Last night, Coursera announced their most recent round of new partner universities, of which UNC-CH is one. Back in November, the Provost issued a Call for Proposals for MOOCs, and I submitted two. About a week & a half ago, I was informed that one of my proposals — for a course on metadata, modeled on the School’s course INLS 720 — was accepted as one of the first round of MOOCs that will be launched by Carolina. Here’s Coursera’s announcement, and here’s UNC’s announcement.
I’m incredibly excited about this. And I’m having a minor freakout as well. I’ve taught entirely online before, many times. I teach in a hybrid mode literally all the time — I haven’t taught a course without using a range of online tools and resources, ever in my entire career in academia. But this is different. I’m still working on figuring out exactly why it’s different. But for starters, it’s causing me to completely rethink how I develop a course. INLS 720 is an advanced course in SILS, with INLS 520, Organization of Information as a prerequisite. But of course most Coursera students won’t have had an Org of Info course, so I have to either figure out a way to proceed without that content or introduce it really fast (my plan is the latter). Also, given that mostly I’ll be using automated assessments (maybe some peer assessment, but I think mostly automated), I really have to get fully on board with backward design.
Anyway, I’ll blog about this as much as I can as we go forward.