Archive for July, 2016

Coursera news –

«Some academics enjoyed nothing more than seeing the “Moocs bubble” burst. But it turns out that those who scoffed at massive open online courses may have unwittingly been playing into the hands of the innovation they were disparaging (… ) Instead, she argued, Coursera – which now has 18 million users and 140 course providers, including some of the world’s leading universities – was “making significant, steady progress in democratising access to education.»

An article in a new scientific magazine AERO OPEN on interviews to MOOCers –

« This article draws on interviews with 92 students in massive open online courses (MOOCs) to examine the strategies they use to overcome the challenges they face. Our findings indicate that some of their strategies, such as rewatching videos, returning to a course after a break, and rereading content, could appear in data automatically collected by learning platforms. Other strategies, such as asking family members for assistance or searching the web for supplementary study materials, are invisible to tracking logs. We present three important domains of the experience of MOOC students that are absent from the tracking logs: the practices at learners’ workstations, learners’ activities online but off platform, and the wider social context of their lives beyond the MOOC. With the rise of sophisticated new methods of learning analytics (Siemens & Baker, 2012), researchers, faculty, and course developers have a growing and diverse body of quantitative data and computational research methods to guide improvements in MOOC design; our findings highlight the importance of drawing on other forms of research to design courses that support learners’ needs and practices.»

An article in EURODL (European Journal of Open, Distance and E-Learning) on the economic sustainability of MOOCs –

«In this position paper, the authors explore possible business models for courses, along with their advantages and disadvantages, by conducting a literature study and applying personal insights gained from attending various MOOC discussion fora. Some business models discussed here are: the Freemium model, sponsorships, initiatives and grants, donations, merchandise, the sale of supplementary material, selective advertising, data-sharing, follow-on events, and revenue from referrals. This paper looks at the sustainability of MOOCS as opposed to the sustainability of MOOC platforms, while observing the tight link between them.»