Courses and Workshops

HomeCourses and Workshops

Spring 2015

Spring term courses meet for six weeks, unless otherwise noted. When available, course syllabi can be viewed via the link below the instructor bio. If a course is full, call 510-642-9934 or email berkeley_olli@berkeley.edu to be added to a waitlist.

Monday, Starts March 30

10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Berkeley

Joy of Singing

Lauren Carley

Would you like to strengthen your singing and speaking voice, increase your range and projection, and grow in confidence while learning five to eight songs in harmony?...

$145.00
1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Berkeley

Everyday Physics: Understanding the News

Fred Schlachter

Understanding important events in the world around us often requires knowledge of concepts in modern physics--concepts that affect our lives, safety and well-being...

$145.00
1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Berkeley

Introduction to the Poetry of Rumi

Grace Smith

In this course, we will study the works of Jelaleddin Rumi (1207-1273), often known as the greatest mystical poet of mankind...

$185.00
1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Berkeley

Write That Script! Screenwriting From The Inside Out

Megan Siler

Do you have a movie playing in your head? In this six-week workshop course, students learn to develop their story idea into a feature-length or short film script while learning the fundamentals of screenwriting...

$225.00

Tuesday, Starts March 31

10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Berkeley

How Your Brain Works and When It Doesn't

Peter Ralston

In the second of a two-part series, this course describes neuronal networks and how they are organized in the human brain. Each lecture will introduce a basic neuroscience topic...

$145.00
10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Berkeley

Writing Memoir: Evoking the Senses

Lynne Kaufman

We all have important stories to tell. Often, though, we don’t know how to shape them, how to bring those moments in vivid detail to the page. In this workshop, we begin the first four sessions with simple awareness exercises focusing sequentially on sight, sound, taste, and touch...

$225.00
1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Berkeley

Current Health Issues: Care, Cure, Costs

Michael Thaler

Innovations in information technology generate rapid advances in molecular genetics, robotics, and imaging techniques that deliver longer, healthier, albeit often more stressful lives...

$185.00
1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Berkeley

Global Lens: The International Documentary

Michael Fox

The view from abroad—courtesy of filmmakers and television producers working in their own countries and speaking to their fellow citizens—is revealing, refreshing and occasionally jarring...

$145.00
1:00 p.m. - 3:30 p.m.
Berkeley

Personal Essays for Pleasure and Publication

Elizabeth Fishel

An artful personal essay showcases your wisdom, wit, and window on the world. Learn how to turn your opinions and ideas into short, shapely works for pleasure or possible publication...

$225.00
1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Lafayette

The Comic Operas of Gilbert and Sullivan, Part 2

John Prescott

The comic operas of Gilbert and Sullivan were the Beach Blanket Babylon of Victorian London. Featuring six different operas from Part 1 (Spring 2014), we will explore these operas as masterworks as well as the way in which they affectionately poke fun at the musical, social, and political world of their time...

$145.00
5:00 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.
Berkeley

Pixlr: Cloud-based Photo Editing & Graphic Design

David Casuto

Have you heard of Photoshop? (Yep.) Know how much it costs? (Uh-oh.) This fun class will explore a Photoshop alternative called Pixlr, an online (mostly) free program that can do most of what Photoshop can do...

$225.00

Wednesday, Starts April 1

10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Berkeley

The Short Stories of James Joyce

John Campion

In this course, we will work to develop participants’ ability to analyze, understand, and interpret some of the masterworks that have shaped all modern and contemporary fiction...

$145.00
10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Berkeley

Turn, Turn, Turn: A chronological and musical road trip through the golden era of American rock ‘n’ roll, 1955-75 (Part One)

Peter Elman

This six-week course will cover the golden age of American rock n’ roll, 1955-75. It is the first of two parts, and will be taught chronologically and geographically (“a road trip”) across six regions where key American musical movements sprang up...

$145.00
2:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Berkeley

Climate Change: Civilizational Crisis and Political Challenge

William Barnes

This course will examine the mounting crisis posed by climate change and the failure of the world’s polities and governments to respond effectively. We will discuss the limits and problems of existing environmental debates...

$145.00
2:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Berkeley

Native American Literature, History, and Politics

Patricia Penn Hilden

This course explores Native American literature from an Indigenous perspective. Five writers whose work reflects many significant preoccupations of the contemporary Indigenous world will be read and discussed...

$145.00
2:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Berkeley

Power of the Puppet in Performance

Lee Armstrong

This theater/art based class will explore the power of the puppet, its diversity in world culture, and its performance potential. The class will view rare footage and discuss the works of master puppeteers.

$225.00

Thursday, Starts April 2

10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Berkeley

Leaders in Our Lives: FDR

Larry Bensky

Franklin Delano Roosevelt, the only U.S. president elected four times, led the nation through two of our greatest crises: the Great Depression and World War II. Born to a patrician family and privately educated by tutors and at elite schools, Roosevelt nevertheless became known for this ability to relate to all people...

$145.00
10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Lafayette

Ripple Effects: World History as a Single Story

Tamim Ansary

World history is typically recounted from the perspective of a particular culture or peoples: it’s the story of how we got to where we are today but with an embedded assumption about what is meant by “we.”...

$145.00
1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Berkeley

Dixie Voices: The World of the Antebellum South

Mick Chantler

Americans are alternately fascinated and repelled by our collective national memory of the Old South. We either righteously condemn Southerners for their brutality, boorishness, and backwards social system—or romanticize the “land of cotton” as a bastion of gracious country living, and courteous behavior...

$145.00
1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Berkeley

The Theory of Evolution

Marty Pollard

This course will explore the theory of evolution. Each of the topics will be taught by faculty from UC Berkeley and the Department of Energy’s Joint Genome Institute. Topics will include, among others, the most current evolutionary science research...

$185.00
1:15 p.m. - 3:15 p.m.
Lafayette

The Meanings & Mysteries of Photography

Ken Light

What makes some photographs iconic? How do image-makers enter different communities and confront tough issues and subjects? How do they see and cope with complicated interactions and create art?...

$145.00

Friday, Starts April 3

10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Berkeley

Beginning Sculpture

Vanessa DiTullio

Learn basic hand-building and finishing techniques and apply them to class projects. First we will make a ceramic box out of slabs in which you have the freedom to create simple or complex decorations and shapes...

$225.00
10:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.
Berkeley

Feminism in the Bay Area Arts

Kathryn Roszak

While women are increasingly visible in many realms, they still strive for equality in earning power and leadership opportunities. We’ll hear from invited artists including younger generations of women...

$185.00

Tuesday, Starts April 21

3:15 p.m. - 4:45 p.m.
Berkeley

The Art of Dramaturgy

Philippa Kelly

Four classes, three performances (Aurora Theatre, 2081 Addison St., Berkeley)

$185.00

Winter 2015

Winter term courses meet for six weeks, unless otherwise noted. If a course is full, call 510.642.9934 or email berkeley_olli@berkeley.edu to be added to a waitlist.

Monday, Starts January 26

10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Berkeley

Celebrating Germany's Women Writers

Marion Gerlind

Join this interactive seminar if you are curious about popular German literature from a diverse group of female writers, including ...

$185.00
10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Berkeley

Joy of Singing

Lauren Carley

Would you like to strengthen your singing and speaking voice, increase your range and projection, and grow in confidence while learning ...

$145.00
10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Berkeley

Life/Story: Memoir

Tamim Ansary

This introduction to memoir is open to anyone with a work in progress or a project in mind. Explore the elements of ...

$225.00
1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Berkeley

Art in the Bay Area

Kerrin Meis

Inspired by the exhibit Fertile Ground: Art and Community in California at the Oakland Museum of California, we’ll explore four ...

$145.00
1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Berkeley

Case Studies in Cross-Cultural Miscommunications

Joseph Lurie

Explore how cross-cultural differences in values and prisms often contribute to misperceptions of meaning and intent. We’ll examine ...

$185.00

Tuesday, Starts January 27

10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Berkeley

How Your Brain Works and When It Doesn't

Peter Ralston

Learn about nerve cell functions and how neuronal networks are organized in the human brain. Each lecture will introduce a basic ...

$145.00
10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Berkeley

The Myth of American Innocence

Barry Spector

While historical, scientific, political, psychological, and religious thinkers often offer insufficient responses to profound ...

$185.00
1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Berkeley

British Revolutions: Kings, Queens, and Knaves

Bruce Elliott

Britain was the birthplace of representative democracy, religious diversity, and industrial revolution. Sweeping through four ...

$145.00
1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Lafayette

Exploring Philosophical Issues through Film

Richard Lichtman

Though film is often taken as sheer and irrelevant entertainment and commercial exploitation, it has every claim to significance and ...

$145.00
1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Berkeley

Writing Between the Lines: Using Style to Make Meaning

Deborah Lichtman

What is the relationship between form and content? How do novelists create suspense with syntax? How can an effective ...

$225.00
5:00 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.
Berkeley

Tech 2.0

David Casuto

Antivirus software, malware, streaming videos, cloud computing, embedding videos — many people are afraid of these ...

$225.00

Wednesday, Starts January 28

10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Berkeley

Bay Area Documentaries

Michael Fox

For more than 40 years, film festivals and television programmers around the world have recognized the breadth and depth of Bay Area ...

$145.00
10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Berkeley

Current Issues Before the U.S. Supreme Court (for new students)

Marshall Krause

Students will hear an introduction to how the U.S. Supreme Court works and its place in our constitutional system ...

$185.00
10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Berkeley

Short Stories of Ernest Hemingway

John Campion

Masterworks by Ernest Hemingway have shaped all of modern and contemporary fiction. For that reason, special emphasis will be placed on the techniques...

$145.00
2:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Berkeley

Current Issues Before the U.S. Supreme Court (for repeat students)

Marshall Krause

Students will hear an introduction to how the U.S. Supreme Court works and its place in our constitutional ...

$185.00
2:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Berkeley

The Meanings and Mysteries of Photography

Ken Light

What makes some photographs iconic? How do image-makers enter different communities and confront tough ...

$145.00
2:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Berkeley

Was Our Universe Created by Chance or Design?

Didier de Fontaine,Yan Linhart

Address some fundamental principles of science, how they were discovered, and how they are relevant in everyday ...

$145.00

Thursday, Starts January 29

10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Berkeley

Alexandra David-Neel: A Tibetan Buddhist Journey

Clare Fischer

Alexandra David-Neel challenged early 20th-century cultural expectations associated with her gender by undertaking and documenting a remarkable account of her pilgrimage to Tibet’s Lhasa ...

$185.00
10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Lafayette

Hands on the Vines: The California Wine Story

Alex Saragoza

Examine the historical development of the California wine industry, focusing especially on those involved firsthand in its creation, from the fieldworkers to the winemakers ...

$145.00
10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Berkeley

Italy and Ideas: A Literary Tour

Beverly Allen

Travelers to Italy often know something about its art and cuisine, but few have experienced its literature ...

$145.00
1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Lafayette

Dilemmas in Biomedical Ethics

Marjorie Shultz

Biomedical ethics has emerged over the past half century and incorporates medicine, philosophy, law, and social science perspectives. Explore significant issues, including allocation of decision-making between physicians and patients ...

$145.00
1:00 p.m. - 3:30 p.m.
Berkeley

The Expanded Self

Lauren Vanett

Appreciate who you have become over your lifetime. Reflect on past successes, gain tools for cultivating self-compassion, and envision your best possible future ...

$225.00
1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Berkeley

When Movies Mattered: Art House Cinema 1946-1966

Russell Merritt

American culture sustained a 20-year blitzkrieg of foreign films during the 20th century that radically transformed our concepts and discussions of narrative film. Building on models created in the silent film era ...

$145.00

Friday, Starts January 30

10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Berkeley

Fired Up for Pottery

Vanessa DiTullio

Dive right into clay in this introductory course on making pots, including basic methods for finishing and glazing your pieces ...

$225.00
10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Berkeley

Five Hundred Years of Italian Landscapes and Gardens

Katherine Rinne

Inspired by newly discovered ancient gardens and plants introduced from voyages of discovery, fresh approaches to landscape planning, agricultural development, and garden design began to emerge in Italy ...

$185.00