Visual analysis of machine learning MOOC imagery

By Michael Wolfindale, for Introduction to Social Research Methods, 2022

For this report, I analysed visual imagery related to ‘machine learning’ courses. The scope of this exercise was limited to the ‘front pages’ of three Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) and the imagery placed there. I entered the term ‘machine learning’ into various MOOC website search engines, and selected three courses with images aligned to my research interests (algorithmic systems and agency) and which appeared to broadly relate to philosophical perspectives surrounding humans and technology. I acknowledge that the selection (and analysis) of these images was not a neutral process, and was informed by my pre-existing assumptions.