It's Not Just Another Intro Class

Writing Analytically is a writing-intensive seminar for students in the first semester of their first year at Regis. Sections are limited to 17 entering students, and are taught by faculty from different academic disciplines.

Although topics vary from section to section (see below), all focus on Eloquentia Perfecta, the classical Jesuit emphasis on critical reading, thinking, and writing, which are central elements of the college learning process.The seminar also serves as an orientation to college life and addresses transitional issues of first-year students. The seminar faculty instructor serves as each student’s academic advisor until the student declares a major.

Take a peek at the course titles below, and dive into the descriptions. This isn't your average class. Excited? Once you've narrowed down your top three choices complete the online advising form so we can start planning your very first semester of college at Regis University. It's going to be great!


Writing for Social Justice

Note: This section (En Route) requires a year-long service learning component, for which students will receive an additional credit hour both semesters.

In this section, we focus on writing for and with others through social observation, analysis and advocacy. We approach this theme in two ways: via weekly fieldwork at a Denver program or agency seeking to address basic human needs and to promote justice; and via reading, reflection, discussion, and writing at Regis University. Our goal is to trace the connections between academic life at Regis and life in and beyond the city of Denver.

MWF 9- 10:15 a.m.

Jason Taylor, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Philosophy
Susan Sci, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Communication
Melissa Nix, M.A., Center for Service Learning

Environment, Justice and Colorado

Note: Students enrolled in this section will be taking a 10-credit block, ENVS*250 (Intro to Environmental Science), ENVS*251 (Environmental Science Lab) and PJ*200 (Intro to Peace & Justice) in the same semester.

Environment, Justice and Colorado is a grouping of three courses, held back to back, which explore environmental justice. Because of the unique format of the course collaboration, students also are able to take trips to the mountains, engage in local exploration, and take time to understand the environment around them. Specifically, we consider Colorado’s landscape, both city and wilderness, with questions of access, preservation, and resources. Many of the materials and assignments for the classes will be shared, helping students gain a deeper understanding of the content and wider application to the remainder of their time at Regis. Courses are co-taught by three faculty. Dr. Eric Fretz, head of our Peace and Justice program, will guide and complicate our conversation around humans’ roles in the environment. Dr. Catherine Kleier, head of our biology program, will help students understand the scientific and ecological perspectives at play in our region. Dr. Morgan Reitmeyer, director of the writing program, will discuss how language impacts the ways we frame and engage in environmental issues.

MWF 9- 10:15 a.m.

Eric Fretz, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Peace and Justice Studies
Morgan Reitmeyer, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Writing Program Director, English

The C-Word: Living and Dying with Cancer

The C-Word: Living and Dying with Cancer, considers what it means to be influenced by cancer. Through readings, discussions and writing assignments, students gain a better understanding of how cancer affects the patient, the professionals who serve that patient, and the patient’s family and friends.

MWF 9 - 10:15 a.m.

Jay Campisi, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Biology

Going Beyond Bill Nye the Science Guy

Science is all around us. It infuses every aspect of our lives from health care and pharmaceuticals, to energy consumption and conservation, to the way we wage war and the food we grow and eat. Modern trends in science are commonly thought to be diametrically opposed to society. Is this due to a lack of communication or historical precedent? How do we improve the communication of complex scientific ideas to the public? How can the scientific community involve nonscientists in resolving urgent scientific problems? How is scientific funding swayed by popular public opinion or world events, and how is society influenced by current scientifi c trends? In this course we use current sources of scientific communication within American culture, including newspapers, blogs, Ted talks, YouTube videos, and podcasts to analyze the way that science is communicated to the public. We develop an understanding of how science and society intermingle. Using multiple writing platforms, we develop the skills required to both analyze and communicate modern scientific trends and their impact on our global society.

MWF 9 - 10:15 a.m.

Stacy Chamberlin, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Chemistry

Sustainable Cities

How we view city life often depends on how distant we are from it. Those who experience it regularly might see the convenience of having their needs met nearby. Those who rarely experience city life might see it as dirty and dark and dangerous. This course looks at the evolution of the city—from growth to suburban flight to re-vitalization—by offering a hands-on approach to evaluating and writing about the good, the bad, and the ugly aspects of city life.

MWF 9 - 10:15 a.m.

John Hickey, M.B.A., Associate Dean, Regis College

Let Your Life Speak

What are your talents, interests, and passions? How do you feel called to serve the world around you? And how might Jesuit education contribute to your sense of calling? This seminar will explore the idea of “vocation” as a calling to use your talents and passions in service of others. We will also learn about distinctively Jesuit ways of discerning vocation within the context of core education at Regis.

MWF 9 - 10:15 a.m.

Kari Kloos, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Religious Studies

Food Fights

The issues we explore concern anyone who likes food. The readings range widely and treat everything from agribusiness to home gardens, from vegetarianism to hunting, from food surpluses to famine and poverty. Students read, research, and write critically about cultural practices and contemporary controversies (political, environmental, and ethical) in the production and consumption of food, and together we consider how these shape our answers to the question of how we ought to live.

MWF 9 - 10:15 a.m.

Frank McGill, Ph.D., Associate Professor, English

Consuming Religion and Religious Consumption

From the recent motion picture, Noah, to the adrenaline-inducing quest of ice climbing, this course invites students on a journey to explore facets of our culture within the framework of religious experience. Some of the terrain we will cover includes defining "religion" within a context of distrust in institutions, the role of story telling and importance of story in informing identity, and our seemingly insatiable appetite for more stuff, which includes experiences. Is it possible to escape the clutches of consumption? Is religion itself somehow immune to materialism? Are there new forms of religious spirituality and can they avoid the inertia of consumerism? Ultimately, we will ask questions about the meaning of human fulfillment and expression and wrestle with tensions that arise in the face of consumerism and materialism.

MWF 9 - 10:15 a.m.

Aaron D. Conley, Ph.D., Instructor, Religious Studies

Lies and Lying Liars

Due to recent schedule changes, this course is no longer being offered. Check out 'Consuming Religion and Religious Consumption' or one of the other options listed on this page.

Making the Familiar Strange and the Strange Familiar

Develop a greater understanding of self and others through fieldwork - on-the-ground study of subcultures and groups of people, both familiar and strange. Step out of your own subcultures/groups and look in to gain fresh perspective; step into unfamiliar groups to understand strangers. We listen deeply to interesting people of your choice, explore strange and familiar subcultures, question assumptions, analyze and interpret findings, and move beyond common stereotypes. Students gain new insights about the magnificence, complexity, and challenges of ourselves and others. Through our explorations and the quest to articulate our findings to others, we will become better researchers, readers, and writers.

MWF 9 - 10:15 a.m.

Eve Passerini, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Sociology

Health and Society

What does it mean to be healthy? Continuing advancements in our understanding of the human body have led to an ever-increasing array of ways to improve our health. This course examines the intersection of individual health within a broader societal context. We critically analyze, through discussion and writing, advancements in medical technologies and popular trends in health. Students are encouraged to explore their own ideas of what it means to be healthy, both individually and as a community.

MWF 9 - 10:15 a.m.

Kristi Penheiter, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Biology

The Naked Ape

For more than a century, humans have clung to and clashed with our close relationship to apes. The affinity we feel toward our closest living relatives stems largely from the many obvious physical and behavioral characteristics we share with chimpanzees, bonobos and gorillas. In the U.S. we, as a society, have granted special conservation status to these African great apes, and we oppose the use of chimpanzees in medical research more fiercely than that of any other species. At the same time, negative connotations of apes are embedded in Western culture and our everyday language – we view certain people as inferior due to their “apish” qualities, and insult others’ talents by saying “a chimp can do that.” In this course, we explore the basis of these contradictions and use written work about African great apes to reflect upon what it means to be human. Are we simply a naked ape as many primatologists and geneticists might claim? Or are we a breed apart with our big brains, advanced technology, complex societies, and the wide-ranging texts that we produce?

MWF 9 - 10:15 a.m.

Amy Schreier, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Biology

How to Live Safely in a Science Fictional Universe

Don’t look now, but we are living out the science fictional fantasies of our parent’s generation. Technology is shaping our environment, both physical and cultural, often in unanticipated ways, and not always to our benefit. Science fiction serves as both a warning of the inherent dangers in technological growth, and a predictor of the potential bonanza from beneficial technological advances. In this class we contemplate and write about the impact technology has on our lives through the lens of modern science fiction.

MWF 9 - 10:15 a.m.

James A. Seibert, Ph.D., Department Chair & Associate Professor, Mathematics

Human and Civil Rights

Slavery, foot binding, child labor, women's suffrage, genocide, land mines, Apartheid, trafficking of women… just a few among many examples of the world's concern for human and civil rights. How does an ideal become part of a global movement to extend universal human right? We'll examine this movement's lessons for other causes. This is an ideal course for pre-law students.

MWF 9 - 10:15 a.m.

Daniel Wessner, Ph.D., Department Chair & Professor, Politics

Significant Moments in the History of Music

We will investigate seminal moments throughout the history of music and explore how these musical texts served to make musical and cultural change. Different styles of music will be covered, including classical, jazz, rock and roll and folk.

MWF 9 - 10:15 a.m.

Trudi Wright, Ph.D., Instructor, Music

Reality, Imagination, and Science Fiction

Note: This section is not recommended for athletes due to practice conflicts.

This course enables students to read, discuss, and write about modern and classic science fiction (both literature and films). We focus on the science and philosophy of consciousness and the human experience. We examine the question, “Are we able to create human consciousness in a computer or robot?” This course aims to help students develop writing skills including thesis construction and support, the incorporation of research into writing, and the appropriate and expected use of personal interpretation and voice.

MW 2:30 - 3:45 p.m., F 9 - 10:15 a.m.

Brian Drwecki, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Psychology

Maker Space

Note: This section is not recommended for athletes due to practice conflicts.

We examine (and participate) in the “Maker” community. What is that, you may ask? Building, crafting, and hacking-- creating objects and design from scratch to better understand our material world. Learn how to ask questions, find answers, and communicate your experience back out to the world. Soldering gun not required, but imagination is.

MW 2:30 - 3:45 p.m., F 9 - 10:15 a.m.

Morgan Reitmeyer, Ph.D., Writing Program Director & Assistant Professor, English

The Cuban Revolution

Note: This section is not recommended for athletes due to practice conflicts.

Interested in learning what that Che t-shirt really stands for? Join us for a history of 20th century Cuba. We will consider imperialism, racism, revolution, socialism and tourism, relying on Cuban and U.S. texts to understand the island’s history since 1898. Course materials include declassified government documents, revolutionary speeches, political cartoons, Cuban films and music, Cuban poetry and even a Cuban blog post or two.

MWF 9 - 10:15 a.m.

Martina Will de Chaparro, Ph.D., Instructor, Politics

Reading (Popular) Culture and Film

Note: This section is not recommended for science/pre-health majors due to lab conflicts.

How do you create the world? How does it create you? From Toulouse-Lautrec paintings to Tarantino flicks to trash television, our art, films, and popular cultures define us in obvious ways and in ways we might not fully comprehend. This course explores the flexible form of the essay as a way to understand yourself and the world around you by seeing ourselves (and our stuff) in context.

T/Th 9:25 - 10:40 a.m., F 9 - 10:15 a.m.

Scott Dimovitz, Ph.D., Associate Professor, English

Our Times

Note: This section is not recommended for science/pre-health majors due to lab conflicts.

Using the New York Times as our main text, we will focus on ethical, social and political issues found in today’s news, arts, science, sports, politics, and pop culture. Through class discussion and writing assignments about current events and issues, students will learn more about their world; to evaluate it, contribute to it, and even change it.

T/Th 9:25 - 10:40 a.m., F 9 - 10:15 a.m.

David Hicks, Ph.D., Professor, English

The Sporting Life

Note: This section is not recommended for science/pre-health majors due to lab conflicts.

A 2011 study estimated the worldwide economic value of professional sports at approximately $620 billion. (By comparison, global box office sales ran a paltry $32.6 billion and global pharmaceutical sales topped $800 billion.) In this course we explore the political, ethical, and aesthetic effects of sports culture on our lives and institutions. As we read, research, and write critically about this sporting life, we consider how different cultures use sport to frame moral and political issues that may be too sensitive to confront openly; to confirm or challenge assumptions about what is right, good, useful, or beautiful; and to use the human body as an instrument of art or violence. We also take the measure of its social, medical, and economic costs, from the rise in early onset dementia in football players to steroid abuse and eating disorders in an alarming number of athletic cultures. Do sports create a class of disposable human beings who lack the skills to survive the collapse of their careers? How does sport aid or impede care for the entire person?

T/Th 1:45 - 3 p.m., F 9 - 10:15 a.m.

Nicholas Myklebust, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, English

Honors Writing Analytically

Note: Honors Students Only

As the foundational offering in a five-semester sequence, this course begins a series of historically recursive seminars that bring the traditions of Christianity and classical learning into fruitful engagement with new developments in culture and thought. During the semester, writing, discussion, and experimentation will happen in classrooms, studios, laboratories, museums, cinemas, parks, and theaters. Students will gain a clearer view of their own opinions, a fuller truth in developing them, a greater eloquence in expressing them, and a stronger force in urging them.

MWF, 9 - 10:15 a.m.

Mark Bruhn, Ph.D., Department Chair & Professor, English
J. Thomas Howe, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Religious Studies
Lara Narcisi, Ph.D., Associate Professor, English

Commitment Writing Analytically

Vocies from the Holocaust

Note: First Year Commitment students only. Service learning component required

This course examines powerful literature produced out of situations of extreme suffering. Though burdened with an enormous heft of sorrow, these works soar with an imperative of hope and a challenge of witness. The course embraces a central tenet of Judeo-Christian belief: in an imperfect world, where evil stalks and sometimes appears to prevail, meaning remains possible and necessary. However we may discover, uncover, and/or recover it, a sense of meaning anchors human existence, especially during times of moral chaos.

MWF, 9 - 10:15 a.m.

Victoria McCabe, Ph.D., Director, Commitment Program
Professor TBA

Artificial Paradise

Note: First Year Commitment students only. Service learning component required

This course examines readings from several academic disciplines and cultures; each work addresses the deceptive nature of artificial shortcuts to the infinite, and documents the hellish destination of such journeys. The thematic burden of these works concerns the human quest for meaning in an imperfect world. Since many of the works are written from within the world of addiction, readings are sometimes harrowing but always enlightening. Each work affirms the human need for meaning and purpose; each is beautiful, terrible, and instructional.

T/TH, 9:25 - 10:40 a.m., F, 9-10:15 a.m.
Victoria McCabe, Ph.D., Director, Commitment Program

T/TH, 10:50 a.m. - 12:05 p.m., F, 9-10:15 a.m.
Abigail Gosselin, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Philosophy