• Ghosthunting – Science or Pseudoscience?

    Every fall I teach a course called “Science vs Pseudoscience” that is, by far, my favorite class. It’s a hit with students, who have given me great feedback (samples below).

    “Dr. Lack is the best professor in this world”
    “Best course taken @ UCO”
    “Dr Lack is the shit!”
    “Lectures were always fascinating and well‐structured”
    “Dr. Lack challenged me to think critically and more openly about certain topics.”
    “Changed my way of thinking for the better”

    For the past two years, I have challenged my students to stretch outside their comfort zone and, rather than write a paper, had them create documentaries about supposedly paranormal phenomena in Oklahoma. I’ve just uploaded the five latest to YouTube, and will be highlighting some of them over the next couple of weeks.

    First up is Ghostbusted! The Scientific Search for Ghost Hunters by Jade Pech Janacek and Ryan Harris. They explore what it takes to be a “ghost hunter” and whether or not the people doing this use actual scientific methods, or use scientific tools in a non-scientific way. Enjoy!


    Category: ActivismPseudoscienceScienceSkepticismSocial MediaTeaching


    Article by: Caleb Lack

    Caleb Lack is the author of "Great Plains Skeptic" on SIN, as well as a clinical psychologist, professor, and researcher. His website contains many more exciting details, visit it at www.caleblack.com

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    • Reginald Selkirk

      Oh my ghost!
      I started watching the video, which claimed to be 12:37. But when it reached 4:29 it halted abruptly, and now it claims to be only 4:29 in length. This must be paranormal activity.

      • Odd, I just tried and it’s all there for me. Must be a ghost in your machine 😉

    • You let them use Wikipedia? Damn, to be a student these days.

      • Well, it’s much more reliable than most things online, and similar to something like the Encyclopedia Britannica, so for basic info it’s okay.

    • Mark Loftis

      Fun stuff, kids. Just one teensy-weensy picky thing to point out. “Agape” is pronounced “Ah-GOP-Ey”… not “Ah-Gape”. But hey, your mispronunciation of one word doesn’t negate all the good work you did…

      • The APS folks were supposed to be interviewed on camera, but they (and the other groups contacted) kept backing out at the last minute.

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