Single Classes

Spring Semester 2020

Update: All spring classes have been cancelled due to the COVID-19 outbreak. Classes will resume in the winter 2021 semester.

Online registration has been disabled until the summer session.

Single classes are individual adult sessions designed for expanding your mind alongside good friends. These classes last 90 minutes and each cover a unique topic. Schedule is subject to change. 

Note: If you are new to CLIR and would like to sample a free single class, please contact

Environment, History, Wellness, and more

CLIR Winter Brochure for 2020

Winter classes run from January 7th to March 31st.

Download the winter brochure

Italian Spices

bowl of spagetti with tomatoes and spices on the tableGrowing up with a war-bride Italian mother and a very Yankee dad, the speaker loved both cultures with their sometimes shocking, often humorous contrasts. She lived briefly in Italy as a child and has visited for nearly 50 years.
Tuesday, January 7, 1:15 to 2:45
Cindy Adams, Professor Emerita and former Associate Dean of Allied Health, UConn

It’s a Home Run!

baseballCoach Jim Penders answers your baseball questions and talks about the UConn baseball team.
Wednesday, January 8, 1:15 to 2:45
Coach Jim Penders, UConn baseball team

Mad Queen Juana

oil painting of queen JuanaQueen Juana I of Castile (1479-1555), daughter of Ferdinand and Isabella of Spain, was declared insane by her husband and father and spent her last 46 years in prison. Historians now suspect she was betrayed by ambitious men who used her “madness” to rule Spain in her place.
Tuesday, January 14, 1:15 to 2:45
Janet Avery, local history buff and a member of the Richard III Society

Advertising is More than “Mad Men”

clip art of man holding a sign titled "social media trends" standing in front of a white boardThe latest trends in social media, global brand building, consumer insights, data and analytics, and diversity.
Wednesday, January 15, 1:15 to 2:45
Chris Olugbenga Ayeni, Professor, Dept of Communication, ECSU

Vaccines: A Victim of their Own Success?

person getting a shot by a nurse in the armThe history of immunizations and the diseases they prevent, their impact on public health locally and globally, historical and current controversies surrounding them, and the current and future state of immunization programs.
Thursday, January 23, 1:15 to 2:45
Jody Terranova, Assistant Professor, Dept of Pediatrics, UConn Health Center

The U.S. Approach to Food: Causes and Consequences

knife and fork with lettuce and tomatoeWhy do we eat the way we do and what is it doing to our bodies and environment?
Wednesday, January 29, 1:15 to 2:45
Hedley Freake, Professor of Nutrition Sciences, UConn

Dinosaurs in Connecticut

drawing in dinosaurs in a jungleNew interpretations of rocks at Dinosaur State Park in Rocky Hill, calling into question some long-held ideas about the dinosaurs and their environment.
Thursday, January 30, 1:15 to 2:45
Peter Drzewlecki, Professor, Environmental Earth Science, ECSU

The Norwich Sons of Liberty: Revolutionary Organizing in Connecticut

picture of paper from 1769 talking about the sons of libertyThe lives of some of Eastern
Connecticut’s most prominent freedom fighters, known as the Sons of Liberty, and how they organized against Great Britain in the years leading up to the American Revolution, between 1765 and 1775.
Tuesday, February 4, 1:15 to 2:45
Dayne Rugh, Director of Education,
Slater Memorial Museum, Norwich, CT

What’s That Smell? Development of a Cannabis Horticulture and Molecular Biology Research and Teaching Program at UConn

cannibis plantLack of federal grant support and industry’s proclivity to keep research private has led to a paucity of U.S. peer-reviewed research about cannabis. UConn aims to become a national leader in cannabis horticulture and education, building a program that might attract grant support and generate research into the biology of this commercially important plant.
Wednesday, February 5, 1:15 to 2:45
Gerald Berkowitz, Professor, Plant Science and Landscape Architecture, UConn

Investigating How Alzheimer’s Disease Might Progress

clipart, brain in a skullExploring hallmarks of Alzheimer’s disease progression, and the possibility that dysfunctional immune cells in the brain might be a contributing factor.
Tuesday, February 11, 1:15 to 2:45
Kurt Lucin, Associate Professor of Biology, ECSU

Today’s White Nationalism and Yesterday’s Fascisim

American Flag and the European Union flagThis talk explores “white nationalism” in both Europe and the U.S., comparing and contrasting it with the fascisms of the 1930s and 1940s and showing that the contemporary American right is more in dialogue with its counterparts in Europe than it has been in generations.
Wednesday, February 12, 1:15 to 2:45
Christopher Vials, Associate Professor of English and Director of American Studies, UConn

Myths about Creativity: How to Overcome Our Bariers and Foster Our Creativity

clip art brain with rainbow colorsA discussion of some misperceptions about creativity in the workplace. What blocks it and what helps us foster it?
Thursday, February 13, 1:15 to 2:45
Nora Madjar, Associate Professor of Management, UConn School of Business

Reparations for U.S. Slavery

old balck and white photo of slavesThis talk discusses German reparations for the world wars and covers the history of slavery reparations proposals from the U.S. founding to the current day, suggesting how to determine lost African-American inheritances. Also addressed are the South’s Jim Crow laws and federal discrimination during the New Deal to the post-war era.
Wednesday, February 19, 1:15 to 2:45
Thomas Craemer, Associate Professor, Public Policy, UConn

CranioSacral Therapy: What it is and How it Works to Heal our Body’s System

women laying down on a table getting a messageAn overview of how our nervous system ensures flow within our body and how stress can cause the system to become stuck, impeding flow and communication and leading to dysfunction or disease. Specific details about CST’s clinical applications and methodology, what a typical session is like, and what to expect during treatments.
Wednesday, February 26, 1:15 to 2:45
Vera Killian, Physical Therapist, Pelletier Physical Therapy, Mansfield, CT

An Introduction to Genealogy

clip art family treeThis talk covers relationship basics and documentation tools, U.S. Census and other genealogy records, and techniques to break through brick walls.
Thursday, February 27, 1:15 to 2:45
Mary Dickerson, Dickerson Development Consulting

Location, Location, Location: Where You Live Can Affect Your Health

suburban neighborhood from up aboveDo you live near a major road, a power plant, an industrial site, or in a dense neighborhood or a suburb? Are you close to a supermarket with lots of fresh fruits and vegetables? Such neighborhood factors can impact your health and longevity.
Tuesday, March 3, 1:15 to 2:45
Debarchana Ghosh, Associate Professor, Health Geography, UConn


European Union flag and United Kingdom FlagWhere it came from, how it happened, and what’s next.
Wednesday, March 4, 1:15 to 2:45
Stephen Dyson, Professor, Political Science, UConn

Reproductive Health Policy in Connecticut and Briefly Nationwide

women symbol and health symbolThe development of Connecticut reproductive health policy since the Supreme Court decision Griswold vs. Connecticut, and current threats to reproductive health rights around the country.
Thursday, March 5, 1:15 to 2:45
Judith Blei, health law attorney

Digital Gold? Imagining the World’s Next Generation of Software

clipart coin

Digital transformation has created an entirely new world; robotic labor, drones, genetic manipulation, and virtual reality are only the tip of the iceberg. Digital gold in the form of bitcoin, and potentially digital cash in some other form, will challenge 400 years of history around how we organize capital in our society.
Tuesday, March 10, 1:15 to 2:45
David Noble, Head of the Peter Werth Institute for Entrepreneurship and Innovation, UConn

A View from the Trans Bridge: Observations about Our Gendered Lives

Transgender flag (light blue, light pink, and white stripes)Drawing upon her experience of living in two genders, Michelle will utilize ideas from psychotherapy, queer and feminist theory and racial sociology to expand current understandings of gender and sexuality. Please be prepared to hear explicit discussions of sexuality and anatomy, always delivered in a professional manner.
Wednesday, March 11, 1:15 to 2:45
Michelle Allison, licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and a fully-out transgender woman


clipart lockGarry will discuss various cybersecurity threats and how institutions protect themselves, provide basic advice on how to avoid falling into the most common malware attacks, and answer your questions.
Thursday, March 12, 1:15 to 2:45
Garrett Bozylinsky, Chief Information Officer, ECSU

Is Irish Unity Possible?

Irish Flag (green white and orange)If yes, why? And if no, why not? The talk will be followed with some blarney and song.
Tuesday, March 17, 1;15 to 2:45
Sean Kennelly, former priest and CLIR’s resident Irishman

Kids Today: The Truth about Generational Differences

family of many generationsThe headlines tout stories about why Boomers and Millennials can’t get along, but the research doesn’t really back up the headlines. What are the real differences and what is junk science about Baby Boomers, Gen X, Gen Y, and now Gen Z?
Wednesday, March 25, 1:15 to 2:45
Peter Bachiochi, Professor of Psychology, ECSU

The Zigs and Zags of Human Evolutionary History

clipart tree made of DNAThis talk is from a cultural evolution perspective.
Friday, March 27, 1:15 to 2:45
Peter Turchin, Professor, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, UConn

Healthcare Spending and Reform

health insurance card, heart beating, doctorA review of U.S. healthcare spending patterns; the impacts of health insurance on gross and out-of-pocket prices, utilization, and spending; and potential healthcare reforms.
Tuesday, March 31, 1:15 to 2:45
Dennis Heffley, Professor Emeritus, Economics, UConn