LMU’s new online courses
Some people find it easier to get up in the morning than others. Why? And why do theatrical productions now find audiences all over the world? These are just two of the questions addressed in LMU’s new Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs).
In the new MOOC entitled “Circadian clocks: how rhythms structure life”, which gets underway on 15. January, Professors Martha Merrow and Till Roenneberg of LMU‘s Institute of Medical Psychology explore the workings of biological clocks and how they affect how we organize our daily rounds. In the introductory video, Professor Roenneberg pointedly demonstrates one such effect – by turning up late for his own lecture. He has a ready explanation: It’s too early in the day for him. And what follows in this course on chronobiology demonstrates that his justification for his late appearance is not a threadbare excuse for laziness. Entrained circadian rhythms not only structure daily routines in human societies, innate biological clocks have been shown to operate in organisms at all levels of complexity. They are found not only in flowers, bees and birds of prey, but in moles – and molds.
The online study programs provided on the Coursera platform attract participants from all over the world. And Professor Christopher Balme’s new lecture series is tailor-made for a far-flung audience: His course begins on 16. February, and its subject is “Theatre and Globalization“. Indeed, his online students can actively contribute to ongoing research on the impact of globalization on the dramatic arts by reporting their own experiences of local theatre productions. What roles do theaters play in cities around the world? Does the very term ‘theatre’ actually have the same meaning in different cultural settings? These questions, as well as other issues relating to the interaction between globalization processes and the theatre, will be examined in depth during Balme’s course.
As a novel form of collaborative learning, LMU made its first Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) available on the Coursera platform in 2013. The two new courses bring the total number of MOOCs provided by LMU to 9. Of these, 4 are available on demand, i.e., students can choose to start them at any time. In response to great demand, two of LMU’s MOOCs are also available in Chinese. The courses are open to everyone, anywhere in the world. No prior qualifications are required, and enrolment is free.