Coursera is an organization that partners with some leading US Universities to offer free online courses. I have signed up for 2 courses, Model Thinking by Scott Page and Game Theory by Professor Matthew Jackson and Professor Yoav Shoham. Today I'm delighted to receive a letter of accomplishment for completing the Game Theory course.
It was a great experience to work on these courses. It has been a long time since I graduated to enrolled in a some kind of structured courses again. Prof Page's model thinking course is wide-ranging and provide a lot of useful tool to help us become an intelligent citizen of the world. All these delivered in a series of engaging and enthusiastic video lectures. The game theory course is more formal and its math is a bit difficult for me. Still I want to thank Prof Jackson and Shoham for doing this. An interesting topic like Model Thinking I think I can do well with independent study. But it is the power of a structured course that keeps me hanging in there to surmount the difficulty Game Theory.
I originally think once the professor take a video lecture and then they are done. Waves and waves of students then watch the same video and have the machine grade their quizzes while the professor are free to take a trip on a cruise ship. Actually there are fair amount of communication from the professor and they stay engaged and address issues throughout the course. While Coursera's description says you can do the study at your own pace, each course actually have a schedule that you need to adhere to. You better follow each week's work on time. Once you fall behind, more new materials are created each week making it more difficult to catch up. I do make good use of my gap time to watch the videos, like when I'm rocking my baby to sleep each night or when I'm working out in the morning. I guess in this sense it is to "study at my own pace".
After doing fair amount of work on this I vowed not to take 2 course simultaneously again. But Coursera has just published a long list of new courses. It look so interesting that I signed up for a bunch of new courses already.