I’ve signed up for a Stanford MOOC called “Digging deeper: the form and function of manuscripts”, which is opening on April 21 and will run over the course of 5 weeks. I intend to share my reflection here as part of the learning process.
What is Digging deeper about ?
It’s a follow-up to a previous MOOC on the making of manuscripts, which I haven’t followed, though some of the video lectures are available on YouTube. The core issues being discussed in the course will be the interpretation, conservation and dissemination of medieval manuscripts. Quite an ambitious syllabus !
The part I am looking forward to the most is analysing non-Western manuscripts (still not sure which part of the world we’ll focus on) as well as music notation, a topic that was briefly outlined in last summer’s University of Edinburgh « Fundamentals of Music Theory » on Coursera.
The course description also promises an exploration of what changes digitization has brought about in the field of manuscript studies. I’m guessing we’ll look at digitization from the point of view of conservation and access, but I’m curious as to what other issues may emerge in the process.
Why did I sign up ?
I am no stranger to MOOCs – on Coursera, Udacity, P2PU – but this will be my first time MOOCing with Stanford. It will be a good opportunity to test the new Lagunita platform, born out of a rebranding of Stanford EdX.
Aside from being a welcome respite from my studies and the stress of upcoming deadlines, Digging deeper should be a wonderful insight into collections that I may otherwise not have had access to, or may not have appreciated as much without an introduction by specialists.
P.S. In her review of Digging deeper 1 , Bardiac wonders why Stanford would be investing so much in an online course that doesn’t quite measure up to a regular college course that is 1. free and 2. doesn’t quite measure up to the standards of a regular college course. It’s an interesting question to reflect on this Sunday as we get ready for the start of Digging deeper 2.