25 Real-Life College Courses That Are Freaking Awesome

| | Learning | March 8, 2016
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1. The Linguistics Of Middle Earth

Ever wanted to know the difference between Quendya and Exilic Quenya? Ever wanted the Black Speech of Mordor to be your party trick? Then this is the course for you, provided by the University of Texas. Whatever your reasons, you’ll know this will be the one college credit to rule them all.




2. The Art Of Walking

Looks like anything can be an art form these days. But considering that most of America views even the walk from their front door the car can be too strenuous, maybe this is something we can all learn to appreciate. The Centre College of Kentucky provides this course that will “lead students through several different historical, artistic and philosophical walking tours.” Please bring appropriate footwear.




3. Klingon

Back to the made-up languages! We’re not even going to provide any links to this one, as a simple google search reveals a plethora of Klingon courses offered worldwide. Make sure to learn the cultural merits of being a true Klingon as you traverse the guttural sounds and phlegmy consonants of this not-so-delicate language. These could be useful titbit’s such as where to find par’mach (usually found in all the wrong places) and that the day before the final exam is, in fact, a good day to die.




4. United Kingdom: To Hogwarts, Harry: An Intensive Study of Harry Potter Through the British Isles

This University of Michigan provided course is actually a spring semester sojourn to the United Kingdom, home all things Pottery. Learn how many words can end with –extuality as you read the course description, which promises to provide a “greater appreciation of the book’s textuality, intertextuality, subtextuality, and contextuality.” As long as there’s butter beer, any student should be good.




5. What If Harry Potter Is Real?

And if the field trip wasn’t enough, when you get back, grab a broom and fly over to the Appalachian State University, to grapple with complex ideas such as what is the “very nature of history”, or why couldn’t Voldemort have just made it easier for himself and knocked away Harry’s glasses? So many questions…




6. Feminist Perspectives: Politicizing Beyoncé

One of the courses provided by the department of Gender and Women’s studies at Rutgers School of Arts and Sciences, you would be forgiven for thinking this might just be a class filled with watching Beyoncé videos on YouTube and putting a ring on things that you like. It’s not (although if you want a class all about wasting time on YouTube then there are at least two more further down this very list!), but instead focuses on Beyoncé as a political figure, and asks how does she “deploy messages about race, gender, class, and sexuality.” This class is not just for all the single ladies.




7. Wasting Time on the Internet

The University of Pennsylvania sure knows how to attract the Twitter generation with its course titles. Here, you won’t be reprimanded for watching moronic cat videos, you’ll get extra credit!




8. #SelfieClass

The University of Southern California used to call this class “Writing 150: Writing and Critical Reasoning: Identity and Diversity.” But that didn’t resonate very well with the student body, who commandeered the course with the hashtag #SelfieClass, which can be used to explore the students’ thesis that “critically examine society’s influence on self-identity and how selfies reflect and affect the global culture in which we live.” So for those hoping to find a course on how to take that perfect shot that captures you, your BFF, your drinks and background in the same obnoxious moment, keep looking.




9. Learning From YouTube

I don’t know about you, but I have learned plenty from YouTube, from how to make the perfect meringue, to how to ‘deactivate a cat,’ whatever that means. Now MIT, already distributors of useful knowledge themselves, have released this educational video-book that looks at the world’s largest video-sharing site as a democracy, a window into the human condition, and tries to tie it all together with hilarious cat videos.




10. ‘California Here We Come’ The O.C. & Self-Aware Culture of 21st Century America

“Everybody is hyper self-aware. We live in a post-everything universe.” So starts the course description for this uber-meta course from Duke University, itself a quote from Josh Schwartz, executive producer of The O.C. and Gossip Girl. Attempting to be ‘post-post-modern,’ using the sad-but true facts that “cardio barre, yogalates, and rehab are not so much vernacular as they are facets of quotidian Orange County life.” The course promises to cover all this, and take you “right back where we started from.”




11. The Sociology of Miley Cyrus

Want to take a wrecking ball to your GPA? Then this Skidmore University course is the one for you! We Can’t Stop to read the course description, which will “examine core issues of intersectionality theory, looking at the interplay among race, class, and gender, as well as taking a feminist critique of media and sociology of media approach to the Miley “problem.”” Well, at least they recognise that there is a problem.




12. Stupidity

Yes, that’s right. After years of having to suffer people’s stupidity, now someone went and gave them a freaking degree. Provided by the incredibly eclectic Occidental College (that you will see appear more than once on this page), the title is actually quite misleading, as anyone genuinely stupid wouldn’t be able to get through the course description, which describes itself as a “course in critical psychology” that “follows the work of Friedrich Nietzsche, Gilles Deleuze, and most recently, Avital Ronell, in a philosophical examination of those operations and technologies that we conduct in order to render ourselves uncomprehending.” But it also covers Beavis and Butt-head, so not all hope is lost.




13. The Physics Of Star Trek

If learning Klingon wasn’t enough for you, put on your science hat and warp over to Santa Clara University, that’s offering the very thing you need. Covering the whole gamut from transporters, wormholes, warp drive, time travel. Sadly an explanation of why the crew of the Starship Enterprise can’t wear seatbelts is still under a cloaking device.




14. Jay-Z And Kanye West

Not wanting his other-half to get all the academic lime-light, Jay-Z also has a course dedicated to him, and it seems he’s brought his bestie Kayne along for the ride (ironic since Mr. West is a proud non-reader of books). The Marquette University course uses the titular subjects to ask “Is it art?” Less political, more artsy, still can’t explain why people will spend $100 on Kanye’s plain white t-shirts though.




15. Street Fighting Mathematics

Math just got hardcore. Sadly though, this isn’t a case of Ken and Ryu battling over who can count to the last decimal of Pi, but in fact a study of “the art of guessing results and solving problems without doing a proof or an exact calculation.” Those clever people of MIT (again) also wish to point out that “no epsilons or deltas are harmed by taking this course.”




16. Topics in Comparative Media: American Pro Wrestling

MIT is back again, this time showcasing the merits gained by being willing to “explore the cultural history and media industry surrounding the masculine drama of professional wrestling.” Also, if you talk back to the teacher, you will get a flying chair to the face. Maybe.




17. Tightwaddery, or The Good Life on a Dollar a Day

Apparently, happiness bought from money “is a lie perpetrated by capitalists in order to sell their products,” or so this course from the Alfred University would have you believe. If you have to ask how much the course costs and if a discount is available, then you’ve already got your first credit!




18. Underwater Basket Weaving

The course used as the very idiom of frivolous and useless academics has now transcended the meta-layers into the real world, thanks to Reed University. It’s all actually a joke, but a good one, so worthy of being included here.



19. The Strategy Of Starcraft

When the suggested reading includes ‘The Art Of War’ by Sun Tzu, you know the course isn’t about to pull any punches. This Berkeley course uses the popular videogame to discuss military tactics, established strategies, critical thinking, quick decision-making, and game theory skills. Rage-quitter get an automatic fail.




Trying to help you see the world in different ways, using zombies. Sounds legit. Thanks Columbia, sign me up! Just don’t tell me who dies in the latest season of The Walking Dead, or there will be more dead in the classroom than you anticipated.




21. The Amazing World Of Bubbles

Although sounding like the lame ‘kiddie’ part of a theme park that you’re forced to endure because someone brought along the two-year-old monster nephew, this is in fact a serious scientific discussion thanks to CalTech. Covering various subjects such as energy, anatomy and engineering, perhaps that dopey little fish from Finding Nemo had it right all along.




22. Nuthin’ but a ‘G’ Thang

First Beyoncé, then Jay-Z and Kayne, now the rest of the gang want to get involved in this Oberlin College course that purports that no experience required other than a love of music.




23. Mail Order Brides: Understanding the Philippines in Southeast Asian Context

Covering diverse subjects such as “tourism, transnational migration, and local ‘syncretic’ religion” this Johns Hopkins University course is probably not what some students were expecting (or hoping) given the title.




24. The Science of Superheroes

The course claims to link the science behind Superman’s flight to real world issues like global warming, but forget that. All you need to do is wait for the University Of California course to produce the inevitable radioactive spider, and then just let it bite you.




25. The Unbearable Whiteness of Barbie

Occidental College is back again, offering a course about “scientific racism” using the famous doll with the impossible legs as its mascot. How it manages to link this to “The Matrix” almost makes me want to attend.


Like this list? Have you come across similar ridiculous courses in college? Share it with your friends!


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