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Dear Christina…

Yesterday we received a letter from Christina – an American FutureLearner who’s writing one thank you letter every day for a year. Here, Richard Banks, a Senior Content Producer at FutureLearn, responds.

Thank you.

Dear Christina

We were delighted to receive your letter yesterday. It’s always a boost to hear from our learners, especially those overseas, so thanks for taking the time to get in touch.

I love learning, too. It sounds trite, I know, but I come from a family full of educators (my wife, sister and mother are all teachers, and my father was a driving instructor for a few years), so I know how demanding teaching can be and how hard it is to find time for studies of your own.

That’s the best thing about working at FutureLearn: learning is part of my job – it’s impossible not to learn something new every day, working here. As a Producer in the Content team here, I help our partners to develop and refine their courses while they’re in production. That means I get to review every step within a course before it starts, and as a result I’ve learned a great many things about myriad subjects since I started at FutureLearn.

The courses that you’ve joined – Shakespeare and his World from the University of Warwick, and Exploring Play from the University of Sheffield – are two of my favourites. I loved seeing the items in the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust’s collection and it’s a privilege to have Jonathan Bate‘s expert commentary throughout. I was amazed when our friends at Warwick Business School told me that Jonathan delivered every piece to camera in the ten week course unscripted, requiring only one or two retakes. Remarkable. I’m certain you will enjoy dipping into the eight plays covered in the course and learning what they tell us about Shakespeare and his life.

I’m father to an energetic toddler and a supporter of outdoor education, so I found Sheffield’s course about play equally compelling. Without giving too much away, you’re in for a real treat in Week 6 (possibly the first online course ever to be taught from a virtual world? certainly the first on FutureLearn). Did you see Professor Jackie Marsh’s blog post about the course last month?

Thanks again for writing to us. I look forward to reading your comments once your courses get underway at the end of the month. Keep in touch; we’d love to hear your feedback.

Best wishes


Senior Content Producer, FutureLearn

p.s. good luck with your thank you letter project!

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