Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Mooc’s & Higher Learning.....

A little more than a year ago as a result of bashing heads with folks at city hall I decided to discover whether it was me or them so I went back to school as it were...to check my facts. As it turns out I did rather well (imo) 75, 8?, and a 96 with distinction). To me I vindicated myself....but so far there is no movement from city hall in a direction that would suggest they understand what they are doing ....I’m more educated and they...well they are still just council....

The route I went in search of enlightenment was Mooc’s....oddly all the courses I was interested in were offered through Penn State in the USA. Now that I am kinda comfortable with this form of education I may pursue some engineering courses...just to be sure of a few other things.

Now the idea that you can take a course from a higher rung school without actually having to attend on campus is fab...but imo it is a bit much to expect me to “pay” for a course that is going to be graded by fellow (as of yet uneducated in this field) students. I didn’t pay for the courses I took so perhaps I am being un-fair in regards to how assignments are graded...In my case I think I did rather well considering I only did 2/3rds of the work (started all 3 courses in mid/end of week 3 of 8-10 week programs)...and still managed to pull the marks I did .....BUT!!! In each of the courses I did I had to give higher marks than I was comfortable with giving when the/a student did the absolute bare minimum in effort. In another case I received a low-ish mark for some very complicated work and felt that some of my peers lacked a basic understanding in the area and the techniques I employed. To me if I was paying for these courses I would be beyond mad at those particular grades or marks.

In the afore mentioned case my marks improved the more flesh the project took on and there fore required much less explanation for my peer’s to understand what they were looking at....(this would be my grade of 75 that I am referring to lol).  So I think should you pursue higher learning through Mooc’s and your going to hand over some hard earned ca$h you may want to make sure your work will be marked by some one that knows substantially more about the topic than you or your peers. Now this does depend a bit on the kind of courses you want to take...are they serious topics or fun kinda things  in which your mark is rather moot as long as you learned something and had fun.

To close this topic I can say that Penn State did a great job presenting the info and made learning the material enjoyable so I strongly recommend the Mooc route and in particular the “Geodesign: Change Your World” course through Penn State. Not exactly what I was expecting but a very enlightening course ....and also the “Design: Creation of Artifacts in Society”. If you are a designer of any kind you will benefit from both of these course's regardless of how long you have worked in these two fields

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