Coursera. One of the leading providers of MOOC's (Massive Open Online Courses), Coursera partners with top universities and organizations to offer courses online for anyone to take for free. Currently, Coursera tops the MOOC List with over 160 offerings. Julia Stiglitz recently announced on their blog that seven leading schools of education, including University of California Irvine Extension and Johns Hopkins University School of Education, will be providing these courses for educators. They also have a network of educational organizations and museums offering courses including the Exploratorium and the American Museum of Natural History.
I believe MOOC's are an excellent way for teachers to receive personalized learning to improve thier practice. As lead learners in the classroom it is important to model lifelong learning, a trait we want to see in all of our students. When I first taught biology 10 years ago, I paid to take a course online from U.C. Berkely to refresh my knowledge. Now that there are similar courses available through Coursera and other MOOCS's, teachers can take courses on any subject of interest. I encourage all teachers to try out a MOOC and learn something new today. Technology lets us learn anytime that is convenient from any place and at a pace that is comfortable for the individual. The time is now for teachers to embrace online learning as a professional learning tool and be a model for their students.
Now the question is.....which class will I take this summer?