5 Zombie College Classes You Can Actually Take

Droz once said in the underrated college comedy movie PCU that the beauty of college is “you can major in GameBoy if you know how to bulls*#$.” These days, the students don’t even have to think up a valid reason to convince a major university to let them earn a major in the film works of Adam Sandler or Asian porn. The university will come up with a reason for you. 

For instance, now that zombies are back in fashion thanks to movies like “Shaun of the Dead” and the AMC series “The Walking Dead,” several college professors have come up with special classes where students can learn all about the habits of the undead. 

1. The University of Texas at Tyler’s “Zombie Outbreak: Biology of Disease”

Zombies may be a supernatural concept (except for people who wear unwashed costumes to comic book conventions or really, really want the world to end so that underground bunker they built won’t go to waste) but the foundation of their creation starts with a viral infection that spreads throughout the world. 

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Since it’s hard to get non-science majors interested in science without using massive explosions or Bill Nye the Science Guy, a biology professor at the University of Texas at Tyler created a course that uses the fictional concepts of zombies to teach them the basics of biological outbreaks and diseases. If only that hospital in Dallas had taken the course, then we wouldn’t be wetting our pants over the possibility of an Ebola outbreak. 

2. Peru State College’s “Zombie Renaissance in Film, Literature and Culture”

We presume that it would be pretty easy to motivate film and literature students to pay attention and work hard because they are clearly enthusiastic about the material just by making it their major and they don’t yet know just how low the employment rates are for film and literature majors. 

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Peru State College in Nebraska offers a special zombie courses for its arts students that explores the use of the undead in all realms of popular culture. That means there is a chance that students will get to play video games like “Dead Rising” and the “Resident Evil” series as part of their required coursework. Now if they could just find a way to complement it with a course on pot smoking, the circle would be complete.

3. Michigan State University’s “Surviving the Coming Apocalypse: Disasters, Catastrophes and Human Behavior”

Every teacher knows that the worst way to get a student to understand a complex problem or even a basic fact is to make them sit in a chair for three hours and read the book to them. You’d have a better chance at educating someone if you threatened slam each one of their fingers with a brick every time they fail to identify the correct symbol on the Periodic Table of Elements. 

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Michigan State University’s zombie survival course feels more like an interactive theme park ride than a college course. Students sign up online and are given challenges by the professor that they must meet in order to survive certain zombie situations as a way to teach them about the effects of human behaviors in dangerous, survival situations. And nothing says “I learned a lesson” more than getting shot or stabbed during a coup for camp leader. 

4. Monmouth University’s “Zombies: Social Anxiety & Pop Culture”

No offense is attended to any anthropologists out there but anthropology sounds like a course that’s not interesting enough to have it’s own Indiana Jones. Instead of spelunking in darkened caves for artifacts hidden behind booby trapped walkways, you’re uncovering the way people use to live and you don’t even get to wear a cool hat while you’re doing it. 

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A Monmouth University professor in New Jersey found a way to make it interesting by mixing zombies into their curriculum. Students will learn the roots of the zombie movement before it became a thing for geeks to complain to each other about on Internet forums as it relates to science and religion. They’ll also get to apply those theories and principles to subjects such as the AMC show “The Walking Dead” and even as part of a zombie walk in Asbury Park. And since it takes place in New Jersey, a shambling crowd of rotting, ragged zombies can also be considered a beautification program. 

5. San Diego State’s “Zombies” 

The most of the people who are into zombies or zombie culture don’t get their addiction because of some deep, abiding interest in the socioeconomic effects of a viral epidemic or the psychological implications of being left alone in a hostile world. They just want to see heads explode, limbs flying off bodies and flesh being ripped apart like a pack of hungry dogs attacking an unprotected Thanksgiving turkey. 

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San Diego State’s course simply called “Zombies” sticks to the blood and guts (pun intended) of zombie movies and shows in order to reach that higher plateau of understanding about racism, classism, multicultural understanding and other heady (also pun intended) topics. Now all we need is some kind of economics course that uses “Sharknado” to teach people about supply and demand and our nation’s math scores will go through the roof.