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ZANESVILLE -- Do you want to learn how

Published: February 19, 2011 11:01 PM

ZANESVILLE -- Do you want to learn how to write funny? Then, consider taking Humor Writing (JOUR 488), a three-credit hour course offered March 28 through June 8 on Mondays and Wednesdays from 1:10 to 2:30 p.m.Created by Professor Mel Helitzer, the course received national attention as the first college-level humor class and for its infamous final exam -- a stand-up comedy performance before a live audience. OU-Zanesville Professor, Dr. Mark Shatz, co-author with Helitzer of a top-selling humor writing book, Comedy Writing Secrets (2nd ed.), now teaches the course. Students learn how to think and write humor for a variety of media outlets including print, television, and the Internet. Instruction is individualized so students can apply humor principles to their specific professional and personal interests. The class follows the tradition of "The Onion" and "The Daily Show with Jon Stewart "to create a campus publication. Students write satirical pieces and work with visual humor, such as cartoons and illustrations. Several past classes created and produced an OU-Zanesville Comedy Evening with a professional comic headlining the show. The skills taught in the course have professional and everyday implications. In the workplace and classroom, humor is a powerful tool for improving communication, learning, and productivity. Humor is also a social lubricant, and when used properly, enhances interpersonal interactions. And yes, that means more dates and fewer evenings alone at local retail establishments. If you have questions concerning the class, contact Shatz via e-mail at shatz@ohio.edu or phone at (740) 588-1496.

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