One of the biggest advantages of MOOCs is that they allow anyone, anywhere to take courses from some of the best educational institutions around the country, and even around the world. With the possibility of accessing course catalogs from more than 100 top schools, the question pops up: Is it too soon to start making requests? Here are five classes that we would love to see as MOOCs from schools that already offer courses or will start offering them soon.
Giving 101 (Princeton)
Taught by controversial ethicist Peter Singer, this course (recently described as “the Princeton class that teaches students to be less selfish”) covers all of the hot-button ethical issues that face us today, especially those surrounding helping others. With Christmas around the corner, we could all use a little help to be less selfish.
Great Big Ideas (Yale)
Yale will launch its first MOOCs on Coursera in January, and although this course isn’t on the list, perhaps next semester? The course covers big ideas and innovations in twelve fields, from psychology and economics to biomedical research and cosmology. The course materials already consist of video lectures from experts in the fields, so the transition to MOOC should be relatively smooth.
Witchcraft and Charm Magic (Harvard)
Who doesn’t want to study at Hogwarts? Think of this course as the real-life equivalent of Hogwarts’s “History of Magic.” The class explores witches and witchcraft from its earliest days to the present. Wands are not required (but they probably couldn’t hurt).
Pursuit of Happiness and Health (Stanford)
With new studies showing that Americans are less happy than we used to be and less healthy than we think we are, we could all use some help on this front. This course covers research from neuroscience and psychology and provides practical tips for improving happiness and health.
Philosophy and Star Trek (Georgetown)
Philosophy has a reputation for being a bit stodgy, but this course will prove that theory wrong. In any case, you would get to spend a semester watching Star Trek while pondering essential questions like “Is Data a person?” and “Could we be brains in vats?” At the very least, it would make for great dinner conversations.
More universities are getting into the MOOC game all of the time, and MOOC providers are constantly increasing their offerings—Coursera is already up to 544 courses. What courses would you like to see get MOOCified?