Jul 19, 2024  
2020-2021 University Catalog 
2020-2021 University Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Feinstein School of Humanities, Arts and Education

Mission Statement

At the heart of each strong, established university is its College of Arts and Sciences. At Roger Williams, the Feinstein College of Arts and Sciences (FCAS), like its counterparts on other campuses across the world, houses and ensures the vitality of that tradition. Here as elsewhere, today as in the times when human imagination first entertained the enterprise of higher education, the College is the unifying center of the University and of undergraduate studies. Here students and faculty come together from all parts of the University and of the world. Here we pursue knowledge. We master skills. We become informed. We discover how the traditional arts and sciences impact contemporary interdisciplinary and professional studies. We achieve in the fullest sense of the term a well-rounded education.

The following pages describe the College’s wealth of knowledge and diversity of programs in the humanities, in the natural and social sciences, and in the fine and performing arts. Here all paths toward graduation, toward rewarding work and toward enriched lives converge. As each student pursues his or her own path through professional studies majors or through arts and sciences, all students meet in the College to explore the traditional disciplines, to accomplish the University Core Curriculum, and, in growing numbers, to earn dual majors.

The College’s programs and its faculty are dedicated not only to preserving and transmitting the tradition, but to developing habits of mind that appreciate and can deal well with the increasing complexities of contemporary, global life and work. Teaching and learning in the College are characterized by exploration, diversity, inquiry, interaction, tolerance, confidence, competence, community and service.

Education is relevant and interpersonal. It is the means by which students prepare for the challenging roles they will play and for the civic responsibilities they will fulfill in this rapidly changing world. As students complete their studies in the College, they carry forward a sense of the joy involved in the process of discovery and an understanding of why that fundamental process must be an integral component of their daily lives.


The Feinstein College of Arts and Science consists of two “Schools;” the School of Humanities, Arts and Education (SHAE) and the School of Social and Natural Sciences (SSNS). Roger Williams undergraduates have opportunities to pursue a liberal arts curriculum as they major or minor in the humanities, fine arts, social or natural sciences. All university undergraduates may access the liberal arts as they satisfy the university’s core curriculum and take elective courses that explore disciplines outside of their major. Small classes, none taught by teaching assistants, a commitment to student-centered learning, achievement, and quality, distinguish the College, its faculty, students and programs. Situated thus, and with the largest number of students, faculty and courses of study, the schools compose the heart of the university.

Academic programs emphasize analytical thinking, problem-solving and research, all of which prepare FCAS graduates to compete effectively in a world that increasingly requires flexible habits of mind, teamwork.  Professors and students work together in an academic community that values the hallmarks of a liberal education: intellectual inquiry, the lively exchange of ideas, an appreciation of diverse perspetives, scholarship, and development of the skills devoutly wished for by 21st century employers. The schools foster cross-disciplinary and interdisciplinary studies that include the experiential education that is the hallmark of Roger Williams University.

Programs of Study

Academic programs emphasize analytical thinking, problem-solving and research, all of which prepare FCAS graduates to compete effectively in a world that increasingly requires flexible habits of mind, teamwork, the ability to reason well and a broad base of knowledge. Students enrolled in the College also develop competence in effective communication; they learn to read, write and speak with clarity and precision. They learn to think critically about the works, ideas and events that have shaped knowledge. They learn to explore how these relate not only to the past, but also to the present and future. They engage in the creative process and learn how the arts are produced and why they are integral to humanity. As they study and learn in multiple areas of the arts and sciences, FCAS students develop intelligence, talent, competence and confidence.

Choosing from over 22 majors and minors, FCAS students are able to combine and tailor their academic programs to meet their goals and interests. They can exercise the option to complete two majors by applying work in the Core Concentration toward a second major. In addition to traditional majors, students in good standing may undertake individualized majors and directed independent studies. Cross-disciplinary programs further promote the flow of knowledge and skill across traditional academic fields of study, and students develop competence in multiple areas. FCAS students may also expand their portfolios by enrolling in courses in the School of Architecture, Art and Historic Preservation, the Mario J. Gabelli School of Business, the School of Engineering Computing and Construction Management or the School of Justice Studies.

Pre-professional and interdisciplinary courses of study offer additional options. Students interested in preparing for law school enroll in a joint program that includes course work in the College and in the School of Justice Studies. FCAS majors who plan to enter the medical or veterinary fields can pursue studies that prepare them for graduate studies in those areas. Those who elect careers in secondary education follow a program of study that ensures a rich background in the arts and sciences, coupled with course work in educational history, philosophy, and the teaching-learning process.

As a result of this rich range of choices, graduates of the College possess both multi-disciplinary perspectives and multiple skills competitive advantages always, but never more so than Well-rounded,  knowledgeable and skilled, FCAS graduates are well prepared and highly competitive as they enter either the workforce or graduate school. All majors offered through the College of Arts and Sciences lead to the Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Science, or Bachelor of Fine Arts degree.


The academic departments of the Feinstein College of Arts and Sciences are housed in several campus buildings, conveniently grouped according to their shared needs for laboratories, studios, stages, lecture halls, seminar rooms, computer and audio-visual equipped classrooms and other facilities. Administrative offices are located in GHH; faculty offices are also located there and in other buildings on the campus.

The College’s Marine and Natural Sciences Building (MNS), houses the science and mathematics programs. This two-level bayside complex contains state-of-the-art laboratories, including an open seawater lab that was expanded in 2009. The Performing Arts Center (PAC), affectionately called The Barn, is a lively venue of cultural activity on campus. The Performing Arts Annex (formerly the North Campus Classroom Building) is another hub of creative activity for the Theatre, Dance and Music programs, for rehearsals and classes. It includes two rehearsal/dance studio spaces, a chorus room, music practice rooms, a classroom, and faculty offices. The Center contains professionally lighted stage and performance areas as well as costume, makeup and scenery rooms. More than 30 events are staged here each year. The Fine Art Center (FAC), sometimes called “The Muffin” for its unique shape, is home to the Visual Arts disciplines of drawing, painting, printmaking and sculpture. Courses in photography and digital media take place in the SAAHP darkroom and MAC labs. Additional studio space is located in nearby downtown Bristol at the Reynolds and Byfield schools on the historic Town Common. There, a new ceramics studio, senior studio spaces and a project space for exhibitions and installations are in close proximity to working arts professionals, cultural centers, Bristol businesses and restaurants.

Global Heritage Hall - the newest academic facility on campus, opened in fall 2009 - is home to the humanities including the departments of communication and graphic design, English and creative writing, foreign languages, philosophy and culture, history, and writing studies, rhetoric and composition. This four-story technology-rich academic center features heritage-themed classrooms, an interactive world languages center, four Mac labs and a fully equipped broadcast production studio for hands-on learning experiences.

Learning Outcomes for Academic Programs in the Feinstein College of Arts & Sciences can be found at http://www.rwu.edu/academics/schools/fcas/outcomes/

Degrees Offered by the School of Social and Natural Sciences

The School of Social and Natural Sciences offers the following graduate degrees:

Master of Arts in Clinical Psychology
Master of Arts in Forensic Psychology
Master of Arts in Forensic Psychology 4+1

The School of Social and Natural Sciences offers the Bachelor of Arts in:

Anthropology + Sociology
Aquaculture and Aquarium

The School of Social and Natural Sciences offers the Bachelor of Science in:

Applied Mathematics

The School of Social and Natural Sciences offers Dual Degrees in:

Biochemistry B.S. and Pharm D.
Biology B.A. and Pharm D.
Biology B.S. and Pharm D.
Chemistry B.A. and Pharm D.
Chemistry B.S. and Pharm D.

The School of Social and Natural Sciences offers Minors in:

Anthropology + Sociology
Aquaculture and Aquarium
Marine Biology

The School of Social and Natural Sciences offers a Certificate Program in:


Degrees Offered by the School of Humanities, Arts and Education

The School of Humanities, Arts and Education offers the following Graduate degrees:

The Master of Arts in Special Education

The School of Humanities, Arts and Education offers the Bachelor of Arts in:

Communication & Media Studies

Cultural Studies
Dance & Performance Studies
Education, Elementary
Education, Secondary
Educational Studies
English Literature
Modern Languages (Chinese, French, German, Greek, Italian, Latin, Spanish)
Graphic Design Communication
Performing Arts
Public Relations
Visual Arts
Web Development

The School of Humanities, Arts and Education offers the Bachelor of Fine Arts in:

Creative Writing
Visual Arts

The School of Humanities, Arts and Education offers a Certificate Program to:

Teach at the Middle School level

The School of Humanities, Arts and Education offers Minors in:

Communication & Media Studies
Creative Writing

Cultural Studies

Educational Studies
English Literature
Film Studies
Modern Languages (Chinese, French, German, Italian, Spanish, American Sign Language)
Graphic Design Communication
Performing Arts
Professional & Public Writing
Visual Arts: Film, Animation and Video
Visual Arts: Painting, Drawing and Printmaking
Visual Arts: Photography and Digital Media
Visual Arts: Sculpture
Web Development

Feinstein College of Arts and Science Faculty

Ben Greenstein, Ph.D., Dean of SSNS

Cynthia Scheinberg, Ph.D., Dean of SHAE
Jeffrey Meriwether, Ph.D., Associate Dean of SHAE, Professor of History

Becky Spritz, Ph.D., Assistant Dean of SSNS, Professor of Psychology
Anne-Marie Cerda - Manager, FCAS Operations

Peter Alfieri - Modern Languages
Garrett Berman - Psychology
Robert Blackburn - Philosophy
Dorisa S. Boggs - Theatre
Bruce Burdick - Mathematics
Jennifer Campbell - Writing Studies, Rhetoric and Composition
Alan Canestrari - Education

Margaret Case - English Literature

Robert A. Cole - Communication
Sean Colin - Environmental Science
Alan Cutting - Web Development
Edward Delaney - Creative Writing
Kelly Donnell - Education
Elizabeth Duffy - Visual Art
Frank Eyetsemitan, Ph.D. - Psychology
Steven Esons - Public Administration
Lonnie Guralnick - Biology
Anthony Hollingsworth - Classics and Modern Languages
Dale Leavitt - Biology
MaryBeth MacPhee - Anthropology
Marcia Marston - Biology
Jeffrey B. Martin - Theatre
Rachel McCormack - Education

W. Brett McKenzie - Web Development

Murray McMillan - Visual Art
Jeffrey Meriwether - History

Deborah Mulligan - History
Nancy Nester - Writing Studies, Rhetoric and Composition
Stephen K. O’Shea - Chemistry
Susan Pasquarelli - Education

Jason Patch - Sociology
Judith Platania - Psychology
Anjali Ram - Communication
Michael Rich - Visual Art

Deborah Robinson - English Literature, Emerita
Teal Rothschild - Sociology
Scott Rutherford - Environmental Science
Mark Sawoski - Political Science

Cynthia Scheinberg, English Literature
Timothy Scott - Biology

Amiee Shelton - Public Relations
Jessica Skolnikoff - Anthropology
Thomas Sorger - Biology
June Speakman - Political Science
Becky Spritz - Psychology
Robin Stone - Theatre
James Tackach - English Literature

Anne Tait - Visual Art
David Taylor - Biology
Margaret Thombs - Education
Peter Thompson - Modern Languages
Cliff J. Timpson - Chemistry
Mel A. Topf - Writing Studies, Rhetoric and Composition

Evgenia Tsankova - Education
Yajni Warnapala - Mathematics
Kerri Warren - Biology
Paul Webb - Biology
Donald Whitworth - Psychology

Ann Winfield - Education
Michael B. Wright - Philosophy
Brian Wysor - Biology
Matt Zaitchik - Psychology

Min Zhou - Modern Languages

Associate Professors:

Paul Bender - Writing Studies, Rhetoric and Composition
Adam Braver - Creative Writing
Nancy Breen - Chemistry
Kelly Brooks - Psychology
Loren Byrne - Biology
Bonita G. Cade - Psychology
Jeremy Campbell - Anthropology

Charlotte Carrington-Farmer - History

Jacquline Cottle - Psychology
Laura D’Amore - Cultural Studies
Frank DiCataldo - Psychology
Sargon Donabed - History
Avelina Espinosa - Biology
Kamille Gentles-Peart - Communication
Annika Hagley - Political Science
Catherine Hawkes - Music
Jason Jacobs - Modern Languages
Hume Johnson - Public Relations
Tadeusz Kugler - Political Science
Dong-Hoon Lee - ESL
Alejandro Leguízamo - Psychology
John Madritch - Writing Studies, Rhetoric and Composition

Elliot McKinley - Music
Kate Mele - Writing Studies, Rhetoric and Composition
David Moskowitz - Political Science

Clifford B. Murphy - Chemistry
Cathy Nicoli - Dance/Performance
Erica Oduaran - Chemistry
Koray Ozer - Mathematics
Paola Prado - Journalism

Christian Pulver - Writing Studies, Rhetoric and Composition
Autumn Quezada-Grant - History
Andrew Rhyne - Marine Biology
Joseph W. Roberts - Political Science
Lauren Rossi - Chemistry
Gary Shore - Dance/Performance
Roxanna Smolowitz - Biology
Renee Soto - Creative Writing
Jennifer Stevens - Cultural Studies

Dahliani Reynolds Temte - Writing Studies, Rhetoric and Composition
Laura Butkovsky Turner - Psychology
Kerri Ullucci - Education

Lori Lee Wallace - Theatre
Li-Ling Yang - Education

Assistant Professors:

Aaron Allen - Cultural Studies
Hum Nath Bhandari - Mathematics

Christopher Burtner - Biology
Selby Conrad - Psychology
Edward Dougherty - Mathematics
Catherine Forsa - Writing Studies, Rhetoric and Composition

Wendy Godek - Political Science

Victoria Heimer-McGinn - Psychology
Hasala Gallolu Kankanamalage - Mathematics
Brian Hendrickson - Writing Studies, Rhetoric and Composition
Saeed Hydaralli - Sociology
Robert Jacobson - Mathematics

Nikki Juen- Graphic Design 

Adam Moore - Education

Bernardo Motta - Journalism
Jennifer Pearce - Physics

Koty Sharp - Marine Biology
Erin Tooley - Psychology
Adria Updike - Physics


Katherine R. Mattaini - Biology

Christina Rawls - Philosophy

Fernanda Righi, Modern Languages/Latino and Latin American Studies

Special Events

The Professor John Howard Birss, Jr. Memorial Lectureship and Professor John Howard Birss, Jr. Endowed Library Fund, were established by Roger Williams University alumnus Robert Blais ‘70, to honor Professor John Howard Birss, Jr., mentor and life-long friend of Mr. Blais. Professor Birss studied in the New York public school system and completed his academic work at New York University, Harvard University, and Columbia University. An English instructor at Rutgers University and later a professor of English and American Literature, Birss was a noted Herman Melville scholar and one of the founders of the Melville Society. He was also a bibliographer and collector of letters as well as inscribed and rare first edition books. His extensive collection included a wide variety of material on Melville, Hart Crane, Edgar Allan Poe and Walt Whitman.

The library funds are allocated for the purchase of reference and research books for the library and expand holdings in the Humanities area. The Professor John Howard Birss, Jr. Memorial Lectureship is an annual event that features an important work of literature. Past works honored have included Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451, Harriet Beecher Stowe’s Uncle Tom’s Cabin, Herman Melville’s Moby Dick, and Walt Whitman’s Leaves of Grass.


Bachelor of Arts

Bachelor of Fine Arts

Master of Arts



Bachelor of Arts/Master of Arts