Rachel writes: Choosing courses for Fall-Spring 2010-2011

Toward my ALM degree, I have 4 courses remaining to complete (plus a thesis–first things first!).

I am now trying to figure out which courses to select for the coming year–I plan on making a huge leap from one course per semester to two, and from “in-person” to online.

Finding courses which meet the stipulations for the degree requirement in my concentration–Visual Arts–is not necessarily easy. I notice that on offer for fall are two courses which were also offered last year: Designing the American City: Civic Aspirations and Urban Form and Nazi Cinema: Hitler’s Hit Parade.

Last semester, when I took only one course,  I often felt I had time for a second, even though I work full-time and work was busy. I hadn’t felt that way in previous semesters, but it may be that having one’s children grow up and go out on their own releases one’s time & energy in unexpected ways. It could be that time-management will be easier in a sense with online courses, since there is no commuting time, and one can listen to pre-recorded lectures at any time of the day or night, at one’s convenience. Still, the thought of having two research papers due simultaneously gives me pause.

I called a friend who has taken both of the above courses and got her very detailed feedback, which I think was helpful because it’s given me  a sense of what to expect and an assessment from a trusted source.

Among fall courses on offer, I eliminated Latin American Cinema because my understanding of Spanish is limited–I wish it were better, because I have heard wonderful things about this instructor and this course. Introduction to Computer Graphics sounds very technical–not my thing, though it sounds like excellent training. Works on Paper sounds like a fun studio course, but I am more interested in research and analysis than in creating artworks myself.

If all goes well, in the spring I will take Law through Film which appears to meet “live,” and one more online course, Religion, the Arts, and Social Change .  Each of these courses presents an aspect of visual culture via a specialized area, a sort of focused approach that appeals to me as a researcher.

So, we’ll see how it goes. Spring semester especially may be challenging in terms of managing time. But that’s the plan. I’ll start toying with ideas for my thesis project as well, while I’m at it!


  1. Posted July 27, 2010 at 3:48 am | Permalink

    I can give you more feedback on Dr. Krieger’s course if you’re still debating taking the “Designing the American City…” class- I took it this last spring. I actually am taking the “Latin American Cinema” and “Works on Paper” courses this fall, ironically. And I’ll be seeing you in the “Religion, Arts, and Social Change” class next Spring! 🙂

    • Rachel Youdelman
      Posted July 27, 2010 at 11:13 pm | Permalink

      Yes, please, feedback welcome on Designing the American City. Would love to hear your comments about it.

      Do you take one course per semester usually? Are you in a degree program?

      How great that you will take the Latin American Cinema and Works on Paper courses–how did you settle on these, I wonder?

      I will look out for you in Religion, Arts, and Social Change in the spring.

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