Sunday, September 16, 2007

YouTube 101 - SoCal College Offers YouTube Class

CLAREMONT, Calif. — Here's a dream-come-true for Web addicts: college credit for watching YouTube.

Pitzer College this fall began offering what may be the first course about the video-sharing site. 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.

Alexandra Juhasz, a media studies professor at the liberal arts college, said she was "underwhelmed" by the content on YouTube but set up the course, "Learning from YouTube," to explore the role of the popular site.

Class members control most of the class content and YouTube watchers from around the world are encouraged to comment, Juhasz said.

She hopes the course will raise serious issues about YouTube, such as the role of "corporate-sponsored democratic media expression."

YouTube is "a phenomenon that should be studied," student Darren Grose said. "You can learn a lot about American culture and just Internet culture in general."

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