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Courses - Spring 2014

Please note that all course offerings are subject to change. Changes in faculty availability and student enrollment can occasionally result in course cancellations.  

Click on a course name to see a course description and a sample syllabus from a past semester. (Current syllabi may differ.) For sample syllabi or academic questions, please email global.academics@nyu.edu.

A list of all courses offered at the Global Academic Centers, organized by department, can be found here.

Spring 2014 courses are now availble in Albert, NYU's Student Information System. Directions on how to view Study Away courses in Albert, and other Registration FAQs can be found here.


Academic Requirements & Registration Guidelines

  • Students must register for 12-18 credits
  • All students will take Global Orientations - a zero credit pass/fail course. Students will be enrolled by Global Programs during registration week.
  • Attendance is expected and required; absences will negatively affect grades
  • Before you plan your personal travel, check your syllabi! Academic site visits and field trips are considered required class time.
  • Don’t forget to fill out an application for Univ. of Ghana-Legon, found here by October 23.
  • Exact courses offered at University of Ghana-Legon will not be available at registration time, but sample courses are listed here.
  • Enrollment for Legon courses and dropping of NYU courses will be done once in Accra (so make sure you are registered for at least 12 credits, even if you plan to take Legon courses)
  • You must take at least two courses at the NYU Accra campus
  • SCA-UA 9042/INDIV-UG 9050 Internship Seminar & Fieldwork is a permission only class. Students must apply ahead of time for this course. Application information can be found here. During registration week, register for another course as a place holder in case you are not accepted.
  • More information about Registering for Study Away Courses and registration FAQ's is available here.
  • If you have trouble finding a course on Albert or encounter problems, email global.academics@nyu.edu

Spring 2014 | Fall 2014 | Spring 2015 | Fall 2015 | Spring 2016

 

Required Course for All Students

This course has three main objectives: a) to enable students to gain insights into the local culture and context, and b) to deepen students’ understanding of Ghana’s and Africa’s relationship with other cultures, especially the West, c) and to equip students with basic communication skills in a local language. To achieve the first two objectives, guest speakers will be invited to talk about specific topics, including the history, society and culture, religion, indigenous and contemporary health and political systems and their relevance in contemporary Ghana. These lectures and discussions will be complemented by site visits and excursions to major historical and cultural sites. It is hoped that these talks and field trips will provide the relevant background information for students to understand some of the issues raised in their classes as well as their day-to-day encounters within their new environment. Regarding the third objective, there will be three introductory lessons in the Twi dialect of Akan, the most widely spoken local language in the country.

This course will combine talks, discussions, field trips and assignments. Four 1 - 1.5hrs guest lectures, two site visits, and two language lessons will form part of the orientation activities in WEEK 0. In the first six weeks of the semester, there will be two additional field trips and film screenings. Each student is expected to write three 2-page reaction/reflection papers on any of the talks, site visits and film documentaries.


Africana Studies

Introduces students to a variety of topics and methodologies associated with Africana
studies as a field of academic inquiry, including the history of the field and its growth
over the course of time. Specific topics may include the question of African retention
in the Americas, the comparative study of slavery, the concept of creolization, an
understanding of the black Atlantic, and the meaning of diasporic studies, as well as the
use of history, sociology, linguistics, anthropology, literature, music, and the arts as ways
in which the experiences of black peoples have been documented and transmitted.

Using a variety of paradigms, this course explores a broad range of popular musical forms in sub-Saharan Africa as stylistic areas. Southern, Central, East and West Africa (Francophone and Anglophone) musical styles are considered. The historical scope of the inquiry extends from 19th century to the present. The investigation seeks to highlight the relationships among popular music, traditional performance, and the social and cultural forces of modernization.

Sample Syllabus

 

This interdisciplinary course combines ethnographic readings, representations, and interpretations of city and urban cultures with a video production component in which students create short documentaries on the city of Accra. The interpretative classes will run concurrently with production management, sights and sound, and post-production workshops. The course will have three objectives: (1) teach students the documentary tradition from Flaherty to Rouch; (2) use critical Cinema theory to define a document with a camera; and (3) create a short documentary film.

Sample Syllabus

This is an interdisciplinary course designed to study the life and times, intellectual thought and practical activity, of Ghana’s first president, Kwame Nkrumah.  With the use of a variety of readings and audio-visual materials, this course will critically explore the socioeconomic and political factors that served to shape the life, thought, and times of Kwame Nkrumah.  The persons, ideas, and events that influenced Nkrumah and the ideas, persons and events that he also impacted will be covered as well.  Students interested in sociology, history, political science, economics, and cultural studies will find this course of particular interest as its subject matter will dovetail into each of these related fields of study.

Sample Syllabus

Examines gender from a multidisciplinary perspective and in particular as a
sociolinguistic variable in speech behavior. How do linguistic practices both reflect
and shape our gender identity, and how do these reflect more global socio-cultural
relationships between the sexes? Do women and men talk differently? To what degree
do these differences seem to be universal or variable across cultures? How do dominant
gender-based ideologies function to constrain women and men’s choices about their
gender identities and gender relationships? How does gendered language intersect with
race and class-linked language? How is it challenged by linguistic “gender bending”?
What impact does gendered language have on the power relationships in given societies?
Also examines gendered voices—and silences—in folklore and in literature. Asks how
particular linguistic practices contribute to the production of people as “women and
men”?

This is a language course designed to provide basic communicative competence in oral and written Twi for beginners. It focuses on the structure of the language as well as the culture of the people. The areas covered include: (i) oral drills; (ii) orthography; (iii) written exercises; (iv)translation from English to Twi and from Twi to English; (v) reading and comprehension; (vi) conversation and narration involving dialogues, greetings, description of day to day activities and bargaining); (vii) Grammar (parts of speech—nouns, verbs, pronouns, adjectives, adverbs, particles, determiners, tense/aspect, and question forms); (viii) Composition writing.

Sample Syllabus


Anthropology

The course introduces students to aspects of Ghanaian society and culture. It considers both traditional aspects of life and how people live their lives in this first decade of the new millennium. How Ghanaians perceive and conceive themselves and their society; how others view the society and life of Ghanaians also receive critical attention. The course emphasizes that Ghanaians are not an undifferentiated lot and that what the different people say their behavior should be differs from what their actual behavior is. Students will get to examine these varied perceptions and perspectives as well as construct their own representations of the society. The course will also attempt to answer questions about Ghana and Ghanaians that are of interest to the non-Ghanaian getting acquainted with the country. The course combines talks, readings, discussions, visits, and students' presentations in class. There will be a written examination at the end of the semester and a dissertation on an aspect of Ghanaian society and culture that students might choose to explore.

Sample Syllabus


Applied Psychology

Courses listed under Teaching and Learning / Applied Psychology


Art History

This course uses an interdisciplinary approach to explore Ghanaian art and art history in their historical, anthropological and archaeological contexts. The course serves both as a survey and critique of the literature on West African art, and as an exploration of method and theory in sub-Saharan art historical research. Students explore major works from key periods of Ghanaian artistic and cultural production and are involved in practical work in laboratories and museums dealing with art specimens from local archaeological sites and ethnographic contexts.

Sample Syllabus


Comparative Literature

This course shall focus on the place of women in the literary tradition, an issue that is very current in the discourse on the literature of Africa and its Diaspora. Women writers have emerged at the forefront of the movement to restore African women to their proper place in the study of African history, society and culture. In this process, the need to recognize the women as literary artists in the oral mode has also been highlighted. Furthermore, the work of women writers is gaining increasing significance and deserves to be examined within the context of canon formation. Authors and texts will be examined, focusing on such topics as the heritage of women's literature, images of women in the works of male writers; women in traditional and contemporary society; women and the African family in the literary tradition; literature as a tool for self-definition and self-liberation; African women writers; female expressions of cultural nationalism in the Caribbean; female novelists of the African continent; Black women dramatists; the poetry of African women.

Sample Syllabus

Note: this course is open to all students for elective credit. Comparative
literature majors in track ii (literary and cultural studies) may count this
course toward one of their non-core major requirements.

The course examines certain recurring themes and critical issues in post-colonial narratives in Africa. It begins with a look at the debate and polemics around post-colonialism as a critical and theoretical concept. It then dwells on specific narratives, mainly novels by African writers, works located in the period following classical colonialism. The reading of these narratives is informed by such critical issues as the crisis of cultures in contact; personal, class, ethnic and national identities; the politics of gender; debates over language; the aesthetics and politics of art; strategic transformations in narrative form, etc.

Sample Syllabus


Creative Writing

This is a workshop type course intended for a small group of students, each with a strong aptitude and/or demonstrated talent for creative writing. Our basic objective is to guide students into a more systematic approach to creative writing in any of the main genres, especially fiction and poetry. Each student is expected to engage in critical discussions on samples of their own writing as well as on writing by other members of the class. Our focus shall be on developing a grasp of the rudiments and general mechanics of the writer's craft, while at the same time allowing for a fuller realization of the personal/individual creative impulse and talent. Some class sessions will be devoted to various types of writing exercises, others to the discussion of sample texts, most of it produced by members of the class. Each student will be expected to share his/her work with the class and possibly with a wider audience when possible. At the end of the semester, each student will be expected to have produced a substantial body of creative writing for assessment by the course instructors.

Sample Syllabus


Gallatin School of Individualized Study

Enrollment by permission only. Application required. Contact global.academics@nyu.edu for application information. Course includes weekly seminar and minimum of 10 hours fieldwork/ week at approved internship fieldsite.

Sample Syllabus


History

The course examines the rise, growth, effects, and the abolition of the Atlantic Slave trade as well as its legacy. The course begins with a discussion of the nature of West African society before the introduction of the Atlantic Slave Trade; and the relations among Asante peoples, other neighboring West African peoples, the indigenous slave trade, and relations with Europeans in the Atlantic Slave Trade. The Atlantic Slave trade itself is analyzed from historical, ethnographic, sociological, economic and political perspectives, focusing on Africa, Europe and the Americas. The immediate and long term effects of the Slave Trade on Africa are considered, as well as the history of the trade's Abolition, and the legacy of the Atlantic Slave trade in African, European and American societies.

Sample Syllabus


Journalism

The aim of the course is to have NYU journalism students team up with students of University of Ghana to report on Ghana. Reporting teams will be constituted and reviewed throughout the semester, depending on the number and experience of students who sign up for the Course. Three thematic areas – Politics, Health/Environment and Social Issues – will form the focus of coverage. Reporting Assignments by student teams constitute the essence of the course. Ideally, stories should reflect perspectives from both genders, as well as the socio-economic context of Ghana. Experts will be invited to give background lectures on the three thematic areas. The course will also involve class discussions and critiques on how to cover the selected areas of reportage.

Sample Syllabus


Linguistics

Examines gender from a multidisciplinary perspective and in particular as a
sociolinguistic variable in speech behavior. How do linguistic practices both reflect
and shape our gender identity, and how do these reflect more global socio-cultural
relationships between the sexes? Do women and men talk differently? To what degree
do these differences seem to be universal or variable across cultures? How do dominant
gender-based ideologies function to constrain women and men’s choices about their
gender identities and gender relationships? How does gendered language intersect with
race and class-linked language? How is it challenged by linguistic “gender bending”?
What impact does gendered language have on the power relationships in given societies?
Also examines gendered voices—and silences—in folklore and in literature. Asks how
particular linguistic practices contribute to the production of people as “women and
men”?


Metropolitan Studies

Enrollment by permission only. Application required. Contact global.academics@nyu.edu for application information. Course includes weekly seminar and minimum of 10 hours fieldwork/ week at approved internship fieldsite.

Sample Syllabus

This interdisciplinary course combines ethnographic readings, representations, and interpretations of city and urban cultures with a video production component in which students create short documentaries on the city of Accra. The interpretative classes will run concurrently with production management, sights and sound, and post-production workshops. The course will have three objectives: (1) teach students the documentary tradition from Flaherty to Rouch; (2) use critical Cinema theory to define a document with a camera; and (3) create a short documentary film.

Sample Syllabus

Counter to the prevailing view of a rural African living in traditional communities, the majority of Africans are rapidly becoming urban dwellers. African cities are fast joining the ranks of mega-cities, global market hubs and centers for political and cultural exchange. This phenomenon raises important questions that form the basis for this course. Are these cities merely the products of globalization, or do their roots lie in pre-colonial tradition? Are global cities a new phenomenon in Africa, or can we find traces of earlier international links? What factors define the spatial geography and political economy of urban Africa? What challenges do African governments face in managing the city? How has the architecture and the arts of the African city been influenced by external connections?

This course examines those factors that have shaped Accra throughout history. While the emphasis of the course is on Accra, the course also introduces the main theoretical debates across disciplinary fields in the comparative study of the city. Students will be challenged to utilize primary resources such as national archives and special collection libraries, maps, and various cultural resources to address some of the questions being posed.

Sample Syllabus


Nutrition

The course is designed to enhance students’ awarenessof the multifaceted nature of nutrition problems across the globe and the needfor holistic approaches to methods to address them including research. Thecourse will review the UNICEF malnutrition structure within the context oflivelihood frameworks to demonstrate the linkages between health, nutrition andagriculture. Food security issues and impacts on nutrition and developmentalissues will be discussed. The course will also discuss the trends ofglobalization and the nutritional implications. The fact that the intensity andeffects of globalization are experienced differently across different nations,social classes, cultures, and genders will be stressed. The course will furtherreview key concepts and debates regarding nutrition transition, infant andyoung child feeding, women, aging and health.  

Sample Syllabus

 

 

 


Psychology

This course does not count for NYU CAS Psychology major credit

Community Psychology attempts to understand people in their social contexts. It integrates social action and psychological research in culturally diverse contexts. The purpose of this course is to introduce you to the breadth of topics, social issues, and research approaches that characterize community psychology. These topics include the history of Community Psychology, major theoretical approaches, and the nature and methods of community research. In addition, the course explores different perspectives on mental health, and research and practices related to programs intended to promote or prevent certain behaviors. Finally the course explores the relationship between communities and social change. Teaching will be in the form of lectures, discussions, and class presentations.

Sample Syllabus


Public Health & Public Policy

This course will examine some of the key issues and principles of environmental health practice. It will focus on the how environmental health issues are defined and approached by civic groups, governmental officials and researchers. It will highlight how environmental threats come to the attention of the public and weigh the options for addressing these threats. Finally, it will underscore the need for multi-disciplinary approaches in understanding these threats and crafting solutions. We will focus on prevention of environmentally mediated diseases and discuss challenges to effective prevention.

 


Sociology

Globalization has become a buzzword in our time. Four different sets of literature have been developed around this concept. The first set of literature seeks to define the concept in terms of its relationship to the changing workforce, technology and communications, culture and finance. A second set of literature debates the novelty of the various processes encoded in the concept of globalization. Another set of literature debates the changing role and nature of the state in an era of globalization. The final set of literature debates the issue of whether the economic prospects of the developing world indeed hinge on their full participation in the globalization process. This course will expose students to these four sets of literature and provide the students with an opportunity to interrogate the very concept of globalization and to debate its benefits and disadvantages for the developing world in general and Africa in particular.

Sample Syllabus


Teaching and Learning / Applied Psychology

Students enrolling in the Human Development course sequence must register for both APSY-UE 9020 Human Development I and one of the Human Development II sections (APSY-UE 9021, 9022, or 9023). Human Development I runs for the first 7 weeks of the semester followed by Human Development II. All sections of Human Development II will meet together for class sessions however classroom observations and assignments will be differentiated.

Students enrolling in the Human Development course sequence must also conduct observations in an Accra school classroom each week.

Introduction to research and theory of human development across the life span. Seminal theories & basic research of individual growth & development are analyzed & critiqued. Emphasis is on the range in human development with discussion of normative & non-normative development. Emphasis is also placed on the importance of understanding the influence of normative & non-normative contexts of development, including the impact of culture, heritage, socioeconomic level, personal health, & safety. Relations between home, school, & community and their impact on development are also explored via readings, lectures, discussions, & weekly observations in the field. Interrogation of implicit folk theories as a foundation for exploration of formal knowledge of human development.

Sample Syllabus

Further analysis of research findings & theories of human development focusing on early childhood, & applied across various institutional contexts. Important issues include: language development, assessment of readiness to learn, separation from the family, peer relationships, aesthetic experiences. Developmentally appropriate consideration of abusive & dangerous environments, & of alcohol, tobacco & drug use will also be included. Direct application of theory & research is made through field-based inquiry & issue-based investigation.

Sample Syllabus - Note Sample Syllabus is from NYU London, Sample NYU Accra syllabus will be posted when available.

Further analysis of research findings & theories of human development focusing on childhood, & applied across various institutional contexts. Important issues include: numeric competence, assessment of reading problems, gender differences in learning styles. Developmentally appropriate consideration of abusive & dangerous environments, & of alcohol, tobacco, & drug use will also be included. Direct application of theory & research is made through field-based inquiry & issue-based investigation.

Sample Syllabus - Note Sample Syllabus is from NYU London, Sample NYU Accra syllabus will be posted when available.

Further analysis of research findings & theories of human development focusing on early through late adolescence & applied across various institutional contexts. Important issues include puberty, cross-gender peer relations, preventing risky behaviors, understanding & mastering test-based graduation requirements, transition to work/college, identity development, depression, & aggression. Developmentally appropriate consideration of abusive & dangerous environments & of alcohol, tobacco, & drug use is also included. Direct application of theory & research is made through field-based inquiry & issue-based investigation.

Sample Syllabus - Note Sample Syllabus is from NYU London, Sample NYU Accra syllabus will be posted when available.


The University of Ghana-Legon

The NYU Accra program was created within a larger community of universities and scholars and has deeply integrated itself within the culture of Accra. NYU Accra enjoys a strong multicultural exchange with scholars and students at our partner university in Accra; the University of Ghana-Legon. Many students compliment their studies at the NYU academic center by enrolling directly in one or two courses at our University of Ghana-Legon.  

Widely recognized as one of the top institutions of higher education in West Africa, the University of Ghana-Legon, based on the Oxbridge model (reflecting Ghana’s former status as a British colony), is the country’s flagship university. Home to some of West Africa’s foremost scholars, it offers hundreds of courses and a full range of academic programs with particular strengths in African studies, the social sciences, and the performing arts.

Current courses and syllabi will only be available upon arrival at NYU Accra. Credits and course equivalency, if any, are to be determined in consultation with student's departmental advisor. Any course expected to count for major/minor credit should be pre-approved by student's advisor. (Students are encouraged to obtain a written record of approval for their records.)

Actual fall course listings from all departments will only be available upon arrival. Students may find the sample course lists provided below useful in discussing their planned semester abroad with their advisor.

Archeology, Botany, Dance, Economics, Geography, History, Linguistics, Music, Nutrition, Politics, Psychology, Religion, Social Work, Sociology, Theatre, Zoology

Apply Now!

Upcoming Application Deadlines

Spring Semester


Priority: September 15

Regular: October 15

Applications received after October 15 will be reviewed on a rolling basis. Admission will be granted only when space is available and time allows for required travel documents to be attained.

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