Open courses that teach writing skills: where are they?
July 11, 2012 6:16 AM   Subscribe

Open courses that teach writing skills: where are they?

Sites like Coursera, Udacity, and Khan Academy specialize in technology, science, and mathematics. I need similar resources but that teach writing skills (and English in general, I suppose, but mainly how to write well).

Free courses on expository writing, technical writing, grammar, how to build a sentence, how to edit, how to index, etc., would all be good.

Courses that require payment would not be good. Also, it isn't enough to get a syllabus, a few PowerPoint slides, and a list of Amazon links. I am hoping for real content (lectures, exercises, and tests) free and online like you might get on Coursera (but for writing, not for math and science).
posted by pracowity to Writing & Language (6 answers total) 34 users marked this as a favorite
How about the wise old OWL (Purdue Online Writing Lab)?
posted by notyou at 6:32 AM on July 11, 2012

MIT Open Courseware includes writing and humanistic studies. The content available looks to vary from course-to-course, but you may find something that will meet your needs.
posted by chiefthe at 6:53 AM on July 11, 2012

Response by poster: OWL is nice as far as it goes, but I'm looking for the sort of motivation students get from seeing and hearing a good lecturer explain how to do something. Does OWL have videoed lectures online?
posted by pracowity at 6:53 AM on July 11, 2012

OWL includes some video, but unfortunately not quite what you're after.

There's an opportunity here for an enterprising composition teacher.
posted by notyou at 7:01 AM on July 11, 2012

The party line in composition studies is that it is not helpful to deposit information about writing into the minds of students. Writing teachers want to see what a writers goals are, what they have composed so far, and then go forward from there. This approach doesn't lend well to lectures, tests, and handouts. Not saying the party line is right but that's my sense of it. A composition scholar who created a resource such as the one you describe might have to do so anonymously to avoid harsh criticism from peers.
posted by Jagz-Mario at 11:36 AM on July 11, 2012 [1 favorite]

Well there's your Comp Academy Premium upsell, Jagz-Mario.

Skype + Google Docs.
posted by notyou at 2:33 PM on July 11, 2012 [1 favorite]

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