Emilie Rusch

Need the perfect elective to round out your Fall/Summer 2020 schedule? Look no further.

Students working in a chemistry lab

Registration is underway for the Summer and Fall 2020 semesters at Colorado School of Mines. Below you’ll find some of the new and interesting courses being offered for all students.

Fall 2020 Course Offerings

Introduction to Space Exploration (MEGN 408): All systems are GO. Launch Day is Monday, August 24 at 6 p.m. in CTLM 102 for all of you space enthusiasts, regardless of department, major or class standing.  Come aboard for this semester-long space ride. Learn more about the course here

Anatomy and Physiology (CBEN 304): Ever wonder what structures make up the human body? Interested in learning more about how the human body (and other animals) works? Curious about how you can apply engineering principles to the human body? If so, CBEN 304 is for you. Monday/Wednesday/Friday from 1 to 1:50 p.m.  

Chemistry and Biochemistry of Pharmaceuticals (CHGN 441): With new diseases and illicit drugs popping up around the world on a nearly daily basis, this course will explore the chemistry and biochemistry of drugs used to fight these diseases and recreational drugs. This course covers what drugs do to the body, side effects, testing and forensic detection. Offered Monday/Wednesday/Friday at 2 p.m.  

Fundamentals of Catalysis (CHGN 584): For every $10 million invested into catalysis, it returns $10 billion. Earth would be 1/3-1/2 as populated without the development of the Haber-Bosch process to synthesize ammonia from molecular nitrogen and hydrogen for fertilizer. This course discusses historically important developments in catalysis, along with new developments. Characterization of catalytic materials are covered, as well. Offered Tuesday/Thursday at 8 a.m.  

Educational Psychology and Assessment (SYGN 398): An explosive growth in research on how people learn has revealed many ways to improve teaching and catalyze learning at all ages. The purpose of this course is to present this new science of learning so that educators can creatively translate the science into exceptional practice and know if they succeed. This course is designed to prepare students for college or high school teaching. 3 credits. Tuesday 6:30 to 7:15 p.m.  

K-12 Field Experience (SYGN 498): This course is the ideal way to try out teaching. Assist in a classroom alongside an experienced mentor teacher. Requirements include a total of 25 hours in the classroom and a 50-minute weekly seminar. Repeatable. Classroom hours are work study eligible.  Thursday 6:30 to 7:20 p.m. Get more information about the course here.  

Introduction to Nuclear Engineering (ENGY498A/MEGN498C): Discover the wonder that is nuclear engineering! This course will provide a general primer for nuclear engineering principles and serve as a useful gateway to those considering a 4+1 MS degree. The basics of nuclear engineering will be discussed in the context of nuclear security and the nuclear fuel cycle. Tuesday/Thursday 11 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. 

Communities and Natural Resource Development (MNGN 335): Even though this course has a mining prefix, students from all majors are welcome, and the course counts towards your H&SS required credits at Mines. We will go beyond case studies of mining and examine energy and other natural resource developments to understand the intersections between these developments, communities and the environment. Through project-based learning, students will gain the ability to assess development projects and the ways in which they engage communities and address their environmental impacts. Tuesday/Thursday 9:30 to 10:45 a.m.  

French 3: Culture and Conversation (LIFL 198A): Don't let your French skills get rusty! Set yourself apart by being able to converse in French and expand your knowledge of the francophone world. This course will focus on developing speaking and reading skills in a supportive and fun environment. Contact Madame Diercks at for more info. Monday/Wednesday/Friday 10 a.m. 

Sustainable Development and Earth Resources (MNGN 567): Earth resource industries are increasingly being called on to contribute to sustainable development in the communities and regions in which they operate. In this graduate-level course, students will develop an understanding and appreciation of the ways in which resource extraction projects can contribute to sustainable development. The course is framed around the UN Sustainable Development Goals and includes an innovative format where we videoconference with faculty and students at Virginia Tech and Universidad Nacional de Colombia. Students interact and collaborate with others across disciplines, geographies and cultures. Tuesday 12 to 2:50 p.m. 

Engineering for Social and Environmental Responsibility (EDNS 315): Interested in becoming a more socially and environmentally responsible engineer? Want to wrestle with topics such as disaster prep, bioengineering and self-driving cars while earning H&SS 300-level credit at the same time? Sign up for EDNS 315! Monday/Wednesday 3 to 4:15 p.m. 

Numerical Methods for Engineers (CEEN405/505): This course combines theory with practical programming experience, in which all students will be given a powerful suite of pre-written programs for solving a wide range of engineering problems. Monday/Wednesday 3 to 4:15 p.m. 

Introduction to Nuclear Materials/Nuclear Materials Science and Engineering (MTGN 498A/593): Ever since the discovery of fission in 1938, nuclear energy has held the promise of nearly limitless, carbon-free power. While the basic theory of nuclear fission is well understood, developing materials that can withstand the unique conditions inside a nuclear reactor is still a significant challenge. This course will provide an overview of the physics and technology of nuclear reactors, a review of selected materials science concepts, a study of radiation effects on materials and a survey of nuclear materials selection and selection. The course will also cover the unique hazards posed by nuclear materials and challenges posed by the storage and disposal of radioactive materials. Tuesday/Thursday 9:30 to 10:45 a.m. 

Bioinorganic Chemistry (CHGN 498/598): Join us for an exploration of metals in biology! We'll discuss the many important roles of metals in biological processes as well as how to characterize metallo-biomolecules with spectroscopy and crystallography. We may also explore some special topics, such as metals in medicine, biomineralization and metals in the environment.  Monday/Wednesday/Friday 12 to 12:50 p.m. 

Research Skills for Graduate Students (SYGN501): This 1-credit course helps graduate students develop effective research skills. Topics include choosing a research project, making a work plan, working with your advisor, goal setting, publishing papers, oral communication, writing proposals, time management, the scientific career and applying for a job. The class is also open to undergraduate students with an interest in research. Learn more about the course here. Thursday 2 to 3 p.m. 

Property Rights and Natural Resources (EBGN 434): Using the history of North American resource development and use, this course draws upon economics, history and law to understand how societies determine who gets to make decisions regarding resource use, what constraints they face and, ultimately, how these decisions impact the economy. The legal and economic property rights framework can readily help explain investment and development trends in land, water, oil and gas, wind and even development of space resources. Monday/Wednesday/Friday 1 to 1:50 p.m. 

Corporate Social Responsibility (EDNS 430): Corporations are everywhere around us and are some of the most powerful actors in our world. They can be praised for creating wealth and jobs, criticized for not accounting for public or environmental wellbeing in their pursuit of profit, and more. How do calls for greater accountability among corporations affect the engineers who work for them? What opportunities and challenges exist for engineers to better align profit, people, and planet through their work in the private sphere? This course, which fulfills an upper-division H&SS requirement, explores these questions and more through studying a wide variety of cases, from big data and telecommunications to solar energy and mining. Tuesday/Thursday 2 to 3:15 p.m.  

Engineers Engaging Communities (EDNS 479): We often talk about how engineering and applied science serve society. However, actually interacting with communities as a professional is by no means easy. Take this course to learn concrete skills and concepts necessary for respectful, meaningful community engagement. This course counts as 400-level HASS credit, an Area 1 elective for ECD minors and a required course for LSR minors. Tuesday/Thursday 11 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. 

Leading and Managing High-Performing Teams (EBGN 577): Effective leaders contribute significantly to their organization’s performance. This course is about developing your unique leadership skills and style whether you lead a small engineering team or, eventually, a large global corporation. Ultimately, you have to learn how to lead and motivate individuals who don’t look or think like you. Our learning-by-doing approach complements class discussions and case studies with a hands-on simulation of a leadership team facing a series of crises. Monday/Wednesday 2 to 3:15 p.m. Learn more about the class.  

Introduction to Business (EBGN 298): Mines graduates typically start their careers as engineers but quickly get tapped to manage and lead thriving businesses. In this interactive class, we cover what gives a business its competitive advantage, how businesses report information to investors and other general business concepts. We explore best practices including making sound decisions and communicating and how these concepts apply to your own career. This class is a perfect springboard for learning about economics and business processes. Monday/Wednesday/Friday 9 to 9:50 a.m. 

Intro to Computer Science- LAB (CSCI 102): Have you thought about learning how to program? If yes, this Python LAB course is for you! It’s only one credit and is very hands on. In today's world, ALL Mines students should learn how to code! Tuesday/Thursday at 9:30 a.m., 11 a.m. or 3:30 p.m. Learn more about the course.  

Quantitative Human Biology (CBEN413): Interested in a biology course that is math based? Quantitative Human Biology examines the heart, lungs, brain and muscles in a mathematical way. We will cover the transmission of signals in the brain, the pumping action and pressures of the heart and vascular system, the way muscles produce power and movement and the forces and pressures involved in breathing. It is a fun and interesting course that fulfills a requirement for both the biology minor and BME minor. Tuesday/Thursday 9:30 to 10:45 a.m. 

Professional Oral Communication (LICM 501):  At Mines, we are engaged in practical disciplines of the earth, energy and environment. And yet sometimes, this hard and important work can get lost in translation as we switch between different audiences. This course provides you with the space to craft your own speaking style, refine your capacity to organize complex information, and ultimately make a memorable impact on people who might be transformed by you and your work. Monday/Wednesday 2 to 3:15 p.m. 

Arabic (LIFL 114): Arabic is the fifth most spoken language in the world. Skill in the language will improve employment opportunities in energy-producing areas of the Arab world and with certain branches of government. Learning the language is the keystone in understanding the culture, traditions, politics, geography and history of the Arab World from Morocco to Emirates and more. Counts toward mid-level H&SS credit. Tuesday/Thursday 5 to 6:15 p.m. 

Laser Physics (PHGN 480): Curious about how lasers work? Want to build one and learn how to use them? This is a course that will lead you from basic principles in optics, EM, and quantum mechanics to the design and hands-on building of real laser systems. We start with the interaction of light with atoms and molecules to see where optical gain comes from, then learn how laser beams propagate in free space and in resonators. You'll also learn how lasers can put out pulses that are useful for nonlinear effects and materials processing. Pair this with the new online summer Elements of Modern Optics course (PHGN498) to give the best background for non-majors. Monday/Wednesday 11 to 11:50 a.m. Thursday 9 to 11:50 a.m. (lab) Learn more about the course

Engineering Your Career Path (CSM 250): Professional career development is integral to the success of Mines graduates and to the mission of Mines. This 1.0 credit course is designed to provide the student with advanced career planning and job searching tools that are instrumental to be successful in obtaining internships, co-ops, research and full-time positions. The class will also give you guidelines on transitioning into a new career and making a positive impact in your chosen profession. In addition to working directly with you on skills and materials, we have top guest speakers lined up who are leaders in their respective industries to provide valuable advice and tips. Three sections offered: Tuesday/Thursday 1 to 1:50 p.m., Wednesday 2 to 3:15 p.m., Friday 9 to 10:15 a.m.

Engineering Economics (EBGN321): As The Notorious B.I.G. so aptly stated, “Mo Money, Mo Problems.” In this class, you will learn how businesses make decisions to generate more money and limit, or even eliminate, more problems. The concepts taught in this class are useful in business and are extremely applicable in your personal life, as well. Learn where to invest, how to make an Authorization for Expenditure (AFE) and how to build uncertainty and risk into your decision making. Monday/Wednesday 3:30 to 4:45 p.m.

History of Epidemics (HASS 498A & 498C): This class explores how epidemics and pandemics shaped human society, culture and politics, from the Plague of Athens in 430 BCE to the HIV/AIDS crisis in the 1980s. Studying diseases like the bubonic plague, smallpox, cholera, typhoid, tuberculosis, the Spanish Flu and polio, students will learn about how disease outbreaks contributed to the collapse of governments, determined the outcome of wars, threw people's deepest beliefs about religion and morality into question, and transformed relationships between states and their citizens. We will also examine how each of these epidemics changed how physicians understood the causes of disease, and in doing so, advanced medical knowledge. Tuesday/Thursday 2 to 3:15 p.m. or 3:30 to 4:45 p.m.  

Life Cycle Assessment (CEEN 401/501): Have you ever wondered what is more sustainable: paper vs. plastic, hybrid vs. electric vehicles, mining on Earth or the Moon? Students will learn to conduct a life cycle assessment (LCA) during a semester-long project of their choosing. The class has projects designed for all majors: rockets, renewable energy, tiny homes, clean water, advanced manufacturing and more. This 3-credit class can serve as a tech elective for any major and is only 8 weeks and fully online.

Payne Scholars Program - Independent Study (HRNS 399 or EBGN 399): The top writers in the class will receive a paid internship with the Payne Institute the following summer. Meeting times vary based on Payne lecture series. Learn more about the program here.  

Summer 2020 Course Offerings

Lean Manufacturing (AMFG 422/522): Learn about creating efficiencies in the manufacturing process. These skill sets can be applied to any process, from manufacturing in aerospace or automotive, to applying these skills to your everyday life. Students will benefit from learning these skill sets no matter what their focused field is. Online June 22 through Aug. 13. Learn more about the course here.  

Advanced FEA Theory & Practice (FEGN 525): This course offers the perfect balance of theory and hands-on software use to deliver a strong foundation in fundamental finite element analysis knowledge. From this beginning, students can go on to master any commercial FEA program and demonstrate expertise on the job. Asynchronous instruction. Learn more about the course here.

Planetary Geology (GE 410): Planetary geology in the comfort of your own home. Join online and explore the planets for three semester hours. Learn more about the course here.

Geological Fluid Mechanics (GEGN 351): Darcy, Coriolis and Bernoulli, oh my! In Geological Fluid Mechanics, you will be introduced to the physical processes that govern the movement of fluids in environmental and engineered systems. Theory meets application in this course, as students learn various approaches to solving idealized and real-world fluid mechanics problems. Asynchronous online. Learn more about the course here.  

Earth and Environmental Systems (GEGN 101): Getting GEGN 101 done over the summer gets you more personalized attention and a 4 SH distributed core course out of the way. Monday/Tuesday/Wednesday/Thursday 10 a.m. to 12:10 p.m. 

Personal Finance (EBGN304): Interested in learning how to get your financial life on the right track? In Personal Finance we cover topics such as budgeting and planning, developing and maintaining credit, the basics of investing, saving for retirement, buying/leasing housing and transportation, insuring your assets and evaluating job offers and employee benefits. Past students say this class was the best investment they ever made in themselves. The class is very hands on and you will walk away with a blueprint for your financial future. As a Summer 1 course, the class will be offered remotely with some flexibility in meeting time. The class counts towards the economics minor, the business and entrepreneurship minor and as a free elective. Email Professor Lafrancois for more information. Monday/Wednesday/Friday 8:45 to 11:15 a.m.

Introduction to Petroleum Industry (PEGN 102): Did you know that mechanical engineers, chemical engineers, physicists, mathematicians, metallurgical engineers, environmental engineers, bioscientists and many other engineering and science disciplines are employed by the oil and gas industry? Have you ever wondered how oil and natural gas fit in the energy mix? This summer you can learn online about the upstream, midstream and downstream sectors of the oil and gas industry. Enroll in this three-credit-hour-course, with no prerequisites. 

Introduction to Neuroscience and Biological Psychology (CBEN311 and CBEN322): Want to take an online course over the summer to learn about the brain or the mind? There are two new online courses this summer. In CBEN311, Introduction to Neuroscience, you will learn how the brain works, how it sends signals, how the senses work, how we can move muscles, think, learn and make decisions. In CBEN322, Biological Psychology, you will learn how the mind works, how we think, our personalities, our motives and what happens in psychopathy and sociopathy and how it is treated. Both courses work for the biology minor and BME minor.

Introduction to Additive Manufacturing (AMFG 401/501): Interested in 3D printing? Come learn about how to apply 3D printing in the manufacturing process flow. In this course we cover the seven standard classifications of additive technology along with pre and post processing techniques for additively manufactured parts. We also will discuss high-level aspects of materials and design for additive techniques and wrap it all around the economics of AM compared to standard fabrication techniques. 

Elements of Modern Optics (PHGN 498): Are you interested in optics? This introductory course is designed to prepare students for a variety of goals including enrollment in advanced optics courses and research in both academia and industry. Topics covered in the course will provide foundational skills vital to all areas of optics. Online. Zoom Office Hours, Monday/Wednesday/Saturday 9 to 11 a.m. 

Introduction to Science Communication (HASS 323): Have you ever struggled to explain your coursework or your interests to peers and family outside of Mines? Do you wonder why there is such controversy around engineering and science issues? Science Communication gives you the opportunity to learn techniques for communicating with a public audience in different formats and to explore controversies and miscommunications about science issues and debates. Tuesday/Thursday 3 to 6:15 p.m.

Want to see your Fall/Summer 2020 course featured here? Fill out this form, and the Mines Communication team will add it to our next round-up in Today at Mines. 

Emilie Rusch

Emilie Rusch

Public Information Specialist
About Mines
Colorado School of Mines is a public research university focused on science and engineering, where students and faculty together address the great challenges society faces today - particularly those related to the Earth, energy and the environment.