As an academic discipline entirely focused on human culture and heavily reliant on face-to-face communication, the humanities doesn't always seem like a good fit for massive online open courses (MOOCs).

[caption id="attachment_60095" align="alignleft" width="150"]humanities 3.8 million people enrolled in humanities courses.[/caption]

“It is hard to imagine having a human, teacher-ly presence in this space,” Julie Lindquist, a professor at Michigan State University who was building a creative writing MOOC, told eCampus News in June.

It turns out that nearly 4 million humans have flocked to humanities courses offered by the MOOC provider Coursera...

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