Guided Projects is an instructor-led online learning experience available on Coursera designed for training and hands-on applications in a real-world environment. With a unique side-by-side interface, learners can gain new skills faster and with ease as they follow the instructor in the same software environment as she works through real-world problems—all in under two hours.
Before building a Guided Project, consider if it is the best tool for your learning objectives and use case.
When to use Guided Projects?
Guided Projects are a great teaching option in the following cases:
- Learners must learn the skills through hands-on activity instead of solely reading, listening, or watching instructional materials. For example, you want to teach learners how to create a pie chart in Tableau. The best way to do so is giving learners a data set, letting them play with Tableau’s interface and creating a pie chart by themselves.
- Learners need to focus on the knowledge itself instead of setting up a working software or coding environment. For example, you are introducing python to learners who are new to coding. You don’t want learners to lose interest by installing the IDLE. In Guided Projects all relevant software and data is pre-configured on cloud desktops, so learners don’t have to set up or configure anything and can jump directly into coding.
- Learners benefit most from observing an expert. Experts structure knowledge and approach problems in different ways from novices. The best way for learners to adopt experts’ mindset is having them observe and follow along. For example, debugging could be painful for new programmers. Watching how a seasoned engineer debug the code systematically and repeating the process on their own could be super helpful for learners.
- Learners do not need a premium license or paid product to start using the software. Coursera hosts the virtual cloud desktops but we cannot support premium software licenses or paid membership. For example, you can use OpenOffice or Google Docs on a cloud desktop but not Microsoft Office because it requires a license fee per user.
If you decide a Guided Project is the best tool for your use case, below you will find some useful production resources to get you started.