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20 Completely Ridiculous College Courses Being Offered At U.S. Universities

20 Completely Ridiculous College Courses Being Offered At U.S. Universities 86

Would you like to know what America’s young people are actually learning while they are away at college?  It isn’t pretty.  Yes, there are some very highly technical fields where students are being taught some very important skills, but for the most part U.S. college students are learning very little that they will actually use out in the real world when they graduate.  Some of the college courses listed below are funny, others are truly bizarre, others are just plain outrageous, but all of them are a waste of money.  If we are going to continue to have a system where we insist that our young people invest several years of their lives and tens of thousands of dollars getting a “college education”, they might as well be learning some useful skills in the process.  This is especially true considering how much student loan debt many of our young people are piling up.  Sadly, the truth is that right now college education in the United States is a total joke.  I know – I spent eight years in the system.  Most college courses are so easy that they could be passed by the family dog, and many of these courses “study” some of the most absurd things imaginable.

Listed below are 20 completely ridiculous college courses being offered at U.S. universities.  The description following each course title either comes directly from the official course description or from a news story about the course…

1. “What If Harry Potter Is Real?” (Appalachian State University) – This course will engage students with questions about the very nature of history. Who decides what history is? Who decides how it is used or mis-used? How does this use or misuse affect us? How can the historical imagination inform literature and fantasy? How can fantasy reshape how we look at history? The Harry Potter novels and films are fertile ground for exploring all of these deeper questions. By looking at the actual geography of the novels, real and imagined historical events portrayed in the novels, the reactions of scholars in all the social sciences to the novels, and the world-wide frenzy inspired by them, students will examine issues of race, class, gender, time, place, the uses of space and movement, the role of multiculturalism in history as well as how to read a novel and how to read scholarly essays to get the most out of them.

2. “God, Sex, Chocolate: Desire and the Spiritual Path” (UC San Diego) – Who shapes our desire? Who suffers for it? Do we control our desire or does desire control us? When we yield to desire, do we become more fully ourselves or must we deny it to find an authentic identity beneath? How have religious & philosophical approaches dealt with the problem of desire?

3. “GaGa for Gaga: Sex, Gender, and Identity” (The University Of Virginia) – In Graduate Arts & Sciences student Christa Romanosky’s ongoing ENWR 1510 class, “GaGa for Gaga: Sex, Gender, and Identity,” students analyze how the musician pushes social boundaries with her work. For this introductory course to argumentative essay writing, Romanosky chose the Lady Gaga theme to establish an engaging framework for critical analysis.

4. “Lady Gaga and the Sociology of Fame” (The University Of South Carolina) – Lady Gaga may not have much class but now there is a class on her. The University of South Carolina is offering a class called Lady Gaga and the Sociology of Fame.  Mathieu Deflem, the professor teaching the course describes it as aiming to “unravel some of the sociologically relevant dimensions of the fame of Lady Gaga with respect to her music, videos, fashion, and other artistic endeavours.”

5. “Philosophy And Star Trek” (Georgetown) – Star Trek is very philosophical. What better way, then, to learn philosophy, than to watch Star Trek, read philosophy, and hash it all out in class? That’s the plan. This course is basically an introduction to certain topics in metaphysics and epistemology philosophy, centered around major philosophical questions that come up again and again in Star Trek. In conjunction with watching Star Trek, we will read excerpts from the writings of great philosophers, extract key concepts and arguments and then analyze those arguments.

6. “Invented Languages: Klingon and Beyond” (The University Of Texas) – Why would anyone want to learn Klingon? Who really speaks Esperanto, anyway? Could there ever be a language based entirely on musical scales? Using constructed/invented languages as a vehicle, we will try to answer these questions as we discuss current ideas about linguistic theory, especially ideas surrounding the interaction of language and society. For example, what is it about the structure of Klingon that makes it look so “alien”? What was it about early 20th century Europe that spawned so many so-called “universal” languages? Can a language be inherently sexist? We will consider constructed/invented languages from a variety of viewpoints, such as languages created as fictional plot-devices, for philosophical debates, to serve an international function, and languages created for private fun. We wont be learning any one language specifically, but we will be learning about the art, ideas, and goals behind invented languages using diverse sources from literature, the internet, films, video games, and other aspects of popular culture.

7. “The Science Of Superheroes” (UC Irvine) – Have you ever wondered if Superman could really bend steel bars? Would a “gamma ray” accident turn you into the Hulk? What is a “spidey-sense”? And just who did think of all these superheroes and their powers? In this seminar, we discuss the science (or lack of science) behind many of the most famous superheroes. Even more amazing, we will discuss what kind of superheroes might be imagined using our current scientific understanding.

8. “Learning From YouTube” (Pitzer College) – About 35 students meet in a classroom but work mostly online, where they view YouTube content and post their comments.  Class lessons also are posted and students are encouraged to post videos. One class member, for instance, posted a 1:36-minute video of himself juggling.

9. “Arguing with Judge Judy” (UC Berkeley) – TV “Judge” shows have become extremely popular in the last 3-5 years. A fascinating aspect of these shows from a rhetorical point of view is the number of arguments made by the litigants that are utterly illogical, or perversions of standard logic, and yet are used over and over again. For example, when asked “Did you hit the plaintiff?” respondents often say, “If I woulda hit him, he’d be dead!” This reply avoids answering “yes” or “no” by presenting a perverted form of the logical strategy called “a fortiori” argument [“from the stronger”] in Latin. The seminar will be concerned with identifying such apparently popular logical fallacies on “Judge Judy” and “The People’s Court” and discussing why such strategies are so widespread. It is NOT a course about law or “legal reasoning.” Students who are interested in logic, argument, TV, and American popular culture will probably be interested in this course. I emphasize that it is NOT about the application of law or the operations of the court system in general.

10. “Elvis As Anthology” (The University Of Iowa) – The class, “Elvis as Anthology,” focuses on Presley’s relationship to African American history, social change, and aesthetics. It focuses not just on Elvis, but on other artists who inspired him and whom he inspired.

11. “The Feminist Critique Of Christianity” (The University Of Pennsylvania) – An overview of the past decades of feminist scholarship about Christian and post-Christian historians and theologians who offer a feminist perspective on traditional Christian theology and practice. This course is a critical overview of this material, presented with a summary of Christian biblical studies, history and theology, and with a special interest in constructive attempts at creating a spiritual tradition with women’s experience at the center.

12. “Zombies In Popular Media” (Columbia College) – This course explores the history, significance, and representation of the zombie as a figure in horror and fantasy texts. Instruction follows an intense schedule, using critical theory and source media (literature, comics, and films) to spur discussion and exploration of the figure’s many incarnations. Daily assignments focus on reflection and commentary, while final projects foster thoughtful connections between student disciplines and the figure of the zombie.

13. “Far Side Entomology” (Oregon State) – For the last 20 years, a scientist at Oregon State University has used Gary Larson’s cartoons as a teaching tool. The result has been a generation of students learning — and laughing — about insects.

14. “Interrogating Gender: Centuries of Dramatic Cross-Dressing” (Swarthmore) – Do clothes make the man? Or the woman? Do men make better women? Or women better men? Is gender a costume we put on and take off? Are we really all always in drag? Does gender-bending lead to transcendence or chaos? These questions and their ramifications for liminalities of race, nationality and sexuality will be our focus in a course that examines dramatic works from The Bacchae to M. Butterfly.

15. “Oh, Look, a Chicken!” Embracing Distraction as a Way of Knowing (Belmont University) – Students must write papers using their personal research on the five senses. Entsminger reads aloud illustrated books The Simple People and Toby’s Toe to teach lessons about what to value by being alive. Students listen to music while doodling in class. Another project requires students to put themselves in situations where they will be distracted and write a reflection tracking how they got back to their original intent.

16. “The Textual Appeal of Tupac Shakur” (University of Washington) – The UW is not the first college with a class dedicated to Shakur — classes on the rapper have been offered at the University of California Berkeley and Harvard — but it is the first to relate Shakur’s work to literature.

17. “Cyberporn And Society” (State University of New York at Buffalo) – With classwork like this, who needs to play? Undergraduates taking Cyberporn and Society at the State University of New York at Buffalo survey Internet porn sites.

18. “Sport For The Spectator” (The Ohio State University) – Develop an appreciation of sport as a spectacle, social event, recreational pursuit, business, and entertainment. Develop the ability to identify issues that affect the sport and spectator behavior.

19. “Getting Dressed” (Princeton) – Jenna Weissman Joselit looks over the roomful of freshmen in front of her and asks them to perform a warm-up exercise: Chart the major moments of your lives through clothes. “If you pop open your closet, can you recall your lives?” she posits on the first day of the freshman seminar “Getting Dressed.”

20. “How To Watch Television” (Montclair) – This course, open to both broadcasting majors and non-majors, is about analyzing television in the ways and to the extent to which it needs to be understood by its audience. The aim is for students to critically evaluate the role and impact of television in their lives as well as in the life of the culture. The means to achieve this aim is an approach that combines media theory and criticism with media education.

Are you starting to understand why our college graduates can’t function effectively when they graduate and go out into the real world?

All of this would be completely hilarious if not for the fact that we have millions of young people going into enormous amounts of debt to pay to go to these colleges.

In America today, college education has become a giant money making scam.  We have a system that absolutely throws money at our young people, but we never warn them about the consequences of all of these loans.  The following is an excerpt from an email that one reader sent me recently about the student loan industry…

For example, one woman told me that her and her husband sat down and thought of every possible expense they could when they were applying for parent/student loan for their daughter. When the approval came back, they were approved for 7k more than they asked for…how about ****! Of course at 7%, why not! Funny thing is they kept the 7k, because she’s in wealth management and said she could “easily” get more than 7% in the stock market……awesome! I have another example of a younger friend of mine who graduated law school from Vanderbilt with 210k in student loans. I asked if tuition was that much there. She said kind of, but they kept offering more than the actual tuition, so she took it and used it for a better lifestyle. Now 20% of her income goes to pay those loans, and it’s still not enough to touch one dollar of the principal…so all she is doing is paying interest, and building on principal…like a revers amortizing mortgage. To make it worse, she was able to save 25k, so she is going to buy a house somehow. Having explained to her that the best investment in the world is to pay off a high interest loan, she said I’m tired of waiting to have a life.

In a recent article entitled “The Student Loan Delinquency Rate In The United States Has Hit A Brand New Record High” I detailed how nightmarish our student loan debt bubble is becoming.  According to the Federal Reserve, the total amount of student loan debt has risen by 275 percent since 2003, and it just continues to soar.

A college education can be a wonderful thing, but right now we have got a system that is deeply, deeply broken.

So what do you think about our system of higher education?

Bizzare & Odd

Hitler’s secret bunker with photographs and coins discovered in Argentina

Hitler's secret bunker with photographs and coins discovered in Argentina 99
© Twitter

Secret hideouts that were supposedly intended for Adolf Hitler have been discovered 600 miles north of Buenos Aires, Express reports.

It is alleged that even the Fuehrer of Nazi Germany after the end of the war in 1945 could have lived in the found refuge.

Former U.S. Special Forces soldier Tim Kennedy and CIA veteran Bob Baer told Express that Hitler’s likely hideout is 600 miles north of Buenos Aires. There are legends among the locals about why three buildings were built in a remote region of Argentina.

It is reported that archaeologists found during excavations a common photo of the leader of the Nazi Reich Hitler and his Italian colleague Benito Mussolini. Also, archaeologists allegedly found a box with gold coins minted in Germany in 1940, as well as a photograph of a child in Nazi uniform.

According to declassified FBI documents, the Nazi dictator planned to hide in an Argentine bunker in case of defeat, but did not manage to leave Germany – the Soviet army captured Berlin, and Hitler himself committed suicide. Hitler’s corpse was found burnt on the ruins of the Reich Chancellery in May 1945. The FBI studied the theory that a double died in Berlin and Hitler took refuge in Argentina. However, a dental study published in 2018 refutes this theory and confirms the death of the dictator in Berlin.

Today, any artifacts associated with Adolf Hitler acquire immense commercial value. Hitler’s telegram to Field Marshal Ferdinand Schörner , written a few days before his suicide, was put up for sale at an auction in the United States. The owners planned to bail out up to $ 80 thousand for it.

The corner yellow house, in which Hitler was born and spent his childhood, will finally come into full ownership of the state. The Austrian edition of The Local names the amount of the transaction: for an empty house in Branau am Inn, the owner will receive 810 thousand euros. The Gerlinde Pommer family owned the yellow corner house in the town of Braunau am Inn on the German border for almost a century, either selling it or buying it back. The building is unremarkable, except that it was there that on April 20, 1880, Clara Hitler, the wife and part-time niece of Alois Hitler, gave birth to her first son, Adolf.

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We’ve been deceived for 40 years. NASA scientist told how they found life on Mars

We've been deceived for 40 years. NASA scientist told how they found life on Mars 100

His name is Gilbert Levin, now 69. And when he was 26, he was the main explorer of the Martian surface, at least in the USA.

Gilbert Levin was not initially interested in any planets other than his own. He received his degree in environmental engineering, worked in the Department of Health and was involved in air pollution control.

Once, he invented a unique method to check water, food, and in general everything for the presence of harmful microbes – a radioisotope method: you need to put some radioactive compounds in the tested environment and see what happens. If the desired bacteria are present, then they will eat these compounds and emit radioactive gas, which will certainly be fixed. 

This know-how turned out to be cosmic. The fact is that it allows you to search not only for certain pathogenic microbes, but also for microbes in general. NASA was very interested and invited the young scientist to their place. They said that there is an idea to check for sterility on Mars.

Gilbert Levin.  Photo © Dr Gilbert V Levin - Research on Mars
Gilbert Levin. Photo © Dr Gilbert V Levin – Research on Mars

Later on, the talented engineer prepared the famous “Vikings” for solving the problem of the century. The first device – Viking 1 – landed on the Red Planet on July 20, 1976. Viking 2 followed on September 3 of the same year. 

They were in different places: one on the plain of Chris, this is the western hemisphere, and the second – already on the plain of Utopia, much to the right and to the north.

Both conducted an experiment by Dr. Levin: they put on the Martian soil, so to speak, food for potential bacteria – organic matter labeled with the natural radioactive isotope carbon-14. That is, if there is someone there, he will definitely swallow the bait and metabolism will begin. 

The first Viking slipped “food” into a sunlit place, the second – in the shade, under a stone. Such manipulations were carried out several times. The results were…positive, in both places. Four of the first six tests showed that the metabolism has gone.

Photo © NASA
Photo © NASA

But the sensation did not last. A week later (and its very interesting): both one and the other “Viking” again cast the same rod – and nothing. Therefore, the scientific community shrugged their shoulders and said: well, this was probably some kind of chemical process, not biological, in two different places. The project was closed and decided not to return to it

Twenty years pass. By that time, Mars Pathfinder had visited Mars, and it showed that the climate on the Red Planet was once much better, warmer and more humid. Meanwhile, on earth, they found “black smokers” – hydrothermal springs around craters, in which microorganisms feel great in completely unthinkable conditions. 

Levin, in collaboration with another researcher – Barry Digregorio – publishes the book “Mars: the Living Planet“. Scientists insist that all possible chemical options are actually not so convincing.  The world again greeted it with disbelief.

A few years later, Opportunity arrives on Mars and sends, for example, this picture. Please note – this is still not some paranormal site with fake stories, this is the official Mars Exploration rovers site with the NASA logo, and nasa.gov appears in the address bar. 

2004 year. Sol 182. This means the 182nd day of the rover’s work on the surface.

Photo © NASA
Photo © NASA

A similar apparatus was captured in another “sol”. The media compared these balls to mushrooms with raincoats, but NASA preferred berries, namely blueberries, only for a memorable association, because in fact, as they say in the space agency, this crop consists of a mineral called hematite, a type of iron ore.

These loose, BB-sized, hematite-rich spherules are embedded in this Martian rock like blueberries in a muffin and released over time by erosion.
Image caption published by NASA

These loose balls, rich in hematite, about the size of an airgun bullet, are embedded in the Martian rock like blueberries in a muffin and are eroded over time.

Well, okay, what about this for example? This is already Curiosity and 2016. Is this also some kind of hematite? Or did the rover have a screw unscrewed?

Photo © NASA
Photo © NASA

It is also worth recalling , perhaps, about the Martian blotches, very similar to terrestrial stromatolites – these are the kind of structures that cyanobacteria build.

In short, we have: positive results of a widely used microbiological test, confirmation by the results of control studies, coincidence of results in two Viking landing sites, failure to find a non-biological explanation

Gilbert Levin, Principal Investigator of the Viking Program

More than forty years have passed since the time of the Vikings. Life on Earth goes on as usual – ordinary people look at mushrooms and screws with curiosity, if not with horror, well-informed skeptics do their job. They swear. Refute. Just not less, the well-informed Gilbert Levin throws a very simple challenge: prove that there is no life on Mars.

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A mysterious metal monolith found in the Utah desert canyon

A mysterious metal monolith found in the Utah desert canyon 101
PHOTO: UTAH DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC SAFETY AERO BUREAU

A mysterious metal monolith was discovered from a helicopter in a remote part of the US state of Utah. It has not yet been possible to unravel the secret of the origin of the mysterious artifact. A helicopter pilot and his passengers discovered a strange monolith in remote Utah among the red rocks while counting from above the bighorn sheep, according to The Guardian.

The structure, about 3 meters high, seemed to be stuck in the ground. It was made of some kind of metal, the radiance of which was in stark contrast to the huge red rocks surrounding it.

“It was the strangest thing I encountered there in all my years of flying.”

Bret Hutchings, hELICOPTER PILOT

The Utah Highway Patrol has posted photos of the rams and the monolith on the Internet.

Helicopter pilot Bret Hutchings told local news channel KSLTV, “It was the strangest thing I encountered there in all my years flying.”

Hutchings flew on behalf of the Utah Public Safety Department, which assisted wildlife officials in counting bighorn sheep in the southern state.

“One of the biologists noticed this when we accidentally flew over it,” Hutchings says. – He’s like, “Hey, stop, stop, turn, turn!” And I thought, “What?” And he was like: “There is this thing – we have to go see it!”

According to the pilot, the silvery object appears to have been artificially created and seemed to be dug into the ground rather than falling from the sky.

“I’m guessing this is some new wave artist or something, or, you know, someone who was a huge fan of 2001 Space Odyssey,” the helicopter pilot said, questioning the object’s alien origins.

The monolith and the entire surroundings are reminiscent of the famous scene from the 1968 Stanley Kubrick film in which a group of monkeys collide with a giant slab.

A mysterious metal monolith found in the Utah desert canyon 102

The demeanor of two crew members, dressed in jumpsuits resembling sci-fi suits, who were forced to climb each other’s shoulders in an obvious attempt to peer over the rectangular cuboid, only reinforced the impression.

“We kind of made fun of that if one of us suddenly disappeared, the others would try to run away,” Hutchings says.

According to The Guardian, the bighorn sheep lives in some of Utah’s harshest and most remote areas and survives in adverse climates. Fearing that amateur researchers would disappear into the wild while searching for the monolith, the flight crew did not reveal its exact location.

Some observers have likened the monolith to the plank sculptures of artist John McCracken, who lived in New Mexico and New York before his death in 2011. And the artist Liam Sharp expressed people’s admiration for the discovery of no more than 270 symbols, placing the words on the portal: “I like it. I imagine that this is a work of art, but what if it is not? “

Meanwhile, the Utah Department of Public Safety is businesslike and reminds that it is illegal to install structures or art without permission in public areas, “no matter what planet you are from”.

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