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Join us at Laurier

Being a Golden Hawk means more than just cheering on our (really good) varsity teams – it means being a student who cares about your community, who works hard in the classroom, and who takes advantage of all the learning opportunities that can happen outside the classroom, too.

Courses generally run two hours per week for six consecutive weeks and are offered in morning or afternoon sessions. LALL offers courses three times a year:

  • Spring semester: usually runs the second week of April through the third week of May.
  • Fall semester: usually runs the second week of October through the third week of November.
  • Winter semester: usually runs the first week of February through the middle of March.

Note: Your instructor may recommend additional items for purchases (e.g. books). These are only recommendations and are not mandatory for participation in the course.

Waterloo Course Offerings for Winter 2018

Fall or Transformation? The Fate of the Roman Empire

  • Dates: Mondays, from Jan. 29 to Mar. 12 (no class Feb. 19)
  • Location: Bricker Academic Building, BA307.  Note: January 29th class will be held in The Turret located in the Fred Nichols Campus Centre
  • Time: 9:30 a.m. to 11:20 a.m.

The “decline and fall of the Roman Empire” was an accepted part of our historical narrative for centuries. In recent years, this concept has been revisited and revised by historians who have pointed out the continuing vitality of the Eastern Empire (Byzantium), the persistence of Roman ways of life in the West even after the end of the imperial government, and the powerful cultural and political legacy that shaped the so-called successor kingdoms. This course will examine the period that is now called Late Antiquity (200-800CE). We will explore how the traditional narrative of the “decline and fall” and the “barbarian invasions” has been reassessed in order to gain a better understanding of the transformation of the Roman world. 


Alicia McKenzie has taught courses in history and medieval studies at Wilfrid Laurier since 2008. She did graduate work at the University of Toronto, where she focused on the fall of the Roman Empire and the social history of late antiquity. At Laurier, she has taught survey courses on the ancient and medieval world, as well as special topics courses on such subjects as the Middle Ages on film, medieval barbarians, the history of medieval re-enactment, medieval pseudohistory, and the Game of Thrones phenomenon.

Artificial Intelligence: Science, Applications and Issues

  • Dates: Mondays, from Jan. 29 to Mar. 12 (no class Feb. 19)
  • Location: Location: Bricker Academic Building, BA307.  Note: January 29th class will be held in The Turret located in the Fred Nichols Campus Centre
  • Time: 11:30 a.m. to 1:20 p.m.

Articles and discussions of Artificial Intelligence (AI) are increasingly found in all types of media. The objective of the course is to present up-to-date information about AI:'s foundations, methods, applications and issues. More specifically, a brief history of AI developments will lead to a description of current and future methods for using computers to mimic and surpass the capabilities of human cognitive processes. Applications of AI in business, medicine, consumerism, science,, government and the arts will be described. Many ethical issues are associated with AI including privacy and the potential of AI to control human societies. Professor Moore will share his thoughts on the likely evolution of control of AI. The course will make use of numerous videos. A list of several hundred links and references to course topics will be made available to course registrants. In spite of the extensive scope of material being covered, significant time will be available for questions and discussion.


John B. Moore is Professor Emeritus at the University of Waterloo. He has been a high school teacher, systems engineer with IBM, professor of Management Science at UW, author of five books on computing, business owner, computer consultant and past president of the Rotary Club of Kitchener. He taught the LALL course “Computers and the Future” in the Spring of 2016.

Canadian Literature of the Twenty-First Century

  • Dates: Mondays, from Jan. 29 to Mar. 12 (no class Feb. 19)
  • Location: Bricker Academic Building, BA308.  Note: January 29th class will be held in the Laurier Library in the Learning Lab
  • Time: 1:00 p.m. to 2:50 p.m.

Reading Canadian literature can be thought of as a process that feeds into the concept of a national imaginary; however, reading Canadian literature written since 2000 offers a number of ways to re-imagine or re-think our concept of a national literature that was formed, in large part, as a response to the 1967 Canadian centennial of Confederation. How does the literature that has been produced in the twenty-first century articulate a growing literary legacy that is responsive to a variety of “Canadas”? This course, Canadian Literature in the Twenty-First Century, will explore this question via works of literary prose, poetry, and mixed genre in order to introduce students to the uses of Canadian literature as a cultural entity and as a commercial product. Literary texts and accompanying material will explore historical contexts and literary coteries as a context for a "CanLit" tradition, and discuss challenges to that tradition. Class discussions and exercises will ask students to articulate their individual reading positions, and enter into debate about the factors that shape – or resist shaping – literary narratives of nation.


Tanis MacDonald received her PhD in English with a specialization in Canadian literature from the University of Victoria in 2005 and her MA in English from the University of Manitoba in 2000. She spent several years away from academia working as a support worker in at-risk communities, and as a freelance writer.  Prior to joining Laurier, Tanis taught at the University of Winnipeg (2005-2006) and the University of Victoria (2003-2005), as well as at the Victoria School of Writing (2004-2005).

Financial Planning for the Retired or Nearly Retired

  • Dates: Fridays, from Feb.2 to Mar. 16 (no class Feb. 23)
  • Location: 202 Regina St. N., R103
  • Time: 9:30 a.m. to 11:20 a.m.

Financial planning is a complex, sophisticated and rapidly changing field. As we progress through the 21st century, Canadians realize that they are enjoying a better quality of life than previous generations: longer life spans, better health, more leisure time and more varied choices about lifestyles. But they also realize that in order to take full advantage of these benefits they need financial security and thus must surmount complicated financial hurdles. Financial planning helps us overcome some of the extremely difficult challenges that lie ahead.

The course provides students with an understanding of the personal financial planning process and the financial planning areas most relevant to those who are retired or soon to be retired: revenue sources in retirement, taxation planning, and finally estate planning and related family law.

About Instructor, Ernie Cosgrove:

My path to financial planning and investment finance was less than direct: I graduated in the late 1960's from the University of Montreal with an Honours degree in Chemistry. I worked for over 10 years, including graduate work at McMaster University, in various chemical research areas such as natural product development, biosynthesis and environmental chemistry – the latter with the Department of the Environment.

My academic background up to that time had concentrated on the physical sciences, and I had not one economics or business course to my credit! I began to take some extension courses in accounting and economics to aid me in building an investment portfolio.

These courses aroused my interest and I soon transferred to the part-time MBA program at McMaster. At about that time, I became somewhat concerned with the health aspects of the chemical research in which I was involved, so after completing the first year requirements for the degree on a part-time basis, I resigned from my position and completed the MBA on a full time basis in the following year. From there is was off to do doctoral work in finance at the University of Toronto, where I also taught for one year and finally moved to WLU in 1981.

I have been a member of the finance department at Laurier since that time, and have also been an adjunct professor in the School of Accountancy at the University of Waterloo. My interest in financial planning began in the early 1990s, receiving both a CFA and CFP designation during that time. I have taught several financial planning courses both at WLU, UW and for the Canadian Securities Institute.

I am currently a principal in an investment management firm specializing in hedging and computer assisted trading techniques as well as providing some financial planning services. I am an active member of the Chartered Financial Analysis Institute and act as a consultant to the Curriculum and Education area in the development of on-line materials for various candidate programs.

Narrative, Health and Social Justice

  • Dates: Fridays, from Feb.2 to Mar. 16 (no class Feb. 23)
  • Location: 202 Regina St. N., R103
  • Time: 1:30 p.m. – 3:20 p.m.

As human beings we are hard-wired for story. Across cultures, we share a deep appreciation and quest to know and to partake in experiences and insights through the vital, relatable, relevant and memorable vessel of story. Our accounts of the body are deeply entrenched in linguistic choices, metaphor and symbols. Narrative understanding helps us unpack complex power relationships between caregiver and patient, able body and disabled body, individual and institutions.

This course explores connections between narrative, health and social justice with the challenge to bring a critical and self-reflective lens to our own perspectives and actions in everyday life. How are the stories we hear and tell manifestations of social injustice? How can we transform such stories into narratives of justice, health, and change?


Martina C Steiger, PhD, Professor Emeritus at Holos University Graduate Seminary, is a 2013 graduate of the Master of Science program in Narrative Medicine at Columbia University in New York. She currently works as a narrative coach and transformative educator as well as Narrative Medicine Facilitator.


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