As part of my Coursera experience with the course in Digital Cultures, #EDCMOOC, one of the interesting issues I have observed is that there are 40,000 students (60,000 in another of the Coursera course I am attending), from literally all over the world, and EVERYONE has to communicate in English, as English is the language of the course. My research shows that although Mandarin and Spanish have the largest amount of people who are native speakers, English is still the language of the Internet, at least for a couple more decades.

Julien Leyre

What language is the net written in? A wikipedia page on the question proposes the following charts. These charts are based on estimates as of May 2011, themselves not fully representative of the full net content – but let’s have a look at them all the same.

This one represents the languages used for the contents of the web:

Screen Shot 2013-01-31 at 3.02.34 PM

This one represents the language spoken by web users

Screen Shot 2013-01-31 at 3.02.51 PM

Did you notice the discrepancy? English accounts for 57% of all contents – but only 27% of users. And in parallel, Chinese (I suppose this is Mandarin) accounts for 25% of users, but only 5% of contents.

Traditionally, English has been the web’s lingua franca. But non-English contents has grown at a rate much higher than English contents. And it looks like the future of the web will be multilingual. Also, let’s not forget – if 55% of the web is written…

View original post 379 more words

Coursera free courses

Free online courses on topics of your interest.  How about that?  I had heard about the concept of Coursera, so I have registered to one of their online courses, this one on one of the topics of my interest:  E-learning and Digital Cultures.  This is part of my personal learning curve in how people are now being trained in the Global Village of the 21st Century.  Hopefully, many of the concepts I will be learning I will be able to share and implement in my own courses.  So, for starters, I am sharing some of the information on the venue itself – Coursera – and the course that I will be attending.

Quote

About the Course

E-learning and Digital Cultures is aimed at teachers, learning technologists, and people with a general interest in education who want to deepen their understanding of what it means to teach and learn in the digital age. The course is about how digital cultures intersect with learning cultures online, and how our ideas about online education are shaped through “narratives”, or big stories, about the relationship between people and technology. We’ll explore some of the most engaging perspectives on digital culture in its popular and academic forms, and we’ll consider how our practices as teachers and learners are informed by the difference of the digital. We’ll look at how learning and literacy is represented in popular digital-, (or cyber-) culture. For example, how is ‘learning’ represented in the film The Matrix, and how does this representation influence our understanding of the nature of e-learning?On this course, you will be invited to think critically and creatively about e-learning, to try out new ideas in a supportive environment, and to gain fresh perspectives on your own experiences of teaching and learning. The course will begin with a ‘film festival’, in which we’ll view a range of interesting short films and classic clips, and begin discussing how these might relate to the themes emerging from the course readings. We will then move on to a consideration of multimodal literacies and digital media, and you’ll be encouraged to think about visual methods for presenting knowledge and conveying understanding. The final part of the course will involve the creation of your own visual artefact; a pictorial, filmic or graphic representation of any of the themes encountered during the course, and you‘ll have the opportunity to use digital spaces in new ways to present this work.

E-learning and Digital Cultures will make use of online spaces beyond the Coursera environment, and we want some aspects of participation in this course to involve the wider social web. We hope that participants will share in the creation of course content and assessed work that will be publicly available online.

Unquote
Sounds interesting, right?  Will be sharing my experiences soon.Image