Saturday, 10 August 2013

Share Your Thoughts!

Hey! So I thought it would be wonderful for all of us to put down our thoughts about the course ADLS (Archaeology's Dirty Little Secrets) even though I know a lot has been discussed on the forums of the course page. The blog made available to everyone will be a good place to collect all feedback.

Here are my thoughts:

I took up this course purely out of interest. I had some time on hand and decided to do a course for fun. Initially I was a bit apprehensive when I realised that we would have assignments to submit. I us kept wondering what kind of assignments could they possibly expect us to do! As I began the course however, I started enjoying myself so much. The assignments turned out to be very interesting and many were thought provoking. We were given a chance to "Think like an Akkadian" where we could try writing in the cuneform script and talk about our experience. We also had a chance to describe any site and have our peers guess it through various clues and location details. The above mentioned exercises were just two among so many others. I have come away learning so much that I am more intrigued and interested in the work done by archaeologists and all the various people involved from biologists to anthropologists to geologists etc.

So here I am rambling on. Why don't yu guys tell us what your experiences with the course were!


  1. I just joined Coursera in January and had taken a few classes before ADLS started. I was a little hesitant when the course outline talked about the assignments, but I figured why not give it a try.
    The video lectures the first week gave me a tantalizing look at the secrets to be revealed. Each of the readings and web explorations led me to search even further for more information on the topics, and the first assignment was an opportunity to share something I loved with the class. It was a real privilege to read the assignments my fellow students submitted, especially those from students in other countries and cultures who shared something of their own experience. The shared experience was especially highlighted in the discussion forums, where we all shared information, links, personal stories and more. I thoroughly enjoyed this opportunity to become part of a global community who are taking action to preserve our past.
    I am helping to preserve the past by taking part in the Crowdsource Ur project, which one of our fellow students recommended. The project is working to transcribe the records of the joint excavations of Ur (in modern day Iraq) from 1922-1934 by the British Museum and the University of Pennsylvania, led by the archaeologist Sir Charles Leonard Woolley.

  2. I'm Kathy, from Australia.
    I first heard of Coursera from a friend who was raving about a course she’d done, so I checked it out. Going through the courses available, I was struck by the words “Admit it, you always wanted to be an archaeologist….” Those words spoke to me. In fact, they screamed at me! So I enrolled and enjoyed one of the best experiences of my life!

    Prof. Sue Alcock and her amazing staff have put together a fascinating and inspirational course. I found the readings and the videos exciting and thought-provoking. I was a bit doubtful about the assignments at first, but I found them, not a task, but an exploration. And as for the peer reviewing, this was one of the highlights of the course. As well as being humbled by other students’ knowledge and attitudes, this was a great learning experience, and certainly broadened my horizons.

    The forums, too, were lots of fun – “meeting” and chatting with such a range of individuals from all over the world and with such a range of backgrounds was an enormous pleasure.

    I’ve now subscribed to lots of archaeological blogs and newsletters so I don’t lose touch with this fascinating world!

    One down side though – I think I’m becoming a MOOC addict!

  3. ADLS is my first MOOC ever in my life. I was a bit nervous would I be able to do it (the language and all this stuff), but i must say it was so easy, but challenging that i have enjoyed every video, every readings and every assignment! Maybe because I was interested in the subject, maybe because Dr. Alcock and her team were so friendly and approachable, but I think that would be my favourite course for long time.
    Now I can recommend another course, just started - 'The Brief History of Humankind'. There's many of ADLS people there and we have our little forum discussion thread!
    ADLS is the great experience for me!

  4. I found out about the courses by accident through a radio program about free long distance learning. When I came across the ADLS I more or less fell in love with it. I have been involved in archaeology for some time and it was really great to see so many points of view from all over the world expressed clearly and concisely in one place. It has introduced me to some sites from around the world that I had never thought of before and some fresh ideas on some that I know well. Most of my archaeological experience has been within the United Kingdom but I have a long-standing interest and involvement with the protection of heritage sites worldwide. I can be very boring on the world Heritage Convention you have been warned.

    All in all I think it was a brilliant course and roll on the second one.