Exploring free course models

I’m just giddy with all the choices and options for free learning. Being on leave means I have time to follow my nose and I keep poking it into fascinating new learning opportunities. I’m always pondering whether they are free or open; while open is free (in my experience anyway), free is not always open in the true sense of openness in education (see Openness in Education by David Wiley!)

I started exploring open/free educational options (all known now as MOOCs although there is a lot of discussion around what that term really means) in late August. I signed up for David Wiley’s newest venture Edstartup101; Google’s Power Searching course; OCW_Scholar Intro to Psychology and Coursera’s A Networked Life. If you followed my blog posts while I was traveling, you’ll know that I was unable to complete any of them (except for the Google course). Problems with Internet access, adequate bandwidth and just being scattered while on the move were my excuses. See previous blog posts for more about that!

I’ll write a separate post about the thoughts I’ve had about the various structures of these free courses a bit later. For now I just wanted to note that I’m testing out even more options — not just cuz I love to learn but it is enlightening to see the variety of approaches to open, online learning.

In November, I decided to explore Khan Academy, Saylor Foundation and Udacity. I haven’t had a chance to delve into the first two but have watched the first videos of the Udacity course, taught by Andrew Brown – Landmarks in Physics is very impressive. Plus, I think it is inspiring from a teacher’s perspective (which I am as well) to see how someone can weave a love of travel into providing some inspiring online learning!

More as I catch up now that I’m home again.


About Cloudsyl

Now a mid-Island observer of the Cloud
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