Coursera Update- We Be Learnin'

[What we don't all learn about cellular diffusion for fun?]
A few weeks ago I wrote about how excited I was to discover (via a colleague) the Coursera site, a network of esteemed colleges that let you take classes for free. You don't receive any units, but the knowledge is priceless... or something like that.

In the past three weeks I've completed the first part of my Introduction to Physiology class and it's kicking my ass a little bit! I don't know what I was thinking- that a course taught by Duke instructors would be easy? There is nothing simple about the sodium-potassium pump, graded potentials, motor neurons, tonic contractions, and everything else I've been trying to relearn and learn.

I spend maybe three hours a week on class work- there are 5-7 videos that vary in length (usually around twenty minutes) as well as problem sets and notes. There's a test I have to take by Monday, as well as two more over the next two months. I'm guessing I should probably spend more time studying, but there are only so many hours in the day.

So far, despite it being hard and taking away from other things I could be doing, I am thoroughly enjoying the experience. The videos fly by and I find the content challenging and fascinating. I am admittedly half a week behind, but the deadlines of the exams are really what I'm going by.

I've signed up for several additional classes since I first discovered Coursera. And by several I mean a ton. A lot of them are during the summer, when I'll have time, and several also don't have dates attached yet. I'm going to take a history of rock series, a graphic novel and comic book class, a poetry refresher, and a fantasy and science fiction course, just to name a few. I can always drop them if I decide I'm too busy- yet another benefit to free classes. 

I've had to defend/explain why I'm doing this to a few people, which I find amusing. I can understand not wanting to spend time on academic activities, but I do have trouble comprehending the lack of interest in learning. But that's just me. 

1 comment:

  1. I really think I want to enroll in one of these classes. I sort of miss being a student. I'm on spring break right now. I'll go check it out.