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The 12 Coolest College Pop Culture Classes


The 12 Coolest Pop Culture Classes1-2

College is the best four years of your life because it involves non-stop partying. Unfortunately, you occasionally have to put down the Natty Light and pick up a book when classes are called for. Luckily, if you go to one of these schools, your options are unlimited. These 12 pop culture obsessed courses are much cooler than the beyond basic 101s you’re forced to take freshman year. If you’re looking for an easy A that doesn’t involve wizardry (other than watching Harry Potter marathons), these schools prove there’s something for everyone. Whether your obsession is Netflix binge watching or Spotify playlist making, these are by far the 12 coolest pop culture classes offered today.


1. How to Watch Television

This is more real than Underwater Basket Weaving. At Montclair State University, you can take this actual course dedicated to watching TV. I’m pretty sure I could teach that class on my couch and call it Netflix, so please give me your deposit now if you’re interested in enrolling. While college is full of new experiences, it’s sometimes nice to feel like you’re at home (by taking a class that you could easily participate in from the comfort of your own house).


2. Special Topics in Literature: The Game of Thrones

Game of Thrones is coming… to the University of Virginia. In this class, you study George R.R. Martin through his series. In my opinion, this should really be a semester-long letter writing campaign to him, where you create elaborate thinly veiled threats in an attempt to force him to finish the series, because we need to know how it ends. I know all men must die, but can’t we save somebody?


3. Welcome to the Whedonverse: Exploring Popular Culture through the Works of Joss Whedon

If you still have feelings for Buffy the Vampire Slayer and bought an even bigger screen TV to watch The Avengers in all its glory, it’s time to transfer to West Virginia University. In fact, this is probably the only good reason to go to West Virginia at all. The curriculum touches on subjects like “Zombies Redneck Torture Family”: Pop Culture Archetypes, and “By the way, I like your dress”: Gender & Sexuality in Buffy, the Vampire Slayer. Other topics include The Avengers, X-Men, Dollhouse, Firefly, and Serenity. I’m pretty sure I’ve been studying non-stop for the last decade, so I’m ready. This is the perfect introduction to the Whedonverse for the uninitiated, or a good catch-up for the slayer in you that you’re convinced hasn’t yet been called.

Harry Potter2

4. What If Harry Potter Is Real?

This is one of a multitude of courses offered on good ‘ol Harry Potter (poor Ron is always playing second fiddle). It’s taught at Appalachian State University, so I can understand why they’d think anything is possible (including cousin romance), over in Deliverance country. I would be incredibly interested in this class if it involved drinking Butterbeer while studying. Unclear if you have to take Platform 9 3/4 to get there.


5.  Arguing with Judge Judy: Popular Logicon TV Judge Shows

If for you, the best part of school was taking sick days to spend with Judge Judy, Berkeley has you covered without ever having to skip class. This freshman seminar takes a look at Judy and The People’s Court to figure out why people make such ridiculous arguments. Don’t worry, you don’t have to be pre-law, as it’s a rhetoric course.


6. The Sociology of Miley Cyrus: Race, Class, Gender, and Media

If you’re a fan of MiCy, Skidmore has the class for you. If I were the professor, I’d double as Hannah Montana and occasionally rock a wig (then no one will no who you are!). My greatest dream is that this course will teach you how to twerk better than Miley (which isn’t hard, really). I also have to assume that it involves smoking copious amounts of weed and defiling a Jonas Brother as homework.


7. Topics in Comparative Media: American Pro Wrestling

If you spent your childhood attacking your best friends with an endless supply of folding chairs, you need to enroll in this course dedicated to the art of the fake fight. Unfortunately, that means you need to be borderline brilliant, as it’s offered at MIT. The course description says, “Special thanks to the WWE for allowing us to use various materials and for their participation and help with the course,” and I can only hope that means blood capsules and unlimited steroids are involved daily.

Jennifer Lawrence stars as 'Katniss Everdeen' in THE HUNGER GAMES.

8. The Hunger Games: Class, Politics, and Marketing

Looking for an excuse to stare at Jennifer Lawrence all day? Your options are creeping from the comfort of your own basement, or enrolling in this American Cultural History seminar at American University in D.C. This way, when you finally meet J. Law you can charm her with your knowledge of the districts (and your memories of what she wore in each and every scene of the movie). Before you get too excited about an easy A, know that this class examines, “oppression, feminism, food deserts, rebellion, the publishing industry, and social media marketing.” Okay, maybe  it is an easy A after all.


9. Feminist Perspectives: Politicizing Beyoncé

Are you a self-proclaimed expert on Queen Bey after devoting hours to studying her physique? Unfortunately, it’s not Anatomy, but the Women’s Studies department at Rutgers might just be perfect for you. The professor describes it as a course that looks at whether or not Bey’s a political figure, but I think it would be more useful to discover whether or not she and Jay are divorcing… or perhaps you could go undercover to see if she really is Blue’s mom.


10. Lady Gaga and the Sociology of the Fame

Even though Lady Gaga might be over, her impact on pop culture is going to continue for a long time. The professor uses Gaga to study “business and marketing; entertainment law; the old and new media; fans and live shows; gay culture; religion and political activism; sex and gender; and New York.”

the oc

11. “California Here We Come” The O.C. & Self-Aware Culture of the 21st Century America

Over at the always controversial Duke University, you can enroll in a seminar dedicated to The O.C. If you were a fan of Mischa Barton and Rachel Bilson, you should probably sign up stat. If you had other SoCal favorites, never fear. The course travels to “Laguna Beach, behind the gates of Orange County’s private neighborhoods of the Real Housewives, up to The Hills of LA, to get like, really real, and finally to New York City for a serene(a) ride to get out of the bla(i)ring sun, and the syllabus even ends with the missive — “You know you’ll love it, xoxo Your Instructors.”

Did The Sopranos fall into decline by failing to change with the times?

12. Film Studies: The Sopranos in Context

The Sopranos might be long gone, and replaced with Game of Thrones in terms of popularity, but Tony will never be forgotten. The class offers mandatory regular screenings of the episodes, but you can always HBO Go them on your own. My greatest hope for this course is that it gets students started on lives of crime and gives them mafia connections for when they graduate. The only drawback? It’s offered in Canada.

  • COED Writer
    Margaret writes about pop culture, middle school music, and fashion faux pas for CC. Connect me: twitter instagram