Friday, August 30, 2013

MOOCS and Beyond: My Experience

Well, I have to admit the MOOC course wasa worthwhile endeavor.  While I participated in many of the activities, I did not complete the course.
It was a great way to learn about the subject matter (“Exploring Irish Identity”). I was able to experience various aspects of Irish Identity, including: History, Literature, Film, GAA, Art, Music, etc.
Offering free courses via the MOOC format is an opportunity to broaden your knowledge at no financial cost to you. The only thing you will spend is your time.  You can check out the range of MOOCs available across the Internet at the MOOC List website.
The course ran for 8 weeks and began about 5 weeks before my trip.  What I found is that before I took my trip to Ireland, I was dedicated to completing the course.  I would log in when I could, listen to the lectures, complete the discussion boards and do the quizzes.  While some days I wouldn’t be able to do the necessary assignments I would make sure to catch up when I did have the time. Through this, I learned a great deal about Ireland and its Identity.  However, once I was in Ireland I did not have access to WiFi and couldn’t get online. Many of the things I learned about in the course made me have a better experience.  I heard about the great many literary figures from Ireland and was able to see where some were born.  I heard wonderful Irish music and appreciated where some of it originated. I would see the GAA advertised in the different pubs and know what it was all about. I saw where the great Irish song, “Danny Boy” was written. 
Once I returned from the trip, my interest dimmed though.  I found the desire to complete the course was not there.  What I have determined was that a MOOC course is very beneficial as long as you have the time and desire to learn the subject matter.
Go ahead, find one that interests you and go for it!!