Hillsdale College - FREE online courses (U.S. Constitution)

Discussion in 'General Distance Learning Discussions' started by me again, Mar 16, 2018.

  1. me again

    me again Well-Known Member

    While listening to a conservative radio talk show, Hillsdale College was advertised as offering FREE online courses. So a quick online check showed that indeed, they do offer free courses:


    The free courses appear to be based on a study of Constitutional perspectives. It's an awesome opportunity for liberals who are leaning left (towards communism or socialism) to learn about U.S. Constitutional principles. Three names immediately come to mind: Kizmet, Abner and our visiting foreigner Stanslav.

    Nothing else is known about Hillsdale College, at the time of this writing.
    heirophant and Marcus Aurelius like this.
  2. decimon

    decimon Well-Known Member

    Non-credit, it should be said.
    Abner likes this.
  3. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator Staff Member

    insulting, it should be said
    Abner and Stanislav like this.
  4. Stanislav

    Stanislav Well-Known Member

    ...and as such, nothing that's not available on Coursera or from Saylor.
    Nevertheless, a worthy pointer, even if delivered with the usual condescension and a hint of xenophobia. Me again, good job at finding a way to hawk your ideological agenda in a productive way!
    Abner and carbonado like this.
  5. Stanislav

    Stanislav Well-Known Member

    Oh lighten up. He can't help himself. Normal style of proselytizing from a cult member.
    Abner likes this.
  6. decimon

    decimon Well-Known Member

    What insults you now, Your Viciousness?
  7. SteveFoerster

    SteveFoerster Resident Gadfly Staff Member

    Maybe Trump could take it so he could learn about the importance of due process.
    Stanislav likes this.
  8. me again

    me again Well-Known Member

    Good point, but maybe it can be used for in-service training for academics?
  9. nosborne48

    nosborne48 Well-Known Member

    My first thought was that the names and descriptions of the various courses identified them as political propaganda and that if the courses line up the value of the resulting education is suspect. But then I realized something...the constitution itself, the basic text, I mean, IS a political document and has been propagandized since before the Federalist Papers. Presenting a series of courses with a pronounced social viewpoint is perfectly legitimate. Of course, seeking radical change to the current interpretation of the nation's basic law is nothing less than a call for judicial activism...;)
  10. me again

    me again Well-Known Member

    ROFLMBO :)
  11. me again

    me again Well-Known Member

    Stanislav, is Roman Catholicism a cult? LOL :)
  12. heirophant

    heirophant Well-Known Member

    I assume that they are being offered for their educational value.
  13. me again

    me again Well-Known Member

    It appears that there is a push at Hillsdale College to freely educate Americans on the true meanings, interpretations and responsibilities that come with a Constitutional Republic. If the courses are self-automated, then there will only be minimal operational costs for the college -- but the Constitutional payoffs could potentially last for decades. The founding fathers of the Republic had a similar vision when they wrote the Constitution.
  14. heirophant

    heirophant Well-Known Member

    The free classes (there are a number of them, not just the Constitution classes) seem to be presented in automated 'MOOC' format that can sustain large enrollments.

    Hillsdale says: "That's why Hillsdale has become a national leader in free online courses. In fact, we average more than 1,000 enrollments per day across all our courses. And our most popular course --- "Constitution 101" --- now has more than 800,000 students around the world."
  15. nosborne48

    nosborne48 Well-Known Member

    "True meaning"? God didn't write the constitution. It doesn't have an objective meaning in the sense that, say, the equations of General Relativity have. It contains no "truth" in the sense that the Declaration of Independence does. The constitution, like it or not, means what the Justices say it means because in our system for the last two hundred years we, as a society, have assigned that authority to them. This can be changed, of course, but such a change would be, quite literally, revolutionary.

    So a useful education in constitutional law must include a close study of what the Supreme Court has said. Otherwise it's just an extended polemic, full of sound and fury.
  16. heirophant

    heirophant Well-Known Member

    It was written by human beings in a particular intellectual context. Nevertheless, I'm convinced that those who wrote it took it very seriously and intended it to mean something. It wasn't intended to just be a bunch of meaningless syllables ("blah, blah, blah!") that future generations would be free to interpret in any way they choose, depending on their own desires and political agendas at the time.

    I don't understand your contrast between the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence. And the equations of mathematical physics are just strings of incomprehensible hieroglyphs until the symbols are interpreted.

    Interpretation is inevitable. The issue here is how the Constitution should be interpreted. In terms of what its writers intended it to mean? Or in terms of what contemporary judges (political appointees) would prefer it means?

    Are those Supreme Court Justices interpreting a meaning that's already there in the document? Or are they just making up new Constitutional doctrines out of whole cloth based on their own personal political allegiances and moral intuitions? Which should they be doing?

    What's revolutionary (and dangerous) is the (post)modern attempt to render the Constitution meaningless, or to argue that it means whatever we and our political allies happen to want it to mean at the moment.

    I realize that you and yours fear Donald Trump and those who elected him. Just as a large portion of the American middle class fear the self-styled 'progressives' and those they elect. What protects all of us, whatever our religion, race, political allegiance or degree of political correctness, is precisely that fact that the Constitution does mean something. It isn't so flexible that it can be twisted to mean whatever those in power want it to mean. The Constitution is about putting constraints on power.

    I'm not sure that these classes are intended to be law school-style courses in Constitutional law, as you are conceiving it. They are intended to educate citizens on the founding principles of the United States of America.
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2018
  17. Abner

    Abner Well-Known Member

    MAGA cult member
  18. cookderosa

    cookderosa Resident Chef

    popular school choice among homeschoolers. They stand apart in that they don't accept/participate in federal financial aid - a point some parents seem to like. Still, a freebie is a freebie.
  19. me again

    me again Well-Known Member

    Abner, please watch "Introduction to the Constitution" at this website and please share your thoughts on it:

  20. FTFaculty

    FTFaculty Well-Known Member

    I like Hillsdale because they don't put up with anyone's crapola. They also aren't a propaganda tool of the religious right, like Liberty.

    I don't have much of a dog in the political fight (actually, no dog at all), but do care very much about the Constitution and don't understand the distinction between the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution that Nosborne48 makes; no idea why one would be based on "truth" and the other not. Don't get that one. The Constitution is the supreme law of our land, the Declaration of Independence was the formal document that established our land for the purpose of international relations and such. Why would one be founded on truth and the other not?
    Abner likes this.

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