Short term course auditing solutions?

Speaking with @Barb_White from Akron, she noticed some issues when trying to audit an online course for her team’s learning circles. We’ve shared some auditing practices previously, but lately, there seem to be even more barriers around accessing or auditing online course content.

Here’s the three courses she noted and what I found out about how to audit each course:

  • How Music Can Change Your Life (Coursera) starts Feb 22 and can only audit the first week for now. Come Feb 22nd, it may be available to be fully audited, but that’s not certain.
  • Smithsonian’s Objects That Define America (Edx) appears to only to offer one-month audit access. It’s pretty annoying, but the way around this is for learners to create a new account every month, and then that account will have a new one-month to audit the course. It also says the course is only available till March 31 at which point it will be archived. I’m not sure if it can be audited fully after that or if it will remain a one-month only.
  • The Rise of Superheroes (EdX), similar to the Smithsonian, offers a longer audit access period of one and a half months, and also plans for it to be archived March 31st, 2020.

Questions to everyone here:

  1. Do you have any suggestions for Barb’s team about accessing this content during their learning circle? Download the content? Printing? Putting it on a flash drive? Noting the syllabus?
  2. Do you have any recommendations for finding other course content that might meet similar objectives?
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Hi Nico,

I’ve taken a lot of Coursera courses and it’s fairly common to release the first week as a preview, and the rest of the content once the official start date arrives. I completed the first week of the music course just to confirm - loved the neuroscience material :slight_smile: - and once completed, I saw a message advising that the rest will unlock when the session begins.

For most Coursera courses (including this one) all of the materials including video files and transcripts are readily available to download for offline use. When auditing, most courses restrict access to assignments however.

The edX access periods are tied to the course length, the Smithsonian course is 4 weeks, while the Superheroes course is 6 weeks, hence the difference in access.

Materials are also usually easy to download from edX, however I noticed that they’ve chosen not to provide video file downloads on the Superheroes course, and that’s probably due to copyright restrictions due to the topic.

Other content suggestions: is a fabulous site - not a course but a toolkit of resources exploring these interrelationships - with a section specifically on music and cognition.

Why does music make you move?, FutureLearn, starts Feb 10, 6 weeks, available to audit.

Music for Wellness, edX, archived but available to audit, 4 weeks.

Star Trek: Inspiring Culture and Technology, edX, not quite superheroes but this series of 3 courses examining the impact of Star Trek on our culture is definitely worth a look - archived but available to audit, length varies 5-7 weeks.

Hope this helps :slight_smile: