Chevron Left
Back to Mindshift: Break Through Obstacles to Learning and Discover Your Hidden Potential

Learner Reviews & Feedback for Mindshift: Break Through Obstacles to Learning and Discover Your Hidden Potential by McMaster University

12,310 ratings

About the Course

Mindshift is designed to help boost your career and life in today’s fast-paced learning environment. Whatever your age or stage, Mindshift teaches you essentials such as how to get the most out of online learning and MOOCs, how to seek out and work with mentors, the secrets to avoiding career ruts (and catastrophes) and general ruts in life, and insights such as the value of selective ignorance over general competence. We’ll provide practical insights from science about how to learn and change effectively even in maturity, and we’ll build on what you already know to take your life’s learning in fantastic new directions. This course is designed to show you how to look at what you’re learning, and your place in what’s unfolding in the society around you, so you can be what you want to be, given the real world constraints that life puts on us all. You’ll see that by using certain mental tools and insights, you can learn and do more—far more—than you might have ever dreamed! This course can be taken independent of, concurrent with, or subsequent to, its companion course, Learning How to Learn. (Mindshift is more career focused, and Learning How to Learn is more learning focused.)...

Top reviews


Aug 26, 2020

I enjoyed this course very much. I am 64-years-old and this course taught me that you can learn anything new no matter what age you are. I am now broadening my passions and learning is a lot more fun.


Aug 13, 2021

A great course for learners to know more about how to learn and give them a fresh perspective about learning and being successful in life. A great sequel after the renowned MOOC Learning How to Learn.

Filter by:

3126 - 3150 of 3,532 Reviews for Mindshift: Break Through Obstacles to Learning and Discover Your Hidden Potential

By Anne B

Dec 28, 2020

I originally enrolled in Mindshift because I am seeking a career change, and am taking multiple online courses, but felt as though I wasn't focused or strategic in my search and evolution.

Now, I have knowledge of tools to help me become focused or strategic.

I loved learning the meaning of focused and diffused learning.

But mostly Mindshift has been like self therapy for me. It has reinforced and validated things I have already experienced, thought and believed. And put them into a practical and applicable context.

I no longer feel intimidated, but rather encouraged and inspired, to continue on my path.

I think what I will remember the most about Mindshift and Learning How to Learn, is that there will always be critics to my career change. I loved this lesson and was glad to see it in this MOOC. I have encountered these critics in my past and I unfortunately listened to them. And I have experienced these critics in my present. So again, I feel validated and reinforced to continue on my journey of what I know is best and true for me. With better understanding, insight and tools to help me through the intricacies and challenges along the way.

By Dmytro I

Jun 19, 2019

It's hard to actually review this course because topics covered are very wildly all over the place and on different levels of knowledge. Correct way to handle this course would be to actually divide this course into two - first two weeks that should be called "Advanced learning" and week 3 and 4, that are more about encouraging people to change their lives. And, I believe, these are two totally different topics...

For anyone that wants to learn how to learn Week 2 is a total and absolute MUST listen. Several times...

Weeks 3 and 4 are only for people that wants to change their work life or/and level of work happiness. Important topic, no doubt about it, but to more limited number of people.

So if you enjoyed "Leaning how to learn" - you'll find Week 1 and 2 very useful. Otherwise check this course only if you consider changing you profession or way of work life.

Oh, and too few videos from Dr. Sejnowski. His videos in "Leaning how to learn" were a great contrast to easy-going and fun videos from Dr. Oakley - and for me it really helped to keep my focus on the MOOC.

By Mikaella C

Apr 28, 2020

This is the very first MOOC that I took and I wasn't discouraged and disappointed. I wanted to take online courses to pass time as we are all under quarantine because of the COVID-19 pandemic.During the first week, I became lazy and postponed taking the classes. But after all, I decided to finish it. I like how I can see the instructors's faces because it made me feel like I was in a classroom setting. I also appreciate the humor and jokes incorporated while discussing the topics. I was able to learn a lot and see things in a different perspective every time I will finish a video.I also enjoyed reviewing other people's submissions on the peer-reviewed assignments because I learned how to grade properly based on the rubrics and give an honest, respectful review on other people's work.The only think I didn't like though, is how some sound effects are too loud (eg. the "ting" bell sound at the start of every video). As I was using earphones, it hurt my ears hearing the sound.All in all, I enjoyed and earned a lot from the course.

By Matas M

Jun 22, 2022

A solid course that discusses how to learn, develop, and apply skills to your career, as well as the benefits associated with lifelong learning. It is recommended that you take the "Learning How to Learn" course before moving on to this one.

While in theory this course sounds like an appropriate continuation from the aforementioned course, it does lack substance at times and very superficially covers material. The course also does not have a very engaging student cohort; the discussion form is very bland and if you decide to do the honours content then be prepared to wait a while to receive your results. Despite this, Mindshift conveys some important messages which may be very beneficial for different viewers. It is worthwhile to check out, but please do Learning How to Learn first as this course will build from it.

By Pramit B

Apr 30, 2017

Mindshift as a course was "easy", and "helpful". What i have learnt from the course can be applied to my life to make it slightly better. There is a wealth of exercises in self-help today on the internet and from books. It doesn't hurt to do this course, its well put, and you learn new things(sometimes). What you gain from this course is ultimately dependent on how much you are able to exercise the points of this course. Given the small amount of time you are investing in completing the course (it is a very low requirement course and you can finish it in 2 days if you want to, although that is not recommended), i would suggest you take it, since the investment pays off depending on how new you are to the material and how much you are able to put it to use.

By Bev C

Apr 21, 2020

The course has great information and I found it interesting to the end. I did find the videos hard to watch and to keep my attention on what was being said, at the same time. My own thoughts kept intruding, and so I learned to look away while I listened. This helped a lot. I love how the course has mini tests after the videos and a quiz at the end of each chapter. They helped me see where I needed to pay better attention and kept me focused throughout the course. This course has really helped me learn how to pay attention. Now, if I even think I've missed something, I now back up the video so that I catch it all. It's important not to miss anything. Online learning is so much better than in-class learning just for this reason.

By Tulika B

Jun 12, 2020

I was in doubt of many things on my mind , which got cleared in this MOOC. Like stacking up multiple skills , whether it is alright to be a jack of all trades and now , I'm confident about being one. I am more comfortable with my so called bad traits , I just need to be more conscious about them , from now on. I'm glad that my hiker brain , is afterall ,not an issue at all. The technique of verbalising my emotions to just get past through them , is such a tool , which is going to stay with me , forever. Pomedoro technique is a valuable tool. I've gathered a lot of knowledge and insights from this video. It surely did change my perspective on my stand for changing my career. I'm confident about that as well. Thank you

By Susanne O

Apr 11, 2020

I really enjoyed this course and both of the instructors. The information is so clearly presented and easy to follow, that it makes it a pleasure to tune into each lecture. I gave this four stars rather than five, as I had high expectations after taking "Learning how to Learn", and I felt like the course had room for more material. I would have enjoyed even more of a focus on the links between neuroscience and the practical aspects to apply to your own life, and more insight into the benefits of meditation. One of my favorite parts of the course was Barbara's interview with the Singapore entrepreneur, as he had a incredible wealth of wisdom to share from his experiences.

By S M N S

Jun 5, 2020

I am S M Nazmuz Sakib and am an instructor in Airtract. My course link is

& my Linkedin account is here-

I have completed more than 200 online courses or MOOCs.

This course worths 4.5/5 though my review is 4/5 as 4.5 is not possible in Coursera ;)

Well, overall, I had a great experience. i am also an instructor and I teach psychology (Link given ^ ) .

This is a great course. Hoping, a Diploma course in Learning Psychology in future by the instructor of this course.

Thanks in regards


By Ellyn K

May 7, 2017

As always, showcases Dr. Oakley's passion, compassion, intelligence, and practical wisdom in MOOC design. A solid support for those in transition for career choices and learning paths. Implicitly supports a practical application of growth mindset, building on principles of the neurobiology of learning discussed in more detail in sister MOOC, Learning How to Learn. Less technical/scientific information in this course; this course seems more a "lighter" discussion of fewer tools than in the sister course, and, importantly, focuses on delivering a supportive mindset for expanding one's abilities and passions.

By Taleh G

Jan 18, 2021

İt gives some impulse for learning especially how to learn through MOOC and how to get prepared for making MOOC, its something motivation plus some scientific facts how one can overcome procrastination along with using both focused and diffused modes. I read some materials for pomodoro techniques but this course gives me very detailed and thorough view of this technique and how to use. You can ask why you didn't give 5 stars, the answer is simple: Even the best course giving some impulse towards learning will not fit 100% to my needs and features of learning, its like opening door for intensive learning

By Marco M

Apr 24, 2020

The course it's interesting, it gives you a good amount of notions and tools for making better choices in terms of picking the on line classes, making better decisions on what courses you should take to push your career or it gives you extra help if you feel stuck in a rut and you don't know what to do. The professors are very compelling, easy to understand even if english it's not your fist language and they make the classes very easy to follow. I think this Mooc fits more in the self help area, rather than the area of technical skills. PS: i do apologise for my written english.

By Amandine L

Apr 6, 2018

The title is a bit misleading I think because it addresses more career change than learning itself but it's still very interesting. Good addition to learning how to learn for people who are not students. Learning how to learn gives more techniques and understanding of neurosciences but Mindshift repeats nicely some of that learning with helps anchoring the knowledge gained previously. At the end I have more the impression of having gained inspiration than proper knowledge but overall the experience was great.

PS: I loved Nelson Dellis videos/ memories tips which are very fun and pratical

By Ma. A S

Jun 23, 2017

I truly enjoyed "Learning How to Learn" MOOC so I was eager to find out the next installment. However, there are some overlaps from this course and Learning How to Learn which made certain portions redundant. Minus the overlaps, I liked the topics covered such as career choice, mentors, skill set building, and loved the Nelson Dellis memory tips videos (especially the the first one, the names and faces and language - I have not completed watching all the optional videos but intend to do so). Both professors are very engaging and informative and I look forward to their future MOOCS.

By Brandon E

May 13, 2017

I thought that the course was very helpful! Although it had a lot of what was in Learning How To Learn, there were some helpful tips that were not in the course. I enjoyed the focus of this course, since it was on specially mindshifting, ultimately how we can switch from one subject to an entirely different subjects, whereas LHTL was on learning in general. I would have appreciated more neuroscience/cognitive science in the videos. Also, many of the tips were obvious and/or oft-quoted in other related places. Overall, I liked the course and I thought it was very interesting.

By Peiqi H

May 28, 2020

I like this course. It gives some new ideas that are helpful for balancing personal passion and career development. However, since I had finished Learning how to learn before this one, by comparison, personally I feel this course is not as clear as the Learning how to learn and was not that surprising. I still appreciate the advice and mental tricks introduced which definitely helps me. I give 4 four stars does not mean it is not awesome, it is because I compared this course with Learning how to learn. And I wish coursera can allow me to give 4.5 stars.

By Doruk D

Jun 23, 2017

It is good and informative content in general—with spinoff parts to quite a few specializations. This was my second Barbara Oakley MOOC. I can confidently recommend her enthusiasm and professionalism as an instructor to any learner at any age and career step. I think definition of career is changing to self-employment either as specialist or contractor. This MOOC could be designed to prepare learners for near future forms of making a living. Therefore, four stars instead of five. Nevertheless, Mindshift is a job well done. Highly recommended!

By Benjamín A G

Jan 4, 2021

This course was really good, but it can be improved upon... Barbara is pure magic, her lessons are perfect and she´s very fun to listen to. The other instructor´s lessons (i can´t remember his name) where a little bit harder to follow, as i couldn´t see the reason why he was explaining some topics.

Mindshift has definetly changed how i see the world. I WILL definetly apply most of the tips and knowledge on my day-to-day life and also in my long term planning. I reccomend it, whatever background you have, it´ll probably be useful.

By Olexander T

Dec 23, 2017

This courser is very good, but little bit weaker than the previous one.

Maybe my expecatations were very high (because your LH2L course and book are AWESOME), but I felt something wrong about this.

I liked lots of ideas from this course: slow/fast learning, where creativity comes from, П-career model. But some topic were off-topic. E.g. creating MOOC.

It is very good course and it is much better than lots of other courses, but it is little weaker, than LH2L.

Thank you, Barbara, for these awesome courses and books.

By John A S

Jun 12, 2020

Professor Oakley and Professor Sejnowski are knowledgeable and engaging teachers for the subject. They have created a good course. Despite their passion and charisma displayed here, I can agree in some of the cons in the reviews that it the concepts displayed here are the same with the previous MOOC "Learning How to Learn" or book "A Mind for Numbers." The difference however is that in this course, they encourage lifelong learning to different passions for our 21st century technological world.

By Hamel M

Jun 4, 2022

Very well presnted and thoughtout course. Should be required course for all students as early as high school. The instructor is phenomenal, really the right person to teach this class. She relies on a lot of personal experience in accentuating the various topics in the course. This made the course more relatable the instructor more authentic. On the downside, because of the heavy reliance on personal experiences, the sources cited lack diversity. That was my only objection to the course.

By Deleted A

Sep 27, 2017

This course does an excellent job of motivating you that you can change the course of your life through learning. It contains lots of useful and accessible material on how lifelong learning works. The course feels like a bunch of random (but useful!) topics presented in arbitrary sequence instead of drawing a connected, integrated big picture. Be prepared to spend time integrating the ideas together into your own life if you want the ideas to stick.

By Mikhail G

Mar 5, 2021

Well, It was intresting experience. But After that course I have mind that it's crumpled.

It has pretty manyissues with Russian translation in subtitles and materials is intresting but ther is no sense of completeness.

So I recommend to take this course ONLY after finishing "Learning ho wto Learn".

In that way you may look on this as a good addon.

Like Heroes Chronicles in HoMM3 :)

Barbara, Terry thank you very much! anyway You're the best.

Good luck!

By Emmanuelle R

Dec 22, 2017

Une synthèse vraiment riche et objective des certains livres probants et pertinents en matière de self-développement. Des outils importants pour apprendre à progresser dans l'apprentissage dans des voies parfois différentes de notre formation initiale, en évitant de tomber dans certains pièges. Appui nécessaire et stimulant des neurosciences...Une formation utile pour apprendre à apprendre en mettant en exergue ses traits de personnalité.

By Sumaya A

Aug 23, 2018

This course is a great one. It really helped me a lot to shift my mind. Now I think I am able to learn anything. I restored my old passion of studying physics and astrology. My only objection was that the content didn't have many exercises. It all depends on the videos and writing your thoughts in the discussion forum. But I think as an amount of information, It is still enough. The information affected me greatly. Thank you.