I’ve been fed up with the standard issue university courseware options–namely Blackboard and WebCT–so I decided this semester to wing it with my own version of courseware (what I’m calling “of-courseware”) powered by WordPress.
Although Sample Reality runs on Movable Type, I’ve been hearing good things about WordPress, and I thought I’d give it a spin. So now my Fall 2005 courses at George Mason University run on the open-source WordPress platform. The syllabi, links to online readings, and most important as the semester develops, the collectively-written class blog, are online, open to the public, indexed by Google, and just generally out there. Which is something you cannot say for courses kept chained up, locked down, and closed up by Blackboard or WebCT.
Here are the courses. The sites are in their embryonic stages (the semester hasn’t even begun yet), but I expect them to turn into full-blown resources as time goes on:
I should add that the subject matter of both of these courses–postmodern culture and new media–could not be better suited for an networked environment. It would be absurd not to develop these courses in an open, linked way, connected to the rest of the web. It’s of-courseware!