“I believe these types of courses allow for a greater engagement within all aspects of the students’ life, making learning available to them beyond the classroom,” says Dr. Josie Urbistondo, English Professor at University of Miami. “Ideally, their entire life becomes their learning laboratory and they acknowledge how they critically function within their communities.”
Read on for our list of nine advantageous courses that students should consider taking.
1. Public Speaking
Public speaking courses focus on providing students with the skills to engage in public discourse. Whether it’s forming and defending an opinion on a given topic, being able to present oneself with confidence in a public forum or learning interview skills, these courses give students valuable tools to use in real life.
3. Cross-Cultural Communication
With technology and globalization shrinking our world and pushing us all together, learning to communicate with people from backgrounds different from our own is critical. College students might come across people of other ethnicities and cultures for the first time when they get to campus and learning to communicate effectively is important.
Students must also be able to relate to and communicate with others as they enter the workforce; however, gaining competencies in public speaking and cross-cultural communication has benefits far beyond the classroom and the workplace.
4. Human Health Science
While many prospective students may have taken a brief Health class in high school, learning about bodies and healthy habits in college is more timely and prevalent for students who are learning skills and habits to make it on their own. As college students navigate adult life, they may struggle to find balance with at-risk behavior like alcohol and drug use and safe sex habits. Taking a course can help
students develop balanced and safe practices early that will set them up for success for the rest of their lives. Students also need good reminders about nutrition, disease, and general biology.
5. Physical Education or Self-Defense
In line with developing healthy habits discussed above, students should consider a recreation or physical education course. This is especially true for students who don’t have an athletic background. It’s possible that one might discover a passion or hidden talent, be it kickboxing, pilates or running.
Students can find additional benefits from taking self-defense courses, too. According to Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN), 11.2 percent of all college students are sexually assaulted through force, violence or incapacitation. While no one wants to face that situation, it is helpful for students to be aware of the risk and to arm themselves with information on how to combat
6. Personal Finance & Business
Financial situations can be very intimidating for college students. Understanding budgets, loans, leases, and taxes is scary, and our students aren’t prepared with the skills to handle these things as they enter into college.
Students need to be armed with the skills to take on financial decisions as they enter adulthood. These things include buying a car, negotiating a salary at a job, and understanding interest rates on loans.
7. Professional Writing
Written communication is critical to most professions. Students must learn to think clearly in order to write clearly, and students that take these courses can expect to learn both.
8. Inter-Disciplinary Capstones
freshman seminars at the University of Miami, that include Aesthetics and Meaning in African Art and Cultures, Reconsidering the ‘Selfie’, and The Politics of Pain.
Classes in this arena range across all different types of subjects. An example is the group of