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Simpson Colloquium

Special courses that introduce students to Simpson's academic culture

Taken your first semester on campus, Simpson Colloquium is designed to immerse you in the college's academic culture of engaged citizenship and introduce you to others new to campus.

Grow personally and intellectually as you transition into the collegiate environment

Your Simpson Colloquium will familiarize you with the tradition of a liberal arts education through focused study of important issues, and give you a solid foundation for future academic success by focusing on essential skills like writing and critical thinking.

First-year students: SC 101

The Simpson Colloquium (SC 1010) is a four-credit, full semester course limited to 18 students each. The professor will be your academic advisor for most of your first year of college. Exemplary current students also serve as your peer mentor SC leader and as your writing tutor. Together, they'll help you transition to college life and expectations. 

You'll meet students in your SC 101, your SC leader and your professor at summer registration in April or June, when they'll also help you register for your other fall classes. For more information contact Simpson Colloquium Director, Mark Gammon, at 515-961-1685 or via email

Joss Whedon has played a part in the creation of two Avengers movies, the original Toy Story, and TV shows such as Firefly and Buffy the Vampire Slayer. His shows are known for playing out difficult cultural issues in fantasy-world settings. Real problems people face become literal monsters in his shows. We will critically examine how Joss Whedon’s work applies to the metaphorical monsters in our own lives. Topics include gender roles, addiction, class, sexuality, bereavement, family, relationships, and how we find our own place in society.

Meet your Instructor

Paul Craven