This week two more Wesleyan classes debuted on Coursera. Richie Adelstein is teaching a six-week class called Property and Liability: An Introduction to Law and Economics. Andy Szegedy-Maszak is teaching The Ancient Greeks, a seven-week survey of Greek history from the Bronze Age to the death of Socrates. These are free, online versions of courses given at Wesleyan, and there is still time to enroll. Lisa Dierker’s class, Passion Driven Statistics, is a six-week project-based class that will begin March 25. Lisa’s class just received a great shout-out in Forbes magazine. Scott Plous’s Social Psychology class begins this summer and has already attracted amazing buzz.
Scott Higgins just finished up his class on The Language of Hollywood. Since I was also enrolled I can say that it was a great success. There is a strong demand for film studies classes, and his introduction to sound and color was a hit. One of the discussion threads on his class said that Prof. Higgins “deserved an Oscar,” but I especially enjoyed the hundreds of people who wrote in under the rubric, “Prof. Higgins, We Love You.”
I’m still working my way through my 14-week Modern and Postmodern class on Coursera. Students from around the world are giving me new insights into the material. One writes about thinking of Nietzsche as she watches her son ski into the woods, another about how she carries a copy of Baudelaire with her as she bikes around town. A student from across the globe writes that “learning makes me feel alive.” I hope I can benefit from these diverse perspectives when I teach the class on campus next spring. Next week, Sigmund Freud and then on to Virginia Woolf!