MOOCy Monday: This and That

1What is going on in the world of learning for me?

A lot, and not so much. 🙂

I’ve signed up to a lot of astronomy courses, but didn’t follow up. I download the videos to watch them later, always in fear that the courses won’t be repeated and if I don’t sign up now, I won’t get another chance.

Now, NOW! NOW

This is silly, I know, because by now there are a lot of courses about so many topics on so many platforms.

A while ago, I reported that I was helping out in English Composition I as a Community TA. This was an interesting (and quite exhausting) experience. Looking at the course from the other side is quite different from taking it. There are many issues you hardly notice when you’re busy studying. And trying to teach something to someone else, teaches me a lot more about the subject than just studying. This is a phrase that will make the teachers among you laugh. But I haven’t taught all that often in the past, and this (recurring) experience always amazes me.

The interaction with most of the students was fun, and there was a great group of other TAs. It really was a good experience, I wouldn’t want to miss it.

Apparently, having helped once makes you eligible for being asked again by other courses. I’ve been asked to TA another course, but since I’m not familiar enough with the topic, I declined. Instead I’ll be taking the course as a student, because it sounds very interesting (and useful for SF writers… you know, the science part…)

Also, I’ve been asked to test another, new course, to which I agreed. This is also an interesting experience: to see how these courses develop. What do we learn: there is a lot of effort that goes into the planning, and people actually test it before it goes life. So, I’m still a fan of online learning, even more so now, that I got a glimpse from behind the scenes, than I was before.

I’m still too tired to continue with Think Again… and finished the graphic design course, which gave me a lot of fun. I’ll certainly hang out on the Canva site more in the future, and try out things. There are several more tutorials there that aren’t menitioned in the course, so there’s more to learn. I still didn’t get the hang of that cropping thing.

There are new things happening, too. Coursera offers more and more specializations, groups of three or four courses that make you a specialist in a topic and you can purchase the signature track for those (validated certificates). On coursera and on other platforms, there are also more and more self-paced courses. I especially like those. While the interaction with other students often is fun and helpful, sometimes I simply don’t have enough time to participate. Self-paced courses allow you interaction with the people who happen to be ‘there’ at the same time, but you are under no constraints to finish the course at a set time.

So, MOOC-ety, MOOC, MOOC will continue. Hopefully I’ll have more energy for serious studying when Spring comes, I’m tired of the cold and grey. On the other hand, I’m in a good place for writing right now, and maybe doing both is too much for tired-old-me. In that sense, let’s hope for a colourful, warm Spring soon.

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