This just in – it’s time for another Family History Month post. Let’s focus on two things I especially enjoy – our Society’s current Shared Endeavour – World War I (a shout-out to Alex Coles who has been moderating this project all year – with forum topics, hangouts, and articles in Destinations sharing how she is approaching this project in conjunction with her place) AND online learning opportunities.
FutureLearn is a website that brings together students who want to learn with courses offered by universities around the world. The deliver method used is a MOOC (massive open online course). What this means is that the course content is online – usually videos, lectures, links to online resources, student interaction in forums, and sometimes quizzes or essays. Courses are oftentimes available with a certificate of completion. I am finishing up a six-week course on Irish history taught by three professors at Trinity College in Dublin. My fellow students are located all over the world and are of varying ages. The comments and additional resources shared by the students are one of the highlights of the course. I have learned as much from them as I have from the professors.
If you have been following along all year with our Shared Endeavour, you have had an opportunity to study your place from a particular standpoint – the effect World War I had on your place. Whether this was the effect on the individuals who went to war, the families they left behind, the deprivation suffered by the people in your place, how your place changed (becoming less rural or more industrial), the changes from the late 19th century society to the early 20th century society, how politics, migration, health, jobs, technology, and culture changed your place (and the world). Of course World War I went on for more than one year (we started our Shared Endeavour to coincide with the start of the war). And for many of our places (certainly the United States and Canada), we might not have had any serious involvement until later in the war.
Alex Coles has provided a number of excellent resources to date (be sure to check out the Society Forum for resources and ideas). In honor of Family History Month, I’m going to share a learning opportunity with you. Why not learn more about World War I by taking a course through FutureLearn? The following courses are starting soon and will be sure to add to your understanding of World War I and your place.
World War 1: Paris 1919 – A New World Order?
A three week course starting on 13 October and taught by Christian J. Tams through the University of Glasgow (and produced in association with the BBC)
World War 1: Aviation Comes of Age
A three week course starting on 20 October and taught by Peter Gray through the University of Birmingham (and produced in association with the BBC)
World War 1: Changing Faces of Heroism
A three week course starting on 27 October and taught by Allison Fell through the University of Leeds (and produced in association with the BBC)
World War 1: Trauma and Memory
A three week course starting on 3 November and taught by Annika Mombauer through the Open University (and produced in association with the BBC)
Perhaps we will meet up on the student forum over at FutureLearn if you sign up (did I mention these courses were FREE? – yes FREE!) for one or more of these courses. Together we can learn more about World War I from these various perspectives.
Happy Family History Month!