A MOOC is a "massive open online course". Massive because it is targeted to the masses; open because it is free and unrestricted; online because it is, and course because it is a structured educational offering. Pioneered by educators who believed that people should be able to gain knowledge and expertise despite financial circumstance, age, physical disability, time constraints, location or any other impediment.
There are now major universities in the US and abroad who make online courses available to all. Some issue certificates, but almost none offer free college credit.
Other offerings are for technical training, especially computer applications, and creative arts. Some front for-pay organizations and use the free courses as promotions. This helps you evaluate the program before you pay.
MOOCs are good entries into college courses or a new field. They are also useful as brushups. They can help you pass exams for credit, such as Excelsior College.
MOOCs take various forms, live group webinars, videos, scheduled live online courses with chat functions, etc. Read the requirements for time, readings, assignments, etc. before you register.
See a variety of websites below.
A few sites to get you started.
“A free world-class education for anyone anywhere.
Khan Academy is an organization on a mission. We're a not-for-profit with the goal of changing education for the better by providing a free world-class education for anyone anywhere.
All of the site's resources are available to anyone. It doesn't matter if you are a student, teacher, home-schooler, principal, adult returning to the classroom after 20 years, or a friendly alien just trying to get a leg up in earthly biology. Khan Academy's materials and resources are available to you completely free of charge.”
"Established in 1982, AIAG is a not-for-profit association where professionals from a diverse group of stakeholders – including retailers, suppliers of all sizes, automakers, manufacturers, service providers, academia, and government – work collaboratively to streamline industry processes via global standards development & harmonized business practices."
"The ONLY international organization devoted to teachers and trainers of automotive technology and its related fields. NACAT's mission is to promote, update and improve automotive service education. It is the ongoing goal of NACAT to develop and maintain a strong professional organization that will serve the needs of automotive educators in public and private enterprise throughout North America."
"The North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) is the standard used by Federal statistical agencies in classifying business establishments for the purpose of collecting, analyzing, and publishing statistical data related to the U.S. business economy."
"The National Automobile Dealers Association, founded in 1917, represents nearly 16,000 new-car and -truck dealerships, both domestic and international with more than 32,500 franchises. Today, about 90 percent of U.S. new-vehicle dealerships are NADA members. New-car dealers employ about 900,000 people in the United States."
"The United States Council for Automotive Research (USCAR) was founded in 1992. Its goal is to further strengthen the technology base of the U.S. auto industry through cooperative research and development."
Techdirections has free copies available to educators. Go to http://www.techdirections.com/ to sign up or read the copy in the library.
"techdirections is a magazine and website for technology, career/technical, and engineering education. Designed for the involved educator, techdirections brings to life today’s technology and provides a wealth of engaging student activities. We cover automotive, IT, CAD/CAM, electricity/electronics, engineering, manufacturing, woodworking, construction, and much more. We provide information on current industry practices and products that will help you integrate those practices into your classroom."