coursera – best of University courses – for free

While the supply of educational websites and services reaches new peaks every single day it becomes harder and harder to keep up to date with the ‘real cool’ or ‘good’ inventions and players. One site that seems to do a good job is, after giving it a first short try, coursera.

 

So let’s get the ball rolling. How does it work?

coursera.org honor code

accepting the honor code is part of the registration

It sounds a little unbelievable and I am still trying to figure out what I missed but it looks like you enter the website, browse through the course catalog (by category or university), select the course you want, read through it, download the course syllabus and – if you like what you see – simply sign up for your class.

Once you are logged in you can, that actually goes without saying, maintain your courses, manage your courses and edit your account. The focus here really lies on browsing through courses. No unnecessary profile information needed.

 

Who participates?

Right now 16 major Universities participate in this consortium with highly qualified lecturers for each and every course. As far as I understand expansion is planned and wanted.

Is it really for free?

It really looks like. Yes. Not even a ‘pay with a tweet’ or ‘share on facebook to see content’ twist. (However I do ask myself how do they benefit from this except the ‘branding’ effect?).

What to expect?

Hard to say. I signed up for my first courses and am pretty curious to see how those classes turn out to be. The syllabus of courses however look very good and interesting and the introduction videos also look very promising & professional what leaves the impression that every participating University and lecturer really takes this project serious and tries its best to influence online students as much as ‘real’ students.

Having this said I’d be happy to introduce coursera to my University over here. Maybe we can become the first far away overseas partner 😉 Great work, coursera, way to go!

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