I've signed up for a few of the free versions of Coursera courses but I never finished any of them. When they rolled out their specialization lineup, my interest level went up a notch. At first, all the ones that peaked my interest has TBD start dates. Coursera kept sending me course recommendation e-mails and I continued to click into some of the content encased within them. About a month ago, I decided to sign up for two classes for two different but compatible specialization's. The idea would be something to do in the early mornings each day for the late fall and winter months.
I just finished my first 4 week course titled "Business Metrics for Data-Driven Companies" for the overall specialization of "Excel to MySQL: Analytic Techniques for Business". The entire lineup for the specialization is ...
Business Metrics for Data-Driven Companies
Mastering Data Analysis in Excel
Data Visualization and Communication with Tableau
Managing Big Data with MySQL
Excel to MySQL: Analytic Techniques for Business Capstone
So what were my impressions of the first class and will I continue forward to the next one?
I did enjoy the class and that is a primary concern for me to consider continuing. There were a lot of videos but they were in small and easily digestible sizes averaging about 5 to 7 minutes each. Each week had a quiz that needed to be passed and the quizzes were geared towards reinforcing the content shared during the course. The final week required a more robust questionnaire that would be graded by three of my class peers. I also needed to grade the submissions of three other students.
I found that experience a bit interesting because I could definitely see two different attitudes from fellow students. Two of them had different viewpoints than mine, each took the time to explain themselves and I gave them high marks. The other student evidently thought that he would leverage an assumption that one student would be unlikely to give another student a failing grade. Each answer he gave consisted of a single sentence that basically restated the question such that it "kind of" looked like an answer.
Yes, I do plan on going forward. I am still intrigued about how they are going to go from Excel to Tableau and end on MySQL Big Data. I'm willing to pay to see how they are going to do all of that in 12 weeks and then blend in a final capstone project. I'll try to continue to post updates about my progress through this journey and hope that some of you might find the feedback interesting.
November 19, 2015 Update: As much as I enjoyed the first course in this specialization, I am deeply disappointed in the second. It appears that the entire course is a rebranded statistics class. There is almost ZERO Excel in the entire five weeks of the Mastering Data Analysis in Excel. A few models show up in the weekly quizzes and the final homework requires Excel. If that trend holds true, then the Tableau and MySQL courses will be equally disappointing.
©2015 Dwayne Wright