Over the last 4 years our team has created (at last count) 305 free and open courses. We’ve learned some lessons about that process and are continually tweaking our efforts in order to deliver quality content to our users. This year has been no different, and any insider here at the office will tell you we’ve spent a considerable amount of the summer brainstorming.
While we’ve been looking at the bigger picture, we’ve identified action items (or “low hanging fruit”, if you will) that will help us improve the efficacy of our courses and, of course, help our students. You should soon start to see:
- more formative assessments (read: more frequent checkpoints and quizes to assess your knowledge as you go)
- increased use of mixed media (photos, videos, images..oh my!)
- smaller pieces of content (20 pages of readings? How about 5?)
These pieces will be implemented on a rolling basis, but we’ll take this opportunity for a quick shout out to our content team, who will be assessing and directing these improvements in the upcoming year (Jen, Tanner, Lindsay, Angelyn, Izzy and David are rockstars, to say the least).
To that end, a handful of potential courses (listed on site, but not yet complete) had to be let go in order to free up time to make the aforementioned improvements. Only five of our Areas of Study were impacted by this move and you can see the list of these courses we have put on an indefinite hold here. While we may revisit these in the future, we’re taking them off the “to do” list for now so we can focus our energy on increasing the quality of the completed courses on Saylor.org.