In the wide world of higher education, most students will have to undertake any number of courses that they probably feel they could do without, often in the way of general education or requirements for a major. But you can often make up for these downers with a few fun electives or even with classes that are so totally out there that you’d be hard-pressed to figure out how they ever made it into the schedule. So if you’re looking for something interesting to break up the monotony of semester that consists of difficult core subjects like calculus, chemistry, and advanced essay writing, here are a few fun ones that you may be able to find at a university near you.
- The Art of Walking. You might be surprised to learn that this is not, in fact, a course in physical education. It is actually an undergraduate philosophy class offered by the Centre College in Danville, Kentucky. The real emphasis here seems to be reconciling one’s place within nature, and indeed the world, through the simple act of walking, which instructor Dr. Ken Keffer apparently describes as “a lost mode of transportation”. And honestly, what student wouldn’t like to get credit for walking around campus?
- Daytime Serials: Family and Social Roles. This course from the University of Wisconsin in Madison is based on soap operas and how they affect society. So anyone who has followed Victor and Nikki, Hope and Beau, or Luke and Laura for as long as they can remember shouldn’t hesitate to sign up. Of course, you’ll do more than just watch your favorite soaps in this class; you’ll also get to delve into how these seemingly trivial time-wasters actually affect issues like gender roles, family interaction, and workplace dynamics.
- Maple Syrup – The Real Thing. Yes, you read that right. And no, this course is surprisingly not the brainchild of a Canadian college. In fact, you can learn about the process of making maple syrup (starting in the time of the Native Americans) courtesy of Alfred University in New York. Will it help you get your MBA? Probably not, but it’s definitely a good way to break up the boredom of a flurry of economics and business courses.
- Queer Musicology. As you may have guessed, the use of the word “queer” is not in reference to the strange or odd, but rather to homosexuality. And as expected, this UCLA course allows students to explore the differences in how we digest music based on our own sexual preference as well as that of the composer.
- The Phallus. Occidental College (Oxy) in Los Angeles is appealing for a number of reasons. The campus is only a few miles away from the urban center, the SoCal weather is amazing year round, and the college offers small class sizes and a beautiful campus. They also have some pretty weird courses, like Sociology of Food and Exploration of Blackness. But perhaps the strangest is The Phallus, a class that covers everything you ever wanted to know about the phallus but were too afraid to ask. Well, not everything. But it does cover the symbolism of this uniquely male anatomy throughout history and how it has set the genders apart. In case you’re wondering, this liberal arts college actually does have some incredible academic programs (although you’ll have to look elsewhere for the best online MBA programs). So if you consider yourself a super scholar you don’t necessarily have to rule this campus out just because of a few oddball courses.
About The Author
Evan Fischer is a contributing writer for Used Geo Engines, where used GEO engines are shipped nationwide daily.