Fall 2024


Listed in: First Year Seminar, as FYSE-102


Andrew C. Dole (Section 01)
Lawrence R. Douglas (Section 02)
Alexander George (Section 03)
Leah C. Schmalzbauer (Section 05)
Nishiten Shah (Section 06)


Is the world a better place today than it was fifty years ago? Will it be better yet in another fifty years? We cannot answer such questions without asking what we mean by "better," that is, what counts as progress. The question of what progress is cannot be answered simply: the term has been used in different ways at different times and has also been the subject of much critical examination. We will explore the meaning of progress by engaging with a variety of thought-provoking and influential works. 

Open to first year students only. Limited to 16 students. Fall semester. Professors Dole, Douglas, George, Obert, Schmalzbauer, and Shah.

How to handle overenrollment: Open to AC First-year student only.

Students who enroll in this course will likely encounter and be expected to engage in the following intellectual skills, modes of learning, and assessment: The seminar will focus on the related skills of close reading, engaged discussion, and critical writing. Reading prompts will ask you to practice the reading skills required for active class discussion and effective writing. Students will write frequent short papers and have regular writing consultations with the instructor.

Course Materials


2023-24: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Fall 2011, Fall 2012, Fall 2022, Fall 2024Other years: Offered in Fall 2011, Fall 2012, Fall 2023