In addition to exploring the genre on this site, as noted in the About section, I am also an instructor for college-level Western genre courses. Those classes are offered at Sault College (Sault Ste. Marie MI/ON) and St. Clair College (Detroit MI / Windsor ON). This post provides an update and options for students seeking a college-level credit for studying the Western, whether online or in-class. There will be 3 options to do so in the upcoming Winter (January to April) 2015 term.

Screenshot – Red Dead Redemption (2010) – Image –

Sault College, via its Continuing & Distance Education department, offers US, Canadian and international students the 14-week online course, Westerns: A Study in the Film Genre. The class runs from Tuesday, January 13th to Tuesday, April 21st  and registration is open until January 20th. Further information can be found at Sault College or by calling 1-800-461-2260. A course description is available at Sault – Westerns.

For students registered thru St. Clair College, Westerns: Film as a Lens to the Present is offered as a general elective course within the School of Community Studies. The course is available both on-campus and online and runs for 15 weeks from January 12th to May 1st. Contact your Program Coordinator via  St. Clair College or call 1-800-387-0524 to register. 

In each of the Western courses, students are given opportunities to complete film reviews and share reflections about the Western genre via weekly assignments. The classes explore such themes as Origins of the Western, Landscape & Setting, the portrayals of Indigenous Peoples, the portrayals of Women, the selected work of Directors & Actors, Soundtracks, TV Westerns, and Western Video Games. Course material examines such current Western series as AMC’s Hell on Wheels, Netflix’s Longmire, and the new Strange Empire on CBC. Western video games (a popular topic!) such as Rockstar Games’ Red Dead Redemption (2010) and Call of Juarez: Gunslinger (2013) are discussed. Here is a trailer for Red Dead Redemption (mature images):

Please feel free to contact me via email with any questions at Thanks for your time!

Chad Beharriell, MA

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