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Columbia College Chicago
Course Descriptions

Course Descriptions




Essay Writing (Instructor: Kirsch)

Students will read, discuss and analyze essays by Langston Hughes, Anne Lamott, Richard Rodriguez, E.B. White, Loren Eiseley, and Annie Dillard.  Students will also read examples of personal statements written by previous UB students.  The writing in the course will include keeping a journal and writing: 1) a personal statement for use with college and scholarship applications, and 2) a 2 - 3 page essay that explains the theme of one of the professionally published essays read in class.  Students will complete the Columbia College Chicago application required for their participation in the UB Bridge Class, and students will be encouraged to submit at least one piece of writing to the summer magazine.

Modern Literature (Instructor:  Yontz)

This course will act as a survey of selected works of post twentieth century literature, with Laura Esquivel’s magical realist novel Like Water for Chocolate serving as a corner stone text. Along with reading the primary novel, students in this course will explore a variety of genres and styles of poetry, prose and personal essays. In preparation for college literature courses, students will carefully analyze each of these texts, through writing reflective essays, and participating regularly in class discussions.

Intro to Literature (Instructor:  Yontz)

The ability to comprehend and think critically about text is a skill that is both vital to success in college and life beyond school. In keeping with this philosophy, freshmen students in this introductory course will read and write heavily about John Steinbeck’s Of Mice and Men, along with various other short stories, works of poetry and essays. As with all English classes, this course will be as much of a reading class as a writing class, with the intent of each student improving his or her ability to express thoughts in written word upon completion.

Intermediate Composition (Instructor: Hochman)

This is a composition class for rising juniors with an emphasis on literature.  Strong readers make strong writers!  Students will learn how to read critically in order to prepare for the upcoming ACTs, the challenges of high school, and the expectations of college-level reading.  We will be reading and analyzing Richard Wright’s autobiography, Black Boy.  Students will explore the major themes of hunger, identity, racism, suffering, and the power of language.  This is also a writing class that will include a personal narrative and a 2-3 page essay about one of the major themes in the novel.  Students will experiment with the different writing styles we read and use those words as a basis to find their own voice and writing style.  There will be opportunity for revision, and emphasis will be placed on improvement between drafts.  Students will be expected to complete all reading and writing assignments in a timely matter and are encouraged to submit at least one piece of writing to the summer magazine.  


Introduction to Chemistry (Instructor:  Dean)

This course is an introduction to what you will be learning in your high school chemistry class sophomore year.  We will explore matter, atoms, the period table of elements and chemical reactions.  We will also explore some current issues in chemistry and possible careers in chemistry.  We will use many hands on demos and experiments to enhance our learning.

Introduction to Genetics (Instructor: Dean)

This course is an introduction to what you will be learning in your high school biology class freshmen year.  We will explore DNA, protein synthesis, cell division and genetics.  You will learn about your genetic code, and how DNA codes for traits such as hair color and eye color.  We will learn about the history of genetics and we will conduct labs that show the laws of genetic probability.  We will also look at karyotypes and pedigrees to show how genetic disorders can be observed and tracked in a family.

Introduction to Physics (Instructor: Wilkerson)

Students will learn basic concepts of physics in the areas of mechanics, electromagnetism, and thermodynamics. They will also review the mathematics necessary to study these concepts from a quantitative as well as qualitative viewpoint. Several experiments will be performed to focus on observation of physical phenomena in everyday life.



Introduction to Algebra (Instructor: Munive)

In this course, students will be exposed to the main topics taught in a typical Algebra course.  Students will learn how to recognize, manipulate and apply various properties of mathematics such as the commutative and distributive properties.  Students will also learn how to translate mathematical statements and how to use variables in a problem solving situation.  Using these main ideas, students will also learn basics in factoring, linear equations, linear inequalities, and quadratic equations.  Students will apply their understanding and skills in both individual and a group setting where appropriate.

Introduction to Geometry (Instructor: Munive)

In this course students will take their knowledge of algebra and apply it to the understanding of the basic ideas behind geometry.  Students will learn concepts of geometry related to distance, congruence, similarity, circles and a variety of formulas thru the use of theorems and proofs.  By the end of this course, students will be able to identify and utilize these concepts.  Students will incorporate spatial relationships involving coordinate geometry and analyze mathematical situations through visualization, reasoning and modeling.  Real life applications will also be discussed.

College Math Seminar (Instructor: Wilkerson)

Students will learn about and solve problems on a variety of math topics chosen to reinforce their present knowledge and skills and to prepare them for their final year of secondary education as well as the college math experiences that lie ahead. These topics include review of basic calculation skills, algebra, and geometry, and introductory trigonometry and pre-calculus. Problems will focus on practical applications of these concepts.



Introduction to French Speaking Countries (Instructor: Voltaire)

Introduction to French Speaking Countries is an intensive course designed to introduce the qualified Upward Bound participants to the world of French speakers and their environment. Topics covered will enable the students to converse minimally in French at the end of the 6-week session.

Global Issues  (Instructor:  Hochman)

This is an interdisciplinary course designed for rising seniors.  Students will study the themes of censorship, technology, privacy, ignorance as means of control, and civil disobedience while making connections to their own lives and those of the characters in Ray Bradbury’s classic, Fahrenheit 451.  Students will research current events dealing with the themes of the course and present them to their classmates.  Students will read the novel as well as multiple non-fiction pieces and short stories that relate to the themes of the course.  Students will complete a 2-3 page essay about the themes of the novel.  Students will be expected to complete all reading and writing assignments in a timely matter and are encouraged to submit at least one piece of writing to the summer magazine.   


Intro to Video Production (Instructor: Walter)

Learn about both the critical and technical sides of filmmaking in this college-style intro to video course. In this class you will work towards a greater understanding and appreciation of the movies you love by studying examples across various genres, and having the chance to create your own original works. Uncover the inner workings of one of the most powerful forms of media, and leave better equipped as film viewers as well as filmmakers!

Studio Art (Instructor:  Scott-Rudnick)

Develop and refine your artistic style in this college-style Studio Art course!  Discover new ways to inspire creativity in your life and career, and new perspectives of yourself and the world around you.  Mixed-media techniques will be explored through both individual and group activities.  We will touch on collage, drawing, painting, sculpture, simple animation, and more.  Artists of all levels will be able to learn, collaborate, and grow together, giving you material you can include in your college applications, and a real advantage when you arrive on campus.

Photography (Instructor:  Lindvay)

In this course students will learn how to appreciate, understand and create photographic images. Students will work with a variety of photographic materials, processes, and techniques including: digital photography, the basics of Photoshop, Studio Lighting, and traditional black and white (darkroom) photography. In addition to learning photographic techniques and skills students will learn about the history and contemporary practices of photography through slideshows and gallery visits. Through a sequence of assignments, created both individually and as a group, students will create a portfolio of images that transform their personal experiences into art that is meaningful to others. 

Guitar Ensemble (Instructor:  Anderson)

This course is an ensemble-based performance class with a focus on making music together in large and small groups.  Students will learn fundamentals of music and guitar, towards the goal of being able to contribute to and perform with an ensemble.  Large ensemble projects will focus on cooperation and group coordination.  Small ensemble projects will focus on creativity; students will be encouraged to create their own ensemble arrangements or compositions in groups of two, three, or four.  No experience is necessary as guitar fundamentals will be covered.  

 Columbia College Upward Bound is an equal opportunity program