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Learner Reviews & Feedback for How to Change the World by Wesleyan University

258 ratings

About the Course

How can we use the things we share in common to address some of the most challenging problems facing the world? This course examines issues concerning poverty, the environment, technology, health care, gender, education and activism to help us understand better how to initiate positive change....

Top reviews


Sep 6, 2017

Great experience that has changed my perspective of the world and my role in it. I would like to take this opportunity to thank professor Roth for taking on this course and offering it to everyone.


Aug 23, 2021

Makes you think critically about everyones role in changing the world with concrete actions. We should not take things for granted or think that it is someone else's responsibility.

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1 - 25 of 73 Reviews for How to Change the World

By Frederik O

Dec 20, 2017

Very sympathetic delivery. Michael Roth is generally quite captivating, and the contecnt overall id good and interesting.

However, I feel the videos are at times very unnecessarily dragging. Also, it is very scientific, and has a rather conservative approach towards the global issues. Nobody is addressing radical or very innovative initiatives, and the "what can I do" parts are usually the shortest with not very helpful actions. Taboo topics such as animal agriculture (which is the main driver for climate change) are not addressed at all.

Lastly, I would have loved some presence of representatives of for-profit companies in order to learn about their perspective- As, again, the participants are all form the non-profit or academic sectors- And I'm sure everybody agrees if you don't get the for-profits on-board- Any change is pretty hopeless.

I found the first lesson by far the best, and the Environmental one the weakest, as the one lady only talks about her soil.

By Masoud A

Oct 24, 2020

I did like the course at first but having completed it, I have realized it is about "How to Improve The World" not " how to Change The World". The course contents do not support the latter title. Changing the world does not happen by contributing to charity work or by introducing or improving education or fighting poverty. Changing the world must address and touch on subjects affecting governments including their roles in manipulating resources to their advantages and misuse of power.

We all know, almost all, how powerful countries (militarily) dictate their terms and rules on governments of lesser advantage. Turning the latter into an ally by force for a period of time. Sadam and Iraq were the USA's best ally for as long as the war between Iraq and Iran was going on. Once ceased, Saddam was a used card and his role was done, he was a good ally for a "good considerable period of time". It was the time for him to go, especially we all, again, remember that he had threatened Israel by launching rocket missiles. Saddam was given the assurance that his invasion of Kuwait is an internal matter and that "The USA did not take a stand on Arab-Arab conflicts such as Iraq's border with Kuwait" (Wikipedia). Saddam was fool enough to swallow the bate purely due to his narcissistic nature. The world would change if this sort of power play by hegemonic countries is ceased once and for all.

By Giselle S

Oct 27, 2020

This is not what I was expecting. While purporting positive change, the very first discussion is an essay written by the racist, white nationalist, anti-immigration ecologist Garrett Hardin. The author was in favour of forced sterilization of non-white women and segregation to preserve the future, in other words, he is a white supremacist hero. Praising and recommending such an author sounds like dog-whistles. This course reminded me of the Commander telling Offred in the Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood: "better never means better for everyone. It always means worse, for some". We must never lose sight that white supremacists also want to change the world.

By Miguel R C

Dec 21, 2016

How to Change the World is a good introductory course to create awareness about some of the most important issues of our world nowadays. The lectures, leaded by Prof. Michael Roth, showcase interesting conversations with other experts about their attempts to make positive change in the world, and the weekly assignments are a good way for students to synthesise the learning of each week.

As a downside, I found very little participation in the discussion forums. I would have liked to discuss more about the different topics of each week. Also, the lectures, while interesting, were sometimes a bit long-winded, and I did not like the fact that some conversations were divided over several videos.

In general, I have enjoyed the course and doing the assignments, and also reading and reviewing my peers' work. I would suggest re-editing the video lectures in a bit more synthesised and self-contained pieces, and perhaps to spice up the discussion forums with some initial threads by the moderators.

Finally, I would like to say thanks to Prof. Michael Roth for its incredible effort in bringing together all the guest speakers and for making available this course for everyone in the world.

Miguel R. C.

By Laurie S

Feb 1, 2018

It is a very broad topic, but I did enjoy the discussion about the topics I personally cared about. I found this to be more of a conversational cocktail party than an actual class. It's certainly not lecture based. The assignments are pretty intense, asking quite a bit. It seems I even failed the class because on the 6th assignment I didn't give it my all, despite getting good marks on all the other assignments.

By Manal M J

Apr 3, 2021

This course made me EXTREMELY aware about many issues the world faces today. I have become very interested in learning about what small changes I could implement into my life and what difference it would make. This course inspired me to do further reading about social issues. Also, I have grown more curious about differences that could be made to provide a better world for all. I'd like to thank each and every person who helped make this course, it truly was an eye-opening experience.

By Winnifred R L

Feb 12, 2018

A very interesting analysis of system- or macro-level social change, primarily through the eyes of economists and international aid workers. Reviews change in health, poverty, gender discrimination, etc. by interviewing experts from academia as well as institutions like the World Bank and the UN. I learned heaps, and I am sure that most others would have the same experience.

By Elizabeth W

Aug 22, 2017

Great, thought-provoking course. This is aimed a little more toward doing and being than a standard college course - which in this case fits very well with the theme! The professor covers a lot of relevant and interesting information and gives you concrete steps to take. You can also sign up to follow the class on facebook/twitter and get further updates even after its over!

By Samah A J

Jul 22, 2020

How to Change the World is one of the first online courses I joined and enjoyed. The information I got helped me to pass the first part of 2020. Thanks

By Emma L

Nov 23, 2017

Loved it! I learned so much, really valuable information with incredible people. I feel very lucky to have has access to all of this material.

By Jakub R

Feb 18, 2021

Great course, would be ideal to update it with current data & some titilating visuals, but overall much appreciated. Well done Wesleyan!

By Eva B

Sep 27, 2016

Very good and interesting course. The assignments could have been a little more difficult for me, but it was good tht they made you think about how you can improve yourself and how you can help others. Also reading each others assignments was really helpful and inspiring.

By Altaf N A

Jan 8, 2021

Sure, we need to change ourselves first before changing the world. However, do not desire perfection in either of them. They go with each other like a pair.

By Carolina V

May 31, 2021

This is the second time I took this course because I wanted to refresh and what I had learned the first time, especially I needed to material to become more engaged in the world and not just have reading material. the class material needs to be updated, many things have changed, I believed this course was recorded in 201-2014. The first time I took the course there was intense forum participation, this time I couldn't get event the attention of the P.A.s. I posted topics the first three weeks obtaining no answer from anyone.

By Markus W

Mar 23, 2018


By Nata C

Jul 18, 2021

Este curso de Coursera y Wesleyan university fue grabado hace algunos años pero plantea situaciones bien importantes a considerar sobre nuestro papel en la humanidad y los problemas que como humanidad debemos afrontar. A pesar de que siempre me he considerado una persona "empática", igual como muchos vivo en una burbuja relativamente feliz y nunca había estudiado "oficialmente" algo sobre esto, fue bonito expandir mis horizontes en estos temas. Les recomiendo este curso! Me encantaría ver una versión actualizada del curso, con datos de hoy en día y el analisis de en qué mejoramos y que nos falta en relacion al estado en el que estábamos cuando se grabó este.

By Su S Y

Jul 22, 2021

The thematic areas included in this course are what I expected to study. From this session, I had a chance to learn the interconnection between different social sectors and variety of cases from diverse background professional. I also enjoyed the assignments because they involved problem-solving. Special thanks to our instructor; Michael S. Roth for bringing amazing coursework.

By Soleymani R

Dec 23, 2018

I have been acquainted with most of terminologies and area of studies provided in this course because of my career and working in different development projects and organization but this course provided me to view them in package and in a more holistic picture. I am sure passing this course is good for practitioners who are involved in development projects.

By Pia D

Oct 18, 2017

I liked the course although it only gives a brief overview of the issues. I would have wished for some more solutions or some more advice of what we can actually do. In general I think, that courses as this one are very important for the global community and I am very happy that people take the effort and time to contribute to global learning in this way.

By Nuwaira A

Jul 14, 2023

"How to Change the World" aims to equip individuals with various skills and knowledge to address some of the most challenging problems facing the world. By taking this course, teaches me diverse perspectives, experiences, and learn from others' stories, how to contribute to positive and sustainable change in my respective spheres of influence.

By Rohail A

Jan 6, 2017

Pretty amazing. Highly recommendable. If your aim is to gain some insight about many diverse sciences (although many related to social sciences and humanities) you should take this course. The instructors are pretty amazing too, highly eloquent and experts of their respective fields. Happy learning. :)

By Sara B M

Oct 23, 2017

I have really enjoyed doing this course. It has opened my eyes to some many things happening in the world that I was not aware of. It also gives you the tools to start making the world a better place. I encourage everybody to do it, you will not regret it.

By Pablo G A

Aug 9, 2022

This is a great course, with very good contents and well structured.

I have only missed some more speed with the p2p assignments feedback. I suppose this can be due to the current low number of enroled students. Many thanks indeed.

By Francisco J G M

Oct 31, 2017

A very human course, where the world problems are presented (in various fields of interest) and useful opinions and advice are provided to resanr our living conditions in order to improve our world, now so deteriorated.

By Niki G

Dec 12, 2020

By far the best course I've taken in Coursera. I 've learned so many things about important issues that affect all of us all over the world. If it was teached at school, we would live in a much better world today.