This summer I offered a SPOC (a Small Private Online Course) version of God and the Good Life. With the help of Head Facilitator Paul Blaschko, guided twenty two ND students scattered around the world through the four big questions. Along the way, we learned a lot about how to use digital tools in teaching philosophy.
One of the most surprising aspects of the summer course was how close we grew as a group, even though we were never located in the same region of space. We had students in Korea and Mexico for part of the summer… students coming into class via their phone when the power went out in their house… students in multiple time zones. But sharing our writing and four hours of live debate and dialogue each meant we learned a lot about what makes us tick as individuals. Now back on campus, Paul and I have been running into everyone IRL (in real life), and it has been so exciting. Best encounter so far–upon meeting Kelly V for the first time live– “You are much taller than I thought you’d be!”
Here is a picture of me prepping for class at my house and trying out Zoom–our live online teaching platform. We ran our class off a combination of Zoom and WordPress, and in many ways it felt like a traditional and intense philosophy seminar room.