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Economics becomes popular on TikTok thanks to University of Houston professor

You can find Professor Chris Clarke by his TikTok username "@econchrisclarke" or by searching the hashtag #Economics.

HOUSTON — Give Dr. Chris Clarke 60 seconds, and he can school you on inflation, supply shortages, and oil prices.  

“Economics affects everybody,” he said. “Everybody needs it, and everybody cares about it.”

Professor Clarke is an economics professor at the University of Houston but has also found an even larger classroom on the video-sharing app TikTok.

“There’s something in every lecture that the whole public could be interested in,” Clarke said. “There’s always a highlight from every lecture that you can give in 60 seconds.”

Clarke realized the app’s popularity when his college-aged sister sent him a TikTok video. He found a variety of educational content but little on economics.

“Number 1, I want to connect with my students,” he said. “That’s where they are. Number 2, I want to connect with the broader public.”

The daily videos are usually from news headlines that end up in a lecture. Professor Clarke chooses one nugget from class and turns it into TikTok content. He writes a script, finds graphics and other visuals to make his videos compelling. 

“There’s always the mystery of what goes viral and what doesn’t go viral,” he said. “I mean if we all knew what went viral, we would all be famous.”

You can find Professor Chris Clarke by his TikTok username "@econchrisclarke" or by searching the hashtag #Economics on TikTok.

Tiffany Craig on social media: Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

@econchrisclarke

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♬ original sound - Christopher Clarke