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Art  231/331: Intro to Jewelry & Metalwork is one of many courses offered. Art 231/331: Intro to Jewelry & Metalwork is one of many courses offered.

10 Arts Classes for Non-Majors

Get inspired and find your muse with these 10 classes.
By Jessica Ordon

You don't need to be an art major to appreciate the value of art in education. 

But did you know there are arts-related courses that you can take, regardless of your major?

No matter what your major is, consider adding one of these classes to your schedule and maybe you will find your new creative outlet or source of inspiration for the upcoming academic year.

It's not too late to add these classes to your schedule. The schedule adjustment deadline is Friday, Sept. 4 at 11:59 p.m.

School of Art and Design

Art 104: Artists and Designers in Real Time

“I love teaching this class,” said professor David Fobes. Students visit local galleries and museums to learn about how art happens in culture today. Also, the class has an excellent guest speaker list. “Students will hear directly from working artists and designers about what it takes to be a professional in the visual arts,” Fobes adds. Other perks of this course — no hard copy work (all assignments are submitted electronically) and no textbook required.

Art  231/331: Intro to Jewelry & Metalwork

Why take this class? “Because you need some bling,” according to professor Sondra Sherman. This course teaches design and construction of jewelry and small objects in metal.

Art 247: The House and Its Environment

Instructor Natalia Trepchina encourages all students to take this comprehensive course on the history of architecture and design. “We all use built environment on a daily basis, so learning about it could be beneficial to all,” she said. Students who are new to interior design can collaborate with design majors in the class to write a group research paper specific to their area of study. “For example — someone from child development researched how classroom design affects learning outcomes,” Trepchina explained. 

Art 357: World Art in Contemporary Life

If deep conversations are your thing, this class is for you. “We have lively discussions concerning art and censorship, iconoclasm and image destruction, and even the arts of commemoration, from Mayan and Chinese cultures to the 911 memorial,” said instructor Allyson Williams. This online course should prove both thought provoking and convenient for students with tight schedules.

School of Music and Dance

Music 170 – 189: Ensembles

All San Diego State University students are encouraged to keep music in their lives by joining one of the many ensembles offered by the School of Music and Dance. All of the ensembles are open to students of any major, not just music students. While some ensembles require an audition for placement purposes, others — such as Symphonic Band and Aztec Concert Choir — do not.

Music 212: Learning How to Sing

If your roommates are tired of overhearing your shower gigs, or you’re looking to improve your karaoke game, this class is your jam. Taught by opera performer and vocal expert Michelle Ayres, Music 212 is one-credit course available to any student who wants to learn to sing — no audition required.

Dance 181: Introduction to Dance

New faculty member Jessica Dellecave describes this class as a spotlight on contemporary Western dance practices, including classical, popular, and social dance forms. “I take an intersectional approach to teaching dance studies, so my classes focus on the ways that dance conveys meanings across convergences of ethnicity, race, class, gender, sexuality and nationality,” she said. Students will also learn written movement analysis, “a skill many of my former students have found very applicable to other subjects,” she added.

Dance 382: Dance in World Cultures

Also taught by Dellecave, Dance 382 focuses on dances from around the world with an emphasis on traditional and folk dances. “Studying dance for non-majors and/or non-enthusiasts can be eye-opening and transformative,” Dellecave said. “Students discover that it is super fun to learn about the foundations of an art form while gaining critical thinking and writing skills.

From the School of Theatre, Television and Film

Theatre 100: The Art of Theatre

“Theatre 100 is an intro to both theatre and film,” professor Peter Cirino said. “The class gives the basic ingredients to creating a play or screenplay, and instruction on how to create productions and films.” Students will also have opportunities to collaborate in diverse groups to make their own performance or film projects.

Television, Film and New Media 430: History of Prime-Time Television

When you find yourself on yet another late-night Netflix binge, do you ever ask: how did it come to this? Learn the answer to that question in TFM 430: History of Prime-Time Television, taught by Stuart Voytilla. Students study how cultural influences shape and inform what we watch on TV. Benefits of taking the course? Aside from only meeting once each week, you’ll get to watch TV in class.