Posts Tagged ‘course guide’

Fall-ing in Love: The 2013 Autumn Course Guide

Tuesday, August 13th, 2013

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Explore Courses was down more than four hours before Axess even opened for enrollment. Most claim that it was due to overzealous frosh (hint: you can’t sign up for classes until orientation. Please stop bogging down the server), overzealous-er upperclassmen (please don’t judge us for indulging our need to obsessively research and meticulously plan the remaining time in our academic careers),  the fact that the Stanford computing just has a general tendency to suck (Exhibit A: Old Axess. Exhibit B: New Axess) or some combination thereof. But I know the real reason. The real reason you all crashed Explore Courses is because you knew. You all knew how each and every department at Stanford completely blew their course offerings out of the water this quarter.

I’ve written this course guide for over a year now (except for last Spring  – sorry for any of you who looked for it, I kind of dropped the ball. My bad.) and I have to say that each and every quarter of carefully combing through the Bulletin* leaves me freshly dumbstruck with the sheer number of delightful offerings this school continues to pump out. Seriously. Writing this thing is actually pretty excruciating. I want ten more years here. I want to major in about seventeen different things and minor in eight more. I want to take ALL THE CLASSES. But alas. I can’t. So I write this guide and hope that I can live vicariously through all you wonderful people who can collectively take them all for me. With that, I wish you a fantastic quarter full of vigorous and enlightening academic pursuits and the stress, anxiety, sleep-deprivation, loss of morale, and overall decline in physical and mental health that will inevitably accompany them. Cheers.

*The physical book that used to house the year’s course offerings back when the Marguerite was just a horse and an Apple was just a piece of fruit.

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The One, the Only, the 2013 Winter Course Guide

Tuesday, November 20th, 2012

It’s that time of year again.

Let’s just say that this is NOT what Thanksgiving looks like at my house…

No, not Thanksgiving. I mean, yes – technically it is time for family drama, dried out Turkey, sleeping in a bed that hasn’t been tainted by years of college kids getting it on, and becoming unnecessarily excited that it’s now socially acceptable to eat truly stupid amounts of pumpkin pie. But that’s not what I’m talking about. Oh no. Not that. I’m talking about something far more important: the TUSB Winter Course Guide.

Yes, I know Axess opened a month ago. I’m sorry I’ve been a little late to the game. As you all know, the quarter system is effing exhausting and often prohibits us from doing those things we really want to do. However, because it’s “Break”, and because the lovely few of my saintly friends who actually follow this blog have been bugging me to get off my keister and actually write the darn thing, and because my brain is downright refusing to let me start the 25 page paper I’m supposed to write before the end of the holiday, and because it has recently been brought to my attention that I have atrocious time management skills, I’m excited to bring you the 2013 Winter  course guide.

Given that I didn’t have a spare week to sit around Starbucks and think up super-amazing themes like “the Muppets”, this time around I’m sticking with a classic: “When I Grow Up”. As always, you can rest assured that this course guide is poorly-informed, overly generalized, and rarely if ever politically correct. As always, I will accept no responsibility for any misery inflicted by taking any of these classes. So enjoy the post, enjoy the break, and – above all – enjoy the fact that we get to do this all over again after New Years. Cheers.

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Breaking the Fall: 2012 Autumn Course Guide

Wednesday, August 15th, 2012

Ah, summer. One minute you’re shotgunning a beer celebrating with friends after your last final, the next, you’re waking up and rolling over to find that two months of beaching, traveling, summer-schooling, tanning, grilling, working, and/or your resume-building b****work meaningful internship experience have flown by and it’s already August. Which means it’s time to maybe, possibly, conceivably consider what you’ll be studying in the fall. Even at Stanford, summer doesn’t last forever, and eventually we’ve got to come to grips with  all of our first-world problems – namely, enrolling in classes at the happiest place university on earth. But, fear not – I have spent the last fortnight scouring every course in every department this school has to offer (upon reading this line, my proofreader claims that I “need to get laid a life”), with the hope of delivering the BEST list of classes to get you STOKED to come back to campus. It combines all the things I love most in life: cool classes that don’t physically drive me to tears (yes, I’m talking to YOU, “Inventing Classics“), excessive linkage, personality stereotypes, semi-snarky commentary, giant over-generalizations and massive assumptions, and most importantly: THE MUPPETS.  In any case, I hope the article piques your interest in something you might have otherwise overlooked, missed, or been to lazy to go look up.  And if not, all I can say is that I hope it makes you laugh (if only in pity). Other than that, here’s to the remaining MONTH of summer (suck it, Cal) and the boredom and restlessness that will inevitably accompany it. Cheers.

 

Autumn 2012 classes for…

the wise-guy

Old Guys Rule.

AMSTUD 140: Stand Up Comedy and the “Great American Joke” Since 1945

I took this class last fall. Actual (read: more or less deeply paraphrased) quote from the prof: “Hey, Hennessey – I’ve got an idea for a class. It will involve abundant sexism, racism, elitism, lewd and scatalogical references, innappropriate behvaior, excessive profanity, and – above all – some of the most brilliant and observative writers, performers, and anthropologists of our time.  What’s this class called, you ask? Well, it’s Stand Up Comedy and the Great American Joke”. Take this class. It’s awesome.

MUSIC 36N: Humor in Music

My visions of this class involve Steel Panther, Weird Al, and Parry Gripp.

Thank God I’m not teaching it.

 

the romantic

Living up to his name like an absolute champ

HISTORY 33A: Blood and Roses: The Age of the Tudors
Mystery, murder, sex, and scheming? And you thought your family was dramatic.

ATHLETIC 39: Fencing: Beginning
So you can do THIS.

ENGLISH 154: Mapping the Romantic Imagination
The map of MY romantic imagination involves horseback trips through the Florin countryside with Wesley, a sunset on the bow of the (intact) Titanic with Jack, the California coastline in Benjamin Bradford’s convertible, getting stuck on an island in the Caribbean with Cap’n Jack Sparrow, Patrick Verona’s paintball park, and wherever Ryan Gosling is currently located (though, preferably here). To my great disappointment, however, I believe this class refers a bit more to the English romantic poets and novelists and the sublime countrysides they envisioned. Then again, is anything quite as lovely and romanticized as curling up with a little Keats and Byron?

 

the hipster

This muppet is actually called Harry the Hipster. You've probably never heard of him.

ENGLISH 121A: Tattoos, Scars, Marks and American Cultures of Inscription

I feel bad for the poor sucker of a TA who has to read 60+ papers on “Why the dolphin/butterfly/Chinese symbol for “peace”/shooting star/infinity sign/angel wings/song lyrics/Bible verse on my ankle/lower back/shoulder blade/neck/wrist/sideboob/part of my hip that totally gets gets covered by a bikini is a unique artistic expression of my inner self”.

ARTSTUDI 131: Sound Art I 
Because taking just “music” was too mainstream.

FILMSTUD 301: Fundamentals of Cinematic Analysis 
Take this class so that the next time you’re giving your pretentious opinion about the latest film showing at INSERT NAME OF UNKNOWN THEATER HERE, you’ll be able to reference a little-known technique/genre/style/paradigm/buzzword that your professor mentioned once in class.

COMM 182: Virtual Communities and Social Media
This should prepare you well for your vague “job” in the vague cross section between “media” and “social networking” at that start-up no one has ever heard of.

 

the history buff

I want that blazer.

HISTORY 95C: Modern Japanese History: From Samurai to Pokemon
Samurai…. Pokemon. SAMURAI… POKEMON. I’m not quite  sure what’s between these two poles (the history of sushi?!?!) but it’s guaranteed to be awesome.

COMM 125: Perspectives on American Journalism
I don’t know enough about journalism or, frankly, television to confidently explain why “The Newsroom” sucks and “The Wire” is the bestest thing ever since Ike’s Menais a Trois. Admittedly, I should probably take this class and many others on this list. In any case, if you believe the slow death of the newspaper is a genuine travesty or that Cronkite and Murrow could give Colbert and Stewart a run for their money, then this might be the class for you.

HISTORY 103F: Introduction to Military History
It’s like the Military Channel… sans couch.

HISTORY 243G: Tobacco and Health in World History
Not to get all Nick Naylor on you guys, but I’m genuinely curious how one-sided this class is.

HISTORY 59S: The Digital Historian’s Toolkit: Studying the West in an Age of Big Data
From my quick read of the course-description,  it seems like this class involves old documents, scanners, and many a rubber glove. That said, if you like seeing history immortalized and like to wonder “what did they think back then?” and “how did that really happen?” then this is the class for you.

EDUC 116N: Howard Zinn’s ‘A People’s History’ and the Quest for Historical Truth
If you’re reading this section, theres a decent chance that you identify yourself as a history buff. Howard Zinn was the guru/godfather/mack-daddy of all American history buffs. Student, meet the ultimate teacher.

HISTORY 308D: Pre-Modern Warfare
I’m not exactly sure at what point/what contraptions fall under the heading of “Modern Warfare”, but if you’re telling me that I get to take a class on how to use the history of ninja stars, crossbows, catapults, and broadswords, then SIGN. ME. UP.

CLASSGEN 103: The Greek Invention of Mathematics
My sole incentive for taking this class would be figuring out exactly which Greek mathematician to fantasize about brutally torturing  whilst in the middle of my Math 52 midterm.

 

the patriot

Coming Soon: Muppets take 'Merica.

CSRE 51K: Election 2012

I should really, REALLY take this class. Seriously, because – besides Obama – I’m not really sure who’s actually still in the race.

COMM 162: Campaigns, Voting, Media, and Elections 
See above comment.

COMM 164: The Psychology of Communication About Politics in America 
I’d like to think that, to the individuals who plan to lead my country and allegedly have my best interest at heart, I am more than just a number and that my opinions and behaviors are more than just statistics.

ECON 18: The Washington Debate About American Competitiveness
If I take this class, will I get a job?

PUBLPOL 170: Political Corruption
It’s not cheating if you don’t get caught.

PUBLPOL 154: Politics and Policy in California
Let’s hope that by the time this class is over, Michael Tubbs will have a place in its curriculum.

ECON 25N: Public Policy and Personal Finance
Something about tax-brackets… maybe. I expect to see a lot of pitchforks and raised fists.

HUMBIO 120: Health Care in America: An Introduction to U.S. Health Policy
Obamacare. And other stuff. Probably.

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Spring into Spring with the 2012 Course Guide

Thursday, February 23rd, 2012

Think you know all the ins and outs of spring’s awesome courses?

Story. Of. My. Life.

Ha. Think again. Here, for your pleasure, I have painstakingly compiled a list of the hands-down most awesome, useful, compelling, frightening, GER-fulfilling, enjoyable classes you could ever imagine. Remember  before Chem 31, Math 51, and IHUM… back when you applied to Stanford? Remember how you raved about how excited you were for the “engaging classes”? After reading this article, you’re going to realize you weren’t just saying that. Stanford is killing it next quarter in terms of super-interesting classes, and you have the opportunity to get in on the action. I know Camp Stanford is tempting, but after reading this article, you might actually want to bulk up your course load with some of these. And, speaking of Camp Stanford, the categories are…

Camp Stanford: Whether you’re trying to recover from the carnage of your winter course load or just getting a jump-start on summer laziness/craziness, here are the best classes to keep the thoughts of warm breezes and fun-in-the-sun swirling in your head until June…

  • EARTHSYS 180B: Principles and Practices of Sustainable Agriculture: A course that lets “The Farm” live up to its name. Get outside and onto Stanford’s community farm and others in the area. Enjoy the sun on your neck and a little dirt on your nose. (3-4 units, multiple times)
  • ATHLETIC 80: Lifeguard Training: Didn’t snag the Google internship you wanted? No sweat. Speaking from personal experience, I can attest that lifeguarding is a solid career choice for those  looking to dip their toes in the real world. Make decent cash, get the tan of your life (and hopefully not melanoma… sunblock, guys!) and know that you can save a life if need be.  (2 units, T/Th 12-2, fee)

    Once upon a time...

  • ATHLETIC 51: Beginning Golf: If you were able to make it into this class, I commend you with my highest honors. (1 unit, multiple times, fee)
  • ATHLETIC 320: Backpacking: You might have given up Stanford Sierra Camp to work for a start-up, but maybe this class can scratch your outdoorsy itch before you sell your soul for equity. (1 unit, M 7-9:30) (more…)

The One, the Only: the 2012 Winter Course Guide

Wednesday, November 23rd, 2011

It’s that time of year again!  Just when you thought Fall Quarter had you by the throat, the Registrar reminds you it’s time to choose classes for Winter Quarter.  Sheesh.  But don’t worry: TUSB is here with a sweet selection of Stanford classes to spice up your quarter.  From fun alternatives to the typical GER satisfiers to intensive arts experiences to thought-provoking seminars to broaden your horizons, this list has something for everyone!

Got suggestions of your own?  Post them in the comments!  You can also check out past years’ recommendations here.

Hipster microbes!

The Ultimate Silicon Valley Classes:  rad classes for the hipster techie

  • Artstudi178:  Art and Electronics:  make sweet art using analog electronics!  Attendance at first class session is required.  4 units. MW 1:15-3:05pm.
  • CS476B / Music256B:  Music, Computing, Design II: Mobil Music:  “aesthetic, design, and implementation of mobile music, centered around the modern super smartphones.”  Prerequisite: MUSIC 256A.
  • Dance 138:  Mind in Motion: Knowledge Creation Through Dance Practice and Design Thinking:  “engineering principles through a kinesthetic lens” – awesome!  1 unit. MWF 10:00-10:50am.

Stroke that Freud Beard:  answers to life’s bigger questions

  • Religst11N:  The Meaning of Life:  it isn’t just “42.”  3 units.  TTh 11:00am-12:15pm. GER:DBHum.
  • Phil385R:  Metaphysics of Reference:  don’t understand the title?  Me neither!  All the more reason to take it!
  • Arthist210:  The Renaissance Nude:  The “significance of nude… figures in Italian Renaissance art.”  Freud would be all over this one.  Figuratively!  I meant, figuratively!  5 units.  T 9:30-12:30pm.

Artspalooza:  whet your artistic appetite

...horse rides you?

Below I’ve included a few of my favorites, but you should also check out the awesome Creativity Course Guide, produced by Stanford Student Arts. (more…)

TUSB’s 2011 Spring Course Guide

Thursday, February 24th, 2011

Given the hectic nature of winter quarter, you might be so overwhelmed with this quarter’s classes that you haven’t had a chance to figure out classes for next quarter.  Have no fear, TUSB is here!

The following lists include courses for even the most insatiable appetite, whether you’re looking for enriching courses in the sciences, arts, or humanities.  Hoping to check off that GER or pick up that eleventh or twelfth unit?  We can help you out, too.

Here’s to making this spring quarter the most academically exciting one yet!

Exploring the arts:

Meme overload? Now you can study up on the replication fad in pop culture.

The Stanford Institute for Creativity and the Arts has produces some really cool Creativity Course Guides.  Check out the full selection here.  My personal favorites are below.

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TUSB 2011 Winter Course Guide: spice up your courseload!

Friday, November 5th, 2010

Stanford: land of sunshine-y studying all year round

It’s that time of year again!  Not sure what winter classes to take?  No worries; check out TUSB’s course primer.  Whether you’re looking to satisfy a GER, find profound inspiration, or just take a fun class for kicks, we’ve got you covered.

If there’s anything we missed, don’t hesitate to mention it in the comments – we appreciate your feedback.  Additionally, you can check out past years’ course guides hereEnjoy!

Shake Your Groove Thing:  what better way to shake off the winter doldrums (literally) than with some fun dance classes?  Here’s a small sampling of the Dance Department’s awesome offerings.

  • Dance 30Chocolate Heads – contemporary dance from around the world
  • Dance 106African Styles on Stage – inspiration from the African diaspora
  • Dance 138Liquid Flow – “design and engineering through a tactile, kinetic and kinesthetic lens”
  • Dance 147Living Traditions of Swing – taught by the one, the only Richard Powers himself

Out of This World:  all the classes that remind me of Star Trek

  • To boldly split infinitives where no man has split infinitives before!

    Humbio 183Astrobiology and Space Exploration – life on earth and possibly elsewhere, NASA astronauts give guest lectures

  • AA 236BSpacecraft Design Lab – emphasis on practical applications, design, and launching
  • History 6NUtopia: History of Nowhere Land – focusing on Utopian literature of the early modern period
  • CHEM 27NLasers: The Light Fantasticset phasers to stun!

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TUSB’s 2010 Fall Course Guide: Serenity Now!

Monday, August 30th, 2010

School is nigh, which means that indecision about classes is also nigh. We at The Unofficial Stanford Blog, however, want to help you out: we’ve selected some of the most highly recommended and some of the most-ludicrous sounding classes for our quarterly course guide. Add anything to the comments that we missed–your feedback is greatly appreciated. [Also check out past installments of our Course Guides here.] Without further ado:

What's with the quarter system? There's only three of them!

Listen up, MoPhos!
Music 220A: Fundamentals of Computer-Generated Sound
MoPho, by the way, is Stanford’s mobile phone orchestra, in which everyone’s instrument is their iPhone.

Nostalgia for Anyone Who Lives Outside of California
CEE 63: Weather and Storms
Our resident meteorology geek gave this class a review of “awesome.”

Wherein People Do Not Frown Upon Drinking in Class
FRENLANG 60D: French Viticulture (Also known as: Wine Tasting)
You probably didn’t get into this class this quarter. Try next quarter.

If You Want to Actually Think About Deep Moral Questions and How They Relate To Our Lives (not that Wine Tasting isn’t, though)
SURG 150: Principles and Practice of International Medical Humanitarianism in Surgery
The course description states, “Summer internship opportunities for international health service with subsidized travel for top students.” Also, it sounds really interesting.

ETHICSOC 177M: Human Rights & Moral Questions

ETHICSOC 10: Ethics in Theory and Practice (also known as Ethics@Noon)
A 1-unit weekly ethics speaker series.
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TUSB’s Spring 2010 Course Guide (because napping in the sun can’t be taken for credit)

Monday, February 22nd, 2010

Sleeping-on-the-grass1.jpgThe floodgates of Axess have opened and course signups for Spring Quarter are upon us. For those of you looking for a cool class, a GER fulfiller, or just a temporary distraction from your paper due tomorrow, here is the TUSB Spring 2010 course guide. Feel free to add your own additions in the comments section!

Courses you won’t forget (In a good way):
Bio 150: Human Behavioral Biology
Find out why we act the way we do and fulfill that NatSci GER. Taught by Professor Robert Sapolsky – don’t let his mountain-man appearance fool you; this guy’s a neurobiology god and quite the comedian.
English 90: Fiction Writing (also check out English 91: Creative Nonfiction and English 92: Reading and Writing Poetry)
In order to snag a spot in these always-popular courses, enter the lottery at http://creativewriting.stanford.edu
ArtStudi 70: Introduction to Photography
Learn everything from how to turn on your camera to developing your own prints. A bit-time intensive, consider this course a license to spend an afternoon wandering around snapping photos and calling it “homework.”

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TUSB’s Winter Course Guide: the Cool, the Popular, and the Ridiculous Classes of Winter ’10

Friday, December 4th, 2009

Condi Rice grading papers?

Finals week is approaching, and that means one thing (besides, you know, an absurdly large numbers of tests and papers in a very short time): that Winter quarter is right around the quarter. We at The Unofficial Stanford Blog perused the bulletin, asked around, and compiled ideas to create a course preview for the upcoming quarter. From classes that change lives to ones that just sound hilarious, this is the Winter Course Guide.
Thinking: Less is More
–MUSIC 156: Stanford Improvisational Collective
Testimonial: “Everyone sits around on Friday afternoons and makes noises by banging on guitars with mallets, yelling at each other, or playing cellos made from football helmets. It’s a great class to explore “contemporary” music and what real musicians call “extended technique.””
–DRAMA 103: Beginning Improvising
NB: Teacher Dan Klein won teacher of the year last year for his work with this class.
NB2: This class is very popular and is often (read: always) overfilled. To stay in the class, you need to show up for the first few classes and fill out a short application.

101 Classes Tackle The Big Questions
–COMPLIT 101: What is Literature?
–RELIGST 101: Who is Allah?

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