Here are some reasons why zines should be considered in student research:
1. Zines are primary sources.
2. Zines are written by marginalized and oppression voices. These are the voices oftentimes missing from standard scholarly resources.
3. Zines humanize our research. When students read zines on their topics, they get to really hear the methodologies section that they mostly skip over (because it's boring).
4. Zines allow students to really think about their topics and how it relates to not only their own lives but the lives of others. Research and education should be about liberating others. Zines are just one way this can happen.
Using zines in your classroom is pretty easy! There are a few ways this can be accomplished:
1. You can assign zines to be read just as you would other types of resources for your course. We can even put them on course reserve for you.
2. You can assign students to browse the SSU Student-created Zine Collection and select a zine to present to the class and/or write about.
3. You can allow students to use zines in the understanding of their research. This means giving them the okay to use them as cited sources in the bibliographies and Works Cited.
4. You can assign your students to create a zine as either a group project or as an individual project.
5. You can have a zine workshop where students learn about zines and make their own.
For more information, check out:
Zine Scaffolding - How to assign zines as final projects:
If you are thinking about incorporating zines into your course design, I'd love to work with you! I'd worked on a number of course redesigns that include creating rubrics and zine project guidelines. With permission I am sharing some of those materials here so that you a) don't have to reinvent the wheel and b) can brainstorm how zines might fit into your courses.
In the Zine Activity Worksheet below, students are asked to view the SSU Student Zine Collection through the Digital Commons. They are to select a zine to read and fill out the worksheet. This activity helps students become acquainted with zines while also reading a zine from a SSU student.
Course Designed Specifically Around Zines:
Zines can be an important research tool in any discipline. From healthcare to sociology, zines present information in an accessible and easily digestible format. If you would like to know more about zines and how you can incorporate them into your course design, I would love to show you examples of student-created zines.
Here are some examples of zines created by students at Simmons University.
Here are some examples of zines created by students at Salem State University
To read about how other faculty have incorporated zines into their classrooms: