Strange College Courses You’d Actually Want to Take

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One challenge of the college experience is choosing classes. Most colleges offer English, math and science courses, but some provide odd courses, where you have to look at the options twice because you can’t believe they’re real! How can you resist learning about zombie apocalypses, ways to make the perfect cup of coffee or the wizarding world of Harry Potter?

Read on for some strange college courses you’d actually want to take. By the end, you’ll be itching to enroll in one of the classes on this list!

The Science of Harry Potter

Professor Plitnik is not a character from Harry Potter. He’s actually a real professor who started his “The Science of Harry Potter” course at Frostburg State University in Maryland. Plitnik says it’s a serious, college-level course, even though he shows up to class dressed as Hogwarts headmaster Albus Dumbledore.

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The college class explores the physics of the magic in J.K. Rowling’s popular book series. For instance, how can a flying broomstick be produced in real life? Did genetic engineering create the three-headed dog, Fluffy?

After the Associated Press published a story about the class, news of the Harry Potter course went viral. It made headlines in newspapers and magazines from Europe to China. Of course, Potter fan sites got ahold of the news too. Fans from around the world e-mailed Plitnik, begging to take the class.

Other schools have created similar classes, including a Harry Potter literature course at UC Santa Cruz and “Many Faces of Harry Potter” at the University of Western Ontario.

Coffee 101

If you’re a coffee enthusiast, you’ll appreciate the “Coffee 101” course at Oberlin Experimental College. The course covers “coffee and its history for the average Joe.” Oberlin Experimental College is known for offering out-of-the-ordinary classes, including “Beginning Dungeons and Dragons.” The teachers also aren’t your average professors. Anyone can instruct a course, from students to townspeople.

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UC Davis also offers a course called “Design of Coffee,” which focuses on the chemical engineering process of brewing the perfect cup of joe. At first, only 18 students took the class. Now, more than 1,500 students per year sign up for the popular course.

Surviving the Coming Zombie Apocalypse

There are many movies and TV shows about zombie apocalypses, but how many chances do you get to study the end of the world? Michigan State University offers an online course on human psychology and behavior during disasters.

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Students learn about the challenges of saving the future of humanity. They also find out a harsh reality: Planning and managing a group’s survival isn’t easy in the event of a catastrophe. Are you interested in taking the course? If you’re not a student, don’t worry. The course is open to anyone!

Wine/Beer Tasting

Happy hour isn’t just limited to bars anymore. Many students can drink booze in class now thanks to wine or beer tastings as college electives. UC Davis is a major player in booze-related courses. For instance, the school offers “Introduction to Winemaking,” which focuses on wine fermentation and operations. It also jumps into the realm of wine tasting.

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If you’re considering a career as a sommelier, Algonquin College in Ontario offers “Grape Varieties,” “Old Wine Regions” and “The Whisky Course.” For those who are passionate about beer, Oregon State University and Siebel Institute of Technology provide lessons on beer brewing.

The Death Class: A Story About Life

One of the most popular classes at Kean University in New Jersey is a class all about death. It’s an intense course in which students learn the thoughts and feelings about death, how to prepare for death and what to do when a loved one passes away. Students also create their own wills, obituaries and last wishes.

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The first day of class is just as deep as the last. In the beginning, students explain why they’re interested in the course. Field trips are also incorporated. Students speak to people who are close to death at hospices and write their stories.

Ghost Hunting

“Who you gonna call? Ghostbusters!” You also have the option to be your own ghostbuster. Believe it or not, ghost hunting classes do exist! Students spend nights in haunted houses and learn paranormal investigation techniques.

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At Alamance Community College in North Carolina, students quickly fill up paranormal investigation classes. The course focuses on ghost sightings, paranormal disturbances and haunted places. Tennessee’s Volunteer State Community College and Hawaii’s Kapi’olani Community College are also known for their superstitious electives. For the strong and fearless, learning how to ghost-bust would be a worthwhile experience.