My first MOOC was Scott E. Page’s Model Thinking course in 2011. I couldn’t have had a better introduction to MOOCs and Online Learning. The Professor Page presented a broad introduction to themes in Data Science which prepared me for the many courses which followed. But something else very important also happened. You see, I also work full time. Many of these courses, especially the programming and mathematics courses, involve an awful amount of work. In my excitement I tried so very hard to meet every deadline and dutifully studied for every quiz and test. Work and studies nevertheless conflicted and I fell behind. Together with some disappointing test scores, I did not receive the coveted certificate. I failed. Then I realized I didn’t need to pass. I was not after validation. I was after knowledge. And I never looked back.
Since that time I’ve continued to juggle my time. Some classed I’ve completed and others I have not. While I still have the drive to enroll, participate, and contribute, the only competition is with myself. It was an important lesson and I’m thankful I learned it early. Thankfully, some things are sticking, and today I can truthfully say I’ve added to my knowledge in many areas of mathematics, programming, literature, psychology, and philosophy which have enriched my life. I believe I’ve grown both intellectually and personally. I don’t dream of fame, nor fortune. My only ambition is to continue to develop my understanding to enrich my Clear Thinking and my continuing projects in writing, design, art and computer-human interaction. My only regret is MOOCs hadn’t come about ten years sooner.
Currently Enrolled Courses
- UTArlingtonX: Link5.10x: Data, Analytics, and Learning
- DelftX: DDA691x Delft Design Approach
- DelftX FP101x Introduction to Functional Programming
- MITx 6.00.2x Introduction to Computational Thinking and Data Science
- McMaster University Experimentation for Improvement
- IE Business School: Critical Perspectives on Management
- Wesleyan University: The Modern and the Postmodern
- Columbia University: Natural Language Processing
- University of Washington: Programming Languages
- Princeton University: Introduction to Sociology
- Princeton University: Statistics One
- University of Michigan: Model Thinking
- Open Yale Course: Paul Fry, Introduction to a Theory of Literature
- Open Yale Course: Paul Bloom, Introduction to Psychology
I’ve also audited several other courses on machine learning, statistics, and game theory which proved beyond my capabilities at the time. I hope to return to these at a later date when they prove relevant to my educational goals.