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Learner Reviews & Feedback for Seeing Through Photographs by The Museum of Modern Art

3,989 ratings
1,056 reviews

About the Course

Taking, sharing, and viewing photographs has become second nature for many of us. Given our near-constant engagement with images this course will help you dig into the meaning of pictures and reconsider photography’s role in our visual culture. This course aims to address the gap between seeing and truly understanding photographs by introducing a diversity of ideas, approaches, and technologies that inform their making. In this course you will look closely at 100 photographs from the collection of The Museum of Modern Art, going behind the scenes of the Museum and into artist studios through original films and audio interviews. You will hear a variety of perspectives on the ways photography has been used throughout its 180-year history: as a means of artistic expression, a tool for science and exploration, an instrument of documentation, a way to tell stories and record histories, and a mode of communication and critique. Short texts and readings from MoMA publications provide enhanced context for the works in the course. By enrolling in this course, you’ll join a community of international learners in discussion forums, receive invitations to live and virtual events from our lead instructor Sarah Meister, and gain exclusive access to MoMA resources. UPDATE: We’ve been listening to your feedback! In September 2020, we launched new content in Seeing Through Photographs, including audio interviews with additional contemporary artists from around the world, videos of Sarah introducing key ideas, and almost doubling the number of photographs from the collection. We’ve also added opportunities for you to share and receive feedback on your photographs in the discussion forums....

Top reviews

Mar 8, 2016

Seeing Through Photographs has given me a whole new way of looking at my own and other peoples' work. So many aspects, details and points of view, the world of photography now seems even more amazing.

May 28, 2020

Coursera gives me a platform to explore new skills. I was able to experience education from world-renowned universities without losing out on career opportunities.\n\n- Thaneshwary kirupanantharasa -

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1001 - 1025 of 1,049 Reviews for Seeing Through Photographs

By Antonio A

Mar 27, 2016

Very useful and interesting course. Thank you.


Apr 13, 2020

Will like more videos and more photos.


By EagerSnake

Apr 9, 2016

Really interesting from beginning to end.

By Norma M

Mar 14, 2016

solo faltaron subtítulos en español

By Laura D

May 22, 2020

Excellent class. I learned a lot.

By Laura M

Mar 24, 2016

Quite good but only in english...

By Courtney C

Sep 26, 2021

g​ood course and learning more.

By mark d

Mar 31, 2018

Good course. I learned a lot.

By Paolo G

Apr 11, 2016

Good, very interesting course

By Floris v E

Apr 11, 2016

Great material and insights

By Paola M

Mar 26, 2016

very interesting materials!

By Didier S

Nov 9, 2017

Well documented modules.

By Alain M

Feb 8, 2021

Interesting course.

By Bianca S D

Jan 1, 2019

Very good course!!

By Huascar A T B

Jun 28, 2021

Very good course!

By Iliana A C N

May 17, 2018

es muy chevere

By Natasha R

Apr 13, 2016

I love it!

By Tiago C

Mar 27, 2016

Very nice.


Apr 22, 2016


By catalina c

Dec 12, 2016


By Aarul V

Oct 16, 2020


By Martin F

Jun 24, 2021

By Melinda G

Jun 20, 2020

I received only one peer review and that merely ticked the boxes on the required questions with no feedback. If this review is the only assessment we get beyond the quiz scores, my experience with it was not useful.

I also would have appreciated knowing why Heinecken is considered "legendary" and why so much of the required reading in that lesson was devoted to his essays. I found his style to be overly academic (plowing through many, many words to try to find a point) and I almost gave up. I'm sure he must have done something beyond the clever "Are You Rea"; some biographical information and other examples of his work would have given me a better understanding of his importance.

I have been working full time during the weeks of the course so was not able to take part in most of the online lectures, office hours and other daytime activities. I understand that this restricted my ability to fully participate and I'm sure I would have benefited from more involvement.

I did appreciate the first few weeks, especially the documentary and people modules. I'm glad I took the course and am going to pursue a number of the readings on my own. I also was motivated to buy Berenice Abbott's "Changing New York," which is inspiring.

By roxanne w

Jan 9, 2017

I found the course interesting, however I had trouble finding all of the written materials to read. Some were available online, but none were in our library system. I think it would be better if more of the reading was available to people. I also thought that the final assignment instructions were a bit confusing. As it is I never did get to upload the photographs for the final prompt. I asked for help on the forum, but no one responded.

By Jeanette F

May 30, 2016

It was short and interesting... and that is good. In the first week the readings were overwhelming and I was disappointed - but the other 5 weeks had short videos of interviews with photographers to go along with the concepts presented. Some of the quiz questions were looking for details that I felt were not important for the learner. Final assignment was good.