Course descriptions index


Northern Studies

For information on studying at McGill University, Montreal, Canada; the University of Copenhagen, Denmark; or opportunity for study in Russia, see Study Abroad.


NORS F205 Leadership, Citizenship and Choice

3 Credits

History of democratic principles in America and how people can contribute to political and community life in the local, state and national arenas as leaders and citizens. Examines ethical dilemmas of leadership, and political and social issues facing Alaska and American societies. Course includes an experiential learning component. (Cross-listed with PS F205.) (3+0)


NORS F425W Visual Images of the North

3 Credits

Examination of the imagery of the people and landscapes of the polar regions, centering on such issues as depiction of arctic peoples and customs by Europeans, documentary versus artistic goals, translations from original sketches to published images, relationship of polar imagery to prevailing historical styles and the influence of changing world views on modes of polar representation between the 16th and 20th centuries. Prerequisites: ENGL F111X; ENGL F211X or ENGL F213X or permission of instructor. (Cross-listed with ART F425.) (3+0)


NORS F432 Literature of Science and the Environment (h)

3 Credits     Offered Fall Even-numbered Years

Reading, analysis and discussion of classic and contemporary works in science, natural history and environmental literature. Some semesters all of the readings will follow one theme; other semesters a variety of fiction, poetry, oral tradition and nonfiction will be considered. Readings are selected from a spectrum of opinion on the relationship of people to the natural world and both analytical and creative writing are required. Resource management professionals and students in the sciences and humanities are welcome. May be repeated once for additional credit. Prerequisites: Senior standing or permission of instructor. (Cross-listed with NRM F432. Stacked with NORS F632; NRM F632.) (3+0)


NORS F470 Oral Sources: Issues in Documentation (h)

3 Credits

Preparation for recording and use of oral resources. Examines how meaning is conveyed through oral traditions and personal narratives and the issues involved with recording and reproducing narratives. Includes management of oral recordings, ethical and legal considerations, issues of interpretation and censorship, and the use of new technologies to access and deliver recordings. Prerequisites: At least one undergraduate ANTH course and one undergraduate HIST course, or permission of instructor. (Cross-listed with ANTH F470. Stacked with ANTH F670; NORS F670.) (3+0)


NORS F484W Seminar in Northern Studies (s)

3 Credits     Offered Fall

An interdisciplinary seminar focusing on topics relating to the North with emphasis on the physical sciences, the peoples, and the socioeconomic and political aspects of the area. Specialists in the various fields will assign readings and conduct discussions. Prerequisites: ENGL F111X; ENGL F211X or ENGL F213X; junior standing; or permission of instructor. (3+0)


NORS F486 Senior Seminar in Leadership and Civic Engagement (s)

3 Credits

Students are placed in contact with government and other agencies where they will gain practical experience applying principles of leadership and civic engagement. This is the capstone course for the minor in leadership and civic engagement. Prerequisites: NORS/PS F205. Recommended: The student's elective choices in the minor. (3+0)


NORS F600 Perspectives on the North

3 Credits

Basic knowledge of the circumpolar North -- the social, economic, political and scientific facets of northern life. Consideration of major cultural groups of the North and their histories, the environmental settings and patterns of settlement and development in northern regions and systems of governance in different northern countries. Broad overview of the major policy issues of the North in education, justice, health care, and environmental and wildlife protection. Course is also available online. (Cross-listed with HIST F600.) (3+0)


NORS F601 Research Methods and Sources in the North

3 Credits

Development of students' research skills so they can engage in their own research on northern issues. Includes techniques of interviewing, conducting surveys, and sampling; qualitative and quantitative methods of research design; and familiarity with library sources and archival records. Each student will develop a research project. Course is also available online. (3+0)


NORS F603 Public Policy

3 Credits     Offered Spring Even-numbered Years

Major policy models used in contemporary political science and application of these models to environmental sustainability and other social policy issues. Prerequisites: Graduate standing or upper-division with permission of instructor. (Cross-listed with PS F603.) (3+0)


NORS F610 Northern Indigenous People and Contemporary Issues

3 Credits     Offered Fall Odd-numbered Years

Comparative examination of issues affecting northern indigenous people from Alaska, Canada, Greenland and Russia. Issues include the impact of the alienation of land on which these people depend; the relationships between their small, rural microeconomies and the larger agroindustrial market economies of which they are a part; education, language loss and cultural transmission; alternative governmental policies toward indigenous peoples and contrasting world views. Prerequisites: Graduate standing or upper-division standing with permission of instructor. (Cross-listed with ANTH F610.) (3+0)


NORS F611 Environmental History

3 Credits     Offered Spring Even-numbered Years

Discussion of significant works of environmental history. Cultural history of the landscape in world civilization with emphasis on Western Europe and North America. Discussion of interdisciplinary approaches to the history of environment and cooperative work across disciplines. Prerequisites: Graduate standing or permission of instructor. (Stacked with HIST F411.) (3+0)


NORS F613 Wilderness and Environmental Psychology

3 Credits

Examines the relationships between people and the natural and built environments. Topics include the effects of arctic environments on physical and psychological health; preferences for different types of natural settings; the design of residential and community environments in northern climates; and the symbolism of settings and effects on political controversies. Prerequisites: Graduate standing. (3+0)


NORS F616 Performance Studies Abroad

6 Credits

Intensive course for actors, directors, designers, technicians and playwrights interested in script development/training with the participation of international theatre professionals. Develop new scripts and performances in a multicultural environment under the supervision of a theatre faculty member. Previous faculty and student work abroad includes: Russia, Zambia, South Africa and Scandinavia. Course requirements vary according to the project. (Stacked with THR F416.) (3+9)


NORS F620 Images of the North

3 Credits

Emphasis on the variety of images created about the people and environment of the circumpolar North. Examination and interpretation of conceptualizations of the North as expressed in such different media as film, art, literature, travel journals and oral traditions. (Cross-listed with ENGL F620.) (3+0)


NORS F624 Field Artists of the North

3 Credits     Offered As Demand Warrants

Study of field artists and their work, from the explorer artists of yesteryear to today's field artists using a variety of traditional and contemporary media in their creations. Students will conceive and conduct their own study projects, producing a body of work that will demonstrate the principles and practice of a field artist. Prerequisites: ART F105; studio art course (ART F161, ART F162, ART F163, ART F205, ART F211, ART F213 or JRN F203.) (Cross-listed with ART F624. Stacked with ART F424.) (3+0)


NORS F625 Visual Images of the North

3 Credits

Examination of the two-dimensional imagery of the people and landscapes of the polar regions, centering on such issues as depiction of arctic peoples and customs by Europeans, documentary vs. artistic goals, translations from original sketches to published images, relationship of polar imagery to prevailing historical styles, and the influence of changing world views on modes of polar representation between the 16th and 20th centuries. (Cross-listed with ART F625.) (3+0)


NORS F627 Geography of Cold Lands

3 Credits

Comparative physical, human and economic geography of cold regions in the North, especially Canada, Siberia, Greenland and Scandinavia. Special attention given to spatial patterns of settlement and natural resource development. Prerequisites: Graduate standing or permission of instructor. (Cross-listed with GEOG F627. Stacked with GEOG F427.) (3+0)


NORS F632 Literature of Science and the Environment

3 Credits

Reading, analysis and discussion of classic and contemporary works in science, natural history and environmental literature. Some semesters all of the readings will follow one theme; other semesters a variety of fiction, poetry, oral tradition and nonfiction will be considered. Readings are selected from a spectrum of opinion on the relationship of people to the natural world and both analytical and creative writing are required. Resource management professionals and students in the sciences and humanities are welcome. May be repeated once for additional credit. Prerequisites: Graduate standing or permission of instructor. (Cross-listed with NRM F632. Stacked with NRM F432; NORS F432.) (3+0)


NORS F640 Ethics and Reporting in the Far North

3 Credits

Historical overview of media coverage of the Northern frontier with focus on journalistic ethics. A comparison is made to the media climate in Third World countries. (Cross-listed with JRN F640. Stacked with JRN F440.) (3+0)


NORS F647 U.S. Environmental Politics

3 Credits     Offered Spring

U.S. political institutions as they relate to making policies for protecting the quality of the natural environment. The politics of nuclear waste, endangered species, air and water pollution, and wilderness preservation. Analysis of the National Environmental Policy Act, sustainable development, limits to growth and other topics. Course is also available online. Prerequisites: Graduate Standing or permission of instructor. (Cross-listed with PS F647. Stacked-with: PS F447.) (3+0)


NORS F648 Environmental Politics of the Circumpolar North

3 Credits

Overview of how environmental politics and policy as a field of study relates to the Arctic region. Analysis of various threats to the northern environment, focusing on the policy making institutions at selected Arctic Rim nations, as well as strategies to deal with environmental problems in an international context. Course is also available online. Prerequisites: Graduate standing or permission of instructor. (Cross-listed with PS F648. Stacked-with: PS F448.) (3+0)


NORS F652 International Relations of the North

3 Credits

Examination of the international strategies of circumpolar states. Consideration of theoretical and practical elements of strategy formation in major issue areas such as national security, the political economy, human rights and scientific exchange. Prerequisites: Graduate standing or permission of instructor. (Cross-listed with PS F652. Stacked with PS F452.) (3+0)


NORS F653 Greenland: Home Rule and Self-determination

3 Credits

The history and political economy of Greenland with emphasis on development of the Home Rule government. Highlights Greenland's dynamic relationship with the world economy and efforts of the Home Rule government to pursue sustainable development. Prerequisites: Graduate standing or permission of instructor. (3+0)


NORS F654 International Law and the Environment

3 Credits

International environmental law. Includes international case law regulating the sea, airspace, outer space and the polar regions; comprehensive international regulatory and legal instruments to protect the environment (e.g. the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change); and the doctrines, principles, and rules of international law that are basic to an understanding of international legal regimes and the environment. Course is also available online. Prerequisites: Graduate standing; permission of instructor. Recommended: Undergraduate course in international law, organization or politics. (Cross-listed with PS F654. Stacked with PS F454.) (3+0)


NORS F655 Political Economy of the Global Environment

3 Credits

Interactions between basic aspects of the global economy (international trade, investment and development) and the natural environment. Topics include the economic impact of global environmental agreements and the environmental impact of global markets, transnational corporations and development assistance by organizations such as the World Bank. Prerequisites: Graduate standing and permission of instructor. (Cross-listed with PS F655. Stacked with PS F455.) (3+0)


NORS F656 Science, Technology, and Politics

3 Credits

Relationship of science, technology and politics. Connections among scientific knowledge, technology, technological innovations, politics and power. Gender roles and the influence of western science. Both historical and comparative aspects are included. Course is also available online. Prerequisites: Graduate standing or permission of instructor. Recommended: PS F101. (Cross-listed with PS F656. Stacked with PS F456.) (3+0)


NORS F658 Comparative Environmental Politics

3 Credits

Enduring issues of the field of comparative politics and their relation to global environmental problems. Biodiversity, transboundary pollution capacity, political processes and organizations, and international commitments all potentially shape the nature and dynamics of global environmental politics and vice versa. Course is also available online. Prerequisites: Graduate standing or permission of instructor. Recommended: PS F201 or equivalent comparative politics course. (Cross-listed with PS F658. Stacked with PS F458.) (3+0)


NORS F660 Government and Politics of Canada

3 Credits     Offered Spring Odd-numbered Years

The Canadian political system, covering the Canadian constitution, federal structure, parliamentary government and public policy, as well as contemporary issues concerning Native rights and the Canadian North. Students will complete a major research paper on specific policy areas. Prerequisites: Graduate standing or permission of instructor. (Cross-listed with PS F660. Stacked with PS F460.) (3+0)


NORS F661 History of Alaska

3 Credits     Offered Fall

Alaska from prehistoric times to the present, including major themes such as Native Alaska, colonial and military Alaska, statehood, Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act of 1971 and the Alaska National Interest Lands Act of 1980. Also available via Independent Learning. (Cross-listed with HIST F662. Stacked with HIST F461.) (3+0)


NORS F662 Alaska Government and Politics

3 Credits     Offered Spring Odd-numbered Years

Alaska's government and politics, in the context of American state and local government, and politics and governments of circumpolar northern nations. Topics include political history, constitution, political parties, interest groups, elections, public opinion, governor, legislature, judiciary, administration and local governments. Compares Alaska to the contiguous 48 states and subnational governments of the circumpolar North; examines how government institutions and processes respond to social, environmental and political changes of northern communities. Prerequisites: Graduate standing or permission of instructor. (Cross-listed with PS F662. Stacked with PS F462.) (3+0)


NORS F663 Foundation of Russian History

3 Credits     Offered Fall Even-numbered Years

The foundations of Russian society and the modern Russian state from the earliest recorded events through the early 19th century. Topics include the Scythians and Khazars, the rise of the Kievan state, Mongol domination of Russia, the rise of Muscovy, the creation of the Russian Empire under the Romanov dynasty, ethnic and social diversity, the impact of the Napoleonic invasion and the influence of western European ideas in Russia. Prerequisites: HIST F275; or permission of instructor. (Cross-listed with HIST F663. Stacked with HIST F463.) (3+0)


NORS F664 Modern Russia

3 Credits     Offered Fall Even-numbered Years

Russia from the early 19th century to the present. Themes include politics, culture and society in the Russian Empire, the Russian Revolution, the Soviet Union and the Russian Federation. Prerequisites: Graduate standing or permission of instructor. (Cross-listed with HIST F664. Stacked with HIST F464.) (3+0)


NORS F668 Government and Politics of Russia

3 Credits     Offered Spring Odd-numbered Years

Current developments in Russia from a number of perspectives. The effect of history and geography on political change; the nature of Russian government and society; the legacies of Lenin, Stalin, Gorbachev, and the ideological nature of regimes and leadership. Economic forces and the political struggle in governance; revolution, democracy and reform; and the international role of Russia, particularly in relation to the former Soviet republics, Eastern Europe and other border areas. Prerequisites: PS F201; graduate standing or permission of instructor. (Cross-listed with PS F668. Stacked with PS F468.) (3+0)


NORS F670 Oral Sources; Issues in Documentation

3 Credits     Offered Fall

Preparation for recording and use of oral resources. Examines how meaning is conveyed through oral traditions and personal narratives and the issues involved with recording and reproducing narratives. Includes management of oral recordings, ethical and legal considerations, issues of interpretation and censorship, and the use of new technologies to access and deliver recordings. Prerequisites: At least one undergraduate ANTH course and one undergraduate HIST course, or permission of instructor. (Cross-listed with ANTH F670. Stacked with ANTH F470; NORS F470.) (3+0)


NORS F672 Culture and History in the North Atlantic

3 Credits     Offered Spring Odd-numbered Years

Ancient Norse culture and society. Includes readings of Old Norse poetry and Icelandic sagas in translation, with secondary analyses and archaeological background. Includes Greenlandic myths and contemporary ethnographic accounts of Iceland, Greenland and the Faroe Islands. Prerequisites: Graduate standing or permission of instructor. (Cross-listed with ANTH F672. Stacked with ANTH F472.) (3+0)


NORS F680 Comparative Education

3 Credits     Offered Fall

Focus on the comparative study and analysis of international systems of public education. National issues to be addressed include social context, gender, ideology, international power, level of development, current issues and problems, and efforts toward reform. National systems to be studied include Japan, the People's Republic of China and a variety of other national or cross-national studies to be completed by course participants. (Cross-listed with ED F680.) (3+0)


NORS F681 Polar Exploration and its Literature

3 Credits     Offered Spring Odd-numbered Years

A survey of polar exploration efforts of all Western nations from A.D. 870 to the present and a consideration of the historical sources of this effort. Also available via Independent Learning. Prerequisites: Graduate standing or permission of instructor. (Cross-listed with HIST F681. Stacked-with: HIST F481.) (3+0)


NORS F683 20th Century Circumpolar History

3 Credits     Offered Spring Even-numbered Years

A comparative history of the circumpolar North, including Alaska, Siberia, Scandinavia, Greenland and Canada. Focus on social, economic, political and environmental issues of the 20th century, such as exploration, aboriginal land claims, subsistence, military strategy, transportation, oil development, Arctic haze and scientific research in the Arctic. Prerequisites: Graduate standing or permission of instructor. (Cross-listed with HIST F683. Stacked-with: HIST F483.) (3+0)


NORS F687 Alaska Research Resources

2 Credits     Offered Spring

Find, use and evaluate primary sources in the Alaska and Polar Regions Department of the Rasmuson library over the Internet. Student pursues own topics and findings may be used to support research in other courses. (Stacked with LS F487.) (2+0)


NORS F690 Researching and Writing Northern History

3 Credits     Offered Spring Odd-numbered Years

Exploration of the craft and methodology of historical research in the North. Course may be repeated for credit when content varies. Prerequisites: Graduate standing; or permission of instructor. (Cross-listed with HIST F690. Stacked with HIST F490.) (1+3)


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