Freshman Seminars 2024 Spring

WebReg registration begins each quarter on Monday of the 8th week of instruction. Windows open from 7 a.m. through 7 p.m. Pacific Time, Monday through Friday.

University Studies

Enrollment in Uni Stu 3 will be restricted to freshmen until the day the 18-unit enrollment limit is lifted. After this date, enrollment in Uni Stu 3 will be open to all lower-division undergraduates.

For more information on the Freshman Seminars, please visit Freshman Seminar website or call the Undergraduate/Undeclared Advising Office at 949-824-6987. Students may enroll in a maximum of three freshman seminars during their entire time at UCI.

Course NameDepartmentTimeLocationInstructor(s)TitleEmail
Algorithms to live byComputer Science; Donald Bren School of Information & Computer ScienceW 3:00- 3:50pDBH 1420Michael ShindlerAssociate
Mobility Justice: The Past, Present, and Future of Infrastructure Equity in TransportationCivil & Environmental Engineering, Henry Samueli School of EngineeringW 1:00- 1:50pDBH 1420Elisa BorowskiAssistant
Amazing Inventors in Communications and Computing
EECS/EngineeringW 4:00- 4:50pDBH 1420Ender AyanogluProfessor
Introduction to Health ProfessionsSchool of MedicineTu 9:00- 9:50amSSPA 1165John Billimek, Ph.D., Lena NjokuJohn Billimek, Ph.D. is the Associate Professor in the Health Policy Research Institute (HPRI) and Department of Family Medicine at UCI School of Medicine Dr. Billimek is also Co-Director of the Program in Medical Education for the Latino Community (PRIME-LC) Residency Track.

Lena Njoku is the Director of UC PRIME Pre-Health Pathways (UC3P)
DrugsDepartment of Pharmaceutical Sciences, School of Pharmacy & Pharmaceutical SciencesM 12:00-12:50pDBH 1420Sam SchrinerAssociate Professor of Teaching, Vice Chair, Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences
School of Pharmacy & Pharmaceutical Sciences
Secret UCI: Discovering Life on Campus
AnthropologyM 3:00- 3:50pSSL 119Victoria
Crafting Software: Opportunities and Challenges in Software Engineering
Donald Bren School of Information, Computer SciencesW 10:00 - 10:50 amDBH 1420Dr. Mohammad MoshirpourAssociate Professor of
Adventures in Machine Learning
Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Department; School of Engineering
M 12:00-12:50pDBH 1422Fariba AriaeiResearch
UROP Research Discovery ProgramDepartment of Undergraduate EducationTu 4:00 - 4:50pmTBAMichelle Khine, Ph.D.
Sharon Parks
Michelle Khine, Ph.D., Professor
Biomedical Engineering,

Sharon Parks, Director of UROP.
Photography TechniquesDepartment of Physics & Astronomy, School of Physical SciencesTh 4:00- 4:50p
DBH 1429Asantha CoorayProfessor, Physics & Astronomy
School of Physical Sciences
How Comedy WorksDramaTu 4:00- 4:50pCAC 3100BJoel VeenstraProfessor of Teaching, Stage
Globalization: Problem or Panacea?
SociologyW 11:00-11:50SSL 171David A. SmithProfessor of
The End of High School English?: How AI is (or is not) Transforming EducationEducation & InformaticsTu 4:00- 4:50pTBAMark WarschauerProfessor of Education and Informatics and the Director of the Digital Learning
Succeeding in Biomedical Sciences, Allied Health, or Healthcare for First Generation and/or Minority StudentsSchool of MedicineW 4:00- 4:50pTBAB. Cummings and A. AndersonB. Cummings: Professor & Vice-Chair for Research, Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation
School of Medicine
Associate Dean for Faculty Development, Senate
School of Medicine;

A. Anderson: Director of the Sue and Bill Gross Stem Cell Research Center.
A Gentle Introduction to Robot Motion Planning
Mechanical & Aerospace EngineeringM 12-12:50pTBASolmaz S. KiaAssociate
Pathophysiology of Human VisionMedicine, Department of OpthamologyW 11-1150amSSL 105Don MincklerRecall Professor of

Algorithms to live by

This seminar is about using discoveries from the field of computer science in our daily lives. We discuss how to deal with large numbers of choices, strategies to organize material and chores, and when to avoid over-thinking and over-planning. This seminar is aimed at students who have no background in Computer Science. Of course, a lack of background is not a prerequisite, but students do not need to know even the name of a programming language, much less how to use one, to benefit from this seminar.

Mobility Justice: The Past, Present, and Future of Infrastructure Equity in Transportation

When we transverse a cityscape designed to meet our needs, we can travel from Point A to B without much thought, but what happens when a city is not designed for us or actively designed against us? This discussion-based freshman seminar will engage students through challenging questions about historic and present-day barriers to travel and how those barriers can be rooted in systemic injustices. We will read and reflect on research examining transportation inequities across California to challenge the status quo and take a solution-oriented approach to furthering mobility justice.

Amazing Inventors in Communications and Computing

One proved he invented the radio prior to G. Marconi. Two claim they invented the telephone prior to A. G. Bell; the US congress passed a resolution declaring one of them as the true inventor of the telephone. One was a genius who invented most of today’s radio technology. One was a famous actress who invented and patented a secret communications system. After his subordinates showed a working prototype of the transistor, one established the theory of another kind of transistor which became the most frequently used one. Two built the first popular microcomputer and then the first user-friendly computer. One wrote the first compiler for the first microcomputer kit, dropped out of college, then formed the largest software company in the world. Two envisioned and invented the protocol that built the Internet. Major inventions in communications and computing have changed our lives in substantial ways. Their inventors are highly driven and dedicated people who often risk everything to make their inventions work and get adopted. This seminar will study a number of these amazing people’s stories in depth. Students will understand how those inventions were made and how they transformed our lives as well as those of who invented them. The seminar will use a number of lectures, videos, and Internet research.

Introduction to Health Professions

An introductory health professions course that features a thought-provoking exploration of nursing, physician, physician assistant, pharmacy, occupational therapy, dentistry and other professional health programs. Guest presenters with expertise and experience in these areas will share trends and innovations in their respective fields.

Secret UCI: Discovering Life on Campus

In this seminar students will explore and observe diverse aspects of life and culture on campus, taking a few photographs and writing several lines about what they have found. Each week students will share their discoveries with the class and these will serve as a basis for class discussions about campus culture and the diversity of student experiences and activities. The focus of each session will center around what students have identifed. As a professor of anthropology I will provide students with some basic understandings of ethnographic perspectives, ethics, and methods. Some class meetings may include “field trips” to places and events on campus. By the end of the course each student will have a short powerpoint or illustrated essay of their observations. These could also be combined as collective class product. The course is designed to enrich students’ experiences at UCI and to demonstrate how anthropological perspectives are useful in daily life.

Crafting Software: Opportunities and Challenges in Software Engineering

Embark on a 10-week exploration in “Crafting Software,” a dynamic course delving into the ever-evolving landscape of software engineering. Uncover historical foundations, unravel the mysteries of AI, and understand the human dimensions in collaborative coding. Navigate the intricate balance between software and business, learn about modular design, software testing, and requirements engineering. Traverse privacy and security concerns, ethical dilemmas, and gain insights into future trends. Conclude with stimulating discussions, reflecting on innovations, challenges, and opportunities in the field. Join us in “Crafting Software,” an immersive journey exploring the art and science of software engineering with a keen focus on innovation and the future.


The majority of individuals in modern society will use drugs at some point in their lives. Most drugs will be taken for legitimate medical purposes, while some are used recreationally. In a very basic manner, this course will introduce students to human physiology, how drugs work and where they come from, some common health issues and the drugs used to treat them, and some well-known recreational drugs.

Adventures in Machine Learning

Explore the fascinating world of machine learning and its diverse applications across various domains. This seminar aims to provide an accessible and engaging introduction to machine learning concepts, ethical considerations, and real-world applications through interactive discussions, case studies, and hands-on activities.Note: This seminar is designed to be inclusive and accessible to students from various backgrounds. No prior prerequisites are required, and the content is tailored to be engaging within the constraints of a 1-credit, 50-minute per week format.

UROP Research Discovery Program

This course is designed to assist incoming first years (freshmen and transfer students) in their understanding of research opportunities at UCI and how to get involved with faculty-mentored labs and creative projects. Students will learn the necessary knowledge, skills, and resources regarding undergraduate research and to their future goals and aspirations. *NOTE: Students must be part of the Research Discovery Program (RDP) to register for this course. Please contact UROP with any questions.

Photography Techniques

This seminar will discuss the physics of modern-day digital cameras and lenses and will discuss different photography composition techniques for portrait, landscape, and other types of photos. The seminar will also explore analysis methods including software such as Lightroom. This seminar is part technology and part creative applications. A genuine interest in photography and an access to at least an entry level DSLR is essential to get the most out of this seminar series.

How Comedy Works

In this course, we explore the ins and outs of comedy. Learn the elements of what makes a joke funny and research the various ways we can make people laugh. Comedy can do so much more beyond entertainment, investigate the positive impact it can have on our lives and work.

Globalization: Problem or Panacea?

The word “globalization” is familiar to anyone tuned into global media, and is rapidly emerging as the favorite mantras of political leaders, business executives and news reporters all around the world. It is clearly one of those faddish buzzword that is frequently used but rarely defined (and heavily laden with ideological implications). But in the twenty-first century, the reality of globalization and a growing awareness of global inter-connectedness (even among usually insular US citizens) is an important issue that seems increasingly relevant to our everyday lives.

The End of High School English?: How AI is (or is not) Transforming Education

Artificial intelligence tools for content creation and feedback–from large language models to conversational agents–are capturing the attention of the world. This seminar will explore controversies related to the use of such tools for the teaching and learning of writing and other subjects and reflect on how they may change education as we know it.

Succeeding in Biomedical Sciences, Allied Health, or Healthcare for First Generation and/or Minority Students

Healthcare/medical research is supported by Federal funding to improve society, and should be evidence-based and color blind. How is biomedical research actually conducted? Are women and minorities treated equally? Students who’s parents have a college degree already have a general idea of how academia works. We will explore Impostor Syndrome, study habits, & how much volunteer work is enough for various careers. We will also discuss how 1st Gen and URM students can be successful while at UCI.

A Gentle Introduction to Robot Motion Planning

A robot’s ability to plan its movement without explicit human guidance is a basic prerequisite for robotic autonomy. The objective of motion planning algorithms is to enable an autonomous mobile robot to determine its movements in a cluttered environment to achieve various goals while avoiding collisions. This seminar series cover deterministic classical motion planning algorithms, including sensor-based planning, decomposition and search-based planning. The course intends to expose undergraduate students (Engineering and Computer Science) to solution approaches to problems that they may encounter in emerging technologies and disciplines such as autonomous driving and transportation, smart manufacturing, and general mechanical and aerospace robotic applications.

Pathophysiology of Human Vision

Serial discussions of Eye evolution, anatomy and physiology, and major disease categories including Congenital Anomalies, Dry Eye, Refractive Errors, Cataract, Glaucoma, Optic Neuropathies, Macular Degeneration, Retinal Detachment, Diabetic Retinopathy and Ocular and Adnexal Tumors


DROP: The deadline to drop courses is the end of Week 2 by 5:00PM. Drops can be made in WebReg.
CHANGE: The deadline to change grade option or variable units is the end of Week 2 by 5:00PM. Changes can be made in WebReg.
ADD: The deadline to add courses is the end of Week 2 by 5:00PM. Adds can be made in WebReg.