I haven’t had too much luck with MOOCs. Usually I end up signing up for a lot of them and then subsequent NED happens with the effect that I end up doing nothing about the course and I “drop out”. The number of courses I’ve dropped out of is not even funny.
There has been only one MOOC that sustained my interest for a reasonable length of time, though, the course of Asset Pricing taken by The Grumpy Economist. For five weeks in September-October 2013, I diligently did all the readings and assignments and quizzes. I remember returning from a day trip one Sunday, and late that night, sitting down to do my assignments for they were due the next morning. But then the complexity of the course increased precisely at the same time when my work pressures went up, and I missed an assignment. Soon, that led to NED and I dropped out of the course.
I had enjoyed the course so much that I decided that I would take it the next time it was offered and actually complete it. To my disappointment it wasn’t offered in October 2014. I assumed that the economist had gotten too Grumpy and decided to stop offering the MOOC. I was disappointed.
But then this morning I see a mail from Coursera indicating that the course is back, in two parts this time. I’m in the process of signing up for the first part of Asset Pricing. You should do so, too, if you are so inclined. The breadth covered in the course is phenomenal, and what really excited me is how concepts that I had learnt in three or four different courses when I was a student at IIMB all got integrated into one course here. As I had written back then,
The beauty of the Chicago course is that it is holistic, and so well connected. The same professor, in the same course, teaches us diffusions while in another lecture uses the marginal utility theory from economics to explain the concept of interest rates. In an assignment he has got us to do regressions and in some others we do stochastic calculus. Having seen each of these concepts separately, I’m absolutely enjoying all the connections, and that is perhaps helping me keep my interest in the course.