Starting a Udacity MOOC: Introduction to computer science #cs101

Everyone is talking about massive online open courses nowadays… Some predict they will shake the very nature of higher education, predicting we won’t need universities anymore when every student will tune in to Khan Academy.

I really don’t believe it to be the case, but I want to be able to assess the usefulness of MOOCs for myself, so after my Introduction to openness in education participation, I wanted to dig in a more technical class, something I have been putting off for the longest time: Udacity’s CS 101 Introduction to computer science (yes, I admit that I work in IT and I’ve never taken a computer science class… long story). This course will be based on learning to program in Python, an open source language that is gaining in popularity.

I’m just getting through the first module on spare time, so it might take a while to complete, but I’ll make sure to document some of my experiences throughout the process… if I don’t drop out, of course.

I’m also a little late in the game, so I’m not sure how much I will be able to discuss with peer learners, so we’ll see how it goes. The course started in April, and is set to be taken over 7 weeks.

On a side note, there is a interesting ongoing discussion on some EDUCAUSE lists related to how open MOOCs really are, but that’s for another post. See David Wiley’s rant to get started…