Super MOOC March Check-In

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It’s been a few weeks since the start of the Social Issues through Comic Books course. In its first module, Addiction, students were given tools to understand and recognize addiction so they could better identify addiction in the weekly readings. Weekly readings have included Buzzkill, Green Lantern V2 #85 & 86, Sex Criminals #1, and Batman: Venom (The Dark Knight 16-20).

Time to check in on how my fellow Women Write About Comics participants are doing.

Carolina Mello: I am an enthusiastic participant of all kinds of MOOCs, but I have never worked with the Canvas Network platform. Most of my classes are hosted at Coursera, actually, and it was a large change for me. At Canvas, the discussion boards are more like a chat room. I think that the impossibility of creating subtopics under a bigger category leads to confusion, and posts are easily lost. And the discussion boards are a huge part of this course, unlike other classes that focus more on the videos.

The community is great, though. I’ve read Batman: Venom and Sex Criminals. The discussion boards for the first one are interesting; people there are very informal but have strong opinions. I haven’t participated in them though, possibly because I hadn’t much to say—I’ll try to fix that in the future. Unfortunately there isn’t a Sex Criminals discussion board and the Canvas Network interface doesn’t allow students to talk much about that one. The interview with Denny O’Neil was fun and instructive. I am looking forward to the other ones!

Claire Napier: Personally, I’ve not even dipped my toe (yet?). Partly because I don’t have access to the required reading, which was always a potential concern, but it also turns out I am far more reluctant to return to “being taught” than I thought. ~Issues, I guess. I wanted to take the course so that I could at least say “I have done this course” and sound semi-legit to people who value capital-Q Qualification, but. Here I am! Stuck in the middle with me.

Ivy Noelle Weir: Haven’t even signed into MOOC yet, been too hectic 🙁

Two-thirds of the group haven’t yet started, but it’s only a few weeks in. When I originally talked with course instructor, Christina Blanch, she was curious to see if the six-month course length might impact participation. Only time will tell. Personally, I’m curious to see if there’s a bump in activity for Module 2, Environment, as there’s a live interview with Matt Fraction.

Want to hear more? Women Write About Comics will be chronicling the experiences of several students as they participate in the course over the next six months. Images used in this post are covers of comics to be read during the course.

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Brenda works in tech by day and as a geek, maker, STEM community builder by night. She uses her super hero powers for the good of all kind.

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