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MOOCs are like Chinese Buffets

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I liken MOOCs to the Chinese buffet that our family enjoys.  There are dozens of various dishes, and many that I want to eat a lot of.  So I developed a strategy.  First I just get vegetables that are not fried or coated in sauces.  Hot and sour soup is a must.  Next is an eggroll and those dumpling things, etc…This way, at least I can try to claim some healthiness and I don’t feel like a glutton.

Of course, Chinese buffets are great for people watching!  I live in the lard belt and there are a lot of very overweight people here in L.A. (lower Alabama) and South Mississippi.  I see many people that have just one plate that is just piled with food. Sometimes the food is layered on top of other food!    How can they eat all of that food? Don’t they know they can just eat a few things and then go back for something else?  Some of them DO GO BACK and then I wonder how they move for the rest of the day and if they eat dinner.

I took to heart the orientation material from week 1 and decided what I wanted to get out of this course.  At least I tentatively decided 😉  Now that we are in the throes of the course, I think that some things are becoming obvious.  MOOCs are good for self-directed learners and people who are motivated and interested in the topics.  I wish I could sample everything but I can’t put that much on my plate, so I won’t.  If you see me and think I need to try something, just let me know and I’ll go check it out!


About sylrog

I am a graduate student getting a PhD in Instructional Design at the University of South Alabama. My main interests are foreign language acquisition, qualitative research, theories of learning and learning management systems. (So many interests, so little time) I work as a graduate assistant in the Innovation in Learning Center at the University of South Alabama. I also enjoy outdoor activities and generally being active.

3 responses »

  1. Hi, Sylvia,
    I feel the same way, in fact, I was just about to use the same metaphor.


  2. I really loved this metaphor. Some years ago we went to Chinese and I attended a banquet in a massive Chinese eating hall. In attendance were some 3000 people, all seated at round tables, being served an number of dishes. The ‘green beer’ flowed freely and the noise level continued to rise as people ate, drank and mad merry. So I would like to add to your ‘spot on’ metaphor and say that just as these 3000 people had the potential to make an infinite number of connections so to do we as MOOC learners however I think we would just leave the venue (course) feeling exhausted, very full, and ready to collapse. I, for one, want to find the way to leave feeling invigorated,engaged and full of new thoughts and ideas.. I agree let’s put something on our plate and really savour it…. !

  3. Interesting read , I’m going to spend more time researching this subject


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