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Course Catalog

Check out all 70 ways to exercise your mind!

We offer courses in 16 subject categories, led by our accomplished faculty.
Classes are held in numerous locations in the Sarasota/Manatee area at convenient times.

The classes at PSA are intimate, seminar-style courses, from 4 to 6 weeks long.
They are designed to meet the needs of people whose curiosity and intellect refuse to retire.

Click on the course codes below to see full course descriptions and to sign up.

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– All Courses – Your Selection      

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Spring 2016
ART   S16A01-ARG Minority Artists in the Mainstream Art World
4 weeks Mondays,  12:00 – 2:00 pm  •  02/29/201603/21/2016
 •  Argosy University  •  $60
A historical survey of African American artists in the United States: 19th century through 20th century artists of color and their work.
, February 29-March 21
A2
Eleanor Merritt
  S16A02-ARG The Technological Art Revolution
6 weeks Tuesdays,  12:00 – 2:00 pm  •  03/01/201604/05/2016
 •  Argosy University  •  $85
Since the Industrial Revolution, increasing numbers of artists have made art rooted in technology. This pushes the development of technology, challenges the establishment’s notions of art, and is great fun. We will explore the origins of technological art and examine fascinating contemporary examples.
, March 01-April 05
A2
Dave Gordon
CURRENT ISSUES  S16CI02-ARG A New World Order?
6 weeks Wednesdays,  12:00 – 2:00 pm  •  03/02/201604/06/2016
 •  Argosy University  •  $85
The end of the Cold War brought speculation about a “New World Order.” A quarter of a century has passed. Is the picture any clearer? This course examines the idea of a new world order in the post-Cold War period.
, March 02-April 06
A5
Miles Williams
  S16CI01-ARG Locked Up: Justice Denied
6 weeks Wednesdays,  9:30 – 11:30 am  •  03/02/201604/06/2016
 •  Argosy University  •  $85
Can you imagine going to prison for a crime you did not commit? Since 1992, over 350 people have been exonerated using DNA testing. Focusing on actual cases, we will explore wrongful conviction through films, memoirs and research.
, March 02-April 06
A2
Harriet Hendel
EARTH & BEYOND  S16E01-MUS Big Ideas in Science
6 weeks Mondays,  9:30 – 11:30 am  •  02/29/201604/04/2016
 •  South Florida Museum  •  $85
Big ideas in science hit the headlines every week: the history of our universe, “dark” matter and energy, habitable planets, life in nearby solar systems, the state of Earth’s climate. We’ll look at science “ripped from the headlines”.
, February 29-April 04
Bishop Planetarium
Jeff Rodgers
HISTORY  S16H02-ARG The History of African American Life in Sarasota
6 weeks Thursdays,  9:30 – 11:30 am  •  03/03/201604/07/2016
 •  Argosy University  •  $85
A historical review of the African-American experience in Sarasota from the earliest settlement of the town to the present. The course is taught by a native son who is both a product of the experience and a contributor.
, March 03-April 07
A2
James Brown
  S16H01-SFC World War II Revelations and Secrets
6 weeks Tuesdays,  2:30 – 4:30 pm  •  03/01/201604/05/2016
 •  Senior Friendship Center  •  $85
Many events were unknown or covert, others clandestine, which only came to light after the War. Information exposed 50-60 years later from previously classified documents will be presented in PowerPoint lectures. Some unanswered questions will be explored.
, March 01-April 05
Rubin Bldg/Dwyer
George Stassa
IDEAS & SPIRITUALITY  S16I01-ARG Western World Religions: Part II – Worldview
6 weeks Mondays,  12:00 – 2:00 pm  •  02/29/201604/04/2016
 •  Argosy University  •  $85
Continue the exploration of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam - turning to an examination of their teachings concerning God, creation, the nature and destiny of human beings, and the path of spiritual transformation. Special attention will be given to their sources of commonality and difference.
, February 29-April 04
A5
James W. Johnson
  S16I02-ARG Saintly Shepherds and Despicable Despots: The History of the Papacy
6 weeks Thursdays,  12:00 – 2:00 pm  •  03/03/201604/07/2016
 •  Argosy University  •  $85
Explore the intriguing world of the papacy in terms of its 1st century origins, its evolution, and its prominent role on the stage of world history. We will take a close look at the personal lives and pontificates of some of its most illustrious and infamous incumbents.
, March 03-April 07
A5
James W. Johnson
LITERATURE  S16L03-ARG The Outsider in Fiction III: The Disenfranchised & the Powerless
6 weeks Wednesdays,  2:30 – 4:30 pm  •  03/02/201604/06/2016
 •  Argosy University  •  $85
American novelists such as Zora Neal Hurston, Carson McCullers and James Baldwin considered various aspects of inequality in the lives of many of their fellow citizens. We will read acclaimed classics by these three socially and morally conscious artists.
, March 02-April 06
A2
Len Blanchard
Ken Anderson
  S16L04-PRE This is a Real Romance: Elizabeth Barrett & Robert Browning
4 weeks Thursdays,  2:30 – 4:30 pm  •  03/03/201603/24/2016
 •  First Presbyterian Church  •  $60
Pyramus and Thisbe, Romeo and Juliet, Elizabeth and Robert Browning-lovers and soul mates. Robert and Elizabeth shared a deep and glorious affection and their relationship inspired each to create memorable poetry. We will wallow in their storybook courtship and marriage and discuss and appreciate their literary endeavors.
, March 03-March 24
Forum
Phyllis Jaffe
  S16L01-ARG Hemingway's Early Short Stories (before 1939)
6 weeks Tuesdays,  2:30 – 4:30 pm  •  03/01/201604/05/2016
 •  Argosy University  •  $85
Hemingway famously said that good writers of fiction begin with something that actually happened in their lives and then make things up. The truth, he added, is in the things you make up. We'll seek the truth in these stories.
, March 01-April 05
A2
Phillip Buck
  S16L02-ARG The Pleasures of Lyric Poetry
4 weeks Wednesdays,  9:30 – 11:30 am  •  03/02/201603/23/2016
 •  Argosy University  •  $60
The pleasures of lyric poetry are many: auditory, linguistic, imaginative, emotional and intellectual. We will read a variety of short poems with the goal of increasing our understanding of one of the oldest and most effective forms of verbal communication. Come prepared to be challenged—and rewarded.
, March 02-March 23
A1
Stuart McDougal
MEDIA  S16ME01-ARG The Changing Face of the News Media
4 weeks Mondays,  9:30 – 11:30 am  •  02/29/201603/21/2016
 •  Argosy University  •  $60
(Course Closed)
Using the news of the day as examples, TV News expert Sam Roberts discusses the decline in the quality of news reporting and the rise of news on the Internet, and asks whether newspapers and the network news divisions will survive.
, February 29-March 21
A5
Sam Roberts
MUSIC  S16M01-CON The Symphonic Life II: Inside Musicians' Lives
6 weeks Mondays,  2:30 – 4:20 pm  •  02/29/201604/04/2016
 •  First Congregational United Church of Christ  •  $85
The second installment in the hugely popular “Symphonic Life I”series, this course will explore different aspects of the life and work of orchestral musicians. Students are encouraged, but not required, to enroll in “The Symphonic Life I” course before taking this course. Six musicians from the Sarasota Orchestra offer one lecture each on the following topics:

• Traditions of the Orchestra (B. Traba): Why does the Concertmaster walk out onstage last? Why does the oboe tune the orchestra? What's the REAL story on clapping between the movements of symphonies? Learn the origin of some of classical music's quirkiest traditions and how they are changing today.

• A Week in the Life (A. De Sorgo): The concerts you hear come together in orchestra rehearsals, but what does each musician do individually outside of the concert hall? How much do musicians practice? How do they maintain their instruments? What's up with those people who make their own reeds, anyway? Do musicians teach? Do they play elsewhere? Spend "a week in the life" of a typical orchestral musician.

• Who has the Bells and has Anyone Seen the Whistles? (G. Nickson): What has to happen behind the scenes to make each week at the orchestra go smoothly? Following in the footsteps of a Principal Percussionist, take an in-depth look at the logistical challenges of an orchestra and how they are resolved. See how the worlds of production, personnel, administration and librarians must combine smoothly to make it all happen. Additionally, the many challenges of keeping the percussion section running will be discussed: finding obscure instruments, fixing and maintaining an orchestra’s collection of instruments, shipping obscure pieces of furniture all around the world in the name of music!

• What Does a Conductor Really Do? (J. Vibbard): The door opens, and an enigmatic figure confidently walks to the podium and takes a bow, only moments before turning, placing his/her arms in the air and commanding a start to the music. But is this all the equally famed and infamous Maestro, Conductor, Kapellmeister does? Take a peek into the sprawling and diverse career of a conductor, and discover some of those little insider quirks and idiosyncrasies of this often misunderstood profession.

• Playing "By Ear" (L. Cambis): While it seems obvious that musicians use their ears when they play, few understand the subtleties of pitch, intonation and rhythm which professional musicians must constantly assess while playing. Learn the basics of Solfege, the primary ear training method used in conservatories, major and minor tonalities, and how orchestral musicians hear with their eyes (note reading/sight reading) and visualize with their ears (pitch and interval recognition)!

• The Lives of Soloists and Chamber Musicians (A. Feder): Weeks away from home, traveling with instruments, practicing in hotels. Learn about the challenges of maintaining friendships, relationships, and a family for some of our most acclaimed artists who travel most of the year.

No previous class or knowledge of classical music required!
, February 29-April 04
Chapel
Betsy Hudson Traba
 | 
Adam De Sorgo
 | 
Justin Vibbard
 | 
Lena Cambis
 | 
Abraham Feder
 | 
George Nickson
  S16M02-PRE Masterpieces of Choral Music
4 weeks Thursdays,  9:30 – 11:30 am  •  03/03/201603/24/2016
 •  First Presbyterian Church  •  $60
The human voice is a powerful and individual instrument. When combined with others, the possibility for expression and emotion becomes limitless. This course will explore a wide range of choral music by many different composers from many different centuries.
, March 03-March 24
Forum
William Wittig