Coming to Canvas in September: Part Two

Canvas

We are heading into September with images of bright yellow school buses, new backpacks and brown bagged lunches in our heads.  The school supplies are purchased, the first day of school clothes are picked out and the kids have decided who they will sit with in the class.  Ahhh…September and Back to School…

But it’s not just the kiddies who are headed back to school!  Grab your calendar and a pencil and schedule in YOUR back to school plans for September!  Canvas has 15 new courses to choose from this month – so whether you want to study Laura Ingalls Wilder books, learn to speak conversational Spanish or discover the nuances of oil, there are lots of great options to suit you! Don’t forget to check out Coming to Canvas in September: Part One!

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Humanities

Art, Technology & Media: Digital Imaging                                                                                                              Starts Sep 8, length: 6 weeks

This course will examine the intersection of technology, culture, and the fine arts. Digital Imaging will focus on the use and manipulation of the image in print and online with a focus on image authenticity and creativity in the age of the Internet. Students will refine their use of Adobe Photoshop and learn to give and receive constructive feedback on visual artistic projects. Communication and process will be emphasized over raw skill and technique, but students can expect to see their image skills improve along with the conceptual foundations of their work. 

Cada Dia Spanish – Daily Conversations
Starts Sep 22, length: 10 weeks

Quick, what does “cada día” mean? If you know, but don’t speak Spanish, this course is for you. We are a community of learners, sharing daily, practical conversations with each other. Native Spanish speakers from Colombia, Argentina, Mexico, Spain, and all over will join us and provide supportive feedback. The course offers eight modules, with simple and fun conversational activities. We ask participants to share their activities with others for feedback and further investigation. The goal is to make conversation available “cada día.” Optional Web meetings are available to share your conversational activities with native speakers.

Laura Ingalls Wilder: Exploring Her Work & Writing Life
Starts Sep 22, length: 10 weeks

Laura Ingalls Wilder’s novels have inspired generations of readers of all ages. Unlike most fiction for young readers published during the Great Depression, Wilder’s Little House books have never gone out of print. While they are uniquely American, they seem to cross cultural boundaries, and have been translated into dozens of languages, from German and French to Indonesian and Japanese. Yet Wilder’s work is also at the center of controversy. Who actually wrote the Little House series? How did Wilder’s personal life influence the direction and content of her fiction? Are the books a reliable and sensitive representation of the pioneer experience in the American West? This course is designed to explore these issues and more!

Ozarks History: Examining an American Culture
Starts Sep 8, length: 10 weeks

This is an interdisciplinary course that introduces students to the study of the Ozarks through the arts, humanities, media, and social sciences. The course will explore such issues as regional heritage, cultural adaptation, and the survival of regional and cultural identity and folkways through comparison of Ozarks people and places with other cultural groups and regions. 

The World Columbian Exposition
Starts Sep 22, length: 8 weeks

For six months, the Chicago Columbian Exposition of 1893 dazzled both Americans and the world. The largest World’s Fair to date, the Chicago Fair entertained, amazed, and edified 27 million people, introduced hundreds of new technologies and products, and left us legacies such as the carnival midway, the ferris wheel, the trade show, not to mention Pabst Blue Ribbon Beer and Wrigley Gum. This course will take a tour of all the wonders of the Fair as well as introduce students to many of the available online primary sources.

 

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Science

Introduction to Cybersecurity
Starts Sep 22, length: 8 weeks

This course provides an overview of the evolving field of cybersecurity, with an introduction to cybersecurity standards and law. Students will learn about common cyber attacks and the techniques for identifying, detecting, and defending against cybersecurity threats. They will also gain a basic understanding of personal, physical, network, web, and wireless security, as well as a foundation for more advanced study of cybersecurity.

OIL101: Fact or Friction?
Starts Sep 22, length: 6 weeks

Are you using the right type of engine oil in your vehicle? Is synthetic, conventional, or blended oil the best? Are there certain oil types that are better than others? Engine type, driving style, weather, and age of vehicle and engine are some of the important factors to consider when selecting the best oil for your vehicle. The misuse of oil can be detrimental to the life of your vehicle. There is much more to oil than meets the eye!

The Emerging Future: Technology Issues and Trends                                                                                                        Starts Sep 22, length: 6 weeks

Learn to think like a futurist! Futurism is not about predicting the future, but making informed decisions today that will impact future developments. The Emerging Future: Technology Issues and Trends MOOC offered by the School of Library and Information Science at San José State University provides the planning skills and technology trends needed to create your personal and organization’s future. Knowing who and what to watch will keep you informed on the latest technology issues and trends that will impact the future. Thank you for your interest in the Emerging Future: Technology Issues and Trends MOOC. The class is now full, and a wait list has been started. Please complete the form to express interest in enrolling should space become available. 

 

Once you have had a chance to make up your mind about which courses to sign up for, don’t forget to add them to your Accredible Profile!

Spotlight: MRUniversity

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Tyler Cowan and Alex Tabarrok, economic professors from George Mason University, launched MRUniversity to offer education that is better, cheaper and easier to access.  Courses offered consist of multiple, short videos that allow you to watch between tasks.  Have 6 minutes to spare on the bus/train/subway?  You could watch a video and still have 30 seconds to spare!

In a neat and unusual twist, some of the content is crowd-sourced!  Students are encouraged to vote for the next lot of content or to suggest new material.  Instructors are encouraged to create a flipped economics classroom – using class time to drive discussions, explanations and interactions while the videos are watched at home as “homework”. Best of all – the courses are free!

This month we will focus on three courses offered by MRUniversity.

Everyday Economics

What role does economics play in your day-to-day life? You might be surprised to find that economics is a big part of nearly everything you do! Everyday Economics explores just that — how the “big ideas” from economics relate to everyday topics.

Even if you have never stayed awake through an entire economics class in your life, you need to watch “The Hockey Stick of Human Prosperity” Video.  In 4 mins and 54 seconds, you will have a new appreciation for economics and it’s role in the world.  Trust me – I fell asleep in every 8:30AM economics class…with these videos, I just wanted to learn more!

Economics of Media

In the Information Age, media is everywhere. This course will help you make sense of it all, providing insight into the structure of media firms, the nature of their products and how they make money.
Is media biased? Is consolidation of media companies bad for consumers? This course will address those questions as well as how the government affects the structure of media through policies such as net neutrality, copyright, TV regulation, and spectrum allocation. This course will provide a general background on the research from economists on media and journalism. There will be a lot of economics and not too much math.

The American Housing Finance System

The course is intended for people who would like a deeper understanding of the American housing finance system. The focus will be on providing necessary background knowledge rather than on evaluating specific policy proposals. Near the end of the course, participants will be encouraged to bring up policy issues and to discuss them in light of the information presented.  Special emphasis will be placed on two factors. One is mortgage analytics, which means the measurement and modeling of default risk and interest-rate risk from the standpoint of the lender. A second factor is business process and industry structure, which means describing the tasks involved in mortgage lending and characterizing the firms that perform each task.

 

There you have it – three economics courses that will keep you awake and interested this month.  Which will you sign up for?  Don’t forget to update your Learners Profile!