“What is one man’s trash is another man’s treasure” – a colloquialism that is timeless and can be interpreted at a number of levels. As far as college coursework and programs are concerned, this also stands true. A student majoring in biology, for example, may find a genetics course fun, interesting, and quite easy. A student majoring in art, on the other hand, finds that genetics course grueling and terribly hard. And within each program, students will differ on courses that they term “easy” or “hard.” At Savannah College of Art & Design (SCAD), the same thing holds true. There are plenty of easy courses at Savannah College of Art and Design that are also rewarding.
Art and design covers a lot of territory, and the programs (over 40 majors and 70 minors) vary widely in what skills and talents are required or must be mastered. Still, as in any school, there are programs and courses that may be considered easier than others. Most are general ed requirements or introductory level courses in a program. For student who are not certain where their best talents and interests lie, keep reading for 10 easy courses at Savannah College of Art and Design! Then you won’t end up in a major you dislike.
1. Drawing I: Form and Space
Drawing is a part of many programs, because ideas in art and design usually begin with hand-made sketches. Instructors realize that many students are moving into programs in which they just need the basics of drawing from direct observation – still life, nature settings, and architecture. This basic drawing course will help students understand form, light and depth (perspective) and how to sketch what they see, either around them or in their minds. It doesn’t involve much technology (e.g., sketchpad and drawing pencils), and other elements, such as texture and color, are not introduced. Most students find this course easy, fun and useful. Basic competence is the goal.
2. Survey of Western Art I & II
These two courses are aptly title “survey.” They involve studying the general periods of Western art, the elements of style, and the artists who depicted each period well. Study begins in Paleolithic times and proceeds through modern art. While students have to learn major art periods and study painting, architecture and sculpture of each period, nothing is difficult here. These two courses are required for most art and architecture programs. As long as students attend class, pay attention, and study for the tests, they will do well. There are some requirements for essays and papers, but students who struggle with writing a college paper, there are always outside resources for tips and help.
3. Equestrian Studies – EQST 99 and 110
These are the two first courses in the Equestrian Studies program, and they are great electives for students who have a rigorous program of studies in another area but who also want to pursue horse riding and care as an advocational activity. EQST 99 involves individualized riding instruction, along with basic care of horses. EQST 110 explores further care and handling of horses as well as their basic health needs. Students also work with horse equipment and it proper use and care. All in all, these are easy courses that will also satisfy a desire for an extra-curricular activity.
4. FSYR 101 First Year Experience
This is a required course of all incoming freshmen during their first semester, and it is a smart idea. Entering college is fund, exciting, but can also be challenging. This course is designed to help students make the transition from high school to college less stressful. The course is discussion-based but also exposes students to study skills, career exploration, and program options. Exercises and projects make up a large part of the course, and homework is minimal.
5. Weaving I
Here is a basic weaving class that will introduce students to the four-harness jack loom. For those just interested in the process of weaving, this is a great elective. It is a hands-on course that involves creating samples with various colors and materials. This course is a great respite for those in programs that involve a lot of serious academic-type reading, homework assignments, writing, and lecture-based classes. Have some fun and learn a skill that has been handed down through the ages.
6. Astronomy 101
For students who have always had an interest in the “heavens,” this may be a great elective that will give them a change of pace from their regular program courses. This course will give a brief historical survey of theories of the universe. Getting out at night and using various telescopes to view constellation, the moon, etc., is quite cool, as is learning about how our universe is changing. You should also gain some important perspective – how minuscule you are in the “grand scheme” of things.
7. Dance 211- Jazz Dance Techniques
If you are in a major program that has you physically less active, then a jazz dance elective may be a great elective alternative. If you like music, have a sense of rhythm, and just enjoy dancing, then you will like this easy, very little homework course. You’ll pick up basic positions and movements of jazz dancing. Besides movement, the coursework involves class discussions and keeping a personal journal – pretty easy to handle. Face it – every college student needs more physical exercise, and jazz dancing has lots of physical benefits.
8. Introduction to Jewelry
This is a studio-based course that explores jewelry and other metalwork. For students who take Drawing I and II (required for most programs), this can be a cool hands-on class. You can draw your own jewelry designs, pick out the materials you want to use, and fashion your own creations. There is not a lot of work outside of the classroom, so it is a great course to take when you have an otherwise heavy workload.
9. Ceramics I
When we were kids, we all played with clay or Playdough. Now as older students, we can turn that fun into creating ceramic objects. You can make your creations by hand, bake and glaze them, and then learn wheel throwing skills. Again, this is a course that is studio-based, with little outside work involved. It’s easily one of the best easy courses at Savannah College of Art and Design!
10. Photography 106
OK. So, we all have smart phones and we all spend a lot of time taking selfies, pictures of great looking meals we are eating, and cats – lots of cats. We have mastered the art of getting our images up on our social media accounts. This basic photography course will teach you how to get more clarity and sophistication in the photos you take. What’s more, if you haven’t already done so, you will learn how to use your phone’s built-in software to edit and perfect the pictures you take. Here’s a great way to impress your friends and family.
Balancing Your Course Load
One of the great things about SCAD is the huge variety of courses and programs. If you are in a rigorous program and looking at a semester of some pretty hard work, taking one of the 10 above listings can give you some respite and a great change of pace. And, you may develop an interest in an activity that will give you leisure-time pleasure as an adult. The other important thing that you may want to think about as you choose electives is this: the easier electives provide a better chance to get “A” grades – this can be a great way to boost your GPA.
What are your favorite easy courses at Savannah College of Art and Design? Feel free to comment below and share the article!
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