University Teaching 101 MOOC (Johns Hopkins University + Coursera)

I recently signed up for a MOOC on University Teaching offered by Johns Hopkins University through Coursera. It is a nice refresher on some instructional design topics, and is (at one week in) focused primarily on the science of learning. The instructors (Dr. Pamela R. Jeffries, PhD, RN, FAAN, ANEF, David W. Andrews, Ph.D.) advocate a scientific experimental approach to instruction that includes understanding what works according to the literature, developing researchable questions for testing, and implementing changes in the learning environments. These changes are implemented in the learning environment in one of two way. If the practice is well documented in the literature, the focus is on high fidelity implementation with testing for assurance of learning. If the practice is not well documented, then the emphasis is on implementing with caution, frequent micro-assessment, and a willingness to change or abandon the process based on formative feedback.

Overall, I think this is an interesting course and a good refresher of the core processes and scientific approach to instruction and instructional design.