Open Online Learning: Certificate & Curiosity Courses

After the outstanding uptake and positive feedback on our first open online learning course, MIKM2701: Learning from the Knowledge Keepers of  Mi’kma’ki, Cape Breton University is thrilled to offer three more open online learning courses.

In the Winter Semester (January – April) of 2017, CBU will offer three open online learning courses:

Each of these courses can be taken for either certificate of participation, credit, or simply out of curiosity.


Students who wish to join these classes simply out of curiosity, may do so online. Curiosity students will have access to the same materials as Certificate students, aside from any copyrighted materials. Curiosity students are not obligated to complete any assignments, but may switch to the Certificate option at any time throughout the course of the semester if interested. This option is free of charge.

Certificate of Participation

Students who are not looking to earn credit, but would still like to engage in a learning experience through group discussions, assignments and interaction with a CBU facilitator, may register for a Certificate of Participation. Certificate learners will have access to a set of engaging learning activities that will enrich each person’s experience of the concepts explored in the course throughout the term. This option is online only, but CBU facilitators will act as liaisons between online participants and instructors during the live streaming of each class. A fee of $75.00 CAD must be paid before Certificates will be administered.


Students wishing to earn credit for any of the courses mentioned below must first apply to Cape Breton University, and meet all prerequisites, should there be any. If you’re planning to earn credit for any of these courses, you may choose to do so in-class or online. Please note that seats are limited for this option, and tuition is required.

The following courses will be offered as open online courses during the 2017 Winter term:

PHIL1105: The Meaning of Life

Instructor: Dr. Rod Nicholls

Schedule: Jan 4th – April 4th, 2017 (Mon. & Wed., 10:05 – 11:20 AM, live from CBU CC261 and archived through Bell Media)

This course explores the most practical of philosophical questions: what gives human life a deep meaning? It will draw on fiction (a novel, play, short story, for example) as well as philosophical essays by various ancient, modern, and contemporary figures including Marcus Aurelius, the Buddha, Epicurus, Henry Thoreau, Friedrich Nietzsche, William James, Simone de Beauvoir, and Albert Camus. The course tries to break down barriers between academic and popular genres of writing, and bridge different perspectives (philosophical, psychological, and religious, etc.) on what constitutes a meaningful life.

Register for Certificate or Curiosity Now

FOLK2407: Food & Culture

Instructor: Dr. Ian Brodie

Schedule: Jan. 4th – April 4th, 2017 (Wednesday evenings, 7 – 8:15 PM, live from CBU CC261 and archived through Bell Media)

This course is an examination of the role food plays in traditional and contemporary culture. Topics will include food as material culture, food and economy, food and the environment, the food and drink in ritual and custom, food and dietary taboo, culinary tourism, and traditional foodways in contemporary culture.

Register for Certificate or Curiosity Now

PSYC3303: Positive Psychology

Instructor: Dr. Peter MacIntyre

Schedule:  Jan. 4th – April 4th, 2017 (This course will be completely asynchronous and facilitated through a private Facebook Group)

Much of psychology is focused on disorders and problems in development while Positive psychology is the study of how human beings prosper and live well. This course is designed to explore the concepts and exercises that enhance well-being. The format of the course is inspired by major Psychology conferences. In order to participate in the Online Positive Psychology Conference (i.e., this course), you will be asked to view the video presentations of plenary speakers, participate in dialogue sessions (coffee break online forums), and document your reactions and ideas as we move through the conference.

*Registration for this course is now closed.

Laura Baker Warren
Manager, Online Learning

Phone: 902.563.1806