Google MOOC about searching techniques

Ben Zimmer bgzimmer at BABEL.LING.UPENN.EDU
Fri Sep 21 23:50:42 UTC 2012

On Fri, Sep 21, 2012 at 6:55 PM, Garson O'Toole wrote:
> McFedries includes a cautionary note reflecting the complications that
> word-trackers (and quotation-trackers) are facing with increasing
> frequency.
> [Begin excerpt]
> Education researcher Dave Cormier is the coiner of MOOC, but as far as
> I can tell no online cite is available for the first use. The earliest
> citation links to a website called Connectivism Wiki that probably has
> the first use, but alas that site has been taken down.
> [End excerpt]

The first Wordspy cite is from 7/27/08. Slightly earlier (7/15/08):
"I am planning to attend this fall’s Connectivism and Connective
Knowledge online course, that runs from September 8 – November 29,
2008. With instructors George Siemens and Stephen Downes, it is sure
to be an interesting and exciting experience that can be taken for
credit through the University of Manitoba or free without the credit.
Interested in joining over 1000 (at recent count) people in this MOOC
(Massive Online Open Course), then you may want to do some background
reading that George has gathered together."

Even if we still had access to the Univ. of Manitoba connectivism
wiki, we wouldn't be able to push it back much further. Cormier
describes the coinage here:
"To the best of my knowledge, the term 'MOOC' comes out of a skype
chat conversation I had with George Siemens about what exactly he
would call this thing he and Stephen Downes were doing so I could call
it something for the ETT show were were planning on the subject. We
threw a bunch of possibilities around, and I dropped MOOC into the
connectivism wiki, and, yesterday, someone asked me to do a
presentation on the topic. 3 months. crazy. I’m not going to dial down
into specifics of how the course is structured, so if you don’t know
what I’m talking about… check out the wiki first."


Ben Zimmer

The American Dialect Society -

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