Once the preserve of spiritual eccentrics, the paranormal world is now to be examined by academics at a Midland university.
Fuelled by the ever increasing interest in the paranormal, Coventry University has launched its own masters course covering all things spooky, from psychics and spirits to extra sensory perception.
Among the questions it will seek to shed light on is whether there is an after-life.
The new parapsychology course starts in September and is one of three full-time masters courses that have been set up in the UK to examine things that go bump in the night.
Coventry University decided to launch the study in the wake of the growth in popular fiction and factual TV programmes, books and magazines focused on the paranormal and spiritual things.
Programme tutor Tony Lawrence claimed parapsychology had been wrongly marginalised by scientists.
"The fact is certain people have experienced the paranormal and this is a reason to investigate. A number of factors could have caused sightings and senses and this is what this course will look into."
The new masters degree offers students the opportunity to study two controversial and exciting areas of applied psychology - transpersonal psychology and parapsychology.
The parapsychology modules will cover everything from ESP and psycho kinesis to life after death and out of body experiences.
The transpersonal modules includes a module entitled "exploring the self" in which students use forms of yoga and meditation to extend or enhance their personal development.
Mr Lawrence said he hoped students who signed up to the course would have an open mind.
"A lot of what we do will be controversial yet thought provoking. There is always a fascination with the unknown and we will be exploring the paranormal and trying to explain why things happen, but sometimes there won't be answers."
Mr Lawrence stressed the course was not aimed at telling students what they should believe, but at exploring the range of psychic experiences people have described.
It will also include a special focus on the question of whether there is such a thing as life after death.
"If you were to ask anyone what fascinates them, you can guarantee that the one thing they would all like an answer to is if there is life after death," added Mr Lawrence.
The life after death module will study opinions from many different religions, including reincarnation and the spirit world.
Tutors stress there will be a strong emphasis on student involvement. Those on the course will be invited to engage in experiments and give their feedback about the outcomes.
Mr Lawrence said the approach taken by tutors would be one of critical debate without any biase. It is expected believers, spritualists and sceptics will all be able to study together on the course. "Our staff are not all out and out believers there will some very critical investigations into parapsychological experiments." said Mr Lawrence.
Anyone interested in finding out more about the new course call the univeristy on 02476 666749.