Udemy offers a range of IT courses but they are not free, they charge $15 per course. This would most likely have an impact on the uptake of the courses. Subjects include IT Help Desk Professional, How to Win at IT Freelancing and Break into IT – How to Land Your Dream Job in IT. Descriptions provided are very brief and there are not any preview or introduction videos. Each thumbnail lists how many lectures, time and skill level required. The website is well set out but I couldn’t say what the courses are like because I didn’t want to pay to check one out. 2 stars.


edX have 291 search results for Computer Science. They are of a variety that covers all aspects of IT subjects, some examples are; Foundations of Computer Science for Teachers; Computing: Art, Magic, Science; Computer Graphics. Once you click on a thumbnail features include introduction videos and a break down of length in weeks, effort (expected time per week), level, language and institute providing the course. You will also see a dot point of what you can expect to learn and a link to the instructors bio. Courses are free but there is an opportunity to order a verified certificate for some of the courses for a fee. This is an excellent range of IT subjects, as you would expect from edX. 5 stars.


Coursera – Code Yourself! An Introduction to Programming is a coding MOOC created by The University of Edinburgh in conjunction with Universidad ORT Uruguay. The commitment is 15-20 hours over 5 weeks. A syllabus is included on the website so you can get a good idea of what it is you will be learning before committing to it. Reviews from past students are available to read with a star rating. There is not any introduction videos and instructor bios, but there is the names and photo’s of the instructors. There is information of “how it works” and the Universities. At the bottom of the page there is suggestions of other courses that you may like. 4.5 stars.


Udacity offer what they call Nanodegrees for people wanting to “launch your career in Data Science, Machine Learning, Android, iOS, and more”. The courses are for areas that are emerging technologies; VR Developer; Artificial Intelligence; Self Driving Car Engineer. The quality of their website reflects their up-to-date content, it is a clean, uncluttered, user-friendly website. The courses are not free, but you can do the first week for free before deciding to commit. There are some big names involved in the content including Google, Amazon and Facebook. They give you information for the kind of salary you can expect if you go onto a job in the area of the course. There is a program syllabus to view, it all looks very impressive. 5 stars.


Aquent Gymnasium only offers IT courses. They have a colourful website with both full courses and what they call Gym Shorts – “short, snackable courses that all last under an hour”. The full courses are 3-6 hours of video tuition, quizzes, assignments and a final exam. There will be a certificate at the end. You need to create an account to access courses. The course information includes a course preview video, course outline, prerequisites and requirements. There is a bio and image of the instructors and suggestions of who this course would suit. There is a really good FAQ clearing up most of the questions people new to Gymnasium would want to ask. All courses are free – “That’s right — no hidden fees. No ‘freemium’ upgrade offers. All of our classes are absolutely free of charge. Sign up. Sign in. Learn and succeed. For free”. They speak in terms that would appeal to the under thirties, the website is fun and friendly. I’ll be showing this one to my kids. 5 stars.


Library MOOCs

Idaho Commission for Libraries offers MOOC courses specifically for Library staff. They do not require registration, you just click on the course you want and start learning. There are tips on how to get the most from the courses and a list of competencies supported available to you before you start. Topics include Building a Collection, Evaluating Reference Sources and Introduction to MARC Cataloguing. I found this a very interesting resource and I will be bookmarking this page. 5 Stars


Course Sites offers the New Librarianship Master Class helping Library staff navigate the changes and technologies that are a part of a modern library. Unfortunately, I was having difficulties with the website and was unable to browse as a guest. There were not any list, thumbnails or briefs of the courses that I could access. This will impact the uptake of courses. Enrollment is required to undertake the courses. Website appearance and functionality was disappointing. 1 star.


SJSU (San José State University) School of Information has allowed free public access to some of their lectures originally for their students. The MOOCs are concentrating on the emerging trends and technologies of Information Services. SJSU are quite new to offering MOOCs so there isn’t a lot of choice but, as they deliver Master of Library & Information Science, you feel confident of the quality. Website is a bit clunky and old fashion, MOOCs are not listed with a brief, thumbnail or preview. 3.5 stars


MOOC List gathers together courses from various sources but only offered two Library Science courses; Library Advocacy Unshushed & Teaching Library Research Categories Strategies. They list topics that will be covered and Library Advocacy Unshushed a YouTube introduction to watch. It was a bit disappointing that of all the courses on offer there was only two for those wishing to further their library knowledge. The website is well formed and easy to use. 4 stars.


New Librarianship Master Class is a MOOC available from director of the University of South Carolina’s School of Library & Information Science, R. David Lankes. He has an impressive CV lending weight to the expected quality of his MOOC. There are video introductions and clear dot points of the course content. The website is clean and easily navigable. R. David speaks clearly and seems to be a natural educator so while there isn’t a range of MOOCs to select from what is here is interesting and well delivered. 4.5 stars

New Librarianship Master Class/MOOC Archive

Training – Online Lessons

Ted Talks – Stephen Wilkes, The Passing of Time, Caught in a Single Photo.

I enjoy Stephen Wilkes enthusiasm for his art and his photographs are beautiful and interesting. Stephen speaks with clarity and confidence about his subject and I found his talk very interesting. If I had the time and stamina to spend a whole day up a cherry picker I might be tempted to try it! A well presented talk which is informative but probably more interesting for photography enthusiasts like me. Certainly met expectations and I expected a high level of of delivery from Ted Talks. 5 stars.


TeacherTube – Photoshop Introduction was disappointing. The video is of low quality so while the features of photoshop are being demonstrated you can’t see clearly what is actually being demonstrated. It has resulted in the video being near useless. The audio is not great either, it is not done with a proper microphone, its got that tinny echo quality. It is not likely that people will stay to watch the whole presentation. Disappointing. 1 star


National Geographic – Adventures in Photographing England’s Urban Wildlife is a thoroughly enjoyable lecture presentation but a young man who photographs animals in urban areas. Bertie Gregory is confident in delivering his presentation and is charming and funny. He starts with showing photos of himself as a child, always a good way to start! He discusses the different types of animals that can be found in urban England, some of which are quite surprising. He also tells a story of a woman who mistakenly thought that he was taking photographs of her changing in her bedroom. Production quality was high as I expected from National Geographic but the presentation was more enjoyable than I anticipated. 5 stars.


National Geographic – Behind the Photo is a series of short videos explaining the story behind a photograph. This particular one is of a wild Macaque who has just woken up from anaesthetic. He comes from a Macaque community which is highly diseased and at risk of passing those diseases on to the human population in the same area. Beautiful production quality and interesting information in a short package. 5 stars.


TED-Ed – What cameras see that our eyes don’t is and interesting short animation explaining how cameras can be used to see things that we can’t see normally. For example something too fast or too small or too distant. An informative piece that would work for school children as well as adults. Production quality is good and overall it met my expectations of a TED-Ed presentation. 4 stars







Training – Mooc

MIT OpenCourseWare (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) offer material from over 2300 courses. They provide web-based publication of most of the MIT course content. OpenCourseWare is “open and available to the world and is a permanent MIT activity”. They have courses translated into various languages as well so this is a very accessible program. Subjects include Business, Engineering, Fine Arts, Health and Medicine, Humanities, Science and more. I was surprised how much was on offer, I expected the content to more restricted. It is an easy to navigate website featuring various ways to find a course that suits. It has good descriptions of the courses with details of who is teaching it, “as taught in” dates so you know when the course was taught and what level it is. 4.5 stars.


edX offers courses from several Educational Institutes from across the world including Harvard University, The University of Queensland, The RWTH Aachen University and the Australian National University. The courses are clearly identified with “Credit-Eligible” or “Verified”, a fee is payable for verified certificate courses. edX is open to everyone except those in the Crimea region of Ukraine, this is due to a US political sanction. I was impressed with the range of courses on offer, a bigger range than I expected.  The quality of the website is very good. It has bright, clear thumbnails for each course and it is easy to search through them as well as browse. 4.5 stars.


Curtin University states that they believe in “ensuring that education is accessible to all”. They offer a small range of short courses on a variety of topics for free. I was surprised how small a range it is. If there are more that I couldn’t find, then the website needs some work so it is clear how to access them. They include YouTube clips to give potential users a brief overview of the subject you are looking at. Before enrolling you are provided with information on the possible learning outcomes. I think that Curtain University doesn’t offer as good a product as some of the other providers. The website is not up-to-date in either style or content. 2 Stars.


Class Central offers access to thousands of MOOC courses. Class Central gathers links to education providers and offers an easy way to browse or search for what you want. There is a list of trending MOOC’s as well as a “spotlight” section comprising of Class Central selected courses. User friendly, smart looking website which is easy to use. This is the type of thing I would expect when using a MOOC website, and it makes sense to have a website that covers many MOOC providers. 5 stars.


Swinburne University Autism MOOC -In 2015 Swinburne launched a highly successful MOOC specifically for people who work, live or care for people with autism. This was launched on World Autism Awareness Day in 2015 and had more than 15,000 participants. They now offer a selection of MOOC’s for professional development and an Autism MOOC Team. The 2015 MOOC is self paced and you are able to register interest in up coming MOOC’s and information sessions. Course guides are available for download. While not a big range of courses, it is an important resource for those dealing with autism. Straight forward, user friendly website. 5 stars