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Zines!: Teaching with Zines

ACT UP for Social Justice.


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 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. 

3. You can assign your students to create a zine as either a group project or as an individual project. 

4. You can have a zine workshop where students learn about zines and make their own.




For more information, check out this zine:


Since the start of our zine collection in the Fall 2015 here are the classes that assigned student-created zines as graded projects:

  • BOS 101:  Sports & Race in Boston
  • BOS 101:  Social Movements & The University: Simmons, Boston & Beyond
  • COMM 252: Mending Paths to Social Change
  • COMM 344:  Senior Seminar - Storytelling
  • ENGL 178:  Intersectionl Themes in Modern American Literature
  • LC 217:  World Challenge
  • LCIS 201: Seeking the Sacred
  • LCIS 201: Word + Image
  • LCIS 201: Visual Communication and Creative Writing
  • LDR 109:  Bodies in Action
  • LDR 113:  Riot Grrrls, Radicals & Grassroot Change
  • LIS 407:  Information Sources & Services
  • LIS 408:  User Instruction
  • SOCI 249:  Inequalities
  • SOC 101:  Principles of Sociology
  • SOCI 350:  Independent Study
  • SW 481:  SW Health & Healthcare

Students also have the option to donate the original copies of their zines to the College Archives.