Explore Diversity classes for the experience, not the minor

November 3, 2017

Early registration for the Spring 2018 semester began this week and will continue until Nov. 6. As underclassmen think about declaring majors and upperclassmen add additional minors or think about classes that could make them more appealing to potential employers, students should take advantage of the diversity of classes Brandeis offers.

The Diversity Course List published every semester by the Registrar’s office presents students with a number of courses in departments ranging from African and Afro-American Studies (AAAS) to Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies (WGS). The course list is organized into three groups: “Religion, Race and Culture,” “Global Perspectives” and “Gender and Sexuality.”

Select course titles include “Biblical Narratives in the Qur’an,” “Queer Readings: Before Stonewall,” “Blackness and Masculinity,” “All-Under-Heaven: Global China and the Anthropological Imagination,” and many more.

Instead of taking a class that will get you to another minor or even another major, students should consider taking a class on a topic unfamiliar to them. Rather than narrowing their focus on a familiar area, students could take a class that challenges their views or confronts them with narratives they have not previously been exposed to.

Most Brandeis students take at least 32 classes before graduating, and maybe 15 of those classes go to majors. Use the remaining classes to explore a discipline out of your comfort zone. Focus on classes that teach skills like creative writing or web design, topics that may not be directly related to career aspirations but will likely strengthen one’s resume and distinguish job applications.

It is typical of Brandeis students to accrue several majors and minors, which may cause them to be stretched too thin. If students limit their focus to one or two academic areas, they would not only be less overwhelmed but would have space in their schedules to explore other disciplines and learn something they otherwise never would have encountered.

It is also worth checking out the Spring 2018 Diversity classes to see if any of them would fulfill one of your major or minor requirements. Instead of taking more traditional classes that you’re used to or that the department typically offers, it is worth it to expand your schedule by taking one of these classes.

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