2018 Fall Term Special Topics Courses

BIOL 3991-A (3 CR)
MARINE MAMMOLOGY

Prereq: Third year standing; Instructor consent required (amorash@mta.ca)
This course examines the physiology and ecology of marine mammals. Topics include the evolution of the major marine mammal groups, special adaptations for aquatic life, social dynamics of marine mammals, the role of marine mammals in oceanic ecosystems, and general population biology. Students use this knowledge and recent research in the field to explore conservation/management issues. (Format: Lecture 3 hours)

CANA 4991-A (3 CR)
ABORIGINAL LEGAL AND POLITICAL ISSUES

Prereq: Third year standing; Instructor consent required (krjohnston@mta.ca)
Political and legal issues are integral to the examination and understanding of Aboriginal rights and relationships with the Settler State. This course examines the legal institutions and practices of Indigenous cultures and how they might be and have been incorporated into the mainstream system.  It also examines historic and contemporary Indigenous politics. Topics may include the politics of genocide and (de)colonization, self-determination, gender, identity, land claims, court decisions, as well as international law and borders. (Format: Lecture 3 Hours)
 
CLAS-3991-A (3 CR)
DIGITAL METHODS IN THE HUMANITIES

Prereq: Second-year standing, three credits CLAS, HIST, LATI, GREK; or permission of the Department (cforstall@mta.ca).
This course introduces students in arts and letters to basic computational tools and resources that can make their research more effective, and provides transferrable skills that will be useful across disciplines.  It surveys current Digital Humanities research projects in several domains, including analysis of poetry, novels, and visual art.  The class format combines discussion and critique of published research with hands-on workshops in which we replicate model experiments. It introduces basic techniques of programming in a beginner-friendly environment. No previous coding experience is required.  (Format: Interdisciplinary research methods seminar 3 Hours)

COMM 1991-A (3 CR)
Q
UANTITATIVE ANALYSIS FOR BUSINESS DECISION-MAKING
Prereq: Instructor consent required (pberry@mta.ca)
This course provides an introduction to quantitative tools used in business decision making, and the conventions and terminologies used in the application of these tools. It introduces basic business models and algorithms dealing with topics such as discounting, markups and markdowns, breakeven analysis, interest calculations, and the mathematics of finance. (Format: Lecture 3 hours, Tutorial 1 hour)

COMM 4991-A (3 CR)
THE BUSINESS OF AVIATION

Prereq: Third year standing; or permission of the Department (tmachum@mta.ca)
This course explores a cross section of issues in this dynamic industry that create numerous opportunities to demonstrate critical thinking, often without the luxury of time, where the decisions-making frequently requires a balance of strategic and tactical thinking against moral and ethical implications. Topics include: Canadian aviation industry and competitive landscape, industry regulation, risk management, innovation, strategic leadership. (Format: Lectures, case studies, class presentations; possible field trips and guest speakers).

DRAM 3991(3 CR)
PRACTICING DRAMATURGY

Prereq: Third year standing; Instructor consent required (vstpierre@mta.ca)
This course introduces students to the practice of dramaturgy and the wide-range of activities performed by the contemporary dramaturg. Combining the study of the theoretical underpinnings of dramaturgy, and the historical development of the role of dramaturg, with practical dramaturgical projects, this class begins to develop a ‘dramaturgical toolbox’ across the key areas of literary and production dramaturgy. (Format: Integrated Lecture and Workshop 3 Hours)

ECON 4991-A (3CR)
RADICAL IDEAS IN ECONOMICS

Prereq: Third year standing; Instructor consent required (fstrain@mta.ca)
This course introduces some of the radical ideas that have emerged from the study of economics.  Although the primary focus is on recent scholarship the course briefly covers Adam Smith, Arrow and Debru, and Fredrik von Hayek; Marx; Keynes; Arrow; welfare economics; and political economy.  (Format: Lecture 3 Hours)

GENS 3991-A
LOCAL ADAPTATION TO CLIMATE

Prereq: Third year standing; GENS 1401; Instructor consent required (mfox@mta.ca)
This course introduces students to the science of the changing climate and human measurements and adaptations associated with its impacts in the Atlantic Region of Canada. Students explore its environmental and social implications, and examine its impact on daily life by reviewing current scientific data as it relates to vulnerabilities across the region. Topics include methods, strategies, and technologies that address climate change, using case studies of adaptive and mitigative programs in North America, with a special emphasis on the Atlantic Canada Adaptations Strategy Agreement. [Note: Additional travel costs may be required.] (Format: Seminar 3 Hour with several field-based sessions with regional climate change scientists, engineers and experts.)

GENS 3991-B
INDIGENOUS PEOPLES: ECOLOGY

Prereq: Third year standing; GENS 1401; Instructor consent required (dlieske@mta.ca)
The primary objective of this course is to outline the ecological impacts, scientific contributions, and technological innovations originating from Indigenous Peoples in North America. The course explores the dynamic relationship between different groups of Indigenous People and their environments and is designed to teach students how variation in natural resource use and management among Indigenous groups has resulted in different ecological impacts, scientific developments and technological innovations. It emphasizes sustainability, environmental manipulation, and the important contribution of Traditional Ecological Knowledge to the global environmental science knowledge base. (Format: Lecture 3 Hours)

HIST 3991-A (3CR)
FRONTIER SETTLEMENT OF THE AMERICAN WEST

Prereq: Second year standing; 6 credits in History at the 1000 or 2000 level; or permission of the Department (enaylor@mta.ca) 
This course examines frontier settlement and economic development in the American West, juxtaposing that historic West with the more mythic West of popular imagination.   (Format: Lecture 3 Hours)

HIST 3991-B (3CR)
PUBLIC HISTORY IN CONTEMPORARY CANADA

Prereq: Second year standing; 6 credits in History at the 1000 or 2000 level; or permission of the Department (rcupido@mta.ca) 
This course explores how the past is understood by and communicated to people outside the university walls, from museum exhibits, historic sites, and national parks to novels, traditional and graphic, films, Wikipedia, and the Truth and Reconciliation Commissions. It offers an excellent introduction to students who would like to learn more about how our cultural and physical heritage can be used to enhance both our understanding of the past and the urgent controversies and challenges of the present, or who may be considering careers  in the museum and heritage sector.  Students explore the growing literature on public history and social memory, create their own public history projects, and gain practical experience in the wide-ranging methods used by public historians, including archival and community-based research, oral history, and the interpretation of material and visual culture.  (Format: Lecture 3 Hours)

MUSC 3991-A (3 CR)
MUSIC IN FIN-DE-SIECLE VIENNA

Prereq: MUSC 2211; or permission of the Department (gtucker@mta.ca)
This course explores music and culture during Vienna’s “Golden Autumn”, c1890–c1918.  It focuses on selected works of Viennese art music, as well as some popular music and introduces the principal issues, developments and figures in Vienna’s politics, visual arts, literature, architecture, psychology, and philosophy. (Format: Lecture 3 Hours)

PSYC 3991-A (3 CR)
EXPLANATIONS OF CRIMINAL BEHAVIOUR

Prereq: Third year standing; PSYC 1001, 1011; 6 credits from PSYC at the 2000 level; or permission of the Department (tbelke@mta.ca)
This course highlights and explores various theories of crime causation. In particular, it examines the role of individual choice, socialization experiences, and biological factors as determinants of criminal behavior. It begins with an overview of the early classical and positivist foundations of criminological thought and then moves on to discuss more recent extensions of social learning, social control, routine activities, biological, self-control, labeling, and other theories.  (Format: Lecture 3 Hours)

RELG 1991-A (3 CR)
THE GOOD LIFE: ASIAN RELIGIOUS PERSPECTIVES

This course examines the works of Chinese philosophers, who, more than two millennia ago wrestled with critical questions such as: What does it mean to live a good life? How should we treat others? What forms of learning matter? Are happiness and life well lived one and the same thing? The course explores why their works matter and how we can most effectively read to understand the significance of Classical Chinese philosophy for defining and living the good life today. (Format: Lecture 3 Hours) (Distribution: Humanities-a)
 
RELG 3991-A (3 CR)
ISLAM AND MYSTICISM: DIVINE ENCOUNTERS

Prereq: Third year standing; Instructor consent required (fblack@mta.ca)
This course provides an introduction to Islam and its varied mystical traditions known collectively as "Sufism." Through focusing on the theme of encounter, prevalent in Sufism, it explores debates on perception, gender, and orthodoxy, and Islam’s relationship with its Byzantine and Syriac Christian neighbors from Antiquity to the present. We will interrogate the category of “Sufism” in the West and how contemporary media and politics represent Islamic spiritual devotion. No prior knowledge of Islam is necessary. (Format: Lecture 3 Hours)

SOCI 4991-A (3 CR)
HUMAN RIGHTS

Prereq: 6 credits from SOCI 3001, 3011, 3301, 3311; or permission of the Department (mpoteet@mta.ca)
This course explores human rights in relation to security, migration, settlement, race, gender, age, legal status, and other bases of social inequality.  The course begins with an examination of relevant immigration policies and practices in Canada, and then examines intersecting social inequalities in Canada and internationally with implications for human rights.  (Format: Seminar 3 Hours)

SPAN 2991-A (3 CR)
INDIGENEITY IN THE AMERICAS

Prereq: Instructor consent required (jmartine@mta.ca)
This course introduces the Indigenous people of Latin America (Abya Yala) under the perspective of 'buen vivir' (good Living, Indigenous vision of the world). Through readings, discussions, and videos, it explores a new epistemology where 'other worlds are possible', against the patriarchal vision of society and the exploitation of natural resources, in search of the liberation and care of Mother Earth.
 
UNST 1991-A (3 CR)
INTRODUCTION TO INDIGENOUS STUDIES

Prereq: Instructor consent required (deanofarts@mta.ca)
This course provides an introduction to the diversity of Indigenous peoples in Canada and the Maritimes.  Themes include Indigenous studies as a discipline, world views, societies, cultures, politics, colonization, and decolonization, with an emphasis on Indigenous authors and voices. (Format: Lecture, group work, experiential learning 3 Hours).

UNST 3991-A (3 CR)
COMMUNITY ENGAGED LEARNING: PRINCIPLES AND PRACTICE

Prereq: Second year standing; Instructor consent required (mfox@mta.ca, esteuter@mta.ca or fblack@mta.ca) 
This course is for students interested in working with children at the Grade 5-8 level and in learning about community development. Working with faculty in geography and environment, sociology, and religious studies, students help design and run project-based learning programs for students at Marshivew Middle School (MMS), exploring such topics as community gardening and food security; culinary arts; outdoor education; and more. [Note: This course requires a criminal record check and completion of the Pupil Protection Protocol (Policy #701), with assistance of the instructor. ] (Format: Community-based Research, Applied Learning 3 Hours)

UNST 3991-U (3 CR)
TIME

Prereq: Third year standing; Instructor consent required (dhornidg@mta.ca)
This course explores the meaning and relevance of time from the perspectives of four different disciplines: religion and philosophy, physics, biology, and music. It seeks answers to questions such as: What is the meaning of time and how can it be defined? What is the space-time continuum and what does the theory of relativity imply about time? How do organisms perceive time and what is a biological clock?  How is time divided to create rhythms and how do we keep a beat? (Format: Telepresence Lecture through Maple League 3 Hours)