Stephen Downes

Knowledge, Learning, Community

"Imagine a return to a pre-revolutionary world," warns , "where such a form of knowledge and study would only be practised by a very small elite, rich enough to delve into 'unprofitable' questions in their spare time." Her concern is that as MOOCs in the hard sciences raise money and gain support, the humanities are left behind. I think her concern is misplaced. We do not live in an era where only the wealthy have access to knowledge, resources and spare time. For example, I have set up a Philosophy Community in Google Plus (here's another, and here's one on Philosophy of Mind). And the world of MOOCs will very definitely open up to the humanities, spurred on by a global interest in the subject. If, however, it's the death of the first year 500-student English course, I wouldn't mourn.

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Stephen Downes Stephen Downes, Casselman, Canada

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Last Updated: Sept 26, 2023 04:38 a.m.

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