logo

The Manual

Learners

Facilitators

Maintainers

Creating a Course

Infrastructure

A gif of a spellbook floating in the air

Courses and Clubs

Courses are templates that serve to structure active, meaningful learning experiences.

You'll find plenty of info in previous sections of the Manual about how courses are facilitated and maintained. Here's more detail about what makes a great course, and how they get made!

There are — of course! — many motivations for learning something. Here are a few reasons we think it's worth taking on the challenge of creating your own course:

  • Great opportunity for experimentation; when you create your own course, you have full permission to try something weird!
  • Space for in-depth, structured learning, where you can shape things any way you like to make a fun and effective learning experience
  • Build a community of people who care about a topic, and become a leader in this niche
  • Make money by facilitating cohorts of the course

How to Create a Course

  1. First, read the rest of this page to get an idea of what kind of courses we're looking for.
  2. Next, propose a course. No worries if it's a full outline or just a rough idea — plenty of time to develop it further!
  3. We'll review, and if it seems like a good fit, see if you'd like to join the Meta Course — a special invite only course we run regularly to workshop courses and get them ready to go live on Hyperlink..
  4. In each cohort of the Meta Course, a small group of prospective course creators meets with Hyperlink staff over five weekly calls. You'll share your course proposal, give and receive feedback, and develop your curriculum.
  5. Once you complete the Meta Course:
    • If you feel ready: You can publish your course! We'll help get everything set up, and after publishing you'll be able to make further tweaks from the course settings.
    • If you don't feel ready: Don't worry, take all the time you need! You can even retake the Meta Course if you like. Just email to let us know if / when you want to launch.
  6. Once your course is made, it will have a page on Hyperlink, as well as a private forum for general discussion about the course (in addition to a forum space for each cohort). Next steps:
    • Go Live: When we first add the course, it's a draft, not yet publicly visible. This gives you time to add events, configure forum topics, and review course details. When you're ready, hit the "Go Live" button at the top of the page!
    • Read the Maintainer Guide: You're now officially a course maintainer! Find out what that entails, and what powers you have, in our Maintainer Guide.
    • Schedule the First Cohort: You're also this course's first facilitator! Schedule a new cohort in the course settings, and get ready to take this thing for a test drive — hopefully the first of many. Learn more in our Facilitator Guide.

How to Create a Club

  1. Instead of submitting a course proposal via the form linked above, propose a club. Again, this doesn't require a ton of detail for now.
  2. We'll get back to you, and talk through any further questions / details about the club idea.
  3. Since clubs are simpler and more lightweight, you won't have to take the Meta Course first — we can get you set up with a draft club, and figure out a timeline to launch and begin running the club.
  4. Similar to above, you'll edit your club's details, then add a cohort, schedule events, and go live when you're ready.

Course Structure

There are a lot of elements that go into a good course. Here are some things to keep in mind when thinking about a new course idea.

(Many of the considerations are the same for clubs — but with the expectation a club will have a bit looser and more emergent structure.)

Hard Facts

Specific structural elements you'll want to make clear:

  • Schedule: How long does it take to complete a cohort of the course? Two weeks? Six? Twelve?
  • Cost: How much does a learner pay to participate in a cohort? Hyperlink's platform fee is 20% of the course cost; the remaining 80% goes straight to compensating the facilitator.
  • Requirements: Are there any prerequisites — things a learner should already know or have in order to get the most out this course?
  • Time: How much time and commitment are you asking of participants? The more specific you can be here, the better.
  • Resources: What resources will learners need? This may include readings, software, etc. Include links where possible, and be clear about any required resources that come with additional costs.

Loose Constraints

We believe there's a huge possibility space for what learning can look like. Hyperlink can't explore all of it, so we encourage courses aligned with our core Principles.

Great Hyperlink courses:

  • Continuously improve: The more a course is run, the better it gets. Each cohort should contribute back to the course and make it better. Experimentation encouraged!
  • Embrace structure: Constraints help focus a learning experience; the more structure and scaffolding you provide the more smoothly it will be to facilitate the course. Be as specific as you can in defining a course's structure.
  • Encourage active learning: Learners should do something in the course. Group projects, collaborative brainstorms, written explanations, compelling conversations — the possibilities are endless.
  • Outputs artifacts of successful learning: Each course should specify some measurable output — specific artifacts, transformative conversations, final projects, or other evidence of successful learning.
  • Evolve with the community: It's okay for course facilitation to require certain specific skills or knowledge, but ideally a course is reproducible. The more times a course can be run by a diverse set of facilitators, the more it can improve.
  • Learn in the open: As much as possible, a course's curriculum and output should be openly shared. Hyperlink strongly supports open source (see our code base here!) and we're interested in extending this ethos to the learning process. Learners should retain full control over things they create, and it's up to a course to determine how its artifacts are shared; this isn't a rule but an aspiration for courses and their participants.