New Taylor Swift Songwriting Class Started at UT Austin

The University of Texas at Austin is launching a new course on Taylor Swift and her songwriting.

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The class, which begins this fall, comes on the heels of New York University offering a similar course on Swift, which also is open for enrollment this fall.

The NYU class is not as much songwriting focused as it is on Swift’s music-business prowess, along with the slew of country and pop songwriters that have worked with her and helped her build her career. The University of Texas at Austin class will largely focus on her craft as a songwriter.

Dr. Elizabeth Scala, of the school’s English department, will head the Literary Contests and Contexts: The Taylor Swift Songbook course. It will aid students, the course description says, in “a wide range of skills.”

Says the university’s English department in a Facebook post announcing the course, “Let’s turn that Easter Egg hunting and reading in detail to academic purposes!”

Scala spoke with the Austin-American Statesman, which was published on Monday (August 22) and said that she’s honed in on Swift because she looks up to her writing. Scala said Swift is “an intelligent and talented songwriter.”

She also said that her daughter introduced her to Swift’s music in November upon the release of Red (Taylor’s Version). “For me, it’s all about form (not just or even primarily about content),” she said. “We will study Swift’s songs as poems and literary structures.”

In other academic/pop star news, Harry Styles will also be the focus of a college course. In his case, it will be in the Lone Star State, as well, at Texas State University in the spring.

Earlier this year, Swift gave the commencement speech at New York University for the class of ’22.

“I won’t tell you what to do because no one likes that. I will, however, give you some life hacks I wish I knew when I was starting out my dreams of a career, and navigating life, love, pressure, choices, shame, hope, and friendship,” Swift said at one point in her speech.

She also joked about one of her songs. “I’m…90% sure the main reason I’m here is because I have a song called ‘22’. And let me just say, I am elated to be here with you today as we celebrate and graduate New York University’s Class of 2022.”

(Photo by Dia Dipasupil/Getty Images)

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