Knight Center MOOCs: Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)


MOOC stands for massive open online course. Typically, these types of courses are delivered over the internet, are large scale (up to thousands of students), offer no formal university credit and are free to join.
Originally, MOOCs have been college classes redesigned for the Internet in the form of video and reading material, as massive, open, online courses that can reach thousands of students. However, Knight Center MOOCs are of a different kind: massive, open, online courses on journalism topics created especially for this program and organized into weekly modules to be completed within a specific period of time. The first Knight Center MOOC was Introduction to Inforgraphics and Data Visualization (Oct 28-Dec 8, 2012) and taught by Alberto Cairo.
Each MOOC varies, however, for the Knight Center MOOCs:
The MOOC is completely online and asynchronous. Students must participate in weekly discussions and complete quizzes, projects and readings as assigned. Each week the instructor sends out a message via email to orient students to the coming week. The instructor will also provide general feedback, highlighting certain student projects, in a weekly post.
While each Knight Center MOOC will vary slightly, we strive for as much student-student and instructor-student interaction. Course assistants will also participate as needed.
1) Go to:
2) Create a new account with a username and password by clicking on “create new account.”
3) Fill out all the required fields. Click on “create my new account.” Then, click on “continue.”
4) You will receive a confirmation email for your newly created account.
5) Click on the link that is sent to your email to confirm the creation of your account.
6) The link sent to your email will send you to the course platform and you will confirm your account by clicking “courses.”
7) You will then be registered in the course platform and will now be able to enroll in available courses.
8) Click on the course title that you want to enroll in.
9) Click “enroll me” to enroll in the course.
10) You are now enrolled in the course! You will also receive a welcome email from the instructor. You can now access the introductory area of the course and access the syllabus.
An email will be sent to you after registering so that you can then access system platform and then you can use the username and password you established when you registered to enter and enroll in any course that is currently open for self-enrollment.
Yes, you can join a class even if it has already started, as long as there is space still open in the course. It is your responsibility to read the syllabus and catch up with the work of the class.
The first Knight Center MOOC was in English. We have already offered MOOCs in Spanish and plan on offering MOOCs in Portuguese. The best way to stay updated on Knight Center MOOC offerings is to sign up for our newsletter [scroll down to the lower right]:
Yes. The syllabus is the first content available before the course officially begins. To access the syllabus for any MOOC, you must first register in our MOOC system (if you have not done so already) and then self-enroll in the course. You will then be able to enter the course and preview the complete syllabus for the course. To register for the current MOOC, please visit:
Yes, you can retake a class. However, you can only be enrolled in one MOOC at a time.
Please contact the course assistant designated for the course. Provide your name and email and details of the situation.
The MOOC is free. If you would like a certificate of completion, there is an administrative cost associated with processing the certificate (if you meet the requirements).
If you wish to unenroll from this MOOC, please submit the following form: You can also contact the course assistant and request to be unenrolled.
You can automatically unsubscribe from email announcements by scrolling to the end of the message and unsubscribing. If you are receiving course forum announcements or messages to your email, you must go to the forum and choose to stop receiving messages/posts from that specific forum. If you have any questions or encounter technical issues, please contact the course assistant.
There is NO university credit associated with the completion of a Knight Center MOOC.
Yes, certificates of completion are available. Each Knight Center MOOC will have requirements for the certificate of completion. To receive a certificate, students will need to complete the requirements for the MOOC (will vary depending on course) and pay the administrative fee.
Yes, you can retake a class. However, you can only be enrolled in one MOOC at a time.


Each week an email with all of the files (pdfs, videos, links, etc) is sent out to all students. This email contains the essential files needed for students to work on the course. You can use this email in the event that the course platform is not available. Also, a back-up website will be available in the event that the regular course platform is down.
Yes, you can. To do this, log into to the MOOC page, and then go to your profile. Choose “edit settings” and you will be able to update your profile name and/or email address in addition to other information. Be sure to click “submit” to confirm changes.
You should use the lastest version of Chrome, Firefox or Safari. We do not reccommened Explorer. If you wish to use Explorer, please use the latest version.
The server runs maintenance every night, between midnight and 4:00AM, Central Time, and is slower than normal during that period.
You may be experiencing slowness during that time. Site performance should not be terribly slow. If you continue to experience issues, please contact us and let us know by posting the issue in the course Technical Forum.
You can also report technical issues related to logging in to: Please include the date, time and country, details of the issue you are experiencing and which browser you are using.