Getting Started

The Popular Culture Studies minor developed in part because of a desire on the part of students for a roadmap to the many classes and resources in the field that are spread across numerous colleges and departments. We are regularly adding new courses to the minor and signing exceptions for exciting one-time offerings, many of which are brought to us by students exploring the many options Ohio State offers them for their interdisciplinary studies. As we registration begins for our last term on the quarter system, minors should continue to refer to the minor sheet [pdf] at the Arts & Sciences advising website.

To sign up for the minor, make an appointment with a Minor Advisor: students with last names beginning with  A-L: Cecilia Johnson; M-Z: MaryKatherine Ramsey. Call 292-6065 to set up an appointment with the Minor Advisor to declare the minor.   At your first meeting you will plan the courses you will take to complete the Minor. This is not a contract, and it is expected that some of the courses you choose at this initial advising meeting will change as you discover new areas of interests and new classes. The semester before graduation you will update the minor form to reflect the courses you actually took and to make sure everything is ready for your graduation. 

Contact the Minor director, Prof. Jared Gardner, with any questions about the Minor or any of the courses included within it.

Some "fine print"

  • The Popular Culture Studies minor requires the completion of 15 hours, which consists of an introductory course (3 hours), and a) at least one course involving the study of a historical popular culture (pre-1945) b) at least one course focusing on a popular culture outside majority-U.S. culture and c) no more than two film courses. This last limitation exists because the Popular Culture Studies minor seeks to have students exploring a range of media and popular culture forms, and because we have a strong Film Studies program which also has a minor for those who wish to do more concentrated work in film.
  • A couple of other basic rules: only one course may be from your major department and that course may not be counted on the major (this is a university rule). Not including the required introductory course, no more than two courses may be taken at the 2000-level. Finally, no more than two courses to be counted for the minor may be taken from a single department. As an interdisciplinary program, our goal is for students to explore a wide range of disciplines and methodologies.

Introductory course

The minor requires all students to take an introductory course, either English/Comparative Studies 2264 or WGGSt 2230. These courses can be taken at any time while working on the minor, but we strongly recommend all students to take the introductory course as early as possible in their coursework for the minor. English/Comparative Studies 2264 can also double count for the minor historical requirement (see below).

Historical requirement

All students are required to take at least one class from the following list:

  • Arts College 3350: History of Animation (3) 
  • Chinese 5674: Chinese Opera (3) 
  • Classics 2205: Sports and Spectacles in the Ancient World (3) 
  • Compar Studies 3686: Cultural Studies of American Popular Music(3) 
  • Comparative Studies 5957.01: Comparative Folklores (3) 
  • Comparative Studies 5957.02: Folklore in Circulation (3) 
  • English 4577.01: Folk Groups and Communities (3) 
  • English 4577.01: Folklore Genres: Form, Meaning, and Use (3) 
  • English/History 4585 or Comp Stds. 4565: History of Literacy (3)
  • Medieval 2666: Magic & Witchcraft in the Middle Ages & Renaissance (3)
  • Medieval 4504: Arthurian Legends (3)
  • Music 2253: Introduction to Jazz (3) 
  • Music 5646: History of Music in the United States (3) 
  • Theatre 2367.01: Self Images: America on Stage 1830 to the Present (3)

Popular culture from outside majority/U.S. requirement

All students are required to take at least one class from the following list:
  • AAAS/MUS 2288: Bebop to Doowop to Hiphop (3) 
  • AAAAS 4571: Black Visual Culture and Popular Media (3) 
  • Anthropology 3334: Zombies: the Anthropology of the Undead (3)
  • Chinese 4406: China Pop! Contemporary Pop Culture and Media in Greater China (3) 
  • Chinese 5474: Chinese Opera (3) 
  • Compar Studies 2321: Introduction to Asian American Studies (3) 
  • Compar Studies 2322: Introduction to Latino/a Studies (3) 
  • Compar Studies 2360: Introduction to Comparative Cultural Studies (3)
  • Comparative Studies 5957.01: Comparative Folklores (3) 
  • Comparative Studies 5957.02: Folklore in Circulation (3) 
  • East Asian Language and Literature 3346: Asian American Film (3) 
  • English 2270: Introduction to Folklore (3) 
  • English 4577.01: Folk Groups and Communities (3) 
  • English 4577.02: Folklore Genres: Form, Meaning, and Use (3) 
  • English 4577.03: Issues and Methods in the Study of Folklore (3) 
  • English 4597.01: Disability Experience in the Contemporary World (3)* 
  • French 5403: Topics in French Cultures and Literatures (1-3)*
  • German 2251: German Literature and Popular Culture (3) 
  • History of Art 2901: Introduction to World Cinema (3)
  • Modern Greek 2680: Folklore of Contemporary Greece (3) 
  • Music 2253: Introduction to Jazz (3) 
  • Russian 2335: Modern Russian Culture (3) 
  • Russian 3460: Modern Russian Experience through Film (3)
  • Russian 3644 Russian Fairy Tales and Folklore (3)
  • Slavic 2230 Vampires, Monstrosity & Evil: From Slavic Myth to Twilight(3) 
  • Slavic 3251: Underground Literatures and Unofficial Cultures in Old and New Media (3)
  • Slavic 3310: Science Fiction: East vs. West (3)
  • Slavic 3360: Minorities in Eastern European Film (3) 
  • WGGSt 4375: Women and Visual Culture (3) 
  • WGGSt 4576: Women and Visual Cultures of Latin America (3)

Other electives

The final courses for the minor to fill out the 15 credits can come from the above lists or from any of these elective courses:

  • Art Education 2550: Engaging Visuality (3) 
  • Art Education 2367.03: Criticizing Television (3) 
  • Communications 3440: Mass Communication and Society (3)
  • Communications 3413: Media Entertainment (3) 
  • Communications 3466: Communication and Popular Culture (3) 
  • Communications 3513: Video Games and the Individual (3) 
  • Communications 4554 Social Media (3)
  • Comparative Studies 2265: Introduction to Visual Representation (3)
  • Comparative Studies 2281: American Icons (3) 
  • Comparative Studies 3678: Religion and American Culture (3)
  • Consumer Sci: Fashion & Retail 2372: Appearance, Dress, & Cultural Diversity (3)
  • Consumer Sci: Fashion & Retail 2374: Twentieth-century Fashion (3)
  • Consumer Sci: Fashion & Retail 3474: Fashion Forecasting (3)
  • Dance 3401: Dance in Popular Culture (3) 
  • Engineering 2367: American Attitudes about Technology (3) 
  • English 2263: Introduction to Film (5)*
  • English 3364: Special Topics in Reading Popular Culture (3) 
  • English 3372: Science Fiction and/or Fantasy (3) 
  • English 3378: Special Topics in Film and Literature (3)* 
  • English 4578: Special Topics in Film (3)* 
  • English 5664: Studies in Graphic Narrative (3)*
  • Film Studies 2271: Introduction to Film Studies (3)*
  • French 3801: French-American Culture Wars (3)
  • Music 2252: History of Rock and Roll (3) 
  • Music 3341: American Popular Music (3)
  • Psychology 2301: The Psychology of Extraordinary Beliefs (3)
  • Sociology 2640: Sociology of Everyday Life (3)
  • Sociology H2367.01: Politics and American Society (3)
  • Sociology 3302: Technology, Society & Social Change (3)
  • Sociology 3655: Sociology of Sport (3)
  • Sociology 4606: Social Movements and Collective Behavior (3)
  • Sociology 4608: Gender, Race, and Class Mass Communications (3)
  • Theatre 3597: Censorship and Performance (3)
  • WGGSt 3306: Gender, Media and New Technologies (3)
  • WGSSt 3317 Hollywood, Women and Film (3)
  • WGGSt 4527: Studies in Gender and Cinema (3)

Things to keep in mind

Several of the courses in the minor are "special topics" courses. For all of these (marked above with an asterisk), it is worth checking with Prof. Gardner to make sure the specific topic being taught that semester works for the minor. Also, several of these might also focus from time to time on topics that could count for your historical or outside majority-U.S. requirements: when in doubt, ask

In planning your minor, think about the ways in which the course offerings might connect back to your major—allowing you to bring back new ideas and methods. This is the university's largest minor in terms of numbers of course offerings, so there should be more than enough to choose from!

Finally, each semester as registration begins you will find a comprehensive list of all the courses that count for the minor that are being offered in the upcoming term by clicking the "courses" tab on the menu bar at the top of each page.

[pdf] - Some links on this page are to Adobe .pdf files requiring the use of Adobe Reader. If you need them in a more accessible format, please contact