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Northwest Missouri State University


News Release

Northwest students and psychology faculty posed for a picture at Legananny Dolmen, a historic monument in County Down, Northern Ireland, while visiting the region last spring. Psychology faculty will lead the study abroad experience again in 2019. (Submitted photos)

Northwest students and psychology faculty posed for a picture at Legananny Dolmen, a historic monument in County Down, Northern Ireland, while visiting the region last spring. Psychology faculty will lead the study abroad experience again in 2019. (Submitted photos)

Nov. 6, 2018

Spring course invites Northwest students to study childhood thinking, imagination in Northern Ireland

By Kelsey Johnson, communication assistant

Students investigated the original works of C.S. Lewis in the C.S. Lewis Reading Room at Queen's University after a lecture from the university faculty.

Students investigated the original works of C.S. Lewis in the C.S. Lewis Reading Room at Queen's University last May after a lecture from the university faculty.

Two Northwest Missouri State University faculty members are inviting students to join the study abroad experience, “Through the Wardrobe to Magical Ireland and Northern Ireland,” May 14-23.

Dr. Keely Cline, assistant professor of psychology, and Elizabeth Dimmitt, senior instructor of psychology, will lead students through the experience, which focuses on psychological topics of childhood, including children’s unique ways of thinking and the role of imaginative and outdoors play in development.

The trip also incorporates C.S. Lewis’s famous book, “The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe.” Northern Ireland is the home of C.S. Lewis and it’s where he found inspiration for the fictional world of Narnia. Students will read and analyze the book, in alignment with research and theory from psychology and developmental studies.

Interested students must enroll in Psychological Perspectives of Childhood and Play. The course will study societal views of childhood and play and how these are portrayed and reinforced by art, such as children’s literature. A minimum 2.5 grade-point average is required.

Prior to the trip, students will complete assigned readings of journal articles, book chapters focused on the course, and “The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe.” Students also will research specific sites to lead to discussion during the trip and understand how they connect with the course content. 

“Students will have an opportunity to learn about the course topics that may be of interest not only to behavioral sciences students, but beyond,” Cline said. “Human development, imagination, experiences with nature, and how literature influences our perspectives are topics that are relevant across disciplines.”

In Northern Ireland, students will visit various sites in Dublin, Belfast and coastal towns related to childhood, nature, imagination and C.S. Lewis. The tentative itinerary includes visits to the Mourne Mountains, Dunluce Castle, Giant’s Causeway, Kilbroney Forest Park, Tollymore Forest Park, Leganny Dolmen and Crumlin Road Gaol. Students also will participate in falconing to learn how people interact with and are influenced by nature, including animals.

“International travel provides opportunities to consider other perspectives and promotes intercultural competence,” Cline said. “Traveling to Ireland and Northern Ireland will offer students an opportunity to see this part of the world and interact with people who live there.”

The study broad package includes the costs of international airfare, entrance fees and reservations. It also includes nine nights of hotel lodging, daily breakfast, a farewell dinner, transport to and from the airport and a private coach bus, cultural experiences and field trips with local guides and coordinators, and academic and professional excursions with presenters to accompany the group.

Students must register by Saturday, Dec. 1. A $200 deposit is due upon acceptance. Total cost is $4,597.80, which does not include the cost of tuition.

For more information, contact Cline at kcline@nwmissouri.edu or Dimmit at ekeane@nwmissouri.edu.


For more information, please contact:

Mark Hornickel, Communication Manager
mhorn@nwmissouri.edu | 660.562.1704 | Fax: 660.562.1900

Northwest Missouri State University
215 Administration Building | 800 University Drive | Maryville, MO 64468