ELI Curriculum

Visit the Registrar’s Webpage or WebAdvisor for additional information

Courses offered fall 2021:

  • ELI-101 Innovation
  • ELI-103 Leadership
  • ELI-260 Sustainabiity
  • ELI-310 Curatorial Affairs in the Arts
  • ELI-345-01 Film Production Practicum


ELI 101 Innovation: Systems-Thinking and Methods

Faculty: Dr. Brian Detweiler Bedell

Content: Examines the fundamentals of entrepreneurial thinking and activity through the lens of the liberal arts. Students will be introduced to the entrepreneurial skills needed to design and operate any venture, including understanding complex systems, recognizing opportunities, assessing customer need, identifying a viable business or funding model and market, and developing effective marketing strategies. Student performance will be evaluated through class participation and preparation, a number of short assignments, one exam, and a final term project and presentation.
Prerequisites: None
Usually offered: Annually, fall semester
Semester credits: 4

ELI 102 Idea Lab: Introduction to Design Thinking

Faculty: Michael Olich

Content: Introduction to the often messy and unpredictable process of developing solutions to user-focused problems. Students will work collaboratively within a project-based format to explore the rigors of innovative problem-solving. Topics range from entrepreneurial approaches to value creation and social transformation; course includes a weekly 90-minute lab session and provides a distinctively subjective, student-centered learning opportunity through immersion in need identification, ideation, and uncompromising experimentation.
Prerequisites: None
Usually offered: Annually, spring semester
Semester credits: 4

ELI 103 Leadership: Teams & Innovation

Faculty: Dr. Brian Detweiler Bedell

Content: Theories, research, and models of effective (as well as failed) leadership and teamwork. Students will complete a number of experiential projects to evaluate and develop their own leadership and teamwork skills. Leaders from corporate, startup, and nonprofit organizations will periodically join the class to discuss their experiences.
Prerequisites: None
Usually offered: Annually, spring semester
Semester credits: 4

ELI 260 Sustainability & Entrepreneurship

Faculty: Amy Dvorak

Content: Introduction to current trends in efforts to address the environmental, social, and economic challenges of the 21st century. How for-profit and nonprofit entities, and innovative hybrids of the two, have begun to address modern problems and needs by supplying goods and services in new ways; the role of government in promoting sustainability through both traditional regulation and more innovative approaches; how market-dependent mechanisms such as product labels, private and public certification schemes, and investment and divestment strategies affect consumer behavior and public policy. A number of guest speakers will participate in classes over the course of the semester.
Prerequisites: Sophomore standing required
Usually offered: Annually, fall semester
Semester credits: 4

ELI 261 Summer Internship in Sustainability

Faculty: Meredith Goddard

Content: Structured internship program in sustainability, including both a classroom and workplace component. Begins with a two-week introduction to issues in renewable energy, followed by a full-time internship placement. Students will continue to attend a once-weekly class on skill development in the workplace and the relationship between theory and practice.
Prerequisites: None.
Restrictions: Junior standing required
Usually offered: Annually, summer only
Semester credits: 4

ELI 280 Communicating a Vision: Messaging for Impact

Faculty: Bryan Sebok

Content: Examines existing best practices in verbal communication, creative expression, and audio-visual presentation and production. Students will apply these practices in a series of exercises focused on individual and group communication, developing the ability to employ entrepreneurial thinking and principles to communicate innovative ideas to a variety of audiences. Projects include public speaking exercises, written and oral presentations tailored to different audiences, and audio-visual advertising and promotional content production. Case studies will be used to examine successful marketing campaigns for innovative products and services as well as alternative strategies and failures. We will emphasize habits and barriers to effective communication, strategies that promote creative expression, and how entrepreneurial methods empower successful messaging.
Prerequisites: ELI 101, 102, or 103
Usually offered: Annually, spring semester
Semester credits: 4

ELI 290 Technologies of the Future

Faculty: Kellar Autumn

Content: Through lectures, assigned readings, and hands-on activities, students learn about the parallel and synergistic processes of scientific discovery and engineering innovation. Open-ended projects give students experience in mutualistic teaming, technology transfer, product development, and marketing, as well as opportunities to learn and apply methods inherent in effectual entrepreneurial activities. Team-based laboratory projects focus on the process of technology transfer (utilizing scientific research in commercial product development).
Prerequisites: ELI 101, 102, or 103
Restrictions: Sophomore standing required
Usually offered: Annually, spring semester
Semester credits: 5

ELI 310 Curatorial Affairs in the Visual Arts

Faculty: Yaelle Amir

Content: Introduction and examination of issues surrounding the role of a contemporary art curator. The curator’s unique function in various venues—nonprofit, museum, gallery, academic institution—will be thoroughly explored to understand the ways in which space, resources, audience, and material impact their work. Students will meet with local curators and arts professionals, practice critical viewing and writing about art, study different exhibition-making strategies, and obtain hands-on experience in organizing an exhibition. Students must allow for travel time for field trips to different art venues in Portland, which take place throughout the semester during regular class time.
Prerequisites: None.
Restrictions: Sophomore standing required
Usually offered: Annually, fall semester
Semester credits: 4

ELI 345 Industry Practicum: Special Topic/Industry

Faculty Supervisor: Brian Detweiler-Bedell

Content: Organized practicum in a select industry, with strong academic, experiential, and preprofessional components. Past topics include screenwriting and brewing, with future anticipated topics to include real estate, the food industry, technology transfer, and investment management.
Prerequisites: ELI 101, 102, or 103.
Restrictions: Sophomore standing required.
Usually offered: Annually, fall and spring semester.
Semester credits: 4.

ELI 345-01 Screenwriting Practicum (spring class)

Faculty: Fernley Phillips

Content: Inspired by Lew Hunter’s acclaimed 434 MFA screenwriting class, this course is for students who wish to learn a professional approach to writing a screenplay. Predominantly a workshop, the goal is for each student to write a professional looking, first act of a feature length screenplay (approx 25-30 pages) and have an outline detailing the rest of the story by the end of the course.

Students will start at the basic conception stage before exploring the outlining process, learning how to break a story, develop an idea, create compelling characters and arcs, and craft an idea into a classical three act structure, before beginning the art of writing the script.

In addition to the workshop component, the class will combine elements of lecture, discussion, screenplay analysis and the viewing of pre-existing films and special guests.

Course is taught by Fernley Phillips, writer and co-producer of THE NUMBER 23 (directed by Joel Schumacher, starring Jim Carrey). Previously, Mr. Phillips taught screenwriting in UCLA’s Professional Program, and as a graduate student he won 1st Place for Best Original Screenplay in the UCLA Screenwriting Competition. Mr. Phillips remains an active writer and currently has several film and TV projects in development.

Prerequisites: ELI 101, 102 or 103
Restrictions: Sophomore standing required
Semester credits: 4
This course requires instructor permission to register. Please email Fernley Phillips to request permission.

ELI 345-01 Film Production Practicum (fall class)

Faculty: Alissa Ferguson Phillips

Content:  Filmmaking is a collaborative endeavor, but there’s only one position that picks up the final Academy Award for “Best Picture” and this is the Producer. This class will explore what it means to be a creative Film Producer and how one becomes the capital “P.” We will watch a lot of contemporary films, current screenplays, and learn about how filmmaking works from the inside, both in terms of studio and independent production. We will cover development, prep, production, post, budgeting, crew, distribution, marketing and film financing. We’ll also cover contemporary directors, screenwriters and actors and how they interface with producers. This is an advanced film production course, students should have a strong interest in film and an extensive working knowledge of pop culture and media.

Prerequisites: ELI 101, 102 or 103 - Prerequisite will be waived for students with a demonstrated interest in the film and television industry.
Restrictions: Sophomore standing required. 
Semester credits: 4
This course requires instructor permission to register. Please email Brian Detweiler-Bedell to request permission.

ELI 345-02 Music Industry Practicum

Faculty: Rebecca Jordan Smith

Content: This course provides an opportunity to explore firsthand how the music industry works. While studying historical and contemporary practices, students will create original projects and examine and participate in the full potential life cycle of a record release in small collaborative groups. Students will be faced with decisions to make and actions to take at each stage of their project’s life cycle, to help them better understand the practical application of business concepts presented in readings, videos and lectures. We will consider the short- and long-term impacts of decision making from the perspective of both the artist and the business team representing the artist’s interests (manager, record label, music publisher, etc.). Via weekly assignments, students will present a course of action to the entire group to invite feedback and discussion. We will also be visited by at least two music industry guests and experience an in-person or virtual tour of a local recording studio.

About the instructor: Rebecca Jordan Smith began her career in the music industry as a recording artist signed to Elektra Records and Clive Davis’ J Records. She toured nationally with Matchbox 20, Third Eye Blind and Lilith Fair. Learn more about the instructor here.

Prerequisites: Eli 101, 102 or 103
Restrictions: Sophomore standing required
Semester credits: 4
This course requires instructor permission to register. Please email Rebecca Jordan Smith to request permission

ELI 345-03 Marketing Leadership Practicum 

Faculty: Amanda Hill


ELI 349 Innovation At Work: Internship & Seminar

Faculty: Meredith Goddard, Chrys Hutchings

Content: This course is an academic and experiential bridge between classroom theory and workplace application, building on concepts and skills developed in ELI 101, Innovation: Systems-Thinking and Methods (including recognizing opportunities, assessing customer need, identifying viable business models and markets, developing marketing strategies, and designing for-profit and nonprofit ventures). Students work eight to ten hours per week in a problem-based internship, acting as intrapreneurs to add value to their organizations. Additionally, students attend weekly class sessions evaluating personal their own strengths and weaknesses, gaining technical skills, and developing an opportunity analysis, solution landscape, and presentation for their organization. Students must submit a statement affirming their ability to participate in an off-campus internship; instructor consent required.

Prerequisites: ELI 101
Restrictions: Sophomore standing required. Students will need to secure transportation to off-campus internships
Semester Credits: 4
This course requires instructor permission to register. Please email Meredith Goddard and Chrys Hutchings to request permission. 

CS-495: Databases 

Faculty: Alain Kägi

Content: This course introduces some fundamental ideas in database systems. A database is a collection of structured data. But why do we need a database; why can’t we just use a plain file or a spreadsheet? This class will answer this important question. We will learn how to design, cre­ate, manipulate, and access a database.

Goals & Objectives
At the completion of the course, students will be able to…
  • Describe the difference between a relational database and a flat file
  • Organize your data and recognize relationships among that data
  • Structure your data to eliminate redundancy and improve integrity
  • Create a relational database from your data and its structure
  • Understand database transactions
  • Create simple queries for your data
  • Improve your database performance
  • Develop a web interface for your data and its queries

Prerequisite: CS 171 (Computer Science I) or equivalent.

Semester Credits: 4

This course requires instructor permission to register. Please email Alain Kägi (alaink@lclark.edu) to request permission.


Please note that course availability changes frequently. In case of discrepancies, WebAdvisor always takes precedence over schedules posted on this website.