Carnegie Mellon University

Current Grand Challenge Seminars

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66-122 Grand Challenge First-Year Seminar: Beyond Earth: Reaching into the Cosmos through Science, Science Fiction, and Language

The aim in the course is to foster in students a planetary perspective, to see Earth in its context of the cosmos and to see humans in their relation to real or possible forms of life in the universe. The obsession with outer space is found among scientists, business…
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66-136 Grand Challenge First-Year Seminar: Becoming Resilient in Challenging Times

“My heart is in my work” is a phrase that once rang true to many CMU students and remains the motto our institution lives by. But what happens if our hearts suddenly aren’t in our work anymore since life has been interrupted by a global…
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66-137 Grand Challenge First-Year Seminar: You Make Me Sick: Causes and Consequences of Health Disparities

Why do some people live well into their nineties while others are more likely to die at an earlier age? The answer to this question can be more complex than one might think. Life expectancy can be influenced by a host of individual and population-level factors. This course…
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66-138 Grand Challenge First-Year Seminar: Militarizing Freedom: Arms in U.S. Culture

This seminar examines the manner in which American culture and politics have utilized the tools, tactics, and values of the military during both war and peacetime. From the interdisciplinary perspectives of history and rhetorical criticism, we will consider the different…
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66-139 Grand Challenge First-Year Seminar: Reducing Conflict: Perceptions of Culture and Identity

In the days when threats were constant, human beings needed to assess possible danger quickly. Today, before even speaking, our brain assesses and categorizes others. Needless to say, these quick judgments are inaccurate and based on what is visible or perceivable:…
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66-140 Grand Challenge First-Year Seminar: Intersecting Identities in Higher Education: Challenges and Opportunities

Higher education classrooms bring together students from a wide variety of backgrounds and prior experiences. While students’ intersecting identities can be an asset in the classroom, they can also present challenges in terms of student learning. For example, how…
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