Enter the World of Massively Open Online Courses

A few weeks ago I saw an article online from Forbes that read something along the lines of ‘You Can Now Take A College Course on the Walking Dead.’ I’m sure a lot of you all saw it, too. When I first read it I thought maybe that meant that some university somewhere was planning some themed course on zombies and pop culture. That wouldn’t be too out of place at a state school where you can frequently find courses on topics like Harry Potter, the works of JRR Tolkein, and professors writing about zombies and tax law.  I figured the “you” in the title meant you could take the course if you went to that particular school.

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Don't Worry, Your Walking Dead Class Won't Spoil Season 4

If you haven’t heard already, October 14th marks the beginning of the free eight-week MOOC, titled “Society, Science, Survival: Lessons from AMC’s The Walking Dead,” from the University of California on

The official syllabus for the class has been released and the issue of spoilers has come to the forefront. And while it’s not required to watch the show (but really, why wouldn’t you?) the weekly modules of the class will contain information related to the show.  And it wouldn’t be fair to a person like myself who’s behind on their WD viewing or for someone who lives in a country, where episodes have yet to air. But don’t worry my fellow zombie supporters, there will be preventative measures put in place.

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Just signed up to take Scandinavian Film and Television course through and Laura Ingalls Wilder: Exploring her works and writing life through canvas. Does anyone know f any other legit online learning sites?

Exploring geographic information systems (GIS) is a self-paced course where participants will learn about GIS and how the technology is being used in the real world to support problem-solving and decision-making. Participants will create and manage spatial databases, produce well-designed maps, and undertake spatial data analysis using free online software tools. These activities require proficiency in fundamental computer and Internet skills. Participants will have the opportunity to obtain digital badges throughout the course.

Already started! A beginner GIS course with practical exercises in ArcGIS Online. You can watch an introduction video here.

Are you a life long learner? Do you like comic books? Do you think it would be interesting to discuss social issues using comic books as a lens? Are you an educator looking for different methods to present your material? If so, this course is for you! From the creator of Gender Through Comic Books(aka the SuperMOOC), this six month course will examine current social issues through comic books while understanding how popular culture is shaped by it’s surroundings.

We will read a variety of comic books including Scalped, Daredevil, Swamp Thing, and many more. While reading these books we will examine topics such as social inequality, the environment, government intervention, addiction, and information privacy. Using lectures, live interviews with academics and comic book professionals, discussion boards, and readings, we will learn about social issues and how they are presented in comic books and the impact that those books have had on the issues whether large or small scale. This will be more than a class - it’s a formation of a community.

Via The Journey is Paradise

Self-paced, available March 10, 2014

Cost per enrollment: Free

Whether you are 13 or 113, this Google Ninja course is for you.

Most people THINK they know how to use many of Google’s free tools, but they actually only use a small portion of what’s possible.

This course will help you become a near-expert at using the main Google programs, including email and calendaring, video conferencing and chat, spreadsheets, word processing, slide presentations, drawing, survey forms, drive storage, photo editing, blogging, and much more!

Episode 66: MOOCing Around

Jordan reappears, Ben snickers from time to time, Dean whines about hosting and Ed MOOCs the whole thing up! Also, Smart Suggestions. If you’ve got us on an automatic feed to your pod-catcher, this episode is a must download.

Download the .mp3

Main Segment - MOOCs:

Smart Suggestions:

This is a podcast post, click here to download the MP3 audio, click here to subscribe via iTunes, click here to visit our blog, and click here to show us some love. Have feedback or suggestions? Then click here. And as long as you’re still clicking, why not follow us on Twitter: Ben | Ed | JordanDean | Jim | smartppllike

How Writers Write Poetry 2015 - Canvas Network | Free online courses | MOOCs

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How Writers Write Poetry 2015 offers an interactive progression through the principles and practice of writing poetry. The course presents a curated collection of short, intimate talks on craft by two dozen acclaimed poets writing in English. Craft topics include persona, notebooking, the line, the turn, form, and the lyric. The talks are designed for beginning poets just starting to put words on a page as well as for advanced poets looking for new entry points, engagement with process, or teaching tips. The course will be taught by Professor Christopher Merrill, International Writing Program Director, poet, and translator; and Camille Rankine, poet, Assistant Director of the MFA Program in Creative Writing at Manhattanville College, and editorial director of The Manhattanville Review.

Dennis T OConnor’s insight:

The University of Iowa is well known for writing instruction.  As a writing teacher, why not write with the help of the Massive, Open, Online Class?

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