What is a MOOC?
This is a Massive on-line Course.
What is it like in practice?
This is one of a huge number of on-line courses run by many Universities around the world.
They are massive because there is no limit to the number of students on each course.
You need no qualifications apart from an interest in learning something. There are no exams. With some you can get a certificate of taking part and some are increasingly capable of earning points toward a qualification.
Best of all, the basic course is free – you may have to pay for any certificate you earn.
One of the major providers is Future Learn.
If you click on this site, you can then browse subjects that relate to your area of interest or you can just dive in and sign up with any course that takes your interest.
They are usually fairly short – just a few weeks and start from a basic level but they can then be followed by courses of increasing complexity.
I think one of the best things about the courses is that an enrolled student – you? can enter one of the many forums included with each course and have a discussion or debate with like minded students or students with a different viewpoint. You may find kindred spirits in these forums and form friendships that last longer than the course. From the last course I took, I formed friendships with two fellow students, one in Texas and one in Melbourne. We now have long e mail discussions about a myriad of subjects.
So what do you need to try one of these courses?
First is an enquiring mind and an interest in learning something.
Second is a computer and an internet connection.
That’s it, you’re ready to go.
I am now on my ninth course but I have heard of people who have taken far more than this.
These courses are ideal for life-long learners.
So, start MOOC’ing. What’s stopping you signing up today?
If you have no idea where to start and are nervous about the whole thing, why not see if on line learning suits you, by taking this introductory course from the Open University. They have been using on line learning, or distance learning as it used to be called from its start in 1969. Here is the link to the course.
The course lasts 2 weeks and suggests that 3 hours a week study time are required.
If you don’t like it and it isn’t for you, you have lost six hours out of your life but think of the wonders you will discover if it is for you!
The wonders are there waiting for you. What are you waiting for?
Do let me know how you get on.
© Richard Kefford 2017 Eorðdraca
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