Tag: learning

Seeing through photographs – Review

Seeing through photographs – Review

I am a big fan of learning new things, so every once in a while I take some classes to broaden my horizon. This time I enrolled in a class called “Seeing through photographs” that I found on the online platform Coursera

“Seeing through photographs” was created by The Museum of Modern Art, better known as MoMA and taught by curator Sarah Meister. Being a photographer myself I was interested in getting some historic background about photography and changing role of it over time. I decided to go for the certificate to get access to the complete learning material. It takes six weeks to finish all the modules in the class. Each module focusses on a different aspect with the goal to make the learner a more critically viewer of photographs. This is achieved by looking at different time periods to see how photography was used and why. The learning material is provided in form of videos (each just a few minutes long) with interviews with curators and photographers that provide inside into their work.  In addition there is a reading list each week with articles and extracts of books as well as references to websites related to the subject. Sometimes it is a lot to read, but you only have to read the marked material to succeed in the  graded quiz at the end of each week. But it does not hurt to look at the other stuff, too. You are allowed to retake the quiz three times every eight hours. If you have done your reading and video watching, you will be fine.

In the end the learner has to write a peer-graded essay to reflect on the course content and to describe how his/ her understanding of photography has changed. He/ she also has to grade the essay of other learners.

Summary: The learning material is diverse, the videos are professionally done and very informative, the reading list is extensive. I have understood the content well enough for my purposes. I even look at my own photographs more critically now to see if I am transporting the content I want to. I enjoyed this class but I would not take the certificate class again. I think the free material would have provided me with the same insights.

More on Coursera: Coursera provides all kinds of classes of various topics including Arts, Personal development, Science, Management, Languages and more. If you are not keen on receiving a certificate in the end you get limited access to the learning material for free. This way you can try it out and see if the subject is something you would be interested in and you will learn something new even without the certificate.