As a university professor, I have designed and taught online courses myself, so I wanted to see what it was like to be an online student. I have very much enjoyed the course and I have greatly appreciated Joanna's teaching style, her support, feedback and constant encouragement. As a result I have learned a lot, more than I expected to, about many different areas of life, connected by humour. Thank you very much, Joanna."
In all the years I've been in show business, no one ever would share these valuable secrets and tools. Comedy is something you can work at and get better at, just like singing or playing. I really appreciate learning this from Joanna. She is a quite gifted writer and teacher."
Joanna has helped me to hone my natural sense of humor by allowing me to put names to certain techniques. In this way, I feel like I have more control over being funny--that it is somewhat of a science instead of purely an art. This makes comedy seem less mysterious to me. I have been inspired to pursue humor and comedy writing thanks to this course. Thank you!"
It was a pleasure taking this course from an instructor who obviously cares about her profession. Her writing style is as good as any I’ve ever read and she has an amazing ability to be able to explain herself and her subject matter in a clear and enjoyable way. Her critique of my homework assignments were well thought out and authoritative, I would be happy to learn more from Joanna."
I must confess that I was initially reluctant to enroll in this course primarily due to my age. I had used various forms of humor as a type of coping mechanism throughout my life, but I was not confident that I could keep pace with the coursework or the sharp, younger students in this class. With the encouragement of a twenty-something friend, I decided to enroll and am truly glad I did. This course was definitely worth every penny I invested in it and was a ton of fun! The light-hearted humor that you incorporated into each lesson chapter made the reading assignments all that more enjoyable."
Thank you, Joanna! This course was a wonderful surprise and far more than I expected. The assignments were tough, but a joy to complete. I did fall a little behind, but Joanna is very encouraging and never let me feel at a loss. A brilliant class that I have already raved about to others!"
The Get Funny! course delivered much more than was promised and more than I expected. Joanna is an expert in several fields where creating and applying humor are paramount. I learned where comedians and humorists find their material and how they create and apply humor. I now have the skills to generate humorous inputs for various publications and other applications. I also learned ways to incorporate humor into my life, at home, at play, at work, and in almost any situation. Joanna shared her invaluable knowledge in her lessons and reviews of our assignments, both of which were punctuated with her delightful humor. The course was so much fun, I'm not sure it's legal. Waiting for each lesson was like waiting for Christmas, as each lesson was a gift from Joanna. I got up early every lesson day and peeked at the lesson. I couldn't wait to read the lesson and work on the assignment. Joanna spent a great deal of time carefully reviewing our work and constructing thoughtful and helpful comments."
I love this course and I am sorry to see it end. In addition to humor, there are so many valuable skills taught in this class - observational skills, thinking outside the box and brainstorming skills. I am able to apply these skills in all areas of my life. I highly recommend this course! Also, I really appreciated the instructor, she gave wonderful feedback and was very encouraging! She made the course fun - it was challenging but, so much fun!"
I really enjoyed this course, Joanna. I'm a recently retired geophysicist with not a lot of background in writing, so it was quite challenging for me. You have an amazing amount of information in this course--I did not expect to learn so muc!! Plus, it was presented in such a charming way! I sincerely hope to use information from this course in my daily activities. Thanks so much for enriching my life!"
I absolutely loved this class!! It was refreshing and so funny! I don't think I have laughed so much or worked to understand the comedy legends like Buster Keaton or Charlie Chaplin. I loved this class and would recommend it to everyone I know! Thank you and now I can put more humor in my life and others as well."
Course Code: cwr
Start the course with a capsule review of comedy's roots throughout history. Then, learn to hone your powers of observation as you sharpen your wit and study the secrets behind great observational comics like Steven Wright and Jerry Seinfeld.
Learn how to construct a joke, write a pun, twist a cliché, use the unexpected, and begin to dazzle with your humor. Then, look at absurdity and exaggeration—two time-tested and wonderful sources of comedy.
Learn to walk to the line without stepping over it with low humor (sexual innuendo, bathroom humor, etc.), mean humor, and gallows humor. Then, understand how to use pop culture in humor. From television and movies, to music and consumables, to politics and social trends, you'll find a wealth of material to aid you in your quest for amusement
In this lesson, you'll learn slapstick by looking at examples from the comedians of the silent screen to Lucille Ball and beyond. Then, learn how to successfully make fun of TV shows, movies, songs, social habits, or politicians which can help you tap into brand new pockets of humor within you.
Learn the rules you need to follow to perform improvisational comedy—rules that can help you sharpen your wit and quicken your comebacks. Then, this lesson will guide you through using your newly honed sense of humor in business and social situations. You'll find out the remarkable benefits laughter has on our health.
Explore comedy writing. Using the example of writing a script for television, you'll learn the blow-by-blow process of how to write and sell a script from someone who's worked in the industry. And finally, explore some of the many markets open to you as a comedy writer: greeting cards, t-shirts, bumper stickers, comic books, comic strips and panels, gag writing, speech writing, advertising, print humor, and Web sites.
Joanna Sandsmark graduated with honors from The University of Wisconsin - Madison with a degree in Communication Arts: Radio/TV/Film. As a voice actress, she's appeared in numerous commercial, industrial and animated projects, including the popular animated television series, "Rugrats". As a writer, she has written for DC Comics, was a staff writer on TV's "Weird Science", and has written five books, including "The Wisdom of Yo Meow Ma', and 'A Girl's Best Friend: Why Dogs Are Better Than Diamonds". She has taught both writing and voice-over in various formats, in the classroom and out, and is a member of the Writer's Guild of America, Screen Actors Guild, and American Federation of Television and Radio Artists.
Wally has been performing stand-up comedy since 1990. He has appeared on A&E’s “Evening at the Improv,” SiTV’s “Latino Laugh Festival,” and the “Extreme Gong Show" on the Game Show Network. He performed in Las Vegas at the Riviera Comedy Club from 1997 - 2006. He co-hosts two comedy/current events commentary radio shows on KNSJ in San Diego called “Notes From the Underground” and “Laugh In Your Face Radio.” His jokes have been quoted in Judy Brown’s book “Joke Stew” and “Joke Soup.”
There are no prerequisites to take this course.
Instructional material requirements:
A new session of each course opens each month, allowing you to enroll whenever your busy schedule permits!
Once a session starts, two lessons will be released each week, for the six-week duration of your course. You will have access to all previously released lessons until the course ends.
The interactive discussion area for each lesson automatically closes 2 weeks after each lesson is released, so you’re encouraged to complete each lesson within two weeks of its release.
The Final Exam will be released on the same day as the last lesson. Once the Final Exam has been released, you will have 2 weeks plus 10 days to complete the Final and finish any remaining lessons in your course. No further extensions can be provided beyond these 10 days.