UF Law offers first free massive open online course
Capture By Matt Walker
The University of Florida Levin College of Law is joining the MOOC revolution on a global scale. The law school’s first Massive Open Online Course will begin May 1, with The Global Student’s Introduction to U.S. Law.
The course is free and open to all – admission to UF is not required – and will appeal particularly to pre-law undergraduate students and international students contemplating further study of the U.S. legal system.
“Our new MOOC will provide an opportunity to literally anyone with computer access anywhere in the world to learn more about U.S. law and our legal system and for some to learn whether pursuing a career in law would be personally interesting and rewarding,” said UF Law Dean Robert Jerry.
The eight-week course will offer an insightful overview of the U.S. legal system and how it compares to other legal systems around the world, taught by an eight-member team of some of UF Law’s top faculty members and scholars. Students will learn basic concepts and terminology in the fields of constitutional law, criminal law and contract law.
“For curious students, the MOOC is a great opportunity to explore – and not just to explore the subject, but also to explore UF Law,” Jerry said.
Last year, the University of Florida became the first university in the state to offer MOOCs with almost 100,000 students enrolled in four courses at the time of launch last spring.
Through its partnership with MOOC industry leader Coursera, UF Law stands to gain expertise in designing, marketing and staging a course for tens of thousands of students at a time. Coursera’s invitation-only consortium includes only 98 universities worldwide. UF is Coursera’s only member in Florida.
By late March, there were more than 6,400 students from across the globe signed up for The Global Student’s Introduction to U.S. Law, with about 4,000-6,000 more expected to register during the first few weeks of the course. Students can register at any point after the course begins. Students will not receive credit for coursework.