer classes have a maximum of 15 students, some courses are even smaller.

Brandeis online summer classes count toward your degree
In fact, all Brandeis Summer School classes count toward your GPA, as credits toward graduation, and help you to fulfill major, minor, and graduation requirements. Classes taken at other schools during the summer generally only count for purpose – meaning they can help you fulfill a prerequisite, but will not count in your GPA or toward credits for graduation. (Special conditions may apply for Brandeis transfer students – transfer students should consult the Brandeis Bulletin)

About the Online Summer Session:
Our online summer session runs for 10 weeks, classes begin on June 4 and run through August 12, 2018. To ensure online classes remain small, space is limited. To enroll, students must complete a short, free, self-paced orientation to online learning in LATTE before you can enroll in an online class. Email us at summersc@brandeis.edu to be enrolled in the online orientation.

2018 Near Eastern and Judaic Studies

Below is a note from Professor Randall Geller (Brandeis 2011). This year Professor Geller will teach NEJS 185B and NEJS 189A.

I’m a Brandeis Ph.D. in Middle Eastern history with a specialization in the Arab-Israeli Conflict, and this will be my fifth year teaching in the Brandeis Summer School Program.  Last summer (2017), both my Arab-Israeli Conflict and the Making of the Modern Middle East courses at the Brandeis Summer School were student-nominated for teaching awards; it’s great when you love what you do, and I love teaching at Brandeis in the summer!  I look forward to meeting you in class!

I’ve spent significant time in the Middle East; before I became a professor I was a tour guide and journalist in Jerusalem, Israel. I speak Hebrew and Arabic, and this is a region that has long fascinated me and I’m sure always will.  I’ll be teaching two courses this summer; in session 1 I’ll be teaching Arab-Israeli Conflict, and in session 2 I’ll be teaching the Making of the Modern Middle East.

I’m excited about the publication of my first book this past August, entitled Minorities in the Israeli Military, 1948-1958.  It deals with the drafting of the Druze and Circassian minorities into the Israel Defense Forces and the recruitment of Muslim and Christian Arabs too; the dilemmas of drafting non-Jews suspect of potentially identifying with hostile forces in the neighboring Arab world made for fascinating research and writing! Here’s a link to the book’s website, which includes academic reviews:

https://rowman.com/ISBN/9781498541633/Minorities-in-the-Israeli-Military-1948%E2%80%9358#

I’m hard at work on new publications, and I’ll be happy to share my preliminary research with you.  Perhaps most importantly, in keeping with the spirit of both courses, we’ll also have Middle Eastern food in the middle of as well as at the conclusion of the semester – if you haven’t tried it, I’m sure you’ll love it!  (Gluten free and nut free options are available!)

See you in class!

Course offerings in Psychology

A note from Dr. Laura Paige, instructor of PSYC 10A: Introduction to Psychology and PSYC 34B: Social Psychology for Summer 2018.

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Are you a psychology major looking to complete major requirements over the summer? Or are you just interested in learning more about the brain, body, and human behavior?

This summer, both Introduction to Psychology (M,T,Th 1:30-3:50pm) and Social Psychology (M,T,Th 6:00-8:20pm) are being offered by Summer School in Summer Session I.

These courses will cover topics ranging from exploring human memory to understanding prejudice/biases to distinguishing different types of clinical disorders. As a class, we will connect scientific findings to experiences we see in daily life and in the media/pop culture.

Dr. Laura Paige will be the instructor for both courses. Dr. Paige is a recent graduate from the Psychology Department at Brandeis. Her research focuses on memory distortion in healthy aging, as well as across cultures.

For more information and to register for courses, please visit the Summer School website.

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