In addition to the 17 elective courses, such as Creative Writing I and II, Greek, and Web Design, that McNicholas currently offers, two new electives- Psychology and Introduction to Legal Procedures- will be available for the next school year.
Psychology is a one semester course available to sophomores, juniors, and seniors that covers the topics of “learning and cognition, body and mind, development, personality, social psychology, and career opportunities in psychology,” as stated in the course directory. In addition to textbook learning, students will examine cases and participate in experiments and simulations.
Sophomores Taylor Edwards and Sarah Wuerfel told Director of Curriculum Dan Rosenbaum about their idea for this new course in Nov. 2011. Rosenbaum and the girls had to confirm that students were interested in the course before they started planning the details. “We had to make a survey to see who would be interested. The results showed that 81 out of 100 people were interested,” Wuerfel said. After it was confirmed that the class had enough appeal, Rosenbaum decided to make it a semester course and chose Ms. Michelle Semancik as the teacher.
“I’m thrilled to have another social science class,” Semancik said. “It’s exciting that there’s so much interest, and I’m happy that other kids are looking forward to it, too.” Semancik hopes that her students will have a greater insight of themselves and their relationships after taking this course.
Edwards and Wuerfel are excited to know that their idea is becoming a reality next fall. “My mom and I talked about psychology because my brother is autistic. If I learn about psychology, it will help me work with autistic children,” Edwards said.
Introduction to Legal Procedures is also a semester course available to sophomores, juniors, and seniors next year. The class, which will be taught by Mr. Frank Lowden, teaches students about the law and how it is applied to society. According to the course directory, those taking the course “will learn about court procedures, constitutional rights, and problem solving.” Students will participate in mock trials during class. This class has been available in the past, but was not offered this year due to lack of interest from students.
For the full course description of these courses, along with the descriptions of all other McNicholas courses, click here.