Current Students

St. Petersburg 2024 Fall Honors Courses

The Judy Genshaft Honors College offers courses located on all three USF campuses, as well as off-site locations. Honors College courses are open to students from any home campus, but may require a permit. Unless noted specifically in the course description, Honors courses require in-person attendance. 

Click here for information on how to register through OASIS. For information and advice on courses, meet with your Honors advisor.

IDH 2010: Acquisition of Knowledge

Ranging from classical philosophy to the digital age, this first-year Honors course invites students to explore the different ways in which knowledge is created and consumed, how understanding is cultivated, the various relationships possible between knowledge and the self, and the implications of these in our contemporary world. Through an examination of common topics, studio experiences, and assignments, all sections of this course will explore different ways of knowing (e.g., historical, philosophical, scientific, creative, etc.) 

Acquisition of Knowledge
IDH 2010-601
T/R | 9:30 - 10:45 AM

Acquisition of Knowledge
IDH 2010-602
T/R | 11:00 AM  - 12:15 PM

Acquisition of Knowledge
IDH 2010-603
M/W | 12:30 - 1:45 PM

IDH 3350: Natural Sciences

Ocean Life and Why They Matter
IDH 3350-601

Instructor: Teresa Greely
W | 2:00 - 4:45 PM

The main purpose of this course is to advance the ocean literacy and environmental stewardship of students. The ocean is essential for a healthy planet and human well-being. Students will learn about the fascinating diversity of ocean life and their odd strategies for living in the ocean. We will focus on the biology of ocean life, as well as how geological, chemical, and physical processes are essential to understanding ocean life. We will attempt to answer the questions about, “How life in the ocean contributes to human health, food security, and climate?” This course includes outdoor field trips to explore beyond the classroom. Students will learn to formulate reasonable answers to questions related to ocean life and ecosystems, living marine resources, and how ocean life contributes to our global society. A permit is required to register, request one here. 

IDH 3400: Social Sciences

Accessibility in Higher Education: Policies and Practices
IDH 3400-601

Instructor: Jayme Joslyn
T/R | 2:00 - 3:15 PM

In the United States, there are more than 400,000 college-aged individuals with intellectual disabilities (ID) who are eligible to participate in higher education, but only about 2% of those students do so. Inclusive Postsecondary Education programs (IPSE) are shown to help overcome barriers to participation in higher education and help young adults with ID be successful at increasing competitive employment; recent data shows 65% of students who complete an IPSE had a paid job one year after graduation; much higher than the 17% national employment rate of adults with intellectual and developmental disability (National Core Indicators, 2018). USF St. Pete is fortunate to have an IPSE program, UMatter, on site – directed by the instructor for this course. This class will use the UMatter program as a case study and opportunity for experiential learning and research at the intersection of medicine, psychology, policy, law, education, and economics. Students will learn about diagnoses of ID and will come to understand the state of the cultural, social, and educational landscape for their college-aged peers with ID.  We will discuss educational policies and legal support of IPSEs. Through hands-on experiences with the UMatter program, we will explore the purpose and value of IPSE programs, interrogating ideas about the definition of a "successful" education and college student. Through this opportunity, we will understand ourselves, our academic community, our peers with ID, and our society better. A permit is required to register, request one here.

IDH 3600: Honors Seminar in Ethics

Evolution and Ethics: Darwinism and Its Implications
IDH 3600-601
Instructor: Blaze Marpet
T/R | 11:00 AM - 12:15 PM

Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution by means of natural selection revolutionized humans’ understanding of themselves. This course will be a philosophical exploration of Darwin’s revolutionary ideas with the aim of understanding their ethical, social, political, and religious import. Questions that will guide our inquiry include: What does Darwinism tell us about morality? Should evolution by means of natural selection commit us, as some have claimed, to perpetual individualistic strife and inequality, or, on the contrary, does it provide grounds for sympathetic collaboration? To what extent might Darwin’s theories be compatible with traditional ethical theories and religious teachings about the meaning of life? Are recent attempts to “biologicize” ethics (to borrow E. O. Wilson’s term) promising? Do our moral theories, religious ideals, and social institutions undergo something akin to Darwinian evolution? The course will feature two types of readings. First, we will study the books, journals, and correspondences of Darwin and his close contemporaries. The primary goal of these readings will be to understand the historical development of Darwin’s thinking. Second, we will read the work of current biologists, philosophers, and scholars of religion. The purpose of these readings will be to rigorously explore the significance of Darwin’s key insights. A permit is required to register, request one here.

IDH 4200: Geographic Perspectives 

Local Government, Global Crises: Climate Change, Natural Hazards, and How the World Responds
IDH 4200-601
Instructor: Sam Henderson
M/W | 11:00 AM - 12:15 PM

This course will explore how global climate change correlates with the intensification of extreme weather phenomena and natural hazards (disasters) associated with atmospheric and oceanic circulation exacerbated by a rapidly warming planet. We will examine these dynamic changes in Earth’s natural systems through the lens of recent events around the globe, as well as historical trends in weather and climate. The course includes review, discussion and analysis of case studies from regions most directly affected by our changing planet, with an eye for exploring how local governments are reacting and responding. There will likewise be much room for debate and collective hypothesizing as we attempt to understand how the many inextricably linked open systems of Earth are triggering changes in one another that we have yet to fully comprehend, and which policy solutions and community actions are most effective in mitigating their effects and helping prepare people and the planet to be more resilient. A permit is required to register, request one here

IDH 4950: Honors Capstone

Healing Arts
IDH 4950-601

Instructor: Catherine Wilkins
R | 2:00 - 4:45 PM

In this collaboration between the USF Judy Genshaft Honors College and the James Museum of Western and Wildlife Art, Honors students learn by experience how interactions with the arts can benefit individuals on both sides of the health care equation – patients and physicians alike. By the end of the semester, students will have learned how particular methods of engaging with art can help people access and express memories, improve communication skills, externalize emotions, relieve stress and anxiety, increase observation abilities, and promote positive feelings. We will consider how these benefits relate to people dealing with a range of medical conditions, providing therapeutic relief. We’ll practice facilitating these methods ourselves, in preparation for helping our community partner, the James Museum, deliver their Art in Mind program. Community members diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, dementia, and related conditions will come to the museum to receive therapeutic tours from us, as a class! Finally, this capstone course will allow students to participate in furthering the research at the intersection of art, medicine, and community engagement. Please note: this class will be primarily held at the James Museum in downtown St. Petersburg, a 10-minute walk from campus (.5 miles). Please allow time in your schedule for traveling to and from the museum. A permit is required to register, request one here

IDH 4970: Honors Thesis

The Honors Thesis is a two-semester program where students will conduct an independent study under the guidance of their own thesis chair selected by each student. The thesis process mirrors a mentorship system common in graduate schools (e.g., dissertation for a Ph.D. program). By closely working with your own chair, you will come up with a research topic, develop research methods, and produce your own creative work such as a research paper, artwork, a business proposal, etc. It is a great opportunity to create your own unique research project, learn from faculty about the research process, and gain research skills. We recommend that students who are interested in the Honors Thesis prepare early. 

Honors Thesis
IDH 4970-601
Instructor: Catherine Wilkins
F | 1:00 - 2:00 PM

Independent research under the supervision of a faculty mentor. A permit is required to register, request one here