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UFOs: Scanning the Skies Teach-Out

Explore possible explanations for UFO sightings as you delve into fascinating accounts of unidentified flying objects.

2,449 enrolled on this course

  • Duration

    2 weeks
  • Weekly study

    2 hours
  • Digital upgrade


Unpack the myths and facts surrounding UFOs

Following the release of the U.S. Pentagon UFO report, there has been a surge of interest in unidentified aerial phenomena (UAPs). People across the world are gripped by the history of UFOs and the stories told by those who have witnessed them.

On this two-week course, you’ll hear from multidisciplinary experts to understand the importance of investigation and possible explanations for UFO sightings.

Understand what makes a compelling UFO report

The course will guide you through various UFO reports – a crucial aspect of the study of UFOs.

As you explore each one, you’ll learn what factors make a UFO report compelling and begin to understand what conclusions can be drawn.

Apply video analysis practices to UFO videos

You’ll have the opportunity to not only watch but also analyse UFO videos.

You’ll develop the skills and basic techniques used to analyse videos to critically observe UFO videos within the course, and beyond.

Discover how the UFO discussion relates to science and society

With a firm understanding of the history of UFOs, you’ll start to explore the position of UFOs within the larger conversation of science and culture.

Learning from the experts at the University of Michigan and beyond, you’ll hear from top researchers, and scholars in the field to develop your knowledge of the study of UFOs.

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  • Week 1

    The History of UFOs

    • Welcome to the UFOs Teach-Out

      We're glad you're joining us for this discussion.

    • About the Teach-Outs

      Learn about the Teach-Out model and best practices for interacting with the material and your fellow learners.

    • Culture, Media, and the Scientific Community

      In this activity, you'll consider some of the different influences on the UFO conversation.

    • 75 Years of U.S. Government UFO Investigations

      Learn about decades of official investigations into reported UFO activity.

    • The 1966 Dexter UFO Sightings

      Through this story about a rash of sightings in the state of Michigan, you’ll gain a greater understanding of the history of UFOs, eyewitness testimony, public responses, and government action.

  • Week 2

    UFOs in the Present Day

    • Renewed Interest in UFOs

      UFOs are having a renaissance, of sorts. What explanations are there for this change in public interest?

    • UFO Sightings and Analyses

      In this activity, you'll explore the many approaches to investigations of aerial phenomena.

    • Continuing the Search for Answers

      What is the future of investigation into UFOs?

Learning on this course

On every step of the course you can meet other learners, share your ideas and join in with active discussions in the comments.

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you‘ll be able to...

  • Explain the history and cultural phenomena of unidentified flying objects (UFOs)
  • Describe a range of possible explanations of UFO sightings
  • Apply basic techniques used to analyze videos of UFOs
  • Reflect on the connection between UFOs and science and society
  • Summarise UFO reports and describe the study of UFOs

Who is the course for?

This course is designed for anyone interested in learning more about UFOs. You don’t need any prior knowledge or experience.

Who developed the course?

University of Michigan

As the #1 public research university in the United States, U-M has been a leader in research, learning, and teaching for more than 200 years, with 102 Grad programs in the top 10 — U.S. News & World Report (2019).

  • Established

  • Location

    Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA
  • World ranking

    Top 30Source: Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2020

What's included?

University of Michigan are offering everyone who joins this course a free digital upgrade, so that you can experience the full benefits of studying online for free. This means that you get:

  • Unlimited access to this course
  • Includes any articles, videos, peer reviews and quizzes
  • A PDF Certificate of Achievement to prove your success when you’re eligible
  • Learning on FutureLearn

    Your learning, your rules

    • Courses are split into weeks, activities, and steps to help you keep track of your learning
    • Learn through a mix of bite-sized videos, long- and short-form articles, audio, and practical activities
    • Stay motivated by using the Progress page to keep track of your step completion and assessment scores

    Join a global classroom

    • Experience the power of social learning, and get inspired by an international network of learners
    • Share ideas with your peers and course educators on every step of the course
    • Join the conversation by reading, @ing, liking, bookmarking, and replying to comments from others

    Map your progress

    • As you work through the course, use notifications and the Progress page to guide your learning
    • Whenever you’re ready, mark each step as complete, you’re in control
    • Complete 90% of course steps and all of the assessments to earn your certificate

    Want to know more about learning on FutureLearn? Using FutureLearn

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