ASU professor teaching Taylor Swift psychology class receives positive fan feedback

Arizona State has a new classes geared for Swifties -- and lyricists alike.
Published: Aug. 18, 2023 at 11:47 AM MST
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TEMPE, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) -- Taylor Swift just wrapped the first US leg of her world-famous “Eras Tour.” The sold-out shows have bolstered economies and drew in crowds of hundreds of thousands. Swift started her tour in Arizona, and now she’s coming back to the Valley in a different way.

Arizona State University is offering a psychology course applying academic concepts to her lyrics. So what should students expect?

Professor and Ph.D. student Alexandra Wormley says the course is rigorous. It’s for juniors and seniors studying psychology or related subjects. Students will need to have the proper prerequisites for the advanced course. They’ll be applying content from articles to Swift’s intricate lyrics and her life.

For example, in the syllabus, when analyzing the ‘Speak Now’ album, students will be studying parasocial relationships. “Each week, students will come to class having read an article that’s in the peer-reviewed psychology literature. So these articles don’t mention Taylor Swift at all. They are just about the psychology of it. But then they will be able to apply these terms to Taylor Swift’s life and to their own lives as well,” Wormley explained.

Thousands of 'Swifties' headed to State Farm Stadium in Glendale for the opening night of Taylor Swift's "Era" tour.

The professor hopes it will help students have an epiphany breaking down complex topics and applying them to Taylor Swift’s life and her work, making them easier to understand. “I have gotten emails from people all over the world saying, ‘Can I take this course, can you offer it online, can you offer it in another semester,’ so that has been really encouraging,” she explained.

The class had 36 spots, and they filled up almost immediately. Wormley hopes the course can be offered again next semester. The class starts Wednesday.

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