Category: OpenCourseWare

Sep 21 2012

Massive Open Online Courses to Launch This Weekend

Tens of thousands of students have already signed up to take the School of Public Health's first two massive open online courses (MOOCs), Mathematical Biostatistics Boot Camp taught by Brian Caffo and Computing for Data Analysis taught by Roger Peng. Both will launch over the weekend, so it isn't too late to sign up. They are free and open to anyone.

Both courses are built around a series of pre-recorded lectures. They also feature discussion forums, homework assignments, and graded assessments. Students who successfully complete the courses will receive a statement of successful completion from Coursera, the company that hosts these courses and six others that will launch over the coming months. 

You have no doubt heard a great deal of blog chatter and media coverage about the emergence of MOOCs. This is an exciting new frontier in education, and there is much to be learned about the effectiveness of these kinds of courses.

JHSPH is experimenting with this new form of teaching as a potential next step beyond its OpenCourseWare project. OCW is a repository of top-notch teaching materials produced by JHSPH faculty for use by educators and independent learners. OCW is not going away, and it will continue to grow as we add materials from more courses.

However, OCW does not offer students the opportunity to either interact with faculty and fellow learners or demonstrate their acheivement of course learning objectives. In Coursera, students will be able to communicate with their instructors and their peers, and they will be able to take graded assessments to show what they have learned. It is our hope that this new model will help the School broaden the reach of its educational mission by making its world-class faculty and their expertise more widely available to a massive population of learners.  

To see a full list of JHSPH offerings on Coursera, visit 

Posted by Ira Gooding at 11:38 AM - Categories: General | OpenCourseWare | Tech Tools

Jun 8 2012

Free Open Educational Resources Workshop

The following was posted to the Educause Openness Constituent Group, and I'm re-posting here, as it may be of interest:

2012 is a significant year for open education. We are celebrating 10 years since UNESCO adopted the term "Open Educational Resources" (OER). In joining the global celebrations, the OER Foundation in collaboration with the COL OER Chairs and Creative Commons Canada will host a free OCL4Ed workshop.

When: 20 June - 3 July 2012
Where: Online
Cost: Free
Registration: Open
Twitter Hashtag: #OCL4Ed

Open content licensing for educators (OCL4Ed) is a free online workshop designed for educators and students who want to learn more about open educational resources, copyright, and Creative Commons licenses. OCL4Ed is an international community learning opportunity, with participants from 48 countries already signed up.

Reserve your seat today for this free online workshop which is scheduled to coincide with the UNESCO OER World Congress.

Posted by Clark Shah-Nelson at 8:21 AM - Categories: Distance Learning | General | OpenCourseWare | Teaching Tips

Feb 27 2012

Flipped Classrooms: Lectures and Homework Trade Places

Trending meme alert! Trending meme alert!

What is one of the latest trending topics in (higher) education? "Flipped Classrooms." I'd tell you what that means, but this web page does such an interesting job of showing it graphically (and using pictures of dogs no less):

Additionally, the Educause Learning Initiative's "7 Things You Should Know About" series tends to be on top of these trends, and sure enough, just this month they released a version on flipped classrooms. Be sure to open the PDF link to read the whole article:

"The value of a flipped class is in the repurposing of class time into a workshop where students can inquire about lecture content, test their skills in applying knowledge, and interact with one another in hands-on activities."

Further references:

The Flipped Class Manifest
5 Best Practices for Flipped Classrooms ("It is a great first step in reframing the role of the teacher in the classroom.")

But that's just an introduction. Instructors, want to put theory into practice and speak to someone about flipping your course, engaging students in new ways, or increasing levels of engagement? Contact the JHSPH Instructional Design Team for a consultation. Free while supplies last! :)



Posted by Clark Shah-Nelson at 3:57 PM - Categories: Distance Learning | General | Online Courses | OpenCourseWare | Teaching Tips

Dec 2 2011

Trends, Headlines and Hot Topics in eLearning

What are some of the trending topics and headlines in online and blended learning these days? This post includes links to articles and trending topics in eLearning regarding growth in online learning, Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs), Open Educational Resources University (OERu), and other lifelong learning projects.


Posted by Clark Shah-Nelson at 8:55 AM - Categories: Distance Learning | Online Courses | OpenCourseWare

Nov 17 2011

OCW: Gratis and Libre

JHSPH OpenCourseWare is free in both senses of the word. Using OCW is free of charge, and OCW materials are free to share and adapt.


Posted by Ira Gooding at 10:25 AM - Categories: OpenCourseWare

Oct 16 2009

Two Population Science Courses Added to OCW

Two population science courses, Social and Economic Aspects of Human Fertility and Principles of Population Change, have been added to JHSPH OpenCourseWare.


Social and Economic Aspects of Human Fertility analyzes the correlates of fertility levels in societies and childbearing among individuals and couples. The course examines classical theories of fertility change at the societal level and contemporary critiques of these theories, and it also explores the determinants of fertility at the individual level, with an emphasis on differences in the timing of first birth and total family size by social class and ethnicity in developed and developing countries.


Principles of Population Change provides students with the basics of demography and the health implications of major contemporary population issues. Lectures explore population changes over time; elements of demography; child survival and mortality; family and households and demographic change; the demography of social and economic inequality, role of women, urbanization, migration and fertility. Finally, students examine world demographic patterns, synthesizing the data and issues surrounding the importance of population to public health.


Both courses are taught by Nan Astone, PhD, Associate Professor and Director of Graduate Education in the Department of Population, Family and Reproductive Health.


Posted by Ira Gooding at 3:46 PM - Categories: OpenCourseWare

Aug 13 2009

OpenEd2009 Conference in Vancouver

After two days of attending the OpenEd2009 Conference in Vancouver, I am incredibly impressed with the vast array of new projects that are emerging in the open education field. The energy level is high, and the connections being made here at the meeting promise to produce an even higher energy level throughout the field in the months and years to come.

At least two of the sessions I attended are direct outcomes of connections and conversations that began just one year ago at OpenEd2008: Peer2Peer Univesity (P2PU) and the Code of Best Practices for Fair Use in OpenCourseWare.

P2PU describes itself as "an online community of open study groups for short university-level courses." The P2PU helps enrolled students navigate the wealth of available open education materials, creates small groups of motivated learners, and supports the design and facilitation of courses. Students and tutors get recognition for their work, and the leaders are exploring the extra step of building pathways to formal credit. You can view the session here via Ustream, and enrollment is now open for its first offering of courses.

The Code of Best Practices for Fair Use in OpenCourseWare is a soon-to-be-released document with the goal of helping OCW producers to interpret and apply fair use under US copyright law. As one of the Code's co-authors along with a group of practitioners from other institutions (Notre Dame, University of Mighican, Tufts University, MIT, and Yale), I am eager to see how its release will affect the practice of OCW production in the future. When the project began as an ad hoc session at OpenEd2008, I was very skeptical of its value and was worried that encouraging fair use in OCW would discourage the creation of new open learning object. Now, however, I'm convinced that this is an important step toward attaining OCW's full potential. You can view the session led by Lindsay Weeramuni of MIT OpenCourseWare and Lila Bailey of ccLearn here via Ustream. 


Posted by Ira Gooding at 7:50 PM - Categories: OpenCourseWare | Teaching Tips

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