by Karen Nichols
When Sue Frantz was here last week, she mentioned during one of her presentations that MOOCs are being used by people who already have degrees but who are interested in lifelong learning opportunities. Well have I got a website for those of us who seek self-improvement! Do you know about OpenCulture.com?
This site is edited by Dan Colman, director of Open Culture at Stanford, and not only has links to MOOCs on myriad topics, he also searches for lectures, audio books, digital books, movies and any other educational media that he believes may be of interest to lifelong learners.
The curation of the multi-media items is well organized, so whether you're looking for a lecture lasting a few minutes or an online course on a literary movement, you can easily find what suits your needs. If you have young children, there's even a K-12 resource site. It's good to have a safe area to send the children to for their multi-media needs as well.
In addition, there's an area for learning another language or two. Since languages are my area of specialization, I'm anxious to try some of these sites. Having recently begun tracing my genealogy, I've become interested in Gaelic. Sure enough, there's a site in the list for learning the basics.
I also think this site may be of use to your students. Take a look at your subject area to see what may be available. If you see a film or lecture or even an introductory course for students who may need a refresher on the basics, you can post the links inside your Blackboard course for your students. There's also a section on free textbooks that are available. With the rising costs of textbooks, wouldn't it be useful if there's one that students can use for free?
I'm quite interested in the lectures available. There's an entire series in French of Roland Barthes, one of the sources from my dissertation that I'm looking forward to listening to. Here's one from Leonard Bernstein, part of his 1973 lectures on music at Harvard:
Check out the site and let us know what you find interesting and useful.