Examples of early online courses?
June 10, 2013 10:10 AM   Subscribe

I'm looking for examples of online teaching presentations.

Preferably from the early days of online instruction. Extra points for shaky camera, low production values and nervousness. Subject matter can be anything, any grade level.
posted by Ideefixe to Education (7 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Can you narrow down what you mean by online instruction/teaching presentations? I'm familiar with the basic history of the PLATO networked instructional system, which was delivering functional courseware by the early-mid 1970s, but it seems like you are talking about a specific, different sort of online instruction.
posted by drlith at 10:18 AM on June 10, 2013 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: I'm looking more for video courses, with teacher looking ill-at-ease, or slides with voice-over but not amateurs telling me how to crochet--academic instruction.
posted by Ideefixe at 10:36 AM on June 10, 2013

The internet wasn't so good for video until fairly recently, so the early days of online instruction are mostly pure-text, with some static graphics. (think PDF, not MPEG.)

Your quarry lurks on VHS at the local library. Some of it might be in Prelinger, or elsewhere at archive.org.
posted by Myself at 1:30 PM on June 10, 2013

Response by poster: I'm familiar with archive.org and Prelinger--I'm really hoping for names of companies that might have made these or specific videos.
posted by Ideefixe at 1:32 PM on June 10, 2013

What you're looking for was probably on cable access television. There was a long history of doing "virtual" instruction before it ever hit the Internet. And many of the pioneers in online education used audio only, and still do, because it's easier to serve to multiple students without issues of lag or buffering. (My qualifications for answering come from my involvement with one of the pioneering online library science masters programs.)
posted by MsMolly at 4:59 PM on June 10, 2013

The UK's Open University (a very reputable institution) started broadcasting university level lectures on the BBC in 1971. You might be able to obtain archive recordings of these lectures. A quick search did not find anything on youtube from the early 70s from the OU.

Here is a comic parody of an early OU video lecture. While it's a parody, it does give you an idea of what the real lectures were like in those days.
posted by monotreme at 7:25 PM on June 10, 2013 [1 favorite]

Define early? I took math courses through a program called EPGY at Stanford back in the 90s (they now also run a bunch of summer camps). They were computer based but slides with voiceover, not video. (I also taught for them later, but that was the early 2000s, so definitely not early in terms of online instruction).
posted by nat at 10:29 PM on June 10, 2013

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