Rethink your Gen Ed - Consider a WSU Course!


As part of the Weber State University General Education program, WSU courses pose big questions that address significant issues about the world and help students apply their thinking and develop personal and social responsibility, which is demonstated through signature assignments. The purpose of the WSU Program is to provide students access to unique, team-taught, high-impact, interdisciplinary courses aligned with General Education program outcomes.


WSU courses are interdisciplinary, variable (3-5) credit, team-taught, and limited enrollment courses that satisfy requirements in two areas (core or breadth) of general education (with passing grade)*. WSU courses are committed to High Impact Education Experiences (HIEEs). To that end, course delivery modalities are limited to face-to-face or 50% or higher face-to-face hybrid and course enrollments are limited to 20-40 students.

Organization and Oversight

The Director of General Education is responsible for the administration of the WSU Program, including course scheduling, reviewing course evaluations and assessment data, and reporting to the WSU Advisory Committee. The Advisory Committee consists of voting members of GEIAC and is responsible for WSU course oversight, including the review of course proposals and exception proposals.

Course Proposals

Instructors seeking to teach a WSU course are invited to apply each fall semester to be approved for the following academic year. Review the Course Proposals webpage for more information. Once a WSU course is approved, the Director of General Education works with the instructors to complete a memorandum of understanding for the delivery of the course.

Course Offerings

Check out these offerings for the current year (full course descriptions found below).

Fall 2024 WSU Course Offerings

WSU 1450 Intersection of Art & Communication (3 credits) Humanities & Creative Arts Colleen Packer & Jeremy Stott
WSU 1560 Politics in Film (3 credits) Social Science & Humanities Gary Johnson & Scott Rogers
WSU 1560 People and Nature (3 credits) Humanities & Social Science Hal Crimmel & Alice Mulder
Spring 2024 WSU Course Offerings
WSU 1560 People and Nature (3 credits) Humanities & Social Science Hal Crimmel & Alice Mulder

WSU Course Descriptions

Intersection of Art & Communication The course will introduce students to and enrich their understanding of the nature of art and communication through studying the basic principles and elements of each and how they intersect in works of art and communication contexts. Emphasis is on message construction and relationships as evidenced in the intersections of art and communication. Through application of foundational elements to real life situations and experiences, it is hoped that the student will become a more informed communicator and critical viewer of art.


Integrating Chemistry & Art This course is a special investigation of the relationship between chemistry and visual art. Students will learn about different art media from a chemical perspective and a visual arts perspective. This discussion will build to a higher level of learning where students will investigate how chemistry and art approach a broader concept including texture, value, line, light, color, structure, function, space, scale, and form. Finally, students will explore how to represent the connections between chemistry and art in project based "artifacts", through visual, oral, and written forms of communication.
People and Nature

This general education course offers an integrative, multi-disciplinary approach to exploring the interaction between people and nature. It connects the social science and the humanities, with a sprinkle of the sciences. The course provides an introduction to many facets of the human-nature relationship, including nature as commodity, nature and the imagination, nature and health, and nature and sustainability, as viewed through the lens of change. As part of the Gen Ed experience, students are asked to engage with a "Big Question". For this class, the Big Question is: How do we create a sustainable balance between people and nature? 

WSU 1560 HU & SS Politics in Film This course seeks to make students sensitive to and articulate about the ways in which politics and American values are portrayed in film and television. It is the contention of your professors that these depictions say something about what our real, and espoused, values are. Topics to be covered include: the tensions between ethics and politics, the current debate in the academic community on social capital and what citizens owe to one another and the balancing of rights and how creative artists choose to narrate those tensions, an introduction to various moral theories that figure in contemporary policy debates depicted in film and TV, and a consideration of the principal values that animate American politics including issues and dilemmas in professional agencies. This course is multidisciplinary in its approach and materials, emphasizes multiculturalism and devotes considerable attention to the comparative and normative aspects of American government and free speech. The central theme will be citizenship: that is, to prepare students for their roles in a pluralistic democracy in an increasingly media narrated world.
Identity in the Digital Age Who am I? How do I present myself to others? What, in other words, is my identity? While identity questions are perennial, the answers often are influenced by culture. In today’s world, digital technology plays an increasingly prominent role in defining culture and, by extension, in defining identity. In this course we examine digital technology --and digital culture -- and how this culture shapes identity.
The Story and the Brain: Neuroscience & Literature The Story and The Brain is an interdisciplinary, team-taught course which will teach students about neuroscience and the workings of the brain and apply neuroscientific concepts and theories to literary works. This course will also explore the neuroscientific processes that occur when students read, write, and interpret literature.  In other words, in this course students will read literature about the brain to illustrate the workings of the brain on literature.
Research, Creativity, and Exploration Among Disciplines The course is an interdisciplinary, team-taught course which will teach students about scholarship processes in the social sciences, arts and humanities, and the sciences.  Students will have opportunities to make connections between the various disciplines, and understand how research, exploration, and creative processes are intertwined.
The Story and the Cell: Microbes and Metaphors In this course students will explore how microbiology and disease are used in literature to comment on the human condition. Early science, including disease, was often based especially on metaphorical and spiritual explanations rather than evidence because the true causes could not be observed with the current technology. This course will investigate the different epistemologies of science and the humanities. How does literature represent the scientific world? Why does science sometimes rely on metaphors? How does literature help disseminate the impact that disease can have on society?
The Sciences of Human Variation: From Sex to Gender and Race to Ethnicity Race and sex are categories which are studied from the perspective of the biological sciences.  In contrast, ethnicity and gender are social categories which are the topic of study in the social sciences.  This class explores issues of race/ethnicity and sex/gender through an interdisciplinary lens to understand the biological and social basis of these categories.  Students will learn key ideas in the Life and Social Sciences as they learn to understand human variation and their own ethnic and gender identities and its social significance.
Writing With Numbers Topics from mathematics that convey the beauty and utility of mathematics and illustrate its application to modern society. The course also develops language to speak accurately about mathematical concepts in a way a layperson would understand and practice in writing about these concepts. Prerequisite: Level 3 math placement or higher, or instructor permission
Evil Chemicals, Drug Scares, and Big Business The use and abuse of drugs is an important issue that affects people. This course will consider the main understandings, issues, and debates regarding legal and illegal drugs, drug use, and its control and punishment. We will focus on the experience of drug use, how drugs become defined as pleasurable, harmful, and illegal, the differing effects of drug use and control on people, especially concerning opioid use and abuse.