Nine years ago, the University of Alabama at Birmingham had an aha moment: Create an undergraduate neuroscience major that would link the medical and university portions of UAB and produce skilled young researchers destined for medical school or top graduate programs.
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Last Friday, the UAB Alumni House was filled with some of the College’s finest—representing the outstanding intellect, creativity, and character at UAB—as we celebrated the 2015 Scholarship and Awards Luncheon. It was a wonderful afternoon of camaraderie and support, as students, chairs, faculty, staff, donors and members of the community came together to celebrate the accomplishments of our remarkable students and the people who have provided financial support to them.
Published in Announcements
December 05, 2014

Anthropology Classes

AnthropologyThe Power of Nonviolence (ANTH 497 1D)

Time: M/W/F 12:15 - 1:05 p.m.
Instructor: Douglas P. Fry

Nonviolent protest has an important role to play in the 21st century for achieving justice, assuring human rights, and removing repressive regimes. Research shows that nonviolent social movements are more effective than violent ones. In this course, we will consider many intriguing cases of nonviolent social change, including:

Image from a 1963 civil rights march on Washington, DC, by Warren K. Leffler. Image courtesy of the Library of Congress.Image from a 1963 civil rights march on Washington, DC, by Warren K. Leffler. Image courtesy of the Library of Congress.
  • the Arab Spring
  • the ousting of Milosevic from Serbian rule
  • the “Orange Revolution” in the Ukraine
  • the “Velvet Revolution” in former Czechoslovakia
  • the end of Argentina’s military dictatorship by “Las Madres de la Plaza del Mayo”
  • the classic Gandhi-inspired examples of effective nonviolence that drove the British out of India and enhanced civil rights the United States

This course introduces students to the theory and practice of nonviolence as a manner of social change and as a philosophy. The course explores some of the classic writings on nonviolence by Tolstoy, Gandhi, and Martin Luther King Jr. as well as current research findings on the efficacy of nonviolent social change, for instances, in the work of Gene Sharp and Erica Chenoweth. Readings, films, small group discussions, and whole class discussions will contribute to an understanding of the necessary skills for practicing and promoting nonviolent social change. We will watch, discuss, and analyze the award-winning “Pray the Devil Back to Hell,” “A Force More Powerful,” “Brining Down a Dictator,” and other powerful films. No Prerequisites. All interested students are welcome.
Published in Cool Classes
December 04, 2014

Justice Sciences Classes

Criminal JusticeIntelligence Oversight and Legal Controls (JS 338)

Time: TH 5:00 - 7:30 p.m.
Instructor: John Grimes

Taught by retired intelligence community (IC) professional and attorney Professor John Grimes, the course strips back many of the layers of perceived mystery and black art surrounding legal checks and balances under which the IC must operate on a daily basis. Issues to be explored include:
  • What legal sanctions may the US Government pursue against fugitive former IC contractor Edward Snowden?
  • What behaviors that he uncovered through his unauthorized disclosures have the potential for prosecution, both criminally and civilly, against decision makers and agencies of the IC?
Throughout the semester, prominent guest lecturers will make presentations, including several retired IC General Counsels, members of Congress, as well as officers of the IC itself. Students will also work on a class project where advances in social media might be leveraged to significantly enhance the government’s search and rescue capabilities relating to mass disasters such as plane crashes or shipwrecks.

Drugs in Society (JS 400/500)

Time: T/TH 12:30 - 1:45 p.m.
Instructor: Hayden Griffin

Taught by lawyer and criminologist Professor Hayden Griffin, the course examines various definitions of drugs, their pharmacological affects and classifications, the historical development of drug laws, and the various methods of drug regulation, including prohibition, prescription, decriminalization, and legalization. Theories regarding substance abuse will be discussed, including the social and individual characteristics of those most likely to engage in drug use. The course will also examine the direct and indirect harms of drug use and methods of drug treatment. Finally, students will examine the future of drug regulation and treatment in the United States.
Published in Cool Classes
Dear College of Arts and Sciences Family,

After yesterday's announcement of decisions affecting UAB Athletics, I wanted to speak to you about our next steps and the future course of the College of Arts and Sciences.
Published in Announcements
November 24, 2014

Sociology Classes

Sociology. Global & International Sociology (SOC 278-2B)

Time: T/TH 9:30 - 10:45 a.m.
Instructor: Magdalena Szaflarski

Global Society, Global You
Globalization is a pervasive feature of contemporary social life. A world economy, a world polity, and a world culture (from McDonald’s to Hard Rock Café) are all undergoing rapid expansion. This course considers globalization’s aspects and impacts, in an effort to develop some understandings of its causes, effects, and implications for your own life.
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Foreign Languages and Literatures.

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.
Published in Announcements

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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