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

Education and Social Change
IS 101: 01

Why are you going to college? This course will explore this question and more broadly the role of education in society. How does it affect our lives, our work, our perspectives, and our society? You will be encouraged to understand liberal education as a call to action through citizenship and social change. In addition to reading, analyzing and discussing, you will explore these issues by engaging in activities outside of the classroom. By the end of the term, students will better understand how positive social change applies to their lives  INSTRUCTOR: DAN KITTLE

Character, Ethics and Engaged Citizenship
IS 101: 02
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 appreciate of what it means to be an engaged citizen. INSTRUCTOR: KRISTIN TEIG TORRES

Social Activism
IS 101: 03
Individuals are the greatest change agents within any society and this course will look at ways we influence the world around us. Everyone has the power to make an impact. We will ask meaningfulquestions about issues that are affecting our world today and engage in activities to better understand our own biases. INSTRUCTOR: CASSANDRA HALES

Paying for Life
IS 101:04
Have you ever thought about what your perfect future looks like? Many of us dream of a beautiful home and family with plenty of time for all of our favorite hobbies. Now the real question. Have you thought about how you might be able to successfully finance this lifestyle? This course will explore many areas of personal finance that will hopefully allow you to make wise financial choices and better our odds of living the lifestyle for which we have dreamed of having.  INSTRUCTOR: JUSTIN CROUSE

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.  INSTRUCTOR: MATINA CLARK

A Look into the Past, Present and Future of Education
IS 101: 07
How far have we come? What has changed and remained the same about education in the past centuries? How will education evolve in the future? This course looks into education from the apprenticeships of the past to the modern-day classroom to the future and the gamification of learning. 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

How to Solve It
IS 101: 09
We will study the classic problem-solving techniques of George Polya. We will solve a variety of mathematical puzzles and discuss how these problem-solving techniques apply to more than just mathematics. INSTRUCTOR: BRIAN BIRGEN

Survivor – The Liberal Arts College
IS 101: 30
This section presents an overview of the history of the liberal arts college in the United States. There will also be discussions regarding skills, goals and choices to increase the chances of becoming a successful college student. INSTRUCTOR: DOUG KOSCHMEDER

Global Issues, Grand Challenges and the STEM Professions
IS 101: 31
The problems facing the world today seem to be getting bigger and bigger. Global issues like those specified in the Engineering Grand Challenges and the UNDP’s Sustainable Development Goals 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 address these problems. Though focused on STEM fields participation and input from non-STEM majors are encouraged. INSTRUCTOR: LEANN FAIDLEY

Overcoming and Growing: The Psychology of Resilience and Mindset
IS 101: 32
Most people will face challenges during the course of their lives. Some challenges are ordinary, such as achieving one’s educational, career, and personal goals. Others challenges are extraordinary, such as experiencing extreme personal hardship or tragedy. Resilience and mindset are related but different psychological constructs that play an important role in determining how one deals with life’s challenges. In this course we will explore the nature of these two important aspects of personal adjustment.  INSTRUCTOR: TODD REIHER

Memoirs of Faith, Service, Learning & Leadership
IS 101: 33
How do service, leadership, faith, and learning shape what we do as a campus community? How have these things intersected to inform contemporary authors life stories? In this course, we will explore the four pillars of Wartburg College’s mission through common texts and experiences as well as several contemporary spiritual autobiographies from multiple religious traditions. We will explore some of the tensions and complications involved when we consider our various calls to serve and lead, and as we learn about multiple faith traditions that shape those vocations. INSTRUCTOR: CARYN RISWOLD

Talkin’ Trash
IS 101: 34
Everybody produces some form of garbage daily.  What happens to all of the stuff you no longer need or want?  Where does it go and why?  What simple changes can you make to reduce the amount of waste that you generate? These and other questions will be explored and answered through the use of various media, including movies, books and music, as well as a local service project. INSTRUCTOR: DAWN KELLER

The World of Ideas
IS 101: 36
How do we learn, analyze, critique, and communicate ideas? This course will consider a variety of ideas – historical and current – as tools for practicing skills essential for success in college. Using a combination of instructor-provided and student-selected texts, we will navigate and discuss big and small ideas that affect our lives. We will also discuss relevant avenues to communicate our ideas in effective ways. INSTRUCTOR: RICK SNYDER

Vocation for the Welfare of the World
IS 101: 37

As a mentor from his college days asked, “Is it possible to know the world and still love the world?”. A college education helps us to see the world more clearly, to notice the joys and sorrows mingled together. It also prepares us for leadership and service in a world that delights and frustrates us. We will consider how the choices we make during our college years help us to weave together belief and behavior. INSTRUCTOR: RONALD JOHNSON

Health Care for the Ages
IS 101: 38

What does the word healthy mean to you? How does the perception of health change in your mind as you get older? Dig deeper into all things health and begin to make a plan for your different stages in life. Become a healthy consumer in your 20’s, 30’s, 40’s and older. Examine topics like fraud in the health field, consumer health issues, how to understand the American health care system, insurance options and consumer protection and research to ensure you can make informed decisions through every stage of life.  INSTRUCTOR: DANA FOSTER

Leading by Building Relationship
IS 101: 39

To be a leader, you will need to work with all kinds of people. Have you ever wondered how to deal with a ‘difficult’ person? As you navigate through life, are you challenging yourself daily to understand people better? So much success in your education, career, family, and faith can be built off of developing relationships and learning to appreciate our differences. We will work on getting to know ourselves and others to separate the ‘difficult’ behaviors from the underlying person and avoid putting someone in a box. This class explores how to be vulnerable and use empathy to lead greatly and build valuable relationships that can support you through whatever lies ahead. INSTRUCTOR: LONI ABBAS

SCH 101 (First Year Scholar Seminar) Courses

Poetry Medicine: Play, Inspiration, and Vocation
SCH 101: 01
This class explores the value and necessity of creativity, specifically through visual and written art, as a means to solve problems, gain insight, and make meaning out of complex situations. Visual art and creative writing shape the world we live in, and they enrich our lives, no matter what our field of study. In this class, students will examine serious questions about the value of creativity in a capitalist society. We will examine a range of writers and artists that explore this subject, and students will do original creative work that includes collaboration, visual art, poetry, and problem-solving activities. INSTRUCTOR: AMY NOLAN

Utopias and Dystopias
SCH 101: 02
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? INSTRUCTOR: RACHEL CLARK