Tuesday, August 13, 2013

NSA Critic/Curmudgeon To Again Teach MOOC Course


The 3rd edition of Keith Devlin's MOOC course "Introduction To Mathematical Thinking" is coming up beginning Sept. 2 (...I understand it will include a special added section this go-around on whistleblowing and NSA thought control…. er, no, nevermind, just kidding, not on the syllabus).

Seriously though, anyone contemplating joining the 13,000 already signed up for the course should read what must be Keith's best intro yet to what the course IS and ISN'T (I suspect a LOT of people sign up for the course with a mistaken notion of what it will be like!):


Early on, Keith states,
"With the primary focus on helping students develop an new way of thinking, the course was always very light on “content” but high on internal reflection. A typical assignment question might require four or five minutes to write out the answer; but getting to the point where that is possible might take the student several hours of thought, sometimes days."
It is a long post that covers a lot of general ground, and should be read by anyone thinking of taking Keith's course, but may well be of value to anybody thinking of taking… OR, offering… any MOOC.

...Oh, and lucky Princetonites! Dr. Devlin (who is based at Stanford) divulges in the post that he will be spending a term at Princeton early next year teaching in the undergraduate classroom (something he hasn't done for years).

Meanwhile, in other news, the new (101st) 'Carnival of Mathematics' is up-and-running here:


and the 65th 'Math Teachers At Play' carnival is here:


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