Categorized | Education

Hawaii Pacific University offers spring courses at HPA


Hawaii Pacific University (HPU) will offer two three-credit online courses at Hawaii Preparatory Academy during the 2012 spring semester. Introduction to Sociology (SOC 1000) and Research, Argument, and Writing (WRI 1200) are open to Big Island juniors and seniors and adult community members.

Introduction to Sociology will run Jan. 25-May 11 and Research, Argument, and Writing will run Jan. 24-May 11.

“We are very excited to be working with Hawaii Preparatory Academy to offer college courses to their students and other Big Island residents who are interested in furthering their education,” said Dr. Steven Combs, dean of the College of Humanities & Social Sciences at HPU. “HPA is an ideal partner because of the school’s commitment to their students and academic quality. I hope that this is the beginning of a larger project that allows students to connect their high school experiences to what they will encounter in college. It’s great for HPU and HPA, but mostly, it is a wonderful opportunity for learning.”

Introduction to Sociology examines how various social structures and processes influence the well-being of individuals and society. Topics include theory and methods used to study society, the relationship between self and society, social differences and inequality, institutions, contemporary issues such as popular culture and urbanization, and social change through collective behavior and modernization.

Dr. Dan Morgan will teach the course. Morgan’s professional background is rooted in the entertainment industry, where he worked with entertainers, agents, and producers in a career management capacity. He has worked on a number of research projects, which include investigating the relationship between college athletes’ academic performance and athletic success, and success of online course completion.

He currently teaches courses related to school violence, gender and sexuality and cross-cultural relations. He is working on several service learning research projects involving underserved populations in Hawaii. His current administrative interest is in developing a Sports Leadership program at HPU.

Research, Argument, and Writing will focus on argument as the cornerstone of academic writing, emphasizing organization, logical reasoning, and critical thinking. Students will learn how to research, organize, draft, and revise both short and long research papers in MLA or APA format.

The major focus of the course is a 3,000-word paper in which the student draws upon a variety of authoritative sources to present an original argument.

Assistant Professor of English Tyler McMahon will teach the course.

McMahon has won the Glenn Balch Award for Fiction, The Gary Wilson Short Fiction Award, and was a finalist in the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award. His work has appeared in many publications, including Three Penny Review, Sycamore Review, and The Surfer’s Journal. His novel, How the Mistakes Were Made, will be published by St. Martin’s Press in 2011.

“Selective colleges are searching for students who have intellectual curiosity and initiative,” said Andrew Kelsey, director of college counseling at HPA. “By enrolling in college credit courses offered through Hawaii Pacific University, students demonstrate these academic qualities and strengthen their college application profiles.”

The three-credit course fee for students enrolled in high schools on the island of Hawaii is $500 (plus a $20 application fee and materials); the fee for adult community members is $1,035 (plus $20 application fee and materials).

The registration deadline is Dec. 31 for students and community members. For more information, email

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