Fall 2014

Registration for fall 2014 freshmen and transfer students will open on May 12. The first step in beginning the registration process is to select your themes for English and CORE 101 courses.

NOTE: Core topics for 2014 – 2015 are currently being finalized. The 2013 – 2014 course descriptions below will give you an indication of the scope of the courses we offer.


ENGL 101: Freshman Composition is the Freshman English course. All students at SNC are required to take two semesters of English coursework. Transfer students may be waived out of one or more sections of English if they have taken this course at a previous institution which meets catalog requirements for transfer courses. Transfer credit acceptance will be determined during your meeting with the faculty advisor.

ENGLISH 101 Topics

The Individual and Society

This course explores the dynamic relationship between individuals and the society in which they live, with attention to the resulting connections, conflicts and compromises that occur. Examination of themes and techniques in assigned reading is emphasized to develop evaluation, analysis, synthesis and critical thinking skillsWeekly written work, in class discussions, essays, research writing and a portfolio documenting revisions are required.

The Creative Process

This course explores the creative process through reading and writing in a variety of genres including creative non-fiction, short fiction, literary criticism, and poetry with an emphasis on imaginative approaches. Examination of themes and techniques in assigned reading is emphasized to develop evaluation, analysis, synthesis and critical thinking skillsWeekly written work, in class discussions, essays, research writing and a portfolio documenting revisions are required.

Contemporary Literature

This focuses on contemporary fiction, creative non-fiction and poetry. Students examine and analyze creative writing paying careful attention to issues of theme and style, while writing in a variety of modes. Students are required to conduct both primary and secondary research, synthesize and integrate researched material into original works, and present individual research in papers and projects.


CORE 101: SNC Experience is the common intellectual experience shared by all Sierra Nevada College students, employing variable topics grounded in the social sciences (economics, psychology, political science, anthropology and sociology). Topics are selected from areas within art, business, humanities and science to engage entering students while developing the critical skills necessary for a successful and stimulating college career.  The learning objectives of the course will develop the abilities central to active, engaged learning.  Those abilities include critical thinking, problem solving, creativity/innovation, oral communication, teamwork, peer critique, self-reflection, higher-order questioning and active discussion. Students can rank their preference of CORE 101 topics with your faculty advisor.

CORE 101 Topics

Time, Identity and Storytelling

Storytelling is a basic human impulse. We have used it to convey important messages about morality, to remember our own history, to transmit knowledge, to warn of danger and to create common culture from the earliest days of human civilization. In this course, students will learn the value of a good story – how it can be used to influence, to persuade and to communicate. Students will focus on learning to tell stories that convey their identity and allow people to get to know them at a deeper level, facilitating human connection. As part of this course, guest storytellers will share their own stories of identity. The course will be framed by the idea that the stories we tell are a method for framing the meaning of the present moment and building personal histories.

Visual Communication

Human beings are very visual creatures, and the visual component of communication can often overwhelm its other dimensions. This class looks at a variety of ways that people and organizations use visual media to communicate and persuade, training students to make their own visual communication more effective. We will address questions such as: How can text and image be used together to tell a story? How can you illustrate an idea? What’s the difference between information and propaganda? Students will critique and create photographs, diagrams, infographics, illustrations, presentations, and video. Through this process, they will develop a greater understanding of the ways in which visual media are used to inform us and to manipulate us.