ACMS successfully concludes live sessions of three Online Field School 2021 courses; recordings available for future students

On June 21, ACMS successfully completed the live sessions of the third online course, “Mongolian Buddhism: Sacred Geography of Munkh Khukh Tengeriin Oron (MB)“. The previous two courses, “Mining and Environment in Northern Mongolia (MENO)“, and “Digitizing Mongolian (DM)” concluded on May 31, and April 28, respectively, making all lesson recordings of the Session 1 of ACMS Online Field School program available on ACMS e-learning platform.

Due to travel restrictions that prevent Field School courses in Mongolia, the American Center for Mongolian Studies developed the ACMS Online Field School courses in spring 2021. The courses are taught in English, and are free for all participants through the generous support of the Henry Luce Foundation. Thanks to the Foundation, ACMS also offered 1-year complimentary membership to all participants, and 145 participants became members through the program.

So far, 352 unique students have signed up for the platform; 133 enrolled into DM, 100 into MENO, and 169 into MB. Their progress, citizenship, and current statuses aggregated by the courses can be seen from attached graphs. Overall, 36.3% of the students were U.S. citizens, 32.8% Mongolians, and the rest comprised of various countries, including China, Russia, UK, and Germany.


The Mongolian Buddhism course was taught by Betsy Quammen (PhD) and Rebecca Watters, and had 9 lessons (5 sessions and 4 topics). The course was of survey type dedicated for people interested in geographically situated Mongolian Buddhism and its unique syncretism with local and cosmopolitan entities, from sacred mountains to Karakorum to the Gobi Desert. The course also featured monastic leaders involved in the re-emergence of Buddhism who will discuss how it survived under socialism, how it was reestablished, and what it looks like today.

The Mining and Environment in Northern Mongolia course was taught by Dr. Gantulga Bayasgalan, and had 10 lecture sessions. The course explored the human-environment relations through the context of mining activities in the northern regions of Mongolia. The course introduced historical background and current situation of the mining industry in Mongolia and its impact on the Mongolian economy; discussed environmental concerns related to the mining activities.

The Digitizing Mongolian course was taught by Dr. Marissa Smith and had 8 lecture sessions. The course was aimed at promoting international interest in and development of the digitization and use of Mongolian language sources by practitioners and researchers in a range of fields and sectors, strengthening participants’ skills in fields of data science, digital humanities, and Mongolian language and culture.

We encourage all interested students, lifelong learners to explore the three courses free of charge here.

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