Most majors require you to take general education courses at Penn State. Humanities is one of the general education requirements. with hundreds of humanities courses available, it can be difficult to decide what to take. What a lot of people miss is that sometimes you need to take general education courses that meet the US (United States) and IL (International) culture requirements. Here are some popular humanities courses that meet both the US and IL requirements.

1. Introduction to Video Game Culture

GAME 160 or CMLIT 191 introduces you to a comparative look at the nature and history of video games. This course ranges from Pong to online role-playing. This course is perfect for video game players who want to understand the history of their hobby, or for anyone interested in learning about video game culture.


2.The Holocaust in Film and Literature

There a few course abbreviations for this class (CMLIT 128, ENGL 128, GER 128, or J ST 128). The Holocaust is a huge event depicted by various movies, shows, books, journals, etc. Learn more about this historical event through watching film and reading literature representing different perspectives on what happened and how it affected everyone.


3.History of Monsters, Aliens, and the Supernatural

Are aliens real? Do you believe in ghosts and monsters? HIST 203Y is a great course for anyone interested in abnormal creatures we see on TV shows and movies. This class explores the history of the preoccupation with or the ideas of monsters, aliens, and the supernatural. We may never be able to solve these mysteries, but you can be one step closer to understanding some of the world’s greatest mysteries.


4.Representing Women and Gender in Literature, Art, and Popular Cultures

WMNST 106 studies primary works and scholarship pertaining to women in the humanities and the arts. The history of women is constantly changing, and their rights have come a long way. Learn about women’s movements, religious roles, and representation in popular and folk arts.


5. Introduction to World Religions

There are many religion courses, but RL ST 001 is a great place to start if you don’t know much about religions, or if you want to learn about more than one religion. This course offers a brief overview of the world’s major religions and their histories, methods, and problems.


6. African American History

AF AM 152 teaches you the roots of African American culture and history. In this class, you learn about colonial and revolutionary experiences, slavery and abolitionism, civil war and reconstruction, accommodation and protest, and the new militancy.


7. History of Western Medicine

HIST 124 or S T S 124 explores the history of health, illness, and medicine in western society. Learning about the history of medicine may help you the next time you suffer from the flu epidemic or the common cold. This is a great starting point if you’re thinking about going into medicine one day.


8. Race, Gender, and Other Issues of Diversity

CMLIT 101 is about the theme of identity in world literature. People are always finding ways to figure out their own identities, while expressing themselves through literary works. Discover your identity and learn about others through this class.


9. Native American Myths, Legends, and Literatures

The history of the indigenous people of America is interesting enough. Explore the myths and legends of their culture in CMLIT 109. In this class, you examine the ways in which myths, legends, and literary works the cultural values and religious beliefs of the tribal nation.


10. The World At War: 1939-1945

Learn about the second World War through in-depth study of the origins and the conduct of the war. HIST 144 offers political and economic aspects of the war, as well as military. This course combines military history with political, social, and cultural approaches.


There are plenty of other humanities courses to take that may pertain to your interests more, but not all fulfill the US/IL requirement. Hopefully this list gives you an idea as to which courses you might be most interested in, while being able to complete all of your necessary requirements. Good luck!


Tess Fukuyama

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