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College Courses Examine 'End Of The World' Predictions

By Mike DeNardo

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) - Hurricanes. Earthquakes. The fiscal cliff. Unrest in Gaza. Signs of the apocalypse? Some college courses have been examining that possibility.

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Rutgers-Camden religion professor Stuart Charme's class on the end of the world is in its final days before the Mayan calendar ends its cycle on December 21st -- the day some believe the apocalypse will arrive. Charme calls this the most apocalyptic semester ever.

"This semester we had the convergence of economic factors, natural disaster factors, political factors. I mean, it was all there."

Charme's course looks at how doomsday predictions are recycled, and what makes people buy in.

Senior Victoria Christodoulou is taking the course.

"Given the fact that the Mayan calendar so-called predicts that it's going to end in this semester, the fact that Rutgers is offering a class, I figured, 'Why not?' It would probably be fun to literally learn from a teacher and not just Google searches and stuff."

And where will she be on December 21st?

"I have a final at 9 am. I'm failing that class, so fingers crossed that the world DOES end!"

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