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  • Provider Coursera
  • $ Cost Free Online Course (Audit)
  • Session Upcoming
  • Language English
  • Certificate Paid Certificate Available
  • Start Date
  • Duration 12 weeks long

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Mountains 101­­ is a broad and integrated overview of the mountain world. This 12-lesson course covers an interdisciplinary field of study focusing on the physical, biological, and human dimensions of mountain places in Alberta, Canada, and around the world. Specifically, we'll study the geological origins of mountains, how they’re built-up and worn-down over time; we’ll learn about their importance for biodiversity and water cycles, globally and locally; we’ll explore their cultural significance to societies around the globe, and how that relationship has evolved over time; and we’ll learn how mountains are used, how they’re protected, and how today they’re experiencing rapid change in a warming climate.

At the end of each lesson, Mountains 101 will also provide learners with some smart tricks -- Tech Tips -- to safely enjoy time in the high alpine environment: from how to pick the best footwear for hiking to making smart decisions in avalanche terrain.

We’ll be delivering your online lessons from valley bottoms to mountaintops, from museums and labs, to alpine huts and other spectacular alpine sites, and we’ll do so with the help of a whole host of experts.

We invite you to join us for this online adventure! The mountains are calling...

Taught by

Zac Robinson and David Hik

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Reviews for Coursera's Mountains 101
4.9 Based on 287 reviews

  • 5 stars 91%
  • 4 stars 9%
  • 3 star 0%
  • 2 star 0%
  • 1 star 0%

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  • 1
Anonymous
5.0 a year ago
Anonymous completed this course.
(Much of this review has already been published at the Institute for Mountain Research's site, mountainresearch.org.)

Mountains 101 is a great introduction to the growing young field of mountain studies by one of the best academic programs.

True to its promise as an introductory and interdisciplinary course, the class builds slowly from a basic foundation and draws from many different disciplines. The course begins by defining mountains in geological and topographical terms, while always keeping their signicance to human cultures in the mix. One possible definition of…
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Anonymous
5.0 a year ago
Anonymous completed this course.
I really enjoyed this course. I have taken other MOOCs and this was definitely up there in quality. I've read a lot of the reviews and I agree with almost all of them. There are some areas that could be improved: Quizzes, pdfs of course notes, tech tips, background photo locations, etc. Pop quizzes were kind of weird. Asking me questions about what you're going to discuss, and then making me get the right answer before I can proceed? Kind of a strange teaching methodology.

I am quite familiar with travel in the mountains and fairly on top of mountain ecology but I wasn't as…
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Pat B
5.0 a year ago
by Pat completed this course, spending 2 hours a week on it and found the course difficulty to be easy.
If you enjoy the great outdoors, stunning scenery or learning about a variety of plants, animals and geological processes, this course could be for you! Not only does it explain how mountains are formed and degraded, it also teaches us about glaciers, the water cycle, and why mountain habitats change as the elevation increases. Mountain ecosystems are visited and adaptations of plants and animals to life in the cold, rugged landscape and sparse atmosphere are described. Various specific mountains are featured in the discussion of mountains in folklore and legends. The effect of climate change …
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Thomas D
5.0 9 months ago
by Thomas completed this course, spending 1 hours a week on it and found the course difficulty to be easy.
This is by far the best free online course I have studied through MOOC, and I have done several in a range of different subjects. The subject of the course is of course fascinating, and essential learning in these times. The course relates mountains and their nature to the current issues surrounding the global ecosystem, climate change etc., giving a very sound elementary education in how this all works, as well as covering every aspect of the alpine environment from how it's formed to what lives there, how and why. But the main reason I rate the course so highly is that the production valu…
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Mary H
5.0 a year ago
by Mary completed this course.
I loved this course. I enjoyed David and Zac's teaching styles as well as the graphics and video clips. The professionals interviewed were informative and well spoken. I chose not to race ahead with the course, but rather to savour each lesson. I shared what I learned with my dog-walking partner, who may now take the course herself. I appreciated learning about so many aspects of mountains from their geology to their glaciation and to the cultures of mountain people around the world. I will use the information I learned in my work. I have a biology and geography degree from long ago as was delighted to be reminded of what I already knew and to learn information that is new from when I was in school. The course was well put together. I may even take it again! I would certainly enjoy a second course on the same topic. Well done and thank you. Oh yes, and I liked the tech tips too.
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Anonymous
5.0 10 months ago
Anonymous audited this course.
This course spread over 12 weeks introduced me to a range of different topics from a wilderness/mountain point of view. This included physical geography, geology, biodiversity, ecology, climate change, indigenous and modern cultural impacts on mountain regions.



For me it filled a gap and provided a complementary course to enhance reinforce knowledge gained from other courses in the fields of ecology, climate change, geology, physical geography and paleontology et al.

The course does not require extensive preknowledge and can be taken "for interest" as well as a supplement to more advanced studies. There is something for everyone here.

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Melissa A
5.0 a year ago
by Melissa completed this course, spending 2 hours a week on it and found the course difficulty to be medium.
Loved Mountains 101. A true survey course covering from mountain geology to art to human physiology to climate change. Great visuals photos videos charts. Profs Zac and David were great, as were the many guests from different universities and from Parks Canada. You can tell that a lot of work went into putting the course together, including fun extras like the interactive map of locations visited and the tech tips at the end of each session. While the course is introductory, there is a level of detail that will challenge you if it is not your field, e.g. Geology, in my case.
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Anonymous
5.0 a year ago
Anonymous completed this course.
I live in Jasper National Park and figured this course would be a refresher for what I already know. It was not - it gave me an international perspective on mountains as intricate and intrinsic members of a world system. The science is faultless, the accompanying photography is jaw dropping and the layers of information took me from science to humour back to to science and through to rooted cultural understandings. Take this course, it will open the mountains up wide for you.
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Anonymous
5.0 a year ago
Anonymous completed this course.
At first I wasn't sure if the course content would be beyond me in the sense that my studies were in a completely different field. I was pleased to see that not only was the course material fascinating and comprehensive, but presented in an appropriate pace and offered many opportunities for self learning and learner engagement. I am a member of a hiking group and ever since I've completed the course, I've been telling all my hiking friends that they should take this course, it's that good!

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Anonymous
5.0 12 months ago
Anonymous completed this course.
An excellent course!

It's a very comprehensive study of mountains from different perspectives. It's an interdisciplinary course combining disciplines like geology, hydrology and glaciology , to name a few.This is a great example of how best interdisciplinary courses can be.

Videos are excellent with beautiful images. The backdrops where the presenters present are equally beautiful.Presenters are knowledgeable and present the content with very simple and clear explanations. Wherever the content is difficult, it's made simpler by breaking it into parts. Tough concepts…
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Anonymous
5.0 a year ago
Anonymous completed this course.
Mountains 101 was a very interesting and informative course outlining just about everything you'd like to know about our worlds mountain ranges. Diverse topics cover not only geology, but history, cultures and how the weather has shaped our mighty landscapes. Each week had the right amount of info with questions to keep you challenged. Highly recommended for anyone but especially those who love to get outdoors in the worlds spectacular playgrounds.
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Alberto P
5.0 a year ago
by Alberto completed this course.
This Mountains 101 course is certainly worth taking it. It gives you an idea of all aspects that concern Mountains, it's enjoyable and easy to follow also for non-native English students. Teachers are indeed very good and their passion for mountains is transmitted to the students.

It is well organized, has an area on Tech Tips on mountains and one on where mountains are.

I'm really looking for a Mountain 201 course.

Thanks Professors David and Zac!
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Anonymous
5.0 12 months ago
Anonymous completed this course.
Very well taught, great and fantastic teachers, excellent chapters to read and review and learn about all aspect of mountains around the world.

As an avalanche safety instructor in Canada, this course was very valuable for me and expend my mind and comprehension about all kinds of subject related to mountains.

I recommended this course to everybody that is in love with nature, to anybody who wants to learn about the earth and the mountains!
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Anonymous
5.0 a year ago
Anonymous completed this course.
If you are thinking to yourself, 'can I really take a university level course, actually enjoy it and then have what it takes to complete several lessons on (((Mountains))) - Then you have found the right place to start - the lessons are gripping - the video's are truly beautiful & incredibly dynamic!

Zac & David are the type of teachers, that will make you hungry for more - I can hardly wait for the next lessons on Mountains to begin.
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Anonymous
5.0 a year ago
Anonymous completed this course.
An absolutely delightful course. It was easy to start and stop individual units if needed- and extremely well organized. And the photography was incredible. I will hold all other on line classes to this standard. (I'm in my 60's and a complete techno-idiot, so if I say it was easy to navigate and a joy to take you can believe that anyone with a love of the mountains and outdoors and with basic computer savvy will love it.)
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Ross E
5.0 a year ago
by Ross completed this course.
Great course! The technology worked great which is essential in this type of learning environment. The "lectures" were well organized and the amount of content was challenging but not overwhelming. The quizzes encouraged me to review the content which helped to solidify the learning. My only worry is that this MOOC was so well done that any others that I take may leave me disappointed if they are not up to this standard.
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Anonymous
5.0 11 months ago
Anonymous completed this course.
Fascinating, multi-disciplinary course, really well organized and researched, many experts share their knowledge, useful animations, graphs and images help you understand much better and it's not demanding in terms of homework and time, only a small quiz at the end of each unit that helps you remember what you've learned. This is what MOOC courses should be like. Thank you very much to everyone who put it together!
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Anonymous
5.0 6 months ago
Anonymous completed this course.
Mountains 101 made me want to hug a mountain, and to learn more about conserving and protecting our water towers. The "About this course" section perfectly describes the content, and what to expect - which is basically an "introduction to everything mountains". The delivery is engaging, and the pictures, videos, and graphics all added value. I highly recommend this course, and hope for Mountains 201!
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Johanna T
5.0 8 months ago
by Johanna completed this course, spending 4 hours a week on it and found the course difficulty to be medium.
Great course, at the correct level of difficulty. Covers a wide range of disciplines, magnificent photography, and so interesting that I completed it in less than a week (I am retired). I live close to the Pyrenees, with a stunning view of them from my house, and am strongly attracted by mountains, so this was right 'up my trail.' I strongly recommend it.
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Anonymous
5.0 9 months ago
Anonymous completed this course.
This is the best course I have ever taken (including college and grad school). Creatively conceived and beautifully presented. The instructors were great. The guest speakers, field trips, tech tips and interactive map were all exceptional. If you have even a passing interest in being alive on this planet, do yourself a favor and take this course.
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