Continuing Education

If I ever went back to school, I'd be all over studying human behavior. We're just not rational, y'all, and I think it's fascinating to know why.

Since I don't have the funding to go back to school, I read up on the subject. I loved Made To Stick by the Heath Brothers and I'm on their email list. Last week, I got an email from them about an online course to be taught by Dan Ariely called A Beginner's Guide to Irrational Behavior. I've already read Ariely's book, Predictable Irrational: The Hidden Forces That Shape Our Decisions and thought it was great. The science was presented in an understandable manner and the dude is funny. I would love to sit next to him on a plane for a long flight.

The class is six weeks long, has about two hours of video lecture that's broken down into manageable chunks and some heavy reading. Psychological abstracts ain't for the weak hearted.

But, it's FREE!

There are two quizzes each week, one on the lectures and the other on the reading and you get up to 15 tries for each to get a perfect score. There's also going to be a writing assignment at some point.

Somehow, without much thought (hmmmm), I signed up and committed myself to 6 to 8 hours of work a week. In a life that's already overly committed, that seems crazy. However, I will find time for something I love. (Anyone up for poker? It's been too long.)

And, I am loving it. I've already found some things to apply to work and some of the material has made me reconsider how I'm making some personal decisions.

The class is through a group called Coursera. It's associated with a bunch of Universities and there are all sorts of classes. They already emailed me with four more suggestions. I have to admit they looked interesting but I'm at an activity saturation point.

It's been a long time since I've had to think, "I better get my homework done." But, it feels good.

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