THE BLOG
09/30/2013 12:58 pm ET Updated Nov 30, 2013

The One Year MOOC BA -- Senior Year

Apologies to regular Degree of Freedom readers here at Huffington Post for the long hiatus.

For those of you just tuning in, I set a goal at the beginning of the year to see if it was possible to learn the equivalent of what you'd get from being enrolled in a four-year liberal arts BA program in just twelve months using only MOOCs (massive open online courses) and other forms of free college-level learning.

As I noted when the project began, courses would be selected to match the distribution and major requirements of a four year degree program, with my chosen major being philosophy. And the courses which made up the first three quarters of that project can be seen here ("freshmen" year), here ("sophomore" year), and here ("junior" year).

The use of past tense in that last sentence is meant to highlight the fact that this type of extreme learning can be done (at least three quarters of the way).

As this project winds to a conclusion (presuming I don't crack up before then), I plan to share what I've learned regarding how close or far MOOCs and other free learning tools are to "delivering the goods" in comparison to traditional forms of higher education.

But to set the stage for the final act, here's what "senior" year looks like:

Course: Søren Kierkegaard - Subjectivity, Irony and the Crisis of Modernity
Institution: University of Copenhagen
Provider: Coursera
Category: Social Sciences
Credits: 1

Course: The Fall and Rise of Jerusalem
Institution: Tel Aviv University
Provider: Coursera
Category: Social Sciences
Credits: 1

Course: Science & Cooking: From Haute Cuisine to Soft Matter Science
Institution: Harvard
Provider: edX
Category: Science and Mathematics
Credits: 1

Course: China
Institution: Harvard
Provider: edX
Category: Social Sciences
Credits: 1

Course: Technology Entrepreneurship - Part 1
Institution: Stanford
Provider: Novoed
Category: Special
Credits: 1

Course: Pragmatism
Institution: Various
Provider: Independent Study
Category: Social Sciences
Credits: 1

Course: Why Evil Exists
Institution: University of Virginia
Provider: Great Courses
Category: Social Sciences
Credits: 1

So far, my "years" require taking eight full-credit courses or the equivalent to completion (I'm using one credit to represent a full semester course vs. a credit hour system). But for "senior" year, I decided to leave one slot open in anticipation of either a senior writing project or a course that's too good to miss becoming available in the next month or so.

Stay tuned...

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