Fitness + Well-being

Rutgers Professor Uses 'Seinfeld' Reruns to Teach His Medical Students



Sure, it's no "Sesame Street," but it turns out "Seinfeld" can be very educational — its characters show signs of a range of psychiatric problems, and it's up to Rutgers medical students to diagnose them.

Twice a week, professor Anthony Tobia has his students — who number about 150 a year — watch the show's TBS reruns. The next day, they come in and discuss the mental health issues they witnessed, reports.

In the show, "you have a very diverse group of personality traits that are maladaptive on the individual level," Tobia says. "When you get these friends together, the dynamic is such that it literally creates a plot: Jerry’s obsessive-compulsive traits combined with Kramer’s schizoid traits, with Elaine’s inability to forge meaningful relationships and with George being egocentric." 

He calls the training "Psy-feld," and he's already written a paper on five of Elaine's boyfriends. He's even got a database of every single episode and its relevance to his teaching.

"It’s anything but a show about nothing," Tobia tells CBS New York. "it’s a show about a pretty significant amount of psychiatry."

And if Seinfeld isn't your thing, perhaps you'd prefer an academic journal on Bruce Springsteen, or a course on Miley Cyrus?