I completed a previous MOOC on video game analysis (#50by50 #32 – Complete a MOOC – Understanding Video Games) from the University of Alberta and I started one on Metaliteracy some time ago from the State University of New York (SUNY). But I’ve found the Metaliteracy course a bit challenging for its design.
There are ten weeks, with each week having a mix of videos and readings to consume, and then a couple of online assignments to fill out about what you learned. The previous one had an option for just auditing with little interaction, this one needs that interaction to really work. Which is generally fine, no problem.
Except each week’s “submission” then has to be graded by your peers. Which would work fine if you had any other peers doing the course at the same time, but it has continual intake. People can start and stop anytime, the deadlines can be reset with a click of a button, etc. Which means I finished weeks 1-4 and sat waiting for “grades” on the submitted postings/assignments until someone started the course, reached the same point, and reviewed them. As part of the community, you also have to review three other people’s materials. Which also doesn’t work if I go to review them, and there are no other people doing it at the same time — once or twice, I had NOTHING to review.
Which means while I’m doing my part, there’s no cohort moving through the course with me. So I got to week 4 and stalled. Eventually, someone else will come along and review my stuff and I can review theirs, but until then, my submissions go into the temporary abyss of the internet waiting for “review”.
I also confess that the course, while okay, is not as interesting as I had hoped. It has some interesting readings related to curation of info, fact checking in a social media age, licensing, etc., and I’m getting what I wanted out of it, but it is definitely not at the top of my list of interesting presentations and presenters.
The “challenges”, however small, are not an unusual occurrence, nor any grand universe conspiracy, it’s just a really frustrating form of group work that holds back my somewhat boring learning while I’m waiting for others to engage and do their part.
Except it isn’t really holding me back, that is / has been my perception. MY part is just to do the assignments each week and mark other people. I can still do my part, and complete the majority of my learning. If I don’t get the checkmark for any given week because nobody marked my submission, who cares?
MOOC this, universe. I’m proceeding anyway. I’m designating Mondays as my MOOC day, either at lunch or at night. I’ve even downloaded the app for Coursera so I can view it on my tablet rather than at night on my laptop. Week 5 on formats as a consumer and producer is done, moving on to week 6.