Research shows that students in active learning classes outperform those in more traditional settings and that activities such as interactive labs, coding program simulations and other active learning offerings are considered highly important in online learning environments. And in today’s rapidly changing world, it’s imperative for job candidates to have this hands-on experience along with the skills and theory taught in traditional courses.
This is why the company created Coursera Labs — a new capability that allows partners to create hands-on projects using almost any third-party software application. These can be offered as standalone projects or integrated into courses. Labs allows Coursera’s 45 million learners to seamlessly work on projects and assignments in a browser without any environment setup or software downloads. Learners simply click a button to instantly work on programming assignments using today’s most in-demand tools like Jupyter Notebook, RStudio and VS Code. Coursera also recently acquired Rhyme to expand Labs’ capabilities and help learners “learn by doing”; students work on projects while following along with a self-paced or live guide — all from one browser.
Using Coursera Labs, Goldsmiths, University of London, created a custom application called Sleuth (see above demonstration), where students taking their Introduction to Computer Programming course could write code to solve a series of interactive detective puzzles, immediately applying their newly acquired coding skills. Active learning capabilities are clearly in demand for online learners: To date, over 11,000 people have enrolled in University of London’s course. Coursera Labs recently won a Cool Tool Award for “Best New Product or Service” as part of The EdTech Awards 2020 from EdTech Digest. Learn more.