University College Initiatives

Freshmen Seminars

Freshmen Seminars are small, 3 credit, graded courses designed to assist with the intellectual and social transition from high school to college by increasing the involvement of students in the intellectual life of the campus; providing an orientation to resources available to students; and promoting problem solving and writing skills. Two types of freshmen seminar courses meet the Prospect for Success curriculum requirement.

  • UCOL 1000  College Transitions
  • UCOL 1200  Freshman Seminar/ International Perspectives

Prospect General Education Courses

These liberal studies courses have been designed by faculty in the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences to introduce students to foundations in the humanities and social sciences while also preparing new students for success in the college classroom. Each offers students the opportunity to work in small groups and earn general education credit required for any major. Several topics are available taught by faculty in a variety of disciplines:

  • LBST 1102  An Exploration of Life, Death, and Cinematic Fiction (Film): This course will take you on a shared exploration of the dialectic between real life and fictional treatments of death in order to better understand how we use collective symbols to construct meaningful accounts of what is means when life is stilled. Films and written texts that have death as a key part of the story line from multiple genres—horror, comedy, romance, melodrama, war/action-adventure, instructional guides and allegorical tales—will serve to launch discussions intended to enable us to make richer connections between personal experience and cultural frames.
  • LBST 2101 Growing Up in America: Interpreting Stories of Childhood and Culture (ENGL): This course will engage students in inquiry, reflection, cultural, and student success based assignments around what it means to grow up in America, and specifically transition to UNC Charlotte’s campus, as a member of specific ethnic, cultural, gendered, aged, and race-d groups. Primary basis of study will be American fiction and nonfiction from the 19th-21st centuries.
  • LBST 2101 What is Identity (RELS): What are the histories, relationships, choices, and happenstance events that make us who we are? And what are the factors that encourage us to change our identities ov­er our life course? In this class, we examine these questions through autobiographies, films, documentaries, and scholarship focusing on the intersections of race, gender, sexuality, class, religion, and other ways that we identify ourselves, and others identify us, in the contemporary United States.
  • LBST 2101: Cities and Nature: London. Beijing. Mexico City. New York. Charlotte (HIST): We live in a world of cities. As William Cronon highlighted a generation ago, many people view cities as places devoid of nature. We are conditioned to think of today’s urban built environment of skyscrapers and concrete sidewalks as somehow unnatural. But the urban places that we continue to inhabit (including the university where you are taking this class) are deeply connected to nature. Exploring the history of people and nature in the urban context, we will address how individuals and groups have understood urban environments, how society has worked to establish policies for urban growth and development, how such growth has transformed local and distant ecosystems as residents consumed land, water, and energy resources and understood and disposed of waste, and how ideas about cities and nature have changed over time. While we will explore these topics within a global framework, we will concentrate on America since colonial times. Drawing on a range of textual, visual, aural, spatial, and material/physical sources, students will study the development and growth of cities from diverse perspectives. As we journey across time and place, we will examine how cities have managed ecological challenges associated with growing populations and dense settlement patterns. We will consider how residents, government officials, filmmakers, writers and visual artists captured the relationship between cities and nature. With Charlotte as a touchstone, students will examine how people, cities, and nature have shaped and reshaped one another. By considering these developments locally and globally from past to present, students will better understand their role as engaged urban residents as they participate in shaping the region's future.  
  • LBST 2102: Modern Revolutions: Focusing on Europe and the Middle East, this course examines how revolutions transform political structures and civic identities, the economy and culture, and social relations and family roles. As a corollary, it examines how class, race/ethnicity, religion, and gender shape and are shaped by revolutionary processes. Major questions to be addressed include: How and why have individuals and groups participated in revolutions? What have been the net gains and losses for people as a consequence of revolution? What roles do the media and popular culture play in promoting revolutionary values and ideology?
  • LBST 2102 When Nations go to War (HIST):  The last two centuries have seen more war and devastation than ever before in civilization. Why do nations decide to go to war; and at what price? What does war solve if anything; and why does peace seem so elusive? Together we will determine the impetus for war (and peace), and whether there is such a thing as a good war or a bad peace. We will also investigate how war affects soldiers and civilian, and why one continent gets ravaged while the other gets spared. 
  • LBST 2211 Poverty, Inequality and Justice (SOCY): This course provides an opportunity: (1) to gain an understanding of the causes and consequences of poverty and inequality in the United States (2) to learn and explore different ethical theories and frameworks and (3) to apply these ethical principles to contemporary social issues.
  • LBST 2213 Humans Transforming the Environment (GEOL): In this section, our purpose is to address these broad goals via an inquiry into the origins and functions of the Earth’s major natural systems and human interactions with these systems. We will focus on how these interactions impact issues of resource use and human transformations of the Earth. 
  • LBST 2213 Animals, Culture, and Society (ENGL): This course will explore the ways that animals are both conceptualized and utilized in various cultures. The object of the course is to develop a fuller understanding not only of what animals "mean" to humans and how humans respond to animals, but how we address the “post-human condition.” The course will draw on the cultural and metaphoric use of animals (in literature, art, and philosophy), the consumption of animals (as food and clothing), the scientific status of animals (in experiments and as objects of study), the recreational use of animals (in hunting, zoos, aquariums, safari parks, and as pets), and, in a broader context, the emblematic use of animals.