Free online course decodes science 'mumbo jumbo'

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EAST LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Decoding scientific "mumbo jumbo" and learning how to turn complex technical terms into plain English is the subject of a new online course at Michigan State University.

The East Lansing school says the class is its first free Massive Open Online Course and debuts in May 2013.

The Foundations of Science class makes the tongue-in-cheek promise that students will learn "to speak mumbo jumbo" and amaze their friends.

Zoologist Stephen Thomas says he and course co-creator Julie Libarkin seek to help students improve their critical thinking skills and make better decisions.

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is providing $50,000 to fund the course, which will be offered worldwide. Michigan State says Thomas and Libarkin hope the class attracts at least 10,000 students.



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