The Meta Course

The Metacourse is a course that itself facilitates the creation of great courses! We learn how to create learning structures specifically for the ideas and skills most interesting to us. It’s also a great way to participate in a community of people who care about designing effective learning experiences on a variety of interesting topics.

The course begins with a course idea and rough outline. Over two weeks, we workshop our courses together, and upon successful completion, end up with a course ready to launch on this site.


  • Have a clear idea for a course topic, and at least a rough idea of its scope, curriculum, and structure
  • Have started a public discussion of this course idea with a topic in the Course Garden

Who should sign up?

For now, the Metacourse will be invite only to creators with the above prerequisites. A few types of people we imagine might be interested:

  • You are interested in a particular niche want to share knowledge and learn with other people in that community
  • You have some experience teaching online (blogging, YouTube, or another course platform) and want to try out a new format focused on participatory learning and intimate discussion
  • You have academic teaching experience and would like to experiment with teaching online and potentially reaching a different audience
  • You have a deep interest in learning and pedagogy, and want to experiment with novel and interesting new models of learning


  • Produce a thoughtful, and (mostly) polished complete course, with your first cohort scheduled and ready to go
  • Get to know a community of course creators and exchange feedback
  • Learn about Hyperlink — our vision, and how the platform works


  • Intro call: each participant will describe a course idea, its goals and proposed structure; we’ll discuss and exchange feedback (~ 1 hour)
    In order for the group to give you better, more useful feedback, you should come with some areas of concern you are particularly keen on talking about. The more specific you are about what you want to hear, the better feedback we can give. Here are a few examples of things that you’d might like the group to focus on when giving you feedback:

    • What’s the biggest risk/challenge in learning the subject for your course?
    • If you had no resource constraints, what’s the biggest opportunity in learning the subject?
    • What sorts of things would be interesting to experiment with in teaching this subject?
    • What makes this course unique — either in subject matter, or structure / style?
    • I’m worried that this course lacks ways for the learners to engage with the content. Does the group feel the same? How can I increase engagement?
    • Is the artifact that I’m asking for too open ended? What would be an effective way to narrow the scope?
  • After the kickoff call, each participant will post a draft for their course on the Metacourse forum, along with their areas of concern, and over the course of the week we’ll continue to exchange feedback and refine ideas on the forum

  • Midpoint call: after this first week we’ll have a check-in call to review progress (~1 hour)

  • Second week, continue forum discussion and refine course ideas

  • Final call: each participant will present their final course (~1 hour)

Publishing your Course

  • If at the end of the final call, you feel really good about where your course is, let us know and we will publish it!
    If not, don’t worry! Take your time and work on the course at your own pace. You can always take the Meta-Course again anytime if you feel like you want more feedback.

Open Questions and Opportunities

The biggest question is what course development looks like between the calls. For now we’re leaving it open and we’ll see what problems people are having, but in the future I think we could have more support structure in place.

I also think there are interesting opportunities in assigning people specific roles in engaging with other people’s courses, as prospective learners, attackers, etc.

Does it make sense for us to have at least one 1on1 with each course creator as part of the meta course???

Might help people who tend to be a little less outspoken in group settings, and gives us probably a clearer idea of whats going on with them

Yeah I think this could be useful. Maybe we include a note that we’re available for one-on-one calls to discuss further if anyone would like.

It is extra time and some people might be fine just with the group discussion so I don’t think we should make it required, but can suggest it if either us or the course creator feels like it could be helpful!

I guess we should also direct Meta Course participants to this topic as a place for meta feedback about the Meta Course itself :smiley: We can also update w/ things we notice and may want to change or test out for subsequent cohorts.