Instructor: Harold Felveson
Description of Course Goals and CurriculumClass explores some of the most critical technological advances made in WW2 contributing to the allied victory. Some topics include radar, atomic weapons, strategic bombing,codebreaking, and particular aircraft (e.g. P-51, F6F Hellcat, Spitfire, ME109, B-29, A6M Zero, etc.). Class format consists off once a week lectures with videos and presentation by Professor Feiveson as well as a variety of great guest lecturers and student presentations.
Learning From Classroom InstructionClass consists of once a week lectures in a precept format where Dr. Feiveson gives an introduction to the topic and students are given an opportunity to discuss their opinions about the week’s readings. Later weeks include student presentations on a specific topic that takes up about a 30min chunk of class time. Dr. Feiveson also brings in several great guest lecturers throughout the course of the semester who give presentations on specific topics they are experts in. Learning is done through readings and from just general participation in class discussion and paying attention to presentations. There is no real need to take notes in the course as there are no exams.
Learning For and From AssignmentsMost learning for this course is done through paying general attention during lecture, as well as specific learning you’ll do about the topic you pick for your midterm or final papers. Dr. Feiveson also gave us the opportunity to make a video documentary for the final in lieu of a paper which was a time consuming but great experience as we got to interview a famous professor for our project who Dr. Feiveson connected us to. This class has little time commitment outside of lectures except for the midterm and final which are out of class assignments. Additionally, as these are written or creative projects, there is no need to memorize factual information brought up in the class to study/prepare. The two presentations you are required to give are done in groups and are generally just fun to research and present with little stress. Overall, this is a benign class in terms of required work and assignments. If you are someone who has an interest in WW2 history, this class will be more of something to look forward to rather than a time consuming chore to attend to.
External ResourcesNo external resources are needed except for maybe some research help from Firestone for the midterm and final papers. Also, if you decide to do a video project for the final, you can find help in Lewis Library and J Street for video production tips and software.
What Students Should Know About This Course For Purposes Of Course SelectionThis is the best course I’ve taken at Princeton. It was truly a joy to attend every week to catch a break from other responsibilities and was totally stress free. Definitely take this if you even have a remote interest in WW2 history or technology as the class required little memorization or regurgitation of information and is just a fun change of pace from your other courses. Dr. Feiveson is a great professor and does a fantastic job of making this course engaging in terms of the guests he brings in and the format of the lectures and assignments.
Scientists Against Time