Foreign Cultures (FLL 120 1F)

Time: M/W/F 1:25 - 2:15 p.m.
Instructor: Erika Hille Rinker

Do you seek enhanced global awareness? Enroll in Foreign Cultures and gain greater competence in understanding your own culture and the cultures of others.

The goal of FLL 120 is to encourage students to reflect upon the various ways through which cultural and linguistic identities are constructed around the globe. Excerpts from literature and selected films will be used to illustrate introductory concepts in cultural studies, and students will be encouraged to add the perspectives of their own academic areas of interest. In the unique service-learning section of the course, students will learn first-hand about diversity in their own university environment and how others view American culture(s), in exchange for the help they will provide international students with conversational English through a partnership with the English Language Institute.

Spanish Conversation and Culture (SPA 210)

Time: T/TH 12:30 - 1:45 p.m.
Instructor: John Maddox

Do you like to speak Spanish? Then this intermediate Spanish class, designed for students who have completed Spanish 202, is for you! Discussions of history, culture, and everyday life will be complemented with the latest in sports, entertainment, and world events. Students will have the unique opportunity to talk via Skype with students at the world-famous National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM).

African Hispanophone Writers (SPA 414)

Time: T 5:00 - 7:30 p.m.
Instructor: John Maddox

The vast majority of the twelve million enslaved Africans brought to the Americas were not taken to the United States. They were sent to the sugar plantations, mines, and cities of what is now Latin America. Black, mulatto, and mestizo people — as well as African traditions in food, music, dance, religion, and celebrations — have helped to make Latin America what it is today.

This class uses works of literature and film to trace the simultaneously painful, heroic, and joyous history of Afro-Hispanic and Afro-Brazilian peoples from the Conquest to the present, providing an innovative interpretation of Latin America, Spain, and Africa’s only Spanish-speaking nation, Equatorial Guinea. Students will build their Spanish skills through lots of conversation and group work, and they can opt to present their research at the 2015 Birmingham Southern Undergraduate Research Symposium. Graduate students will hone their teaching skills by helping professor Maddox lead class discussions. Come discover the African roots of salsa, the tango, and hip-hop!
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Ameen Barghi and Yoonhee Ryder have been named finalists for the prestigious Rhodes Scholarship.
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art-historyArts of Death in the Middle Ages (ARH 419)

Time: T 5:30 - 8:00 p.m.
Instructor: Noa Turel

Death was ever present in medieval Europe. It struck precipitously and frequently, often within the home environment, and was a core theme of Christian dogma and liturgy. In this course we will explore how the visual arts shaped and reflected ideas about death and the afterlife in pre-Modern Europe. Journeying from third-century Rome to fifteenth-century London, we will examine images ranging from catacomb murals to cadaver-shaped tombs and explore their connection to major historic events such as the crusades and the Black Death.

Death and the Bishop. c. 1500, stained glass, Church of St. Andrew, Norwich, England.Death and the Bishop. c. 1500, stained glass, Church of St. Andrew, Norwich, England.Artifacts and source readings by such authors as St. Augustine and Dante will guide us as we trace medieval ideas about the nature of dying, the connection between the body and the soul, and the shape of the afterlife. These ideas will help us understand such seemingly bizarre phenomena as the veneration of human remains, the obsession with gory images of hell, and the use of wax “prayer machines.”

Students of all majors are welcome. To request an override email

Introduction to Time-Based Media (ARS 260)

Time: T/TH 11:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.
Instructor: Elisabeth Pellathy

This fundamental course will introduce the practice principles of new media, including sound, animation and video capturing. Experimental projection techniques for the fine arts will also be taught. Students will work with dedicated audio video equipment and learn the basics of sound editing, capturing video footage, and editing that footage. Dedicated projects such as in camera editing, montage, and stop motion animation will allow students to build upon video editing skills. Historical context of media arts is given through screenings, readings, and response papers. Technical workshops are given throughout the semester. Students will engage in individual work and collaboration experiences.

Digital Fabrication (ARS 395)

Time: T/TH 2:00 - 3:30 p.m.
Instructor: Elisabeth Pellathy

An introduction to software and production tools used for designing and fabricating objects. This technology will be used in conjunction with sound, animation, and video installations. Fabrication tools may include but are not limited to laser etching and 3D printing.

Time-Based Media Seminar — Animation (ARS 395)

Time: T/TH 5:00 - 7:30 p.m.
Instructor: Elisabeth Pellathy

This course will expand upon creative ability and depth of expression using digital imaging tools. Students will learn the fundamental vocabulary of animation, such as spacing and timing, motion cycles, exaggeration, and staging. Students will apply technical and aesthetic knowledge in the completion of a series of animation projects, culminating in a creative student-directed final project. Historical context of animation history and its role in the art world will be given, providing emphasis on experimental and underground animation. In-class video screenings and readings will accompany each animation project. One-on-one tutorials will be provided as necessary.
Published in Cool Classes
November 04, 2014

Biology Classes

BiologyPhage Genomics II

Time: M/W 1:30 - 4:30 p.m.
Instructor: Denise Monti

Are you interested in hands-on research? Want to learn more about genomics and viruses? Phage Genomics II is a 4-credit, one-semester research course for undergraduate students. Didn't take Phage Genomic I? No problem. We will teach you everything you need to know to work in the lab and annotate a newly discovered virus.

If you are hard-working, enthusiastic, and want to be part of a research team, come join us every Monday and Wednesday from 1:30 - 4:30 p.m. Have questions? Please contact the course instructor, Dr. Denise Monti, at
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The implementation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) generated plenty of talk around the country. But for a group of UAB students, some of the most important discussions took place in Birmingham beauty salons, churches, malls, and even car washes. There, the students shared the facts about the ACA’s impact on health care and helped people enroll in affordable private insurance plans.
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For our alumni who are away from home, or for those of you in Birmingham who couldn't come to any of the Homecoming events for 2014, we have you covered! Our Digital Media team has helpfully bundled all the photos and videos of the fun. Come on in and visit Blazer Country!
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Every year, the United Way of Central Alabama (UWCA) pursues an ambitious annual campaign, and every year, area companies share their employees, or "loaned executives," with the organization to help it reach its funding goals. (For some sense of the scale of this undertaking, the United Way’s 2014 goal is $38,250,000.)
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August 08, 2014

Philosophy Classes

Department of Philosphy. Neuroethics (PHL 292/492)

Time: M 5:00 - 7:30 p.m.
Instructor: Josh May

Neuroethics studies moral issues arising in connection with neuroscience, particularly research on the brain. The seminar will cover several topics in each area, likely to include:

  • Does subconscious neural activity determine our behavior prior to conscious awareness?
  • Is a criminal morally responsible if the behavior is the result of a brain tumor?
  • Is addiction a neurologically real phenomenon?
  • Which areas of the brain are responsible for moral thought and action? (Emotional areas? Rational/cognitive areas?)
  • Can the results of a brain scan constitute self-incrimination, thus violating the 5th amendment?
  • Is there something wrong with making oneself a better person (e.g. more caring and generous) by altering one’s brain directly (e.g. via pills or deep brain stimulation)?

Students will learn about such topics and evaluate arguments on different sides of the issues. (Note: the 492 version of this course fulfills the Philosphy Capstone Requirement.)

Minds and Machines (PHL 372-7P)

Time: W 5:00 - 7:30 p.m.
Instructor: Marshall Abrams

  • Can computers think? And how do we think?
  • Is the mind just the brain's software?
  • Are computers capable of understanding?
  • Could a machine be creative?
  • Does intelligence consist in following complex rules?
  • Would a computer be smarter with emotions?
We'll explore these questions from perspectives of philosophy of mind, artificial intelligence, and cognitive psychology. For more information (including a tentative syllabus) visit Dr. Abram's website. (Note: this course also satisfies the Computer Science elective requirement.)
Published in Cool Classes
The city of Birmingham is an open book for students in one UAB English course. It serves as both subject and setting for their work, which hones their skills for writing about place for different public and academic audiences. And they quickly find that Birmingham’s story has plenty of blank pages for them to fill.
Published in Announcements
Biology major Quincy Jones and two other undergraduates were awarded prestigious Merck Fellowships for their research on aging and the brain.
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