Inquiry Studies (IS) 101 is the foundational class taken by all first-year students. This class begins during orientation. The instructor for your section also will serve as your mentor, guiding you in making a successful transition to college.

Half the class includes content common across all IS 101 sections. You will have two textbooks in common, do some of the same readings, and complete similar assignments as all other new students. The other half of the class, while aiming toward the same goals, will be focused on the topic chosen by the instructor.

Please review these options carefully. As you sign up for a Summer Orientation, Advising, and Registration (SOAR) Day, you will be making your first big choice:

Which IS 101 classes will you list as your top choices?

IS 101 (Asking Questions, Making Choices) Courses

Character, Ethics and Engaged Citizenship
IS 101: 01
This course will provide an in-depth look at your personal character and ethics. A wide variety of materials and activities will be used to explore questions and choices related to this theme. Students will have ample opportunity to select and consider materials, experiences, and projects as they engage in the inquiry process and end the semester with a deeper appreciation of what it means to be an engaged citizen. INSTRUCTOR: KRISTIN TEIG TORRES

Expect the Unexpected
IS 101: 02

This course will explore the transition to college as a first year and all the new and unique challenges that come along with it. Together we will navigate how to have tough conversations with roommates, professors, being apart of a community with people that don’t look and talk like you, and any new experiences that come with being on your own at college. INSTRUCTOR: ALLI SUMMERS

Connections Across Culture
IS 101: 03

When students come to college they have a whole new group of people in their community. Getting to know the people you go to class with, play on a team with, and brush your teeth next to is an exciting and sometimes uncomfortable experience. This course will focus on how to interact with people who have different backgrounds and experiences as well as how to learn and build connections across those cultural differences.  INSTRUCTOR: COURTNEY TRIPP-STUCK

Humanities for a Better World
IS 101:04
How can learning about and investing in the humanities make a difference? Fields like history, religion, languages, cultures, philosophy and the arts are all about what it means to be human and to flourish. This class will explore how people who study and work in these areas are making a difference in the world and challenge the participants to do the same. INSTRUCTOR: KRISTIN WENDLAND

From Surviving to Thriving: How to Have the Richest College Experience
IS 101: 05
You are on the brink of your college experience looking at the vastness of all that Wartburg has to offer; how are you going to ensure that you get the most out of your four years? What are the strategies to be successful? How will you implement these strategies in natural ways? This class will explore what you need to know about higher education, what you need to know about Wartburg, and what you need to know about yourself in order to not only survive in college, but to thrive in college. INSTRUCTOR: LINDSEY LEONARD

STOP: Collaborate and Listen
IS 101: 06
Inevitably, you will be assigned a group project in your college coursework. How does that make you feel? Most students cringe at group work, but the reality is, collaboration is key to being successful not only in college, but also in the world of work. In this course, we will explore the dynamics of a group, including the purpose and function of the group, as well the roles of group members. We will work on building leadership, collaboration, and communication skills and how to navigate through the process of a group project. End products such as poster presentations, slide presentations, and oral and written communication will be utilized. “Alone we can do so little, together we can do so much,” ~ Helen Keller INSTRUCTOR: MATINA CLARK

Teaching through Multiple Lenses
IS 101: 07
In this class, we explore modern teaching methods and techniques as used by different teachers through modern times to serve diverse groups of students with various different needs. We will explore this through the use of a book written by teachers as well as various pop culture sources. INSTRUCTOR: MURAD MAHMOUD

Diversity and the Media
IS 101: 08
Diversity and the Media presents a current analysis and historical perspective of various minority groups and how media depict these groups.  This course helps students understand why and how stereotypical media portrayals have been produced and how the under-representation of diversified images affects students’ knowledge, attitudes, and behaviors toward others, contributing to multicultural illiteracy.  Students will investigate alternative media voices and creators, multi-cultural contributions to media, the image-rebuilding process, and corrective stereotypes. INSTRUCTOR: PAMELA OHRT

Women in Sports
IS 101: 30
From the ancient games to modern competition, this course examines the hurdles — both literal and figurative — and mixed messages female athletes have endured throughout history. Of particular interest are the ways sexism, classism, and racism conspired to keep women off the playing fields and absent in media. INSTRUCTOR: HANNAH WEISS

Pressing World Problems and the STEM professions
IS 101: 31
The problems facing the world today seem to be getting bigger and bigger.  Global issues include many multifaceted “Wicked” problems like Poverty and Hunger, Global Warming, Affordable Clean Energy, Reducing Inequalities, Responsible Consumption and Production, Clean Water, Health Care accessibility and advancement, Cyber Security and many others.  These types of problems will need the collaborative work of many people from a variety of expertise areas and background in order to advance towards solutions.  In this section of IS 101 we will focus on the particular responsibilities and opportunities for people with vocations in the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) fields to addressing these problems.  Though focused on STEM fields participation and input from non-STEM majors are encouraged.  INSTRUCTOR: LEANN FAIDLEY

To Be Heard: The Art of Effective CommunicationIS
101: 32
As you embark on your college career, you will soon realize that not everyone cares as much as you do about what excites you the most. What if you could make someone care as much as you do about your field of study? How would you ensure that someone outside of your field can understand your topic? This course is designed to illustrate the art of effective communication. We will dive into the foundations of pictorial, verbal, and oral communication. We will challenge each other to create meaningful presentations that capture the attention of a wide audience and educate others on topics outside of their field of study. By the end of this course, you will be able to engage people from disciplines outside your own and effectively communicate your scholarly work to others.  INSTRUCTOR: NICOLE STEPHENS

Find Yourself. Change the WorldIS 101: 33Choosing your path, navigating that path, and finding friendship and meaning along the way — all of this is possible for anyone willing to learn from self-reflection, conversations with others, and discovery of the resources that will help you find success in college and beyond. This course will help you navigate college while finding your strengths (and future strengths) and collaborating with others (and their strengths) to create lifelong patterns and connections that will give you footing and traction to create positive change in your world. INSTRUCTOR: JENNIFER LARSON

Where Will Santa Live?
IS 101:34 
Why should I be concerned about climate change?  How do my choices affect the amount of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere?  What simple changes can I make to reduce my carbon footprint and why does that matter?  These and other questions will be explored and answered through the use of various media, including graphic novels, movies, books and music. INSTRUCTOR: DAWN KELLER

Exploring Careers & Vocation
IS 101: 35
Development of an individual’s vocation and career action plan. Utilizing self-assessment instruments to develop an understanding of personal values, interests, skills, and personality, and connecting them to academic and career goals. (Castle Connection students only) INSTRUCTOR: VERONICA REECE

Relationships, Joy, and Well-Being for College Students
IS 101: 36
How can building relationships with classmates, faculty, and staff support your success? Learn practical ways to develop important relationships, cultivate your own joy as you discover your path, and engage in well-being practices that fuel your body and mind throughout college and beyond.  INSTRUCTOR: ZAK MONTGOMERY

Sports Analytics
IS 101: 37
Sports analytics is the process of plugging statistics into mathematical models to predict the outcome of a given play or game. In this course, we will study the foundations of these models as a way to statistically predict the future.  INSTRUCTOR: MARIAH BIRGEN

SCH 101 (First Year Scholar Seminar) Courses

First Year Scholar Seminar: Utopias and Dystopias
The word “utopia” is based on a Greek pun: it can mean both “no place” and “good place.” A utopia is a good world that doesn’t exist. In this course, we will examine the shifting characteristics of utopias (and their dark twins, dystopias) as we study literature, film, and music throughout history, from Sir Thomas More to Janelle Monáe. In the process, we will explore questions crucial to the future of humanity. How do we make the world better for everyone? How do we handle differences of religion, race, gender, sexuality, age, class, and ability? How do we strike a balance between the needs of the individual and those of the community? And what is the value of a liberal arts education in addressing these complex, urgent problems? Prerequisite: Admission into the Scholars Program. INSTRUCTOR: RACHEL CLARK