The Philosophy Department at San José State University has decided not to make use of Harvard professor Michael Sandel’s MOOC [Massive open online course] JusticeX. The department has explained its decision in an open letter to Sandel. An excerpt:
In spite of our admiration for your ability to lecture in such an engaging way to such a large audience, we believe that having a scholar teach and engage his or her own students in person is far superior to having those students watch a video of another scholar engaging his or her students.I’d be proud to knew these faculty as colleagues. Their principled stand for (what I call) real-presence education and against its cheap simulacrum should prove a model for faculty in similar circumstances.
More from the Chronicle of Higher Education
Why Professors at San José State Won’t Use a Harvard Professor’s MOOC
The Philosophy Department’s open letter
Michael Sandel’s response
Thanks to Stefan Hagemann for catching these developments before I did. If you care about teaching and learning, take the time to read Stefan’s post about how to answer a professor’s question in class.