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According to a 2013 Harris poll, 42% of Americans believe in ghosts, 36% in U.F.O.s, and 26% in witches. The paranormal courses give you a multidisciplinary approach to studying the unknown. You will examine the paranormal state, from understanding the role of spirits in different cultures to understanding investigative techniques and practices.
PLEASE NOTE: Harper College does not maintain a capability to investigate paranormal cases. Our instructors are not able to help with individual situations. There are a number of paranormal investigation groups across the country. We do not endorse any group, but you can get information about such groups at these two websites or through a web search.
You should never pay for a consultation or investigation. Reputable groups generally do not charge for investigations.
Listen to this! What do you hear? What do you think?
This is an EVP (electronic voice phenomenon) recording we picked up during one of our CE Paranormal Investigation courses in October, 2011. The investigator asks, "Walter, are you in the hallway?" A voice responds, saying, "I was just down there." Can you hear him?
Do you believe in ghosts?
Take this short survey and tell us what you believe!
Note: not all courses are offered every semester.
Online Paranormal Courses
More Than Mere Ghost Stories: Investigating Folklore - ONLINE
Noted paranormal historian Ursula Bielski goes online to describe places and events that have transcended folklore to become important paranormal investigations. She covers important Chicago paranormal sites such as Lincoln Park and the old City Cemetery grounds, Robinson Woods, and Bachelors Grove, as well as events including the crash of Flight 191, the Iroquois Theater Fire, and the Eastland Disaster. Also examined are incidents from around the country including the Borden murders, the Battle of Gettysburg, and the Galveston Flood. Ursula is an author and the founder of Chicago Hauntings, Inc. She holds an M.A. in American cultural and intellectual history. LAA 0114
The Ghost in You: When the Living Produce the Paranormal - ONLINE
Ursula Bielski will examine paranormal phenomenon thought to be produced by living people. Review her research into electrokinesis, PK and precognition, phenomena that seems to be produced by the living. Will also include theories on poltergeists and related experiments (the Philip experiment). Ursula holds a B.A. degree in history from Benedictine University and an M.A. in American cultural and intellectual history from Northeastern Illinois University. Her academic explorations include the Spiritualist movement of the 19th century and its transformation into psychical research and parapsychology, and the relationships among belief, experience, science, and religion. LAA 0116
Investigating Demons and Exorcisms - ONLINE
Within the world of Paranormal Studies, a special place is reserved for demonologists. Ralph Sarchie has become noted in this field because of his extensive involvement in cases involving demons and exorcisms. A retired, and highly decorated New York City Police Sergeant, Sarchie is also the best-selling author of Beware the Night: A New York City Cop Investigates the Supernatural, which inspired the film Deliver Us From Evil. His television series The Demon Files ran on Destination America. In this class you will come understand the complete stories behind the cases Ralph has investigated as he presents a full framework for the investigation of claims that demons are at work and when exorcisms are conducted. LAA 0115
Paranormal Investigation Courses
Paranormal Investigation I: Introduction to Investigating
Begin with a typology of entities and hauntings as classified in Western culture. You will look at the proper use of equipment and software, the evidence review process, and potential pitfalls. Then examine the audio, video, and photo software that can be employed in evidence review. Instructor: Mary Marshall. LAA 0206
Paranormal Investigation II: Site Investigation
Learn to conduct a paranormal investigation under the direction of Bob Jensen who has more than 20 years of investigative experience. You'll capture EVPs, and use photography and video to capture images. Prerequisite: Paranormal Investigation I. LAA 0207
Paranormal Investigation: Local History Research
You will use microfilm as well as electronic newspaper and periodical databases, including
those of the Chicago Tribune and Daily Herald, and historical societies to research
local hauntings in history.
Instructor: LAA 0307
Paranormal Investigation: Managing a Team
You will learn how make decisive investments in equipment, manage people and schedules, and monitor performance on and off site as you build your investigative team. Instructor: Mary Marshall. LAA 0407
Ghosts and Spirit Entities: Global Perspectives
Develop a broad knowledge of how spirits are understood globally and the social roles they play that will give you a new perspective on how Western societies consider ghosts, spirits and the paranormal. Instructors: Mary Marshall, the founder of The Paranormal MD group, and Scott Cashman, who earned his PhD at the University of Massachusetts in cultural anthropology. LAA 0107
Horror Films, Vampires and More
Gothic in America: More Than Vampires, Ghosts, and Nightmares
Writer and educator, Mihaela Stoica will help you develop a deeper understanding of the themes that define the gothic genre while examining its cultural significance. Discover the meaning behind the stories of vampires, ghosts, and things that go bump in the night. Instructor: Mihaela Stoica, author and and native of Romania. LAA 0149
Hysterics: Horror and Hysteria in Film
You will cover films that pushed physical and mental boundaries, and discover what relevance those films had in their time, and how horror has changed to fit into popular and paranormal culture today. Instructor: Kiel Cross. LAA 0271
Please note, not all courses are offered every semester.