Networked Life will launch on Coursera at 12:01AM Monday (just after midnight), Eastern time US. Below is some basic information about the organization, pace, and grading of the course. It will be repeated on the course site once it goes live; I'm just sending it along in case you want to read it in advance.
Prof Michael Kearns
University of Pennsylvania
This announcement provides some important basic course information. Please read it carefully and in its entirety.
* There are no formal prerequisites for this course, and it is expected that students from a wide range of backgrounds will be able to succeed.
* The course duration is 6 weeks (the schedule is specified under "Video Lectures"), but this is only the minimum recommended pace. More precisely, ALL of the videos and quizzes for the entire course are already available from the start, and you are free to watch and take them as fast as you like and are able to. The quiz deadlines, which fall on the week of the corresponding lectures, follow the 6-week pace. In other words, you must complete the course within the allotted 6 weeks, but you are free to go faster if you prefer. It is anticipated that the 6-week pace will be quite manageable for students with a wide range of backgrounds and schedules.
* There are no homework or other assignments for the course, only the quizzes, each of which corresponds to a specific lecture. The quiz corresponding to a given lecture has the same numerical index as the lecture. For the most part, quizzes are quite short, and test basic attention and understanding of the key points in the corresponding lecture.
* You are free to retake each quiz once. The maximum of your 2 scores will be your final score for that quiz.
* Your overall course score will be the simple average of the individual quizzes. Certifications will be awarded for course scores exceeding some minimum threshold (to be determined at a later time).
* You will notice under "Video Lectures" that, in addition to PDF versions of the slides for each lecture, there may be links to supplemental material for that lecture. Often these links are to demos or articles that were directly discussed in the corresponding lecture; sometimes they are to relevant additional materials, like Wikipedia pages. In order to get the most out of the course, you are strongly encouraged to take the time to peruse this additional material, read the full source articles, etc.