Skillshare: The What’s And Why’s

I recently decided to enroll in a class on skillshare called “Learn Anything on Your Own”.  Skillshare is an online learning platform that connects would-be teachers with would-be students via the internet.  I’ve perused MIT’s OpenCourseWare and digested huge amounts of information via blogs and websites, but this will be my first experience learning with an online teacher.

My plan is to write about the experience as I go along, but for now here are the motivations behind my decision to enroll:

1) I’ve been interested in self-directed learning for a while.  Since I’m now done with college, out on my own, and suffering from a terminal case of perpetual curiosity, investing some time in developing the skill of learning will no doubt pay dividends.

2) Many of my role-models, like Eric Raymond and Luke Muehlhauser, are autodidacts of high caliber.  If I’m to follow in their footsteps, I’ll have to go through the same crucible of self-education.

3) The revolution in online learning is something I’m interested in and encouraged  by.  This class will give me a little bit more experience in one way that this development is unfolding.

4) I know the teacher, Dale Stephens, and I know that self-learning is something he is very good at.  I’m eager to soak up information from someone who is more skilled than me.

I have chosen to study philosophy of science during the month-long course.  There isn’t any profound reason for this.  Philsci is where my studies were when I enrolled, and because my interests are mostly in fields of knowledge as opposed to hands-on skills, philsci is as good a place to learn how to learn as anywhere else.

Additionally, I’ve long been interested in science and have often touted it as the best way of knowing things, period.  Given this, it’s only prudent that I spend some time learning about the macrostructure of the scientific process, the various descriptive/normative perspectives on science, and of course the myriad criticisms which have been aimed at scientific knowledge.