Critics say Massively Open Online Courses, or MOOCs, are over-hyped. But defenders say they are reaching people in unexpected ways.
The world’s most popular online course is a general introduction to the art of learning, taught jointly by an educator and a neuroscientist.
“Learning How To Learn,” which was created by Barbara Oakley, an electrical engineer, and Terry Sejnowski, a neuroscientist, has been ranked as the leading class by enrollment in a survey of the 50 largest online courses released earlier this month by the Online Course Report website.
The course is “aimed at a broad audience of learners who wanted to improve their learning performance based on what we know about how brains learn,” said Dr. Sejnowski, the director of the Computational Neurobiology Laboratory at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies in La Jolla, Calif.