Splash Spring 2020
Course Catalog


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Arts Engineering
Humanities Math & Computer Science
Social Science Science
Miscellaneous


Arts

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A102: The Art of Dance Improvisation
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Kaitlin White

Improvisation can appear to be a daunting task for a dancer, but it can actually serve as a great tool to develop your individual artistic voice! In this course, you will be introduced to a few basic improvisation techniques/activities and get some firsthand experience in the fun and unpredictable art of improv!

No prior dance experience is required!

A111: Intro to Drawing Video Game Art
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Rachael He

Having trouble starting to draw an idea for a game? Want to learn about the basics of art techniques and how they apply to not only general art but also video game art? Find out more about the fundamentals of art, principles of animation, and basic ideas about user interface.
Being taught for the second time!


Engineering

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E110: Automaton Puzzles
Difficulty: *
Teachers: Madhavan Murali

If you've ever watched the movie Hugo, you'd know about the Maillardet automaton. But you'd be surprised to find out how much you can do without modern electricity. In this course, we will be building and understanding ancient automaton using cardboard and plastic and robot kinematics and gear assembly knowledge. Some of the things we will be building include a grandfather clock that pours tea, a book with dancers on it that open a lock, and a camera that controls groups of mechanical fish!


Prerequisites
Elementary physics is a plus, but anyone with an interest in mechanics and ancient machinery is welcome to join!

E115: Robotics- An Introduction into MakerBots!
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Brina Patel

This course will delve into the world of robotics, specifically makerbots! Challenge yourself and your friends to a makerbot race as you learn about electrical and computer engineering! If you like robotics and design, this class is for you!

E113: Intro To 3D Modeling: Gear Design
Difficulty: ***

Have you ever wondered what it takes to design a car? In the U of R Baja Team, we do just that! Learn how to use SolidWorks, the 3D modeling software used by our team, by going through the same process we use to design and optimize our gears!

E114: Move it, Electrochemistry Energy Storage (Batteries)
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Brina Patel

This course consists of a lemon battery experiment that will allow students to use engineering principles to create power. Ideas of maximum power generation, energy storage, and renewable energy will be discussed and explored in more detail. If you want to create a sustainable world for the future, come to this class and see what 'fruit-based' batteries are all about!


Humanities

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H118: “What’s poppin’?”: A conversation about popular culture around the world
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Ellie Yu

WhAt WaS MaRvEl's FiRsT MoViE? WhErE DiD BuBbLe TeA CoMe FrOm?
HaVe YoU EvEr UsEd TikTok?

Popular culture is defined as the set of practices, beliefs, and objects that are dominant or prevalent in a society at a given point in time. We will be discussing worldwide pop cultures, stereotypes, and cultural appropriations with examples of food, entertainment, sports, and media.

H101: Philosophy of Mind
Difficulty: *
Teachers: Alexander Bowman

If life is discovered on some distant planet, how could we know if it had a mind like humans do? Or if it had the same level of mental life as animals or plants? Or is it just some kind of biological machine? Is there even a difference between these in the first place? This class will be a discussion of these questions and the theories philosophers have come up with to answer them.

H130: Intro to Japanese
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Ryan ODell

Ever thought about learning Japanese? This course is an introduction to the language, entirely taught with romanized characters -- no need to worry about the Japanese alphabet! Learn how to introduce yourself, greet other people, order food, and more!

H104: An Exploration of Poetry through Kendrick Lamar
Difficulty: *
Teachers: Melanie Earle

Kendrick Lamar is one of the greatest rappers but is also one of the greatest writers of all time. Explore, listen, and discuss his album "To Pimp a Butterfly". We will talk about the connections he makes throughout the album, the word-play, and meanings in the album. We will also discuss how this album impacted the music world and society.


Math & Computer Science

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M120: How to Code in ANY Programming Language!
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Katie Karabetsos

What's the difference between Python, C, and Java? While they are indeed pretty different, the fundamentals are truly the same! Once you understand the concepts of how coding works, it can be easy to pick up whatever language you want to do whatever you want to do. In this class, we'll be going over a couple notable differences between languages but mostly focus on universal concepts such as loops, conditional statements, functions, data types, and arrays.


Prerequisites
None or very little programming experience! If you know a little programming, this is NOT the class for you.

M116: Infinity
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Mandar Juvekar

Is infinity a number? Can I take infinitely many steps toward my destination and never get there? Are some infinities bigger than others?

For centuries, infinity has been one of the most fascinating and elusive concepts in human culture. In this class we will talk about the infinite, look at various infinite sets, and explore the powerful and confusing nature of infinity.

M127: All Sorts of Sorting Strategies: Computer Algorithms
Difficulty: ***
Teachers: David Wang

Interested in coding (computer science) and would like to get a slightly more in depth view of some of the algorithms you'll get to use in your programming career? Learn how to use several different sorting algorithms, including Bubble Sort, Merge Sort, and Quick Sort. Which ones are the easiest to implement? Which are the most efficient? This course will provide the answers to these burning questions


Prerequisites
some programming knowledge

M128: Quantum Cryptography: From Basic Physics to Super-Secure Codes
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Mandar Juvekar

Every time you buy something online, you put your faith in math: simple math that's easy to do in one direction, but hard to do in reverse. Or at least we think it's hard. All it takes is for one person to figure out how to efficiently solve these problems (which very likely to happen now that quantum computers are a possibility), and internet security as we know it will be broken.

Enter quantum cryptography. Quantum cryptography uses what is literally the hardest system to break to encrypt messages: the laws of physics! In this course, we will talk about the basics of quantum mechanics, quantum cryptography, why it works, and why it isn't popular right now. We will also simulate a quantum cryptography system right in class. Come learn about how to make codes that can never be cracked!


Prerequisites
Some experience with probability will be helpful.

M129: How were the real numbers born?
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Arian Nadjimzadah

The natural numbers come pretty...naturally. Then we can just throw in the negatives and get the integers. Pretty easy right? What if we want the rationals? Why not just take quotients of integers! But how can we formalize what a real number really is? What even is $$\sqrt 2$$? In this class, we will dig into what a real number REALly is. Join us in building mathematics from the ground up!

M103: Intro to Complex Numbers
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Sparrow Tian

Complex Numbers tend to be introduced in a hazy fashion in high school classrooms, with only definitions and examples of calculations and usually none with applications. In this course, a brief crash course to complex numbers will be given, and few examples of applications will be demonstrated.


Prerequisites
None


Social Science

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R117: Digital Citizenship & Literacy
Difficulty: **
Teachers: AJ Jordan

In this class we will explore the basics of how the modern internet works and is designed, and we'll discuss what the consequences of that design might be. From there we will move on to talking about real-world government surveillance made possible by the ideas we've discussed, and we'll conclude by talking about what impacts these policies might have on citizenship, society, and the idea of democracy.
This class will include a significant discussion portion. Students should come ready to share the ideas they're thinking about and developing as the class progresses.


Prerequisites
Students should be comfortable using a computer and the internet.

R112: Psychology of Personality
Difficulty: *
Teachers: Madison Zaelit

What makes people so different from each other? This course will explore how psychologists have tried to define personality from the ancient Greeks to Myers-Briggs test. Learn about your own personality in the process!

R119: Is War Ever Rational?: A Crash Course in International Relations Theory
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Geneva Hinkson

When nations go to war people die and property is damaged. Frequently, the very things fought for are destroyed in the fighting. If wars are so destructive, why do we fight them? Why wouldn’t countries always choose to bargain with each other instead of fighting? This course will analyze these questions through one of the most intuitive and influential models in International Relations. Students will be introduced to James Fearon’s "Bargaining Model of War.” We will work through the model’s logic, engage in several simulations, and explore this model's relevance for present conflicts.


Prerequisites
The sole prerequisite for this class is a curious mind and an interest in international conflict.

R107: Scripts and Cultures Around the World
Difficulty: ***
Teachers: Madhavan Murali

Ever wanted to learn how to write your name in another very cool alphabet? Interested in learning about another culture and their languages? Do you like to travel to exotic countries? If you said yes, then this course is the right one for you! Learn how to write in one of 9 different languages:
-Arabic
-Bengali
-Greek
-Hebrew
-Hindi
-Korean
-Japanese
-Russian
-Tamil

Note: This is not a course that teaches survival skills in other languages, although you may learn a few vocabulary words and survival phrases.


Science

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S126: Pick Your Poison
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Jacob Schmidt

Have you ever wondered how poisons affect your body? Why poisons are poisons? Or why you shouldn't eat apple seeds? Come learn about common poisons and what makes them so deadly!


Prerequisites
None

S105: Introduction to The Brain!
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Jasmine Moon

Want to learn about your BRAIN? The human brain is such a complex structure. Much of it is still unknown to us, but in this course, we hope to start your understanding of our brain, including the different lobes of the brain, what each region is responsible for, and how the brain interacts with the rest of your body! We will be learning about the power of the brain through interactive activities.

S106: It's In Your Genes
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Elijah Hale

What makes you different than your classmates? Exactly how much of who you are is imprinted in your DNA? How much can you change your DNA?

This class will explore DNA, heredity, and introductory genetics, with an emphasis on the impacts of genetics on day to day life.


Prerequisites
Intro biology would be helpful

S123: Chemistry of Cooking
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Julian Maceren

Interested in learning about what chemical reactions take place when cooking? What exactly happens when you heat up your food? Where does flavor come from?

This course explores fundamental chemistry concepts and applies it to cooking, baking, and eating. Through an investigation of the food we cook and eat, you will have a deeper understanding of key chemistry concepts.


Prerequisites
General chemistry

S125: Your Brain on Drugs
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Tanner Metcalfe

When it's 2am and you're exhausted but your lab report is due the next day, to what do you turn? Caffeine of course! Wonder how it's keeping you awake? Come to this class to learn about how caffeine, nicotine, marijuana, and many other drugs affect your brain!

S122: Herps 101
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Katie Karabetsos

Herpetology: the branch of zoology concerned with reptiles and amphibians. Let's talk salamanders, lizards, frogs and snakes! We'll be talking about some interesting species, herps as pets, the hobby of herping, and more!


Prerequisites
Comfortable seeing pictures of snakes and other weird animals


Miscellaneous

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X124: Smoking Cessation: Why are vapes so dangerous?
Difficulty: *
Teachers: Astghik Baghinyan

Cigarette companies advertise vapes as safer alternative to smoking and they tend to attract youth users through variety of flavors and designs. But, are electronic cigarettes safer than regular cigarettes? In this class we will examine how tobacco companies target youth to turn them into smokers, and discuss why it is so hard to quit smoking or vaping. We will also recognize the lack of institutions that control the tobacco industry and will look back at history and learn how the percentage of smokers has declined in the USA over the past decades.