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Tech: New Online Education Venture

JohnInKansas 02 May 12 - 08:25 PM
GUEST 02 May 12 - 09:36 PM
JohnInKansas 03 May 12 - 07:17 AM
JohnInKansas 03 May 12 - 05:02 PM
GUEST,mg 03 May 12 - 09:44 PM
dick greenhaus 30 May 12 - 06:07 PM
Susan of DT 30 May 12 - 08:06 PM
GUEST,mg 30 May 12 - 11:15 PM
GUEST,Philippa 18 Aug 14 - 05:01 PM
GUEST,Philippa 18 Aug 14 - 05:20 PM
Felipa 18 Aug 14 - 05:26 PM
GUEST 19 Aug 14 - 04:25 AM
Felipa 19 Aug 14 - 05:27 AM
Felipa 14 Sep 14 - 11:01 PM
Felipa 22 Sep 14 - 04:50 PM
Felipa 23 Sep 14 - 07:07 PM
Felipa 19 Oct 14 - 07:39 AM
Felipa 19 Oct 14 - 07:43 AM
GUEST,Felipa 06 Apr 15 - 11:16 PM
GUEST,Felipa 06 Apr 15 - 11:22 PM
GUEST 06 Apr 15 - 11:53 PM
GUEST,Philippa 29 Dec 15 - 03:51 PM
Felipa 21 Dec 16 - 07:59 PM
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Subject: Tech: New Online Education Venture
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 02 May 12 - 08:25 PM

There have been previous threads about "online courses" but they're somewhat dated and I didn't find on immediately, so a new one seems appropriate.

A new nonprofit organization has just been announced, between Harvard and MIT, to produce "online courses" to be available as "openware" for use by anyone interested. The "structure" for the courses will be based on the latest MIT venture, called MITx, that was recently introduced and has gone through about "a semester" of trial operation.

A "news report" from the New York Times offers a public announcement, under the typically sensationalised title:

Clash of the Titans! (For online academics).

I'll leave it to those who are interest to read that one. It does make one point that I would personally hope is noted by those producing new courses:

Already, a researcher from the Harvard Graduate School of Education, using the M.I.T. Circuits course, found that students overwhelmingly preferred to read the handwritten notes of Professor Agarwal rather than the same notes presented on PowerPoint.

(IMO, excessive use of Power Point was one of the PRIMARY REASONS for less than admirable success of some earlier similar efforts by many schools.)

Since it's not (so far as I know) publicly accessible, I'll apologize in advance for a lengthy post, and repeat the Harvard announcement that I received in an Alumni news bulletin from the other place:


John Longbrake, Harvard University

MIT and Harvard announce edX

Joint venture builds on MITx and Harvard distance learning; aims to benefit campus-based education and beyond.

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – Harvard University and MIT today announced edX, a transformational new partnership in online education. Through edX, the two institutions will collaborate to enhance campus-based teaching and learning and build a global community of online learners.

EdX will build on both universities' experience in offering online instructional content. The technological platform recently established by MITx, which will serve as the foundation for the new learning system, was designed to offer online versions of MIT courses featuring video lesson segments, embedded quizzes, immediate feedback, student-ranked questions and answers, online laboratories and student-paced learning. Certificates of mastery will be available for those who are motivated and able to demonstrate their knowledge of the course material.

MIT and Harvard expect that over time other universities will join them in offering courses on the edX platform. The gathering of many universities' educational content together on one site will enable learners worldwide to access the course content of any participating university from a single website, and to use a set of online educational tools shared by all participating universities.

EdX will release its learning platform as open-source software so it can be used by other universities and organizations that wish to host the platform themselves. Because the learning technology will be available as open-source software, other universities and individuals will be able to help edX improve and add features to the technology.
MIT and Harvard will use the jointly operated edX platform to research how students learn and how technologies can facilitate effective teaching both on campus and online. The edX platform will enable the study of which teaching methods and tools are most successful. The findings of this research will be used to inform how faculty use technology in their teaching, which will enhance the experience for students on campus and for the millions expected to take advantage of these new online offerings.

"EdX represents a unique opportunity to improve education on our own campuses through online learning, while simultaneously creating a bold new educational path for millions of learners worldwide," MIT President Susan Hockfield said.

Harvard President Drew Faust said, "EdX gives Harvard and MIT an unprecedented opportunity to dramatically extend our collective reach by conducting groundbreaking research into effective education and by extending online access to quality higher education."

"Harvard and MIT will use these new technologies and the research they will make possible to lead the direction of online learning in a way that benefits our students, our peers, and people across the nation and the globe," Faust continued.

Jointly owned not-for-profit structure

The initiative will be overseen by a not-for-profit organization based in Cambridge, Mass., to be owned and governed equally by the two universities. MIT and Harvard have committed to a combined $60 million ($30 million each) in institutional support, grants and philanthropy to launch the collaboration.

Anant Agarwal, director of MIT's Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory, who has led the development of the MITx platform under the leadership of MIT Provost L. Rafael Reif, will serve as the first president of edX.

At Harvard, Provost Alan Garber will direct the Harvardx effort and Faculty of Arts and Sciences Dean Michael D. Smith will play a leading role in working with faculty to develop and deliver courses.
It is anticipated that near-term course offerings from a range of Harvard and MIT schools will be included on the edX platform.

Research to enhance residential model

EdX will enhance the traditional residential model of undergraduate education on both campuses by supporting an unlimited number of experimental online approaches to teaching that can be used by Harvard and MIT faculty to benefit their students. It will also provide global access to some of the world-class instruction that already occurs at both institutions, but which is only one aspect of the full Harvard College and MIT experience.

"The campus environment offers opportunities and experiences that cannot be replicated online," Hockfield said. "EdX is designed to improve, not replace, the campus experience."

EdX will be separate from ongoing distance-learning initiatives at both institutions, including MIT OpenCourseWare and courses offered by schools at Harvard such as the Harvard Extension School, Harvard Business School and Harvard Medical School.

First courses by fall 2012

The universities will work to develop further the online learning platform already begun with MITx and to populate the edX website with courses from the MIT and Harvard faculty. During the early stages, the two universities will work cooperatively to offer as broad an initial set of courses as possible. A first set of courses is scheduled to be announced in early summer and to start in fall 2012.
"We are already moving forward quickly," Agarwal said. "There's a lot of energy in the air, and the teams at Harvard and MIT can't wait to collaborate."

[End Quote]

Since this is new, it may be a while before details are available. MIT initial contributions likely will be mostly technical subjects, but it's difficult for me to guess what Harvard might choose to push forward for their first offerings.

For what it's worth -


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Subject: RE: Tech: New Online Education Venture
Date: 02 May 12 - 09:36 PM

Does MAX or Dick or susan....get a "google-buck" every time we hit?



The days are getting longer....the endorphenes flowin from your honey's pits....tonight, yo be flowin' Mudcat...cause... it don' seem yo br gettin "IT".

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Subject: RE: Tech: New Online Education Venture
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 03 May 12 - 07:17 AM

Garg -

Google is pretty tight with info about their methods and policies, but the popular guess is that a click on an ad posted here by Google gets pennies to the 'cat.

Links posted by us probably don't directly generate revenue here, but the traffic in and out of mudcat probably affects how interested the paying advertisers are in having their ads up here, and hence how many pennies they'll pay the 'cat for each click on one of the "sponsored ads."

A site where there are lots of links, but nobody ever clicks, probably wouldn't be of much interest to the ones who might pay for having their ads here, and "artificial links" placed on pages solely for the purpose of making the site look more active than it is are a negative that Google claims to try to recognize to minimize the presence of such sites in searches. A site with fewer, but real, links, that get a reasonable number of clicks, would sell better and for a better price.

To really know how the Google payroll works, you'd need to be able to see whether they smirk and cross their fingers when they lie to you.


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Subject: RE: Tech: New Online Education Venture
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 03 May 12 - 05:02 PM

It appears that the NYT is doing a series of articles on the MOOC concept, as an unrelated source has emailed me a link to:



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Subject: RE: Tech: New Online Education Venture
From: GUEST,mg
Date: 03 May 12 - 09:44 PM

Washington state university just today announced the arrival of a global university..not sure of the

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Subject: RE: Tech: New Online Education Venture
From: dick greenhaus
Date: 30 May 12 - 06:07 PM


Neither Susan nor I see anything in the way of recompense from anything Mudcat does.No Google bucks, no Monopoly money---nuffin.

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Subject: RE: Tech: New Online Education Venture
From: Susan of DT
Date: 30 May 12 - 08:06 PM

There have been a great number of online or other distance learning courses for many years. They vary quite a bit in how they are presented, who offers them, whether they are are college credit/college equivalent, or something else entirely. Before online there were correspondence courses. I was a dean (science and technology) at New Jersey's distance learning college for adults for twenty-five years. I am also teaching online courses now. The MIT/Harvard courses, I believe, are recorded lectures with no interaction. There are many other sources of college level courses as well. Other courses (often that you pay for and receive college credit) include many interactive components. My Biology 1 students have a lab simulation disk, textbook, material online, a discussion board, multiple choice, and essay questions and lab report each week, and two proctored exams, and email me and other students frequently.

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Subject: RE: Tech: New Online Education Venture
From: GUEST,mg
Date: 30 May 12 - 11:15 PM

At the University of Washington they used to put engineering lectures on TV for distance students..they were amazed at how popular they were with non-students..generally some pretty dry lectures enlivened by some equations on a

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Subject: online folklore courses
From: GUEST,Philippa
Date: 18 Aug 14 - 05:01 PM

I've recently become an MOOC enthusiast and have completed some biology courses via Coursera. It seems to me there is an opening for one or more of our more academic minded mudcatters to offer a folklore or traditional Massive Open On-line Course

there are many folky courses on line, mostly not free and very few are in the MOOC format

I've been looking via search engine and come up with some items of interest
If you understand Chinese, check out edX for
02030330X: The Study of Folklore commencing Sep 15th 2014
"This course will concentrate on some of the basic categories of folklore such as myths, folktales, folk festivals, ballads and folksongs. It will be taught in Mandarin." 8 Sept- 7 Nov - includes folklore, folkmusic among the topics of study

Coursera has in the past offered a seven-week long course called "Listening to World Music"/ I don't know when it will be offered again.

no certification:
MIT has archived syllabus, class notes, etc for this on campus course "Introduction to Anglo American Folk Music"; you can follow the syllabus at your own pace and on your own - or set up a study group with other interested folkies

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Subject: MIT folklore courses archived online
From: GUEST,Philippa
Date: 18 Aug 14 - 05:20 PM

also archived on the MIT webpages are
"SP.694 Issues of Representation: Women, Representation, and Music in Selected Folk Traditions of the British Isles and North America | Special Programs This subject investigates the special relation of women to several musical folk traditions in the British Isles and North America. Throughout, we will be examining the implications of gender in the creation, transmission, and performance of music. Because virtually all societies operate to some extent on a gendered division of labor (and of expressive roles) the music of these societies is marked by the gendering of musical repertoires, traditions of instrumentation, performance settings, and styles. This seminar will examine the gendered dimensions of the music - the song texts, the performance styles, processes of dissemination (collection, literary representation) and issues of historiography - with respect to selected traditions within the folk musics of North America and the British Isles, with the aim of analyzing the special contributions of women to these traditions. In addition to telling stories about women's musical lives, and studying elements of female identity and subjectivity in song texts and music, we will investigate the ways in which women's work and women's cultural roles have affected the folk traditions of these several countries."

"21A.453 Anthropology of the Middle East | AnthropologyThis course examines traditional performances of the Arabic-speaking populations of the Middle East and North Africa. Starting with the history of the ways in which the West has discovered, translated and written about the Orient, we will consider how power and politics play roles in the production of culture, narrative and performance. This approach assumes that performance, verbal art, and oral literature lend themselves to spontaneous adaptation and to oblique expression of ideas and opinions whose utterance would otherwise be censorable or disruptive. In particular we will be concerned with the way traditional performance practices are affected by and respond to the consequences of modernization.Topics include oral epic performance, sacred narrative, Koranic chant performance, the folktale, solo performance, cultural production and resistance."

"21M.030 Introduction to World Music | Music and Theater Arts This course explores the ways that music is both shaped by and gives shape to the cultural settings in which it is performed, through studying selected musical traditions from around the world. Specific case studies will be examined closely through listening, analysis, and hands-on instruction. The syllabus centers around weekly listening assignments and readings from a textbook with CDs, supplemented by hands-on workshops, lecture/demonstrations and concerts by master musicians from around the world."

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Subject: RE: Tech: New Online Education Venture
From: Felipa
Date: 18 Aug 14 - 05:26 PM

link for the MIT courses

another item from my recent web search:
a series of videos "modelled loosely on mooc"

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Subject: RE: Tech: New Online Education Venture
Date: 19 Aug 14 - 04:25 AM

One university fall 2014 offers (plans for great expansion by 2016'

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Subject: RE: Tech: New Online Education Venture
From: Felipa
Date: 19 Aug 14 - 05:27 AM

will there be any folklore courses at Humboldt on line by 2016, latest anonymous "Guest"? A quick glance at the present list indicates that these are more open university degree courses than MOOC format

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Subject: RE: Tech: New Online Education Venture
From: Felipa
Date: 14 Sep 14 - 11:01 PM

Again, more of an archived course than an interactive mooc: a series of lectures on Politics in Music

some of the topics would be discussed on Mudcat - Chilean protest music, Joe Hill, Bob Dylan for example

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Subject: on-line music and folklore courses
From: Felipa
Date: 22 Sep 14 - 04:50 PM

The American South: Its Stories, Music, and Art   < a href=> from 13 Oct for 6 weeks, 2-4 hr/week

"From small farms to urban neighborhoods, from the region itself to the more distant worlds of the southern diaspora, we discover the stories, music, and art of the American South.

"This course explores the stories, music, and art of the American South and considers how they serve as a window on the region's history and culture. We will see how the region's distinctive sense of place defines music and literature in each generation. From small farms to urban neighborhoods, from the region itself to more distant worlds of the southern diaspora, stories, music, and art chronicle places and the people who live within them.

"Our course explores the nature of oral tradition and how its study can provide a methodology for understanding Southern literature. We will discuss Southern artists and photographers and will show how the history and traditions of the South influences their work. We will consider the work of Southern Writers and discuss how they utilize specific stories, music, and art as a structure for literary forms such as the novel and the short story. Lastly, we look into the
rich history of southern music and its roots in work chants, fife and drum, and one-strand on the wall musics."

Taught by William R. Ferris, "a professor of history at UNC–Chapel Hill and an adjunct professor in the Curriculum in Folklore. He is associate director of the Center for the Study of the American South, and is widely recognized as a leader in Southern studies, African-American music and folklore."
World Music (Open2Study)
Sep 15th 2014 for 4 weeks, 2-4 hours/week
"Discover a world of music exploring your community or family to learn how music represents cultural identity."

Coursera also has a beginners guitar course starting mid Oct, and Allversity has a self-paced guitar course, start anytime, 63 lessons

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Subject: RE: Tech: New Online Education Venture
From: Felipa
Date: 23 Sep 14 - 07:07 PM

Links for previous message (The American South)

As Susan wrote, the more traditional form of correspondence course - now with internet connections - is more rigourous and more personal
But I quite like the flexibility and free or lo-cost nature of MOOC courses, and the fact that most of them require less commitment than a university course. Having said that, I'm presently following a genetics MOOC that is quite demanding. And as I read that Susan is a biology lecturer, she may be interested in some cutting edge material as found in "Epigenetic Control of Gene Expression" and "Programmed Cell Death" short courses.

To get back on track, I havent participated in any online music or folklore courses yet but I got involved in this discussion to ask about and inform about online ventures (and especially MOOCs) in the area of interest most alligned to the Mudcat forum. Does anyone have experience of any of the courses I've mentioned in previous contributions? Is anyone designing a folklore or folkmusic course for future "broadcast"?

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Subject: RE: Tech: New Online Education Venture
From: Felipa
Date: 19 Oct 14 - 07:39 AM

many of the people who joined the American South course are musicians and/or have an interest in folk and blues music (subject of 2 of the 6 modules, also there is a module on stories and folklore)

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Subject: RE: Tech: New Online Education Venture
From: Felipa
Date: 19 Oct 14 - 07:43 AM

still time to participate in the aforementioned American south course; very little work involved in watching the week 1 videos

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Subject: RE: Tech: New Online Education Venture
From: GUEST,Felipa
Date: 06 Apr 15 - 11:16 PM

the American South course is now available "on demand", start whenever you like. Just as well, because when I did the course I think Prof Ferris replied to comments on the discussion forum just once. I found the course extremely light. There are nice fragments of interviews/documentaries that the prof. had done with blues singers, storytellers, etc, but the clips are too short. There is a good, longer clip of Pete Seeger talking about the song "We shall overcome"

But if you are interested in American history, I would highly recommend Stephanie McCurry (U of Pa.), The Slave South, on Coursera. It has just finished; you can sign up for the watch list to be advised of the next iteration. In the meantime, "The Age of Jefferson" is available "on demand". Several of the students on the course recommend Eric Foner's trio of courses about the American Civil War and Reconstruction, which are with another MOOC provider, EdX.

there are a couple of songwriting and guitar courses in the mooc ,,, I havent come up with any more re folk music or folk lore.

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Subject: RE: Tech: New Online Education Venture
From: GUEST,Felipa
Date: 06 Apr 15 - 11:22 PM

repeated starting 16 March so maybe it will be offered again next autumn as well

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Subject: RE: Tech: New Online Education Venture
Date: 06 Apr 15 - 11:53 PM

the open2learn courses are 4 weeks long and seem to be frequently repeated. The World music course is offered again 20 Apr-19 May

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Subject: RE: Tech: New Online Education Venture
From: GUEST,Philippa
Date: 29 Dec 15 - 03:51 PM

new ahort mooc re Robbie Burns, commences 25 Jan (of course!)
3 weeks duration, approx 4 hours/wk (you can keep using the material well past the official end of the course once you are enrolled)

From the web page:

"You'll learn with experts from the Centre for Robert Burns Studies at the University of Glasgow, which leads the world in the academic study of the poet, his life and works, the history and culture of the period in which he lived, and his ongoing legacy."

exploring three core questions:

    Who was Robert Burns?
    What made Robert Burns a poetic genius?
    And what made Robert Burns a global icon?

In the process, you'll examine archive material, original publications and manuscripts by Burns himself, recordings of Burns songs and examples of objects used to commemorate the poet. You'll also look at and learn to interpret a selection of Robert Burns's works in the context of Scottish history and culture. Poems and songs covered in the course include:

    Auld Lang Syne
    To a Mouse
    To a Haggis
    Ae Fond Kiss
    A Red Red Rose
    Scots Wha Hae
    A Man's a Man for a' That
    The Vision

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Subject: MOOC - "How Music Can Change Your Life"
From: Felipa
Date: 21 Dec 16 - 07:59 PM Start date 16 Feb 2017, six weeks, 3-4 hours of study/week

"Who is this class for: This course will be relevant for anyone who has an interest in the ways that music can be used to enhance health, wellbeing and connectedness. You don't have to be a musician to be able to understand and use some of these ideas, but an interest in music will make the learning more rewarding and enjoyable. For those who work in hospitals and settings that value scientific evidence, unit one will be most relevant. Unit two is designed for those working in educational contexts, with both an interest in music learning and other achievements. Unit three focuses on mental health, with a particular emphasis on psychotherapeutic concepts, both traditional and contemporary. Unit four uses the parent-infant relationship as a way of illustrating music in intimate relationships and may be particularly interesting for parents. Unit five is oriented to community development and emphasises empowering ways of working with communities. Unit six draws heavily on knowledge from indigenous cultures and explores the importance of cultural sensitivity within and between people of all cultures."

promotional video here:

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