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Has anyone here taken a Coursera course. Answered

I am curious, has anyone taken a Coursera course (https://www.coursera.org/).  They are free online courses.  I was interested in trying it out but wanted to see if anyone else has had any experience with them.  I have never taken an online course before so this is pretty new for me.  I would love to hear from anyone who has tried it.



Reply 5 years ago

Fortunately I work part-time so it is a little easier for me to get the work done. I imagine it would be quite a challenge with a full time job. I am definitely enjoying it though and glad I signed up. I hope you have a chance to do it next year.

I am literally having difficulties making time....as much as I want to get through the course

I should think you would have enormous difficulties literally making time. ;)

Well, after constructing my Wilson Cloud Chamber in shop class in 1973 (9th grade), I worked on the time thing. Einstein had beat me to it however, showing how time can be elongated....I just do not have the funds to "make it happen". *sigh*

And, btw, I am completely serious about the cloud chamber. I wish I still had it....it simply freaked my metal shop teacher out though LOL

I know what you mean. I am only working part time so it is a bit easier for me. But the first couple of weeks I felt overwhelmed. Luckily the course I am taking doesn't have too much homework but by the time you watch the lectures and read the section in the textbook it does require commitment to get through it all.

Yes, the lectures (one course had one lecture per week, about 40 + minutes long, and the other 3-7 lectures of 15 minutes a piece, per week....gaaaaah)

I asked myself  "how are they paying for free / making money?"
Do you know? it's not obvious to me.
And are these qualifications actually worth anything or just valuable as learning?


They're legit AFAIK. I think it may be similar to MIT's opencourseware project in terms of funding and whatnot (not for profit).

The qualifications aren't worth anything other than knowledge, unless the odd employer would accept them as evidence of [insert personal quality here] on a resume.

(BTW, long time, no chat - how's tricks?)
Internet has been very very poor, today must be lucky for me or they fixed it.
Otherwise life is fun; I've got a big cynic's party to go to on the 22nd for "Let's see which of the New Ages that are supposed to happen on the 21st actually happened", and no work until after the season.


Busybusybusy here - currently in the middle of a "departmental review" (AKA "practising for Ofsted") - under scrutiny all week, meeting with the head tomorrow, formal observation on Thursday... >stress<

-My friend is starting a WI - she says that's stressful (people). And I know another guy who (works from home) has taken a second job in a pub "to get out of the house". Life's weird sometimes, but it's usually not worth the amount of worry we give it.


MIT, Duke, University of CA, Brown, Ohio State, Stanford, etc. and etc.

I agree it is not obvious how they are making money and I imagine the certificate that you get when you pass a course doesn't count for much.

I have always envisioned technology as a great way to educate people. The first time I subscribed to satellite TV, I enjoyed a great deal of channels dedicated to learning. One channel offered college courses. You could learn on your own pace. One nice feature was to buy the course book and join the class or just watch the program without any compromise. After a few months the channel disappeared from my list of channels. I also remembered when I watched the TLC channel and learn a lot about home and automobile remodeling and repair. The History and Discovery channel were about documentaries. Now it is about family fighting while building motorcycles, loggers, fishermen, tattoo artists, pawn shops, and all sorts of subcultures. I might enjoy shows like these once in a while, but they have marathons of these shows. The internet is a great tool that brings a wealth of information to those that otherwise would not have ways to learn many things. We need more opportunities like this to be able to learn. I want to thank you for taking the time to post this.

yes, educational television programs seem to be disappearing and replaced by reality shows. Like we really need that. It is nice to see that we have online courses like Coursera available to use. I have in fact started taking the Design course through Coursera and am really enjoying it. The quality of the lectures and assignments are really good.

I am about to take the final tests for Thinking in Mathamatics, and have already started Genetics and Evolution.

Thinking in Mathematics that sounds interesting and does the Genetics course. There is definitely a wide range of courses available. I did decide to take the Design course though the course started last week so I am already behind and have missed the first assignment (so I have to do really well with the remaining ones.) My background is in science (molecular biology) so design is completely new to me so I find it really interesting. Though I am already stressed out about the homework LOL. I agree taking these courses takes commitment and motivation, especially since you didn't pay anything to take the course.

Yes. And the need for "something to fall back onto" is looming in my future *sigh* so my next set of coarses will have to be more practicle.

I am also taking the Genetics and Evolution class! If there are any classes you are interested in, it is surely worth your time to check them out. If I remember correctly, a lot of the funding comes directly from the school--The Genetics class is through Duke, which has put up the money to pay the TA's...Not sure if it works that way for other courses, though.

I've just had a browse through those courses - they look interesting, and the providers appear legitimate.

The hardest thing about studying online is taking it seriously - it's easy to treat it as "just browsing", and the lack of interactivity in broadcast lessons can make them boring, but if you have the dedication, and if they grant a recognised certificate of some sort, they are good to add to your CV / resume.

Yes, it is way too easy to spend all your computer time at FB or here, rather then listen to lectures and do the course work....it takes commitment


5 years ago

I've done Coursera. Depending on what you're doing, it can be a lot of work, but that's only if you're very serious about what you're doing. If you skip a lesson, or get something in late it will affect your course grade (Yes, you get graded).

There are also tests and reviews. Video length varies and teachers do as well. Whatever class you choose is from a specific collage. Blar de blah blar. . . .

It's good, but it all depends on what you choose and your attitude towards things. People say I'm a hard worker, and that's why I like it, but it all really depends on how you respond to everything. I hope this helps and I hope you enjoy it!


Thanks, I guess you get out what you put into it.

I agree. The worst thing is to be taken seriously and get to work, but if you are interested in something, you want it and not the problem.

Well I did (MIT-6002x) the one that was offered by the MIT this year....

It was really an awesome experience!!...
Besides getting to learn new (and helpful) thingsfree of cost from the masters of their fields, you even get to discuss on any topic with the peers via the forums!!!....
And the course even helped me to some extent in the present subjects I'm studying now in engineering!...  
I totally recommend you to undertake the course(s) of your choice and follow it(them) regularly!!!. Though, in case you are not able to complete any courses, nobody's ever going to know about it (until you tell them so!)... and you always retake them once they're offered again....

Although I'd like to add here that I didn't quiet like the courses at coursera.....(don't really know the reason!!!)...But the ones offered by the edx now,  really seem good!!!.... :D