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WWU / Fairhaven College of Interdiscipinary Studies

300 Level Courses, Fall 2009

42615 303a Interdisciplinary Concentration Seminar

O'Murchu/Tuxill (5 Credits)
Materials Fee:  $7.20
Prerequisites:  Fair 101a, 201a, 203a and 305a. Required of students undertaking an Interdisciplinary Concentration.  Note: If you began at Fairhaven during Summer quarter and did not take 101a, contact Kathy Johnson for an override.

Note: Required of all students pursuing the Interdisciplinary Concentration as their major.  The Concentration
Proposal must be completed and filed at least three quarters before graduation.


This seminar is designed to assist you with your development and writing of an interdisciplinary self-designed concentration. It will serve as a forum for discussion, guidance, and support during the proposal writing process. While your Concentration Committee must finally approve your proposal, you will work collaboratively in small groups, meeting with each other weekly, and meeting with the instructor individually in order to write your learning proposal and identify relevant courses and experiences to help you achieve your educational goals. Here are some of the questions we will examine through this process:

-What are the appropriate guidelines and requirements involved?
-What exactly is it you want to achieve in your degree?
-How can your intentions be given effective shape and form?
-Who should be on your committee?
-How do the parts of your concentration work together conceptually?
-What are the best vehicles for your learning?
-What should you put in and what should you leave out of your concentration?


Text: Handbook provided.


Credit/Evaluation: Work steadily on your proposal, meet regularly with your group, contribute to the development of your group members’ proposals, work cooperatively, prompt attendance to all meetings. Credit for the course is granted when your completed committee-approved proposal has been filed with the Fairhaven Records Office and a regular self evaluation form is submitted to the instructor.



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41497 305a Writing & Transition Conference

McClure (3 Credits)
Prerequisites:  FAIR 101a and 201a.


The Writing Portfolio and Transition Conference are Core graduation requirements for all Fairhaven College students.  Your Writing Portfolio will be a selective collection of your academic writing and an introductory statement of self-assessment about your writing at this point in your education.  It will be reviewed and assessed by two Fairhaven faculty, including your advisor.  Your Transition Conference is a rite of passage officially moving from the “Exploratory“ stage of Fairhaven’s program into the “Concentrated“ stage of your educational plans.  You should embark on these requirements when you and your faculty advisor agree you’re ready for them.

This is not a class, however you must attend one of the following orientation meetings: Monday, September 28, noon-1 p.m. or Tuesday, September 29, 3 – 4 p.m. (meeting location will be sent via email to registered students and posted at Fairhaven College).    In order to receive credit for FAIR 305a you must:


1)  Submit your Writing Portfolio & 2 copies of green Writing Portfolio Evaluation Form to Jackie McClure by Thursday, October 15.  Writing Portfolios must follow the format outlined on the green Writing Portfolio Instructions and Evaluation Form (available in the front hall at Fairhaven College.)

2)  Schedule and Conduct your Transition Conference and write your Transition Conference statement and submit it to all conference participants.  Consult your faculty advisor and the yellow Transition Conference form for details.

3)  After your Transition Conference, submit your Transition Conference form to Jackie McClure with the signatures of all participants.


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43876 319b Current Issues in the Law - Gender and the Law

Symons (4 Credits)
Prerequisites: Fair 201a, 203b, 211b.


In this seminar, we will explore the history of discrimination based on gender and the evolution of statutory and constitutional rights including: the right to vote and the right to privacy including reproductive choice and abortion.  We will also explore the role and rights of women in the workplace including sexual harassment, the Equal Pay Act, the Family Medical Leave Act and sex discrimination laws. This course will also address subjects including family law, domestic violence, rape, and pornography.  We will not only address the evolving law in these topics but will also study the policies behind these laws.  We will explore the gains made by women over the past century and discuss the improvements yet to come to ensure equality for all regardless of gender.

Textbook:  Handouts will be provided including Supreme Court Cases and journal articles.

Credit/Evaluation: This course will be conducted in seminar format. All students are expected to attend class prepared, on time, and to participate actively. Students will write reflective papers on various topics and will write one research paper.  Each student will make one presentation and lead class discussion once during the quarter.



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43779 325g Maps

Tag (4 Credits)
Materials Fee:  $8.43
Prerequisites:  Fair 202a or instructor permission.


When we women offer our experience as our truth, as human truth, all the maps change.
—Ursula K. LeGuin

If we don’t know where we are, we have little chance of knowing who we are.
—Ralph Ellison

Exploration is a liberal art, because it is an art that liberates, that frees, that opens away from narrowness.  And it is fun.
—John Stilgoe
Maps permeate our lives.  Mental maps form and exist inside us, and we sometimes cling to them, other times redraw them, each act a way to orient ourselves, to know where we are, and who we are.  Our glove compartments carry street maps, road atlases, odd particular maps to places we travel to occasionally, and scraps of paper with directions to someone's house.  On our walls are world and state maps, bird migration maps, star maps.  What is so special about maps?  Why do we make so many of them?  Need them?  Fight over them? What does it mean to be creatures who map things?

In this course we will explore anything and everything we can related to maps and mapping, including some of the history of mapmaking, diverse ways of mapping, and cross-cultural expressions of space.  We will get out of the classroom and do fieldwork, use Western's Map Library, create our own individual and communal maps, make art, map stories, and push the boundaries of what may or may not be considered a map.  We will try to map things considered unmappable.

This is a course for those of you who want to become map-crazed for ten weeks, who want to explore how to visually express elements of our internal and external lives that are often ignored, who want to experiment with space, shapes, representation, and the possibilities of mapping the strange and compelling worlds that inhabit our imaginations.  Come and join us.  Bring your personal geographies, your political topographies, your philosophical cartographies.  Be ready to take risks, to explore the terra incognita of your own mental, physical, emotional, and spiritual landscapes.  Be open to changing the maps you live by.  Be prepared for a creative, historical, philosophical, artistic, and imaginative exploration of maps.




Credit/Evaluation: Faithful attendance.  Active participation in class discussions, presentations, projects, in-class writings, fieldwork, and other activities.  Completion and quality of short writing assignments, a variety of mapping assignments, and a final map project and presentation.


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42623 332q Topics: Applied Conservation Biology

Tuxill (4 Credits)
Materials Fee:  Variable Course Fee
Prerequisites:  Fair 206a or equivalent.


Long-term solutions to our present-day environmental problems involve not just conservation of the natural world, but increasingly the restoration of ecologically healthy landscapes and communities.  This course introduces students to the science and practice of restoring ecological systems.  We will examine the implications of ecological theory for understanding how natural landscapes change under the impacts of human activities.  We also will review case studies where shifts in natural resource use and environmental policies have helped restore the ecological health of forests, rivers, grasslands, and other ecosystems.  Students will gain practical skills by working collaboratively to plan, implement, and evaluate an ecological restoration project at a local field site. 

As part of the interdisciplinary focus of this course, we also will connect our scientific understanding to social, philosophical, and psychological meanings of ecological restoration as experienced by individuals, communities, and cultures.  


Texts:  Reading assignments will be drawn primarily from scientific journals and distributed via Blackboard. 


Credit/evaluation: Regular attendance and informed contribution to discussions is essential. Evaluation will be based on each student’s grasp and understanding of the issues presented in the readings. Students also will:  1) work in teams to research, plan, implement, and evaluate an ecological restoration project locally;  2) document their restoration work with a written final report and oral presentation;  and 3) complete at least 3 hours of service learning (i.e. one afternoon) with a local or regional conservation organization involved in ecological restoration.


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43780 334c International Human Rights

Akinrinade (4 Credits)
Materials Fee:  $15.47
Prerequisites:  FAIR 203a or instructor permission.


This course examines the idea of human rights, its historical, philosophical and legal origins. It explores the notion of universal rights and examines the relativity debate. It will introduce students to rights that are guaranteed and selective substantive rights will be examined - civil and political rights; economic, social and cultural rights, and other classes of rights. Other considerations include national, regional and international institutions created to supervise implementation of and compliance with those rights. It will also consider the role of non-governmental organizations and activists who seek to enforce human rights.


Texts: TEXTBOOK ON INTERNATIONAL HUMAN RIGHTS, by Smith; INTERNATIONAL HUMAN RIGHTS IN CONTEXT: LAW, POLITICS, MORALS, by Steiner, Alston, Philip & Goodman; and Universal Human Rights in Theory and Practice, Donnelly.


Credit/Evaluation: Conducted in a seminar format, all students are expected to attend class, prepared and on time, and participate actively. Your evaluation will take account of regular attendance, evidence of critical reading, engagement in class discussion, the quality of short reactions, and two assignments. Regular unexcused absences will affect your evaluation. All assignments must be completed to receive academic credit in this course.


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43875 334n Topics in Evolutionary Biology: Darwin

Burnett (5 Credits)
Materials Fee: Variable Course Fee
Prerequisites: FAIR 206A.


There is grandeur in this view of life, with its several powers, having been originally breathed by the Creator into a few forms, or into one; and that, whilst this planet has gone cycling on according to the fixed law of gravity, from so simple a beginning endless forms most beautiful and most wonderful have been, and are being evolved.
--Last sentence of The Origin of Species


On November 24, 1859, Charles Darwin published The Origin of Species, and the world hasn’t been the same since. “As much as anyone in the modern era, he changed human thought, and his influence is still felt in virtually all aspects of our lives. From science and concepts of society to philosophy, theology, and literature, Darwin’s legacy will be discussed and debated for centuries.“ We will join that discussion and, on November 24th, celebrate Origin’s 150th birthday.


We will witness the exciting conception, prolonged gestation, and difficult birth of Darwin’s great idea—that all life evolves through a process of natural selection—and discuss his thought in relation to the scientific beliefs of his time. We will explore the heated reaction to Darwin’s theories from the publication of Origin to the present time (“Intelligent Design,“ anyone?). We will trace the effect of his ideas on social thought, religion, politics, psychology, education and science.  And we will investigate the ways his theories have been challenged, expanded, and refined into a modern synthesis that not only explains the diversity of the rest of the natural world, but gives clues to human life and behavior as well.  For one profound effect of Darwin’s thought is the realization that we humans are not separate, but an organic part of nature and its processes. 


Possible texts:  THE RELUCTANT MR. DARWIN by Quammen, DARWIN: THE NORTON CRITICAL EDITIONS by Appleman, and EVOLUTION by Larson.


Credit/Evaluation: Regular, informed participation in class discussions and exercises, two analytic papers, regular brief reports to the class, and a final project/presentation.


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42624 335b Global Inquiry

Anderson (1 Credit)
Materials Fee:  $13.23
Prerequisites:  FAIR 201a or equiv


This workshop is designed to help students consider their options for independent travel/study projects abroad. It seeks to help students achieve some clarity about why and how they want to travel and study outside of their country of origin at this point in time.  One intended goal is to take the mystery out of applying for an Adventure Learning Grant.  To that end, topics will include how to develop project ideas, the qualities of successful proposals and personal statements, and strategies for developing international connections.  The core of the class, however, will be a series of guest speakers who will share their experiences with travel and research under a wide variety of conditions, and their thoughts about general principles for responsible global study and travel.  This course is repeatable up to 3 credits.


Texts: a number of articles on electronic reserve.


Credit/Evaluation: Students will be evaluated on the basis of participation in weekly discussions, a log documenting questions and insights that emerge from readings and guest speakers, and a final essay articulating why and how (or whether) you would undertake a global inquiry project of your own at this time.  Alternatively, a completed Adventure Learning Grant proposal may be submitted as the basis for evaluation.



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43791 336b Topics in Social Issues: Activism

Osterhaus(4 Credits)
Materials Fee:  $13.73
Prerequisites:  FAIR 203a


Living in a time with unprecedented social, economic inequities and with an environment hanging in the balance, there is an era of radicalism for social change (’radical’, from the Latin rad means to get to the root of) sweeping across the globe.  This course will present an opportunity for students to develop or improve their ability to be more effective, reflective and knowledgeable social activists. Students will look at how people make change in their communities on a grassroots level through case studies, films, readings and their own community engagement.  While activism often gives priority to doing over thinking, this course will be grounded in the organizing concept of “praxis”, understood in political studies as action informed by theory and the course will reflect both aspects. Throughout the quarter, students will also be encouraged to reflect upon the motivations, the values, the spirituality that underlies much activism. 


The class will create an analytical framework in which to critique social change locally and within the larger social, political and economic structures that affect the concerns people come together to address.   The analytical framework will form a base to understanding the dynamics of power relations, coalition building, leadership, and strategies. 


As part of the course, each student will commit 2 hours a week, for 5 designated weeks, to community based learning with a local organization. In addition, the class will collectively choose an action for social change.  Essential to this learning, will be the praxis model of analysis and reflection.  Time will be devoted to analyzing the experiences with questions such as: How and why are action groups formed? Who joins and why do they come? Does the organization operate through a cooperative or command structure?  How do they attract, train, and keep their volunteers?  How do people involved in community groups perceive their own activity?  Are they directed at helping immediate victims or addressing causes? 
Texts: To be announced.


Credit/Evaluation:  Attendance is to be consistent and fully engaged.  Throughout the course, students will be engaged in reflective writing using a "Praxis Journal." Students are to come to each class prepared with thoughtful and thorough reading of all the material; and they will be expected to take leadership, raise questions and contribute insights. Also a research paper and critique on a case study of social justice activism will be required.


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43907 336n Topics in Science: Natural History

Wendy Walker (visiting faculty)


This field course will introduce students to ecosystems of Cascadia: the North Cascades mountains and associated rivers and lowlands. Class sessions will cover geology, paleoecology, climate, biogeography and major plant communities and animal species of the region. Some theory such as disturbance ecology and factors influencing climate change will be introduced and discussed.
Field sessions will include trips to glaciers, subalpine timberline, different forest communities, riparian ecosystems, wetlands, beach and marine ecosystems many within the Nooksack watershed and influenced by their shared river valley. Students will study the attributes of each ecosystem and ways at which the systems influence each other and the organisms that migrate between them.  
Students will learn names, life cycles, adaptations and niches of a diversity of Pacific Northwest organisms while observing and studying them in context of geography and habitats.  
Credit/Evaluation: Regular attendance for class sessions and field trips is mandatory. (Some class session late in the quarter will be cancelled to make up the field trip days.) Each student will write a research paper and give a presentation on one organism, location or process. Teams of students will create a group project that effectively and creatively communicates the story of one of the ecosystems studied during the quarter. Possible test on species identification.


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43792 343r Death and Dying

Eaton (5 Credits)
Materials Fee:  $14.49


All living things die. This event, and our varied human responses to it, will be examined from many different vantage points: literature, art, music, medicine, psychology, religion, culture, philosophy.  The course is a “survey,“ as any one of these approaches could more than fill our time. The inevitability of bereavement and loss, the denial and certainty of our own death, provide the coherence to this study.  We will explore emotional and rational languages, subjective and objective realities of the ways people in the western world have made sense of death and dying. Although we will focus primarily on western, and specifically North American practices, we also will look cross-culturally to provide avenues for contrast and methods to evaluate and critique our own practices and beliefs. We will discuss contemporary issues such as the management of death by funeral and health care industries, legal, ethical and policy issues, and the psychology of bereavement.


Texts: THE LAST DAYS OF SOCRATES by Plato, HOW WE DIE by Nuland; THE DEATH OF IVAN ILLYCH by Tolstoy; GIFTS OF THE BODY by Brown; and other assigned readings from the class reader, the web and on Blackboard. 

Credit/Evaluation: Regular attendance, informed participation in class discussions, response papers, various in and out of class group and individual assignments and a final project on a theme related to the issues explored in class.
Writing in this class: critical response papers and reflective writing.


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42627 354v Scriptwriting Workshop I

Larner (4 Credits)
Materials Fee:  $6.61
Prerequisites:  previous course work or experience with creative writing, or permission of the instructor.

Prereq:  Previous coursework in film or theatre/drama, or experience with creative writing, preferably with dramatic forms (stage, screen, radio, television); or permission of the instructor.


The workshop is a collaborative, supportive group experience.  Students are expected to comment on, support, and participate in the work of their fellow students in the workshop.  Initial exercises and rewriting work with each others’ material will be followed by gradual development of each student’s project for the term.  We may also read a published play or screenplay and discuss it together, as well as attend at least one production or film showing during the term.


The emphasis in 354 is to acquire a working sense of dramatic action and a feel for how storytelling works dramatically, in any medium.  Experimentation and trial-and-error are encouraged.  By the end of the term, students will be expected to complete a one-act play (20-30 minutes) or its equivalent in another medium.


Attention will be paid to getting complete drafts of scripts finished, and then if time remains, to get them ready for production--screenplays for video production and showcasing here on campus, through the Projections Film Festival in Bellingham, and possibly beyond; stage plays for production here at Fairhaven, at the New Playwrights Theatre in the Theatre Arts Department, at iDiOM Theatre in Bellingham, at the Bellingham One Act Theatre (BOAT) Festival at the Bellingham Theatre Guild, and at new play festivals in Seattle, at Northwest Playwrights Alliance events, and other venues; and radio plays for production at KUGS.


Texts: PLAYWRITING: THE STRUCTURE OF ACTION by Smiley with Bert; STORY by McKee;  A play and/or a screenplay, TBA, may be required, as may attendance at selected film screenings and/or theatre productions.


Credit/Evaluation:  Students are expected to complete at least a substantial one-act play (approximately 20-30 minutes in length), or its equivalent in another medium. Work must be brought to class regularly and shared with the group. A portfolio of selected writings done during the term will be due at the end of the course.  Unfailing, dependable attendance; completion of assigned readings; progressively better informed, responsive and constructive participation in the workshop; and steady effort in rewriting and revising are required for credit.  Writing will be evaluated for its aptness for the stage (or the appropriate medium) and the development of the writer during the term.


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43945 361e Race into the Movies II

Takagi (4 credits)


Cinematic stereotyped images of racial minorities, such as the “Cunning Chinese” and “Befuddled Blacks,” used to be prevalent in films of the pre-World War II era.  We would like to think these stereotypes have disappeared since the Civil Rights Movement and as American society has come to grips with being a multi-cultural country…or have they?  Using popular Hollywood films, such as Kramer’s “The Defiant Ones,” Welles’ “Touch of Evil,” Ford’s “The Searchers,” and even “West Side Story,” this class will how American cinema represents immigration, race relations, and the movement towards equality and full democracy in the mid-to-late 20th century.

Texts: Possible texts: FRAMING BLACKNESS by Guerrero, HOLLYWOOD’S INDIAN by Rollins and O'Connor. Articles on reserve and Blackboard.


Credit/Evaluation: Written requirements:

  1. Seven scene analysis papers 350 words each. NOTE THESE ANALYSES ARE DUE THE DAY OF OUR DISCUSSION (EVERY TUESDAY)
  2. Mid-term paper 5-7 pages, typed, double-spaced.  This paper is an in-depth examination that compares two of the films viewed up to the mid-term date.
  3. Final Research Paper 6-8 pages based on a film of your choice – you must have at least 4 outside scholarly sources.


Other requirements:

  • Regular, timely attendance.
  • Participation in class discussions.
  • Must lead one discussion during the quarter.
  • Present oral report on final research paper.
  • More than 3 absences will result in “no credit.”



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42629 375h Audio Recording II

video-Vita (4 Credits)
Materials Fee:  $75.32
Prerequisites:  FAIR 275h


Audio Recording Techniques II takes the concepts introduced in Fair 275h, Audio Recording Techniques I, and allows the student to apply and practice them in a "hands-on" manner, with the goal of becoming familiar with and competent in the use of all of the gear in the Fairhaven Recording Studio.  Students will complete two small-group multi-track recording projects and will have the opportunity to work on other recording sessions as well.  Through the students’ work on these projects they will learn efficiency and speed in the techniques of tracking, overdub, and mixdown sessions.  The recording projects will be evaluated by the instructor as well as the other students in the class.  This course also starts the development of critical listening skills as well as the creative and imaginative expression possible in audio recording.  Students will keep a detailed journal of their session work.


Credits/Evaluation: Each student must finish the assigned projects which will be critiqued by the instructor and peers based on sound quality, balance, clarity and realization.  Overall evaluation will be made based on effort, participation, and growth as an engineer.


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41534 375p Introduction to Pro Tools

video-Vita (2 Credits)
Materials Fee:  $40.31
Prerequisites:  FAIR 375h


This class will introduce students to mixing and editing sound on a computer using Digidesign’s Pro Tools LE software (version 7.4) and the Digi002 digital audio interface.  Covered topics will include:


importing and recording sound into Pro Tools, editing and manipulating sound waves, the use of plug-ins and an overview of mastering processes such as compression/limiting, dithering and overall equalization.  As this is primarily a mixing class, already recorded material (from Audio II or otherwise) is helpful. Students will be expected to attend class regularly, demonstrate critical listening skills through critique of their classmates work and will be expected to apply the skills learned in previous Fairhaven recording classes to their mixing projects.


Texts:  Reprinted materials.


Credit/Evaluation: Students will keep a journal of their progress and the projects will be evaluated throughout the quarter by the instructor and the other members of the class.


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41535 375q Pro Tools HD Recording

video-Vita (2 Credits)
Materials Fee:  $40.31
Prerequisites:  FAIR 375p

This class will give students with advanced recording experience the opportunity to record and mix on a Pro Tools HD professional recording system. Students will enhance their knowledge of Pro Tools and learn how to use this software in conjunction with a Digidesign Control 24 control surface. Students will be expected to conduct at least two recording/mixing sessions throughout the quarter and prepare a final mix for in-class critique.  We will look at the specifics of digital recording, including how to maximize resolution throughout the recording process.


Students will also learn how to properly configure Pro Tools HD hardware and software components, how to set up session templates and how to utilize each component of the HD system.  This course will also look at new ways to use Pro Tools’ plug-ins and audio editing features.  This class is repeatable.


Texts:  Reprinted materials. 


Credit/Evaluation: Students will keep a journal of their progress and the projects will be evaluated throughout the quarter by the instructor and the other members of the class.


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41536 375t World Issues Group Study

Osterhaus (3 Credits)

What do we, as engaged citizens, know and understand about global issues and ourselves in a world faced with the complex issues of growing economic disparities, fragile democracies, environmental degradation, homeland security, civil liberties, military expenditures, racial profiling, globalization, and ethnic/religious conflicts?  What is our awareness of and participation in local and global efforts for peace and justice?  In addition to the weekly forums of speakers, videos, and discussions open to the campus and Bellingham community, students in the class will participate in weekly research and discussion of the issues.
Texts:  Students will read a book of their choice related to global concerns and read/listen to alternative media sources. 
Credit/Evaluation: Regular attendance and participation in the class discussions, reading of one book of their choice related to  global concerns followed by an oral and written book report, weekly reading of/listening to four alternative media sources, wwekly reflection papers, weekly acting for positive social change.  Students will be evaluated on meeting the above requirements, their ability to critique and research alternative media sources, their analysis and understanding of the inter-connection of issues, the relationship of the local to the global and the personal to the political.


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43860 375v Workers of the World

Frandle/ÓMurchú (4 Credits)
Prerequisites: FAIR 203a.


This is a student taught course sponsored by Niall ÓMurchú.


Why have labor unions declined both domestically and internationally over the past forty years?  Do workers and labor unions receive adequate attention within globalization debates? Why are immigrants often excluded from labor movements? Can labor movements make globalization and global governance more democratic? Have labor movements historically promoted democracy? Workers of the World is critical examination of both domestic and international labor movements. It is designed to engage students with the diverse fields and findings of economic history, labor studies, sociology, and comparative politics. As a class we will work toward unpacking the hefty baggage of “globalization“ as it relates to workers, labor migration, unions, and international organizations. During the first half of the course we will explore a history of the American labor movement with an emphasis on the contributions of immigrants, women, and people of color.  During the second half of the course we will transition to a global-historical perspective (via case studies and texts) in order to better understand constraints facing workers and their movements today, as well as the changing nature of worker resistance. Throughout the class we will try to understand the conflict between labor and capital and the implications of centering history on workers.



Additional readings to be found on Blackboard and Wilson Library e-reserve.


Credit/Evaluation: In order to receive credit and a written evaluation, students must: attend class regularly, participate actively in class discussions, keep up with the readings, submit emailed reading reactions through blackboard, write three brief view papers for the required texts, complete a 6-8 pg research project/paper, and submit a written self evaluation.


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42630 378e Whatcom Civil Rights Project Practicum

Helling (2-5 Credits)
Materials Fee:  $5.26
Prerequisites:  instructor permission

You do NOT have to be a Fairhaven student to participate!


“Volunteer Advocate“ role (2 credits):

Take 2 hour Training
Attend Weekly practicum meetings
Be on call one evening a week for interviews
Explore non-legal advocacy needs of person at interview


“Legal Interviewer“ role (3 credits):

Must have taken FAIR 211b or FAIR 377 class previously
Attend two-hour Training
Attend weekly practicum meetings
Be on call one evening a week for interviews
Explore legal needs of person at interview
Present cases to Attorney Review Panel


If any one wishes to earn more credits than is designated for their role, they must arrange in advance with the instructor to complete additional projects for the WCRP. 


About the Practicum

Working in conjunction with the Whatcom Human Rights Taskforce, LAW Advocates and the Center for Law, Diversity & Justice, the Whatcom Civil Rights Project (WCRP) provides legal assistance and advocacy to victims of discrimination.  ALL Western students are invited to participate.


Persons in the “interviewer“ role interview victims and write legal memos on potential cases.  They meet with the instructor (and fellow students) to discuss the case.  Finally, persons in the “interviewer“ role present the case orally before the Attorney Review Panel.   


Persons in the “advocate“ role also assist in the intake interviews, focusing on the non-legal needs of the party harmed.  Under the direction of the Whatcom Human Rights Taskforce, advocates prepare an Advocacy Plan for each case following the intake interview.  Advocates are trained in the advocate training offered once per quarter (advocates do not need prior experience or training). 

In this practicum both interviewers and advocates will be on-call for a weekly three hour shift in the evening to conduct intake interviews at Fairhaven College throughout the quarter.  To participate, students must recognize their responsibility to the WCRP and the victims.  This includes confidentiality, reliability, sensitivity to diverse populations, and ability to meet deadlines.


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42631 378f Court Watch

Helling (variable Credit see text)
Prerequisite: Fair 203a or equivalent
Materials Fee: $15.80
Note:  You must get instructor permission (e-mail for override); Fairhaven 211b American Legal System strongly recommended.

*This is a variable credit class.  You are entitled to 3 credits if you perform the tasks listed below appropriately.  If you want more than 3 credits, you must arrange this with the instructor IN ADVANCE by agreeing to undertake additional work.



Training Manual given in class


This course will train student and community observers to watch protection order hearings and to provide useful feedback on judicial proceedings.  This is a good class for anyone interested in how courts actually work (as opposed to what gets shown on TV), anyone considering a career in the legal field, and anyone interested in issues of domestic violence.


The Whatcom County Court Watch’s (WCCW) mission is to encourage equal treatment for victims of domestic violence while students and the community learn about the judicial system through observation.  Students will attend the weekly practicum meetings on Wednesdays, 5:30-6:20 p.m., as well as observe at least two hours of court at the Whatcom County courthouse weekly.   The times for court observation are:


Whatcom Superior Court:  Mon or Wed at 9 a.m., Thurs at 8:30 a.m.
Whatcom District Court:  Mon-Thurs at 8:30 a.m., Fri at 3 p.m.


Evaluation:  excellent attendance in class and in court (only one absence allowed), three-page reflection paper on book, active participation in class discussion, and weekly written reports on monitoring of courts.


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43867 387k Grant Writing Workshop

Coulet du Gard (4 Credits)
Materials Fee:  $6.61


This course focuses on the basics of grant writing, including researching and seeking funding sources; reading and interpreting funding guidelines; developing and refining proposals; and tricks of the trade.  Development of individual short and long grant proposals are required.


Do you think of writing grants as begging for money?  Do you have a fear of grant writing?  Have you got a great idea that can’t be implemented because you don’t have the resources?  This workshop will help you think of grant writing in a different way.  Learning to prepare a good proposal allows you to help granting agencies find a way to spend the dollars they are required to spend to meet their own mandates.  You need the money.  They need to spend it.  Your challenge is to find the match between your need and theirs, and to persuasively articulate that match.  In this workshop you will learn the basics of writing proposals to funding agencies, including how to find appropriate funding sources, how to read and interpret funding guidelines, funding restrictions, the steps for developing and refining proposals, including the budget.  Aspects of story telling will be used to help with the narrative process.  It is highly recommended that you have identified a project and an agency before the quarter begins.


Credit/Evaluation: Participants will be expected to develop a completed grant request and a proposal to a foundation or other source of funding by the end of the course. These proposals might be directed toward funding your own work, or might be related to the work of a community non-profit agency. Attendance is critical. Evaluation will be based on participation in class exercises on a regular basis, the quality of feedback given in peer reviews, and the quality of the final proposals. I keep a daily log on attendance, participation, and required writing.
Requirements: Credit is earned for this class by:

  • Attending each class
  • Be prepared to discuss the assigned readings
  • Be prepared to read your writing to other students
  • Be prepared with all written assignments, in a professional format (typewritten)
  • Participate in class through discussions, assignments and writing with other students

Complete two proposals by the end of the quarter including:

  1. a letter proposal or request, (2-3 pages) with complete information
  2. a 10 page complete format grant for major funding



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43799 391e American Indian Resistances

Rowe (4 Credits)
Materials Fee:  $2.00
Prerequisites:  Fair 263b or 399b or Amst 202 or 315 or other course in Native American studies or permission of instructor.


This course examines American Indian resistance to European and United States settler-state colonialism. In the first weeks we will survey 18th and 19th century religious and social revitalization movements, pan-Indian reform movements in the early 20th century, and tribally based activism in the post-World War II era.  Our survey will touch on Handsome Lake’s, Tenskwatawa’s, and Wovoka’s movements, the Native American Church and Indian Shaker Church, and pan-Indian organizations such as the Society of American Indians and the National Congress of American Indians.  Then we will turn our attention to the resistance and activism of the Red Power movement.  We will study such organizations as the National Indian Youth Council, American Indian Movement, Indians of All Tribes, International Indian Treaty Council, Women of All Red Nations, Indigenous Women’s Network, and Indigenous Environmental Network. We will also assess the status of contemporary Indian struggles for international recognition, religious freedom, sovereignty, land, and economic justice. Participants will prepare a research and teaching project for presentation to the seminar at the end of the quarter.  Great latitude will be allowed in the choice of individual projects that might include dance, stand-up comedy, art, oratory, music, film, photography, interviews, or an academic research paper.  Students will be encouraged to apply an interdisciplinary approach in their contributions to the seminar, especially in preparing their individual projects.




Credit/Evaluation: Evaluation for granting credit will be based on regular attendance; prepared and meaningful participation in discussions; the quality of several 2-page response papers on readings, films, or guest lectures and the effectiveness of the final project.


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397b Topics in Law: Law School  

Montoya-Lewis (1 Credit)

Are you considering applying to law school?  Are you terrified/worried/excited/overwhelmed with the personal statement/letters of recommendation/choice of law schools?  Are you haunting your advisor?  If so, this is the class for you.  In this class, we will go through the application process methodically, beginning from researching law schools and deciding where to apply (be prepared to think carefully about your choices) and continuing through the moment when you hit “send” on your computer (or put a stamp on your snail mail!).  This will be an intensive course.  We will meet during the first few Saturdays of the Fall quarter and attendance IN ITS ENTIRETY will be required.  Following the completion of the in-class coursework, you will have the opportunity to meet with me throughout the quarter as you wind up your applications.  Even if you aren’t sure you want to apply this year, but you think you might in the future, you should still take this class.  We will discuss applying to all kinds of law schools, not just the “top tier” as well as discuss what to expect from schools.  I expect to have at least one guest speaker from a Washington law school come to talk to the class, as well as a current or recently graduated law student.    
TEXTS:  Will be chosen from these two:  THE ULTIMATE GUIDE TO LAW SCHOOL ADMISSION by Wright OR THE IVEY GUIDE TO LAW SCHOOL ADMISSIONS by Ivey. Blackboard handouts
EVALUATION:  As noted, the attendance policy will be strict.  Since we only meet three Saturdays during the quarter, you must attend each class to receive credit for the course.  The writing for this course will be intensive; you will be required to go through multiple revisions of your personal statements, as well as carefully prepare checklists for each application.  Expect to receive extensive feedback and respond to it.  Evaluation will be based upon attendance, preparation for class, improvement of writing over the course of the quarter.  

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397i Exploring Ethics

Jack(4 credits)
Prerequisites: Fair 203a or permission of instructor

Exploring Ethics: What Really Matters

How do we come by our values, our ethics? Do we inherit them? Choose them?  Do we reflect on what we care about and change courses after major life experiences, after encountering others who make us think? In this course, students will consider the ethical questions posed by a range of philosophers and activists and define their own values in relation to the challenges of our world. Major questions we will consider include 1) What key values and ethical issues have a range of people from differing ethnocultural groups and histories considered most important in their lives? We will delve into what people have written for the This I Believe book series, and also you will write your own essay; 2) What are some of the most critical questions for societies around the world? We will consider together how to reflect on and respond to fundamental inequities in the world, using Terry Tempest Williams, Mosaic: Finding Beauty in a Broken World and the Dalai Lama, Ethics for a New Millineum.


As part of the class, students will attend the World Issues Forum series, Wednesdays from 12-1:30.




Credit/Evaluation: Informed, passionate participation in class discussions and regular attendance. Learning will be assessed through two short papers, regular journal entries, and a service learning project of your choice.


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43879 397v Medicine, Health and Healing

Banks (4 Credits)
Prerequisites: Fair 206a.

Have you ever really thought about what it means to be healthy? When faced with illness or disease do you stop at the symptoms or look beyond to find the cause?  


If you want more than a biological approach to your health and healing then you may have to look outside of mainstream medicine. The rising popularity of alternative and complementary therapies is evident. A landmark survey published in 1998 in the Journal of the American Medical Association showed that approximately 40 percent of Americans (83 million) now use alternative therapies.  People chose these healthcare alternatives not necessarily because they were dissatisfied with conventional medicine, but because they wanted the deeper meanings of their health and illness to be addressed; they also found these therapies to be more congruent with their own philosophies and worldviews. Unlike conventional medicine which views mind and body as separate and largely ignores spiritual dimensions of health, alternative medical systems view body, mind, and spirit as a unified whole. It is this holistic orientation that attracts many people to alternative medicine.


The conventional western medical model has served us well, although its limitations are becoming clear as we are faced with a predominance of stress related illness directly related to personal attitude and lifestyle. Western medicine is based on 17th century physics, i.e. the human body is viewed as an elaborate biological machine. As a consequence of this belief system we have a fragmented, reductionistic approach that fails to account for the social, psychological, emotional and spiritual aspects of health and healing.  A new expanded model that reflects modern science, integrates conventional, alternative and complementary medicine, and supports a sustainable, healthier future for all of us is required.


This class is about developing a broader framework of understanding and a greater appreciation for the diverse approaches to medicine, health and healing. We will learn about some of the problems faced by health professionals and consumers when trying to combine or integrate conventional and alternative therapy options. Together we will examine our perceptions of what it means to be healthy; learn about the origins of western medicine and why the current medical model was developed. We will explore a variety of health alternatives and investigate the different healing methods and treatments for stress related illness utilized in three expanded, more holistic medical models: mind/body medicine, vibrational medicine, and a recently proposed expanded approach based on Systems theory, an interdisciplinary field of science that studies the nature of complex systems in nature, society and science. Students can expect an enlivening variety of experiential learning, combined with inspirational and hopefully passionate discussions. 


Texts: THE TURNING POINT by Capra. Supplemental readings to be posted on the blackboard/distributed in class include selections from:  "Manifesto for a New Medicine" by Gordon, from DOCTOR TO HEALER by Davis-Floyd, VIBRATIONAL MEDICINE FOR THE 21ST CENTURY by Gerber, HIDDEN CONNECTIONS by Capra, A HISTORY OF MEDICINE by Magner, HEALTH AND HEALING by Weil, GUT FEELINGS by Gigernzer, THAT’S NOT IN MY SCIENCE BOOK by Kelly, SNAKE OIL SCIENCE by Baussell, and numerous other brief articles.


Credit/Evaluation: Regular attendance (no more than two missed classes), informed contribution in class discussions, presentations and workshops, written responses to class readings, various in and out of class group and individual assignments and a final group paper and presentation on a theme relating to an issue explored in class.


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