I’m Taking a MOOC This Summer! Are you?

By Lillian Williams

So, I’m enrolled in a MOOC this summer.  It’s a public speaking course taught by Matt McGarrity, a senior lecturer at the University of Washington.

MOOCs, of course, are those massive open online courses which are free of charge, and open to anyone around the globe with an Internet connection.  In most cases, MOOCs do not offer college credit.

As a college teacher, I’m interested in the design of MOOC courses, as well as teaching and learning issues.

I’m aware that this online, public speaking  course does not replicate a face-to-face class (nor was it intended to), or private coaching.   But from what I can glean so far, it’s a valuable introduction to the subject.  It’s also interesting from a pedagogical perspective.

Also, for parents interested in a summer MOOC for high school students, the public speaking course would be a good one.  (See an earlier post about a computer programming MOOC for high school students too.)

Students in the public speaking course hail from from the United States, South Korea, India, Qatar, Russia, and a host of other countries and territories.

The course demonstrates how to write, practice and perform speeches.  Lessons learned could be applied to almost any setting, whether a work or school presentation, a TED Talk, a political discussion, or a must-perform debate of any kind.

Note: This is the second week of the course, however, you could still join this 10-week class.

The following are course objectives:

  • “Design and deliver basic arguments clearly.
  •  Design and deliver informative presentations clearly.
  •  Design and deliver complex arguments persuasively.
  •  Speak confidently with appropriate rate, projection, movement, and vocal variety.
  •  Evaluate and critique speeches insightfully.”

Students can simply watch the instructor videos and participate in short quizzes. Or, they can fully participate by posting in discussion forums, and by recording speeches to be shared with other students.

Find out more about this course here. You can also watch the video above.  For background on MOOCs see earlier posts at this blog, here and here.

It’s your turn. If you take this course (or others), I would be interested in your feedback about the strengths and weaknesses of MOOCs, in general, and about this course in particular.

I’ll update you on my MOOC experience!

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One Response to I’m Taking a MOOC This Summer! Are you?

  1. Pingback: My Reflections on MOOC at Halfway Point Of Course | E-Learning (A Digital Education Forum)

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