Don't let WebReg defeat you – register for these classes before it's too late
We find ourselves again amid course registration season — some already have their classes picked out, while others are still scrambling on Course Schedule Planner. Whether you're registering for your first or final semester, Rutgers offers an endless selection of interesting classes across all departments.
I've taken so many incredible classes at Rutgers, some of which I didn't even know were offered. Whether you're a senior trying to fill time or an underclassman just looking to figure out what you're interested in, try checking out the courses mentioned below as a way to learn something new!
Philosophy of Mathematics
Philosophy of Mathematics addresses some of the underlying questions philosophers have about math. Is math just about symbols? What exactly is math? How and why is math so applicable in science?
If you want to tackle this class, it's helpful to not only take the prerequisite course Introduction to Logic but to also have prior knowledge of philosophy or math.
I naively thought that philosophy and math had little to no connection before entering Rutgers, but after majoring in philosophy (in addition to cognitive science) and analyzing seemingly endless readings, I've learned that they are pretty intertwined.
If you've ever been interested in philosophy, math or are just generally curious about the subject matter, take this course! The philosophy department is incredible here, and I haven't regretted a single course I've taken through it.
Asian American Experience
Rutgers has a large Asian American population, and with increased diversity comes a wealth of perspectives. Asian Americans have largely been misunderstood, marginalized and underrepresented in the U.S., so having academia centered around this population is extremely important.
Asian American Experience is a course taught in the Department of American Studies and aims to discuss the narratives surrounding those with Asian Pacific Islander Desi American heritage (APIDA). By examining history, film and pop culture, students will have the opportunity to explore some of the experiences of individuals who identify as APIDA.
As an Asian American myself, too often have I found false narratives about being Asian American being thrown around. This course is a refreshing take on such narratives and provides a more wholesome view of what it means to be an Asian in America.
Foundations of Medical Ethics and Policy
If you're on the pre-med track, taking this course could be an interesting look into the world of medical ethics and policies. This course seeks to introduce people to certain ideas and theories that have influenced modern medical ethics and decision-making.
It's a mix of lectures, group work and essay writing, so I wouldn't suggest this course if you're not particularly interested in writing. But I think this course, like many at Rutgers, is a fantastic interdisciplinary learning experience.
It combines health care with philosophy and gives students a glimpse into how the two can make an impact by studying the foundations of modern ideas and practices. I took it with Francis Barchi, an associate professor in the Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy, who was knowledgeable and passionate about her work, making this course both fun and informative.
Cognition and Decision Making
I took this course almost two years ago, and it was what started my desire to go for my Ph.D. in cognitive science. This course teaches you about how people make decisions, which made me realize I was more prone to making bad ones than I had previously thought.
It asks three main questions: How do we make decisions, how should we make decisions and how can we improve our decisions? The middle chunk of the course mainly concerns things like procrastination and contained the material I found to be the most interesting. This class is pretty practical as it can help you make your own decisions and guide others.
Medical anthropology aims to analyze cultural diversity and similarities through health, illness and death. There's a prerequisite for this course, Culture and Social Life, but getting special permission from an instructor might also get you in.
More often than not, marginalized groups are excluded from the discussion of medicine, so this course takes a look at various societies and their ideas of health and medicine. Not all cultures deal with death the same way Western society does, and some cultures rely on preventative and holistic medicine.
If you're going into medicine or health, I'd strongly recommend this course as it allows you to see a side of medicine that schools rarely teach you (or have purposefully misconstrued and excluded for years) and forces you to develop a wider view of health. Many of the readings are relevant and deeply insightful, so if you're looking for a course that explains how and why some cultures practice medicine the way they do, this is an excellent starting point.
While the classes you take at Rutgers heavily depend on the requirements of your major, these classes are ones I'd recommend to anyone wanting to learn more during their time here. Hopefully, this list has made the nightmare of class scheduling a little easier for you!