Welcome, padawans, to Jayhawk Jedi training camp. Master the skills needed to understand the Star Wars Universe by completing these 14 KU Core College classes. Will you gain enough to stand with Rey and defeat Kylo Ren?
Jedi are warriors of peace, defending the defenseless when necessary but mostly seeking to resolve conflict without physical force. Discover how and why violence emerges in human societies in PCS 120 Introduction to Peace and Conflict Studies, and you might make sense of what drives the Sith. Lessons on the diverse ways humans have sought peace through history will provide models for creating peace in the universe.
The Resistance needs strong leaders. Learn to lead like Leia by taking LDST 201 Introduction to Leadership Studies. You’ll study theories and research on core themes of leadership, focusing on how course materials relate to your own leadership experiences.
Has Tatooine or Jakku always been so dry and arid? Or did something change in the climate? What about the frozen Tundra of Hoth? Were Luke Skywalker’s adventures there in a polar region of the planet, or is the entire planet frozen? You could become the first Jedi to pay real attention to understanding the climate by taking EVRN 140 Global Environments I, and gaining knowledge on the history of environmental systems and life on earth, the discovery of biotic evolution, ecological change, and climate change. This interdisciplinary course and laboratory sections survey the foundations of environmental understanding and the process of scientific discovery from perspectives that combine the principles and methodologies of the humanities, physical, life and social sciences.
Wouldn’t it be fun, and helpful, to be able to chat with Chewie! While KU’s School of Languages, Literatures & Cultures offers over 40 languages, Shyriwook isn’t one of them. Learn to decipher the fundamentals of linguistics by taking ANTH 106 Introductory Linguistics. You’ll explore the sound system, grammatical structure and semantic structure of languages. The course will include a survey of language in culture and society, language change, computational linguistics and psycholinguistics, and will introduce students to techniques of linguistic analysis in a variety of languages including English.
The Star Wars galaxy has over 400 billion estimated stars, and more than 3.2 million habitable systems. Knowing how the environments in the different galactic regions work will help you understand what kind of life might be there the minute you land. Prepare by taking GEOL 121 Life Through Time and learn about life through time on Earth, from DNA to Dinos. This course leads students on a journey through time to explore the interconnection between life and the geology of Earth, including our own complex relationship with the world around us.
So, you’re dropping in to meet a friend at Cahlmun’s Cantina in Mos Eisley and the band suddenly jumps into life. As Figrin D’an and the Modal Nodes get going, you’ll likely be inspired to dance. But how to keep up with the diverse range of intergalactic styles on show? Prep for your alien boogie by conquering earthly dance forms in DANC 330 Approaches to World Dance. You’ll examine dance from around the world and how they relate to the times and cultures in which they evolved.
Knowing the structure and evolution of the universe should be Jayhawk Jedi training 101, but if you missed that you can take ASTR 191 Contemporary Astronomy and learn all about nearby planets and distant quasars. Topics include recent discoveries concerning planets, stars, pulsars and black holes as well as their evolution, the structure of the universe today and how it will be in the future. The emphasis is descriptive rather than mathematical. The Death Star is not part of the syllabus, as it’s been destroyed, twice.
As the universe’s guardians of peace and justice, Jedi need to be able to negotiate and inspire. And besides, if you’re up against a skilled speaker like General Palpatine who inspired many with his Declaration of a New Order, you’d better be prepared to give a rousing rebuttal. Prep for that moment when you’ll need to rally the troops by taking THR 120 Public Speaking as Performance and learn how to manage performance anxiety, organize a narrative, speak extemporaneously and articulate clearly.
Planet hopping across the galaxy you need to be prepared to understand a huge range of weather systems. From the intense heat of desert-planet Tatooine to the swampy phog-covered forests of Yoda’s home on Dagobah to the blizzards of frozen Hoth, you’ll encounter all degrees across the weather spectrum. Get ready by taking ATMO 220 Unusual Weather and you may even be able to prevent the sort of climate disruptor that the Empire used to cause fires and floods across Naboo.
Inter-planetary trade is a key feature of the Star Wars universe. There are intergalactic firms operating across planetary systems, trade agreements to manage complex deals across economies, and varied currencies and tax codes, while the Corporate Sector in the Universe’s Outer Rim is a sort of free trade zone including tens of thousands of planetary systems. Be prepared to go head to head with the Trade Federation by taking ECON 110 The Economics of Globalization to understand who wins and loses in the economics of globalization and other major considerations of economics on this grand scale.
“We need a system where the politicians sit down and discuss the problems, agree what’s in the best interests of all the people, and then do it.” – Anakin Skywalker
“That is exactly what we do. The trouble is that people don’t always agree.” – Padmé Amidala
Whether it’s the monarchy of King Lee-Char’s Mon Cala, the more democratic Galactic Republic, the dictatorship of Palpatine’s First Galactic Empire, or Naboo’s constitutional monarchy, leaders across the Star Wars universe use a wide range of political systems. Some are small entities akin to a nation-state, others span many planets. Make sense of the role of nationalism, sovereignty, and power by enrolling in POLS 170 Intro to International Politics. Patterns of state action including neutralism, collective security, war, and cooperation through international organizations are covered. Specific examples of contemporary international problems are also analyzed and discussed.
Is Jediism a religion? Some on Earth believe so. Looking further afield, across the galaxy, a Jayhawk Jedi will encounter people with a diverse range of beliefs, making it imperative that you to have a key understanding of how to study and appreciate different religions. Luckily REL 104 Intro to Religious Studies is here to help you come to grips with key methods and issues in religious studies, while providing an introductory survey of selected religions.
The Ewoks prove that you don’t need complex technology to live a good life, or help bring down the Empire. The Ewoks live a sustainable life that’s in touch with nature on the forest moon of Endor. But how much does the environment shape their activities, or others across the galaxy? GEOG 102 People, Place, and Society will offer you a chance to examine the relationships between humans and their environments. And then you can see how it applies to the Ewoks, Wookiees, and other societies of varied beings. You’ll be introduced to basic concepts in human geography relating to economic activities, landscapes, languages, migrations, nations, regions, and religions.
Note: These classes are offered across all semesters. Check out the schedule of classes to see what’s available in upcoming semesters.