In OEB 119: Deep Sea Biology, groups of students have to present and lead discussions on scientific papers throughout the semester. Before class each week, all students have to read an assigned scientific paper and post a summary paragraph and two questions to an online forum. A group of students has to prepare a short presentation about one part of the paper, so that each paper is presented by a different group of three to four students each week.
Students in Caroline Light's general education course, Sex and the Citizen, create five-minute visual essays in response to Brenda Weber's, Makeover Nation. In order to do this assignment, students must complete the assigned reading and gain familiarity with iMovie, Prezi, or PowerPoint. These visual essays or makeover parodies are meant to address issues of identity and citizenship central to the course.
In Caroline Light's course, WGS1238: Consuming Passions, students participate in a simulation where each student acts out the persona of either an invented/fictional character or a real public figure. They then debate a question regarding globalization in order to develop critical thinking and contextual skills around the course's topic on agency in the global marketplace.
Professor Güven Güzeldere uses debates extensively in several of his courses, including Philosophy of Mind, Philosophy of Artificial Intelligence, and Philosophy of Religion. The debates consist of two teams of two or three students each, presenting and defending two opposing positions on a particular philosophical question (e.g., Can we attribute genuine emotions to robots or computational systems on the basis of affect-appropriate behaviors?). Each team gets a first period for presenting, and then a second period for a rejoinder to the opposing team and their own response. The debate concludes with an open question-answer period that involves the whole class.
In gen ed course "First Nights," students invent their own chords and rhythms based on Stravinski's "Rite of Spring" in order to to better describe the way in which the piece was composed by experiencing that composition themselves.
In Robin Kelsey's gen ed, "Seeing is Believing: A History of Photography," students complete a final project by producing multiple photographs that engaged the history of photography in an inquisitive and meaningful way.
How did race, gender, employment, and other characteristics condition people's responses to revolutionary activities during the American Revolution? In this activity, students take on different personas and consider whether they would support a boycott of British goods.