Heads up – MailGun misfire #mooc #mmooc #seq21oct13

Hi all,

We’ve just discovered an issue with our MailGun mail server that may have prevented some learners from receiving their Week 3 assignment e-mail.  We’re looking into it now and will get back to you when we know more.

-Mech MOOC

Posted in Seq21Oct13, Tech issues | 5 Comments

Week 3 – The Mechanical MOOC is recalculating your route #mooc #mmooc #seq21oct13

Seq21Oct13: Mailed 4 November 2013.

Mechanical MOOCers,

IMPORTANT PROGRAMMING NOTE: Our friends at Codecademy have been busy expanding their Python track from 12 units to 21, so the Mechanical MOOC is making adjustments on the fly.  We’ve redistributed the Python exercises across the eight weeks (see the course sequence page), but we’ll be looking to you, the learners, for advice on whether we got it right.

Materials:

Tasks:

As always, ask for help for help on OpenStudy or from your small group peers. And remember to hand out medals on OpenStudy to anyone who helps you out.

Once again, the Mechanical MOOC reminds you not to panic if you are struggling to keep up. After all, we’re not keeping score here, we’re helping you to learn Python. Just keep trying.

Much happy MOOCing.

–The Mechanical MOOC

Tweet #mmooc | Follow @MOOC_E | MMOOC Blog

The Mechanical MOOC’s A Gentle Introduction to Python is a collaboration between Peer 2 Peer UniversityMIT OpenCourseWareOpenStudy, and Codecademy. For this course, Peer 2 Peer University has developed an email scheduler that coordinates student activity across the participating sites to facilitate collaborative learning. This email was generated by the scheduler. A full archive of emails for this course sequence is available here. For more information, please visit http://mechanicalmooc.org. For questions regarding the logistics of the course, please e-mail mooc-e@p2pu.org.

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Wondering how we made the Mechanical MOOC? #mooc #mmooc

Thanks to the staff at Peer 2 Peer University, now you can learn the story behind the learning through this spiffy new report by P2PU’s Bekka Kahn, “How We Made The Mechanical MOOC – Freerange Learning With a Mechanical Guide.”  From the report:

Introduction

In late 2011 there was a rumbling in the air around the open education space… Massive, open, online courses were springing up all over the web. Two distinct types begin to emerge out of the MOOC model – Connectivist MOOCS (or cMOOCS) and Instructivist (or xMOOCS). Both were large-scale online learning experiments, with very different theories of learning behind them. In the open educational field, practitioners, activists and communities of interest were beginning to think about the component parts of cMOOCS and how they might work together, rather than adding to the emerging model of a proliferation of MOOC platforms, many of which seemed to be recreating the same thing repeatedly.

At P2PU, we’d been talking to our collaborators at MIT OpenCourseWare and had been struggling with the problem of how to move learners in a cohort through the exciting new world of the MOOC. “I’d read a blog about using RSS feeds as a kind of time-release capsule for OER material, which would send learners a reminder, and thought it was a really interesting idea, but I knew that RSS was a bit too esoteric for many students, and it didn’t solve the cohort problem,” says Steve Carson, Head of External Relations at MIT OpenCourseWare.

The solution, we soon realised, would look a little bit like a mailing list sign-up, without a platform per se, which would allow organisers to loop in the various component parts and run what is essentially a headless MOOC; no instructor was placed at the centre, and after a certain number of signups was reached, the MOOC itself would trigger messages to everyone in the group.    Read on.

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Week 2 – More fun with Python #mooc #mmooc #seq21oct13

Seq21Oct13: Mailed 28 October 13.

Good people of the Mechanical MOOC,

We now enter the second week of the Mechanical MOOC. If you’ve not completed the first week, don’t panic! You’re probably not alone and no points are deducted for working at your own pace. Plus, now there are others working ahead of you that can help you out.

Here’s what’s up for this week:

Materials:

Tasks:

As always, ask for help for help on OpenStudy or from your small group if you’re in one. And remember to hand out medals on OpenStudy to anyone who helps you out!

MOOC on!

– The Mechanical MOOC

Tweet #mmooc | Follow @MOOC_E | MMOOC Blog

The Mechanical MOOC’s A Gentle Introduction to Python is a collaboration between Peer 2 Peer UniversityMIT OpenCourseWareOpenStudy, and Codecademy. For this course, Peer 2 Peer University has developed an email scheduler that coordinates student activity across the participating sites to facilitate collaborative learning. This email was generated by the scheduler. A full archive of emails for this course sequence is available here. For more information, please visit http://mechanicalmooc.org. For questions regarding the logistics of the course, please e-mail mooc-e@p2pu.org.

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Two things as you get underway #mooc #mmooc #seq21oct13

Seq21Oct13: Mailed 24 October 2013.

Hey Mechanical MOOCers,

We hope you’re enjoying week one of the course. Two things as you work your way though the initial tasks:

Thing one.

We can guarantee that learning Python will be equal parts exhilaration and exasperation, and we hope you’ll embrace both as a natural part of the learning process. When you hit the rough parts, we encourage you to read this post by Claudia Scholz, Mech MOOC sequence 1 participant and blogger extraordinaire. Wise words for aspiring programmers.

Thing two.

Please take five minutes to complete our start of course survey, so we can learn more about who is participating in the course. You can access the survey here: (link removed to limit responses to class enrollees.  If you are participating and want to complete the survey, e-mail mooc-e@p2pu.org.)

Thanks, and much happy MOOCing.

–MM

Tweet #mmooc | Follow @MOOC_E | MMOOC Blog

The Mechanical MOOC’s A Gentle Introduction to Python is a collaboration between Peer 2 Peer UniversityMIT OpenCourseWareOpenStudy, and Codecademy. For this course, Peer 2 Peer University has developed an email scheduler that coordinates student activity across the participating sites to facilitate collaborative learning. This email was generated by the scheduler. A full archive of emails for this course sequence is available here. For more information, please visit http://mechanicalmooc.org. For questions regarding the logistics of the course, please e-mail mooc-e@p2pu.org.

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We begin #mooc #mmooc #seq21oct13

Seq21Oct13: Mailed 21 October 2013.

Mechanical MOOCsters,

The start of the Mechanical MOOC A Gentle Introduction to Python is here! We begin our journey with a reading, a video, and some exercises from Codecademy before tackling the first homework assignment. You should try to finish this material in the first week.

Materials:

Tasks:

Let your learning style be your guide with the materials. If you like to learn by doing, dive into the Codecademy exercises; if you are a reader, start with the text; or if you prefer a lecture-style introduction, begin with the videos. Once you are done with all three, move on to the homework.

Remember, if at any time you have questions, go over to OpenStudy or email your small group. And remember to hand out medals on OpenStudy to anyone who helps you out!

Mechanical MOOC leaves you with something of a chuckle….

Thank you kindly for your attention,

– The Mechanical MOOC

Tweet #mmooc | Follow @MOOC_E | MMOOC Blog

The Mechanical MOOC’s A Gentle Introduction to Python is a collaboration between Peer 2 Peer UniversityMIT OpenCourseWareOpenStudy, and Codecademy. For this course, Peer 2 Peer University has developed an email scheduler that coordinates student activity across the participating sites to facilitate collaborative learning. This email was generated by the scheduler. A full archive of emails for this course sequence is available here. For more information, please visit http://mechanicalmooc.org. For questions regarding the logistics of the course, please e-mail mooc-e@p2pu.org.

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Legalese #mooc #mmooc #seq21oct 13

Seq21Oct13: Sent 18 October 2013.

Mechanical MOOCsketeers,

Our goal is to help thousands learn to code Python, but also to better understand how large group online learning works, so we’ll be looking at questions like how peers in this community support one another, whether they are more engaged with the sites than other users and how well learners in the community have mastered the subject matter.

In all cases, any user information reported will be in aggregate or anonymous to protect your privacy, and your participation in the course is voluntary.  The data collected on the various sites during the course is further governed by each site’s terms of use and privacy policies, which can be found here:

MIT OpenCourseWare 
Terms of Use and Privacy Policies: http://ocw.mit.edu/terms/

OpenStudy 
Terms of Use: http://openstudy.com/terms-and-conditions
Privacy Policy: http://openstudy.com/privacy-policy
Code of Conduct: http://openstudy.com/code-of-conduct

Codecademy 
Terms of Service: http://www.codecademy.com/terms
Privacy Policy: http://www.codecademy.com/policy

Peer 2 Peer U
Terms of Use: https://p2pu.org/en/pages/terms-of-use/
Privacy Guidelines: https://p2pu.org/en/pages/privacy/

Thanks, and happy MOOCing.

–The Mechanical MOOC

Tweet #mmooc | Follow @MOOC_E | MMOOC Blog

The Mechanical MOOC’s A Gentle Introduction to Python is a collaboration between Peer 2 Peer UniversityMIT OpenCourseWareOpenStudy, and Codecademy. For this course, Peer 2 Peer University has developed an email scheduler that coordinates student activity across the participating sites to facilitate collaborative learning. This email was generated by the scheduler. A full archive of emails for this course sequence is available here. For more information, please visit http://mechanicalmooc.org. For questions regarding the logistics of the course, please e-mail mooc-e@p2pu.org.

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A few tips on MOOCing mechanically #mooc #mmooc #seq21oct13

Seq21Oct13: Sent 17 October 2013.

Brave Mechanical MOOCers,

A mechanical MOOC is unlike other online courses, or MOOCs, you may have taken in that we don’t have a central platform that you log into to access all of your course materials. Instead, we use materials that are already out there and available as open resources. This means you have a bit more to keep track of, but it also allows us to take advantages of some of the features developed by the sites we use. So here are a few tips that can help you keep organized and use some of the great features of our participating sites:

Hopefully this will make your Mechanical MOOC experience easier and more rewarding.

–The Mechanical MOOC

Tweet #mmooc | Follow @MOOC_E | MMOOC Blog

The Mechanical MOOC’s A Gentle Introduction to Python is a collaboration between Peer 2 Peer UniversityMIT OpenCourseWareOpenStudy, and Codecademy. For this course, Peer 2 Peer University has developed an email scheduler that coordinates student activity across the participating sites to facilitate collaborative learning. This email was generated by the scheduler. A full archive of emails for this course sequence is available here. For more information, please visit http://mechanicalmooc.org. For questions regarding the logistics of the course, please e-mail mooc-e@p2pu.org.

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Making sure you are ready to go #mooc #mmooc #seq21oct13

Seq21Oct13: Sent 16 October 2013.

Mechanical MOOCers,

People get ready–the course is comin’. In addition to the items in yesterday’s mail, please consider the followings steps:

Watch Monty Python and the Holy Grail.
If you’ve never watched it, you probably should for the life experience, but the programming language Python is named for the comedy troupe Monty Python, and our text and the Codecademy exercises make many references to Monty Python movies, especially …the Holy Grail. If you’ve seen it before, watch it again. It can’t hurt.

The MechMOOCs favorite bit:

 

Register for each site and create profiles.
Please be sure you are registered for all the sites and have provided lots of fun detail in your profiles.  You should have accounts and profiles on the following sites:

  • Openstudy.com–Open Study is a social learning site where communities of folks can learn together in forums. You’ll go here if you get stuck and need a quick answer.
  • Codecademy.com–Codecademy will have lessons for you to try and write actual Python.
  • If you don’t have one, you might also want to set up an account on GitHub, so you can easily share code with peers on OpenStudy and in e-mail using GitHub’s Gist.

The Mechanical MOOC also suggests:

A tip:  Use the same profile pictures across all of these sites, as well as twitter or other services if you use them, for the duration of the course. This will help peers to recognize you when they bump into you on the various sites and in conversation.

Python on!

–MM

Tweet #mmooc | Follow @MOOC_E | MMOOC Blog

The Mechanical MOOC’s A Gentle Introduction to Python is a collaboration between Peer 2 Peer UniversityMIT OpenCourseWareOpenStudy, and Codecademy. For this course, Peer 2 Peer University has developed an email scheduler that coordinates student activity across the participating sites to facilitate collaborative learning. This email was generated by the scheduler. A full archive of emails for this course sequence is available here. For more information, please visit http://mechanicalmooc.org. For questions regarding the logistics of the course, please e-mail mooc-e@p2pu.org.

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Bad robot #mooc #mmooc #seq21oct13

Seq21Oct13: Sent 16 October 2013.

Mech MOOCsters,

Yesterday’s e-mail inadvertently indicated the start date for the course as July 17th.  Obviously, it’s October 21st.  Bad robot.

— The Mechanical MOOC

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