Exploring Classes Outside the Classroom

NYU offers a variety of courses that allow students to get out of the traditional classroom environment and take advantage of its location in a city teeming with life and adventures. Here is a simplified list of a few of the classes that can take you beyond the four classroom walls.

Topics in Ghanaian Culture


While NYU offers various study abroad destinations, some students might not feel ready to leave New York City for an entire semester. The Topics series solves this problem by choosing a different country to study each semester and by concluding with a one-week visit to the chosen country. This fall is bringing Ghana to New York City, allowing students to dip themselves into all aspects of the West African nation, from traditions to economics. Students will visit galleries and studios related to topics discussed in class, and they will even learn from guest lecturers who specialize in different facets of Ghanaian culture.

Culture, Hist/Imaging
Photography Studies

PHTI-UT 1003

Culture, History and Imaging Photography Studies (CHIPS) takes students to galleries around the city. This course is mandatory for freshman photography majors and requires no prerequisites. It helps students gain a deeper understanding of not only the content of art pieces but also the format, structure and presentationof exhibits.

Tisch sophomore Kai Kim said she learned analytical art skills and gained a greater appreciation while viewing artwork in real life. Kim said, “I really liked it because I got to know about galleries I wouldn’t have otherwise.”


ART-UE 1514 – 001

This two-semester course utilizes the UrbanGlass studio on Fulton Street in Brooklyn to help students build a vast knowledge of glass art. Steinhardt junior Isabella Kapczynski said the first semester focuses on blowing, hot casting, stained glass, mosaic and kiln casting, while the second semester looks into coldworking, sandblasting, lampworking and beadmaking.

“While the class was a huge commitment and a lot of work, the place itself, UrbanGlass, with its amazing studio space, equipment and teachers really made the class great,” Kapczynski said. “Since it was a beginner class, most of class time was demonstration and experiments, and we need to come in outside of class to make finished work.”

Although commuting from Manhattan to Brooklyn is challenging, the love of the class stands stronger than the annoyance from
the travel.

Cultural Foundations III


Part of the LS Core Program requires students to take three semesters of Cultural Foundations, and this class series exposes students to the history, art and culture of different areas around the world. Professor Karen Karbeiner encourages students to stay present during the readings, to hear recitations of religious texts and to look at art as well as performances that further her students’ understandings of the readings.

Intro to Games Development


Tisch and Tandon both offer this class, which is located in NYU’s Game Center in Brooklyn, and it introduces methods, skills and principles of digital games. Tisch freshman Michael Dellapi said that the learning is done through hands-on methods and that students start by creating sketches and prototypes but end the semester with polished products.

“It’s nice to have a space that feels like our own, considering how different game design is from art majors,” Dellapi said. “But money and time are still issues when it comes to travelling so much.”

A version of this article appeared in the Monday, April 4 print edition. Email Polina Buchak at [email protected]