An academic article on the accessibility of MOOCs’ plataforms:

«Massive Online Open Courses (MOOCs) have become an accepted way to make learning opportunities available at large scale and with low cost to the learner. However, only if these are made accessible will they be able to offer flexibility of learning and benefits to all, irrespective of disability. Experience in providing accessible online learning at distance universities suggests that this can be best achieved through understanding different roles and the options in planning for adjustments to be made. To effectively apply similar approaches to MOOCs, it is necessary to understand the various viewpoints and roles of stakeholders and how these impact on accessibility. This includes educators who create materials and facilitate learning, and technologists who develop and maintain platforms. In this paper, we report the results from a study involving semi-structured interviews to investigate the perceptions and accessibility-related processes of MOOC platform accessibility managers, platform software developers and designers, and MOOC accessibility researchers. Our results show the awareness that MOOCs can be valuable for disabled learners, and indicate that legislation acts as a driver for accessibility. However, our investigations suggest limited progress to date in either producing universally accessible MOOCs, or tailoring MOOCs to meet the needs of individual learners with disabilities.»

An academic article on the MOOCs ofered by the UK platform FutureLearn

«During the last eight years, interest in massive open online courses (MOOCs) has grown fast and continuously worldwide. Universities that had never engaged with open or online learning have begun to run courses in these new environments. Millions of learners have joined these courses, many of them new to learning at this level. Amid all this learning and teaching activity, researchers have been busy investigating different aspects of this new phenomenon. In this contribution we look at one substantial body of work, publications on MOOCs that were produced at the 29 UK universities connected to the FutureLearn MOOC platform. Bringing these papers together, and considering them as a body of related work, reveals a set of nine priority areas for MOOC research and development. We suggest that these priority areas could be used to develop a strategic approach to learning at scale. We also show how the papers in this special issue align with these priority areas, forming a basis for future work.»

Tony Bates’ year review –

«I indulged my obsession with knowing the extent to which online learning is penetrating post-secondary education with five posts on this topic. In a field undergoing such rapid changes, it is increasingly important to be able to track exactly what is going on. Thus a large part of my professional activity in 2016 has been devoted to establishing, almost from scratch, a national survey of online learning in Canadian post-secondary institutions. I would have written more about this topic, but until the survey has been successfully conducted in 2017, I have preferred to keep a low profile on this issue.

However, during 2016 it did become clear to me, partly as a result of pilot testing of the questionnaire, and partly through visits to universities, that blended learning is not only gaining ground in Canadian post-secondary education at a much faster rate than I had anticipated, but is raising critical questions about what is best done online and what face-to-face, and how to prepare institutions and instructors for what is essentially a revolution in teaching.»


Open Education

Posted: December 22, 2016 in Moodle MOOC posts

An e-book on Open Education and International Perspectives on Higher Education:

«The main purpose of this volume is to examine the emerging trends and common themes taking place in open education around the world and to provide education professionals, policymakers and interested readers with a global overview of the open education movement. Each chapter investigates a different aspect of open education within a different cultural and institutional context. Using case study data, this volume addresses the following questions: What are the global macro pressures impacting open education? What are the more granular micro pressures underlying the emerging trends in open education? What are the major changes occurring in tertiary education as a result of these pressures? How can we best interpret and explain these trends and themes to develop a plausible theory of open education?»


Appeal to more investment on european MOOCs to open up the model and turn it more accessible to a wider participation –

Great article about the role of Higher Education and the values that should convey –

«We have allowed the story of higher education today to become one about value, to be sure — monetary value, dollars and cents as surrogates for quality and more important moral values. It’s not just about the incredible wealth of some universities, although that is part of the perceived value today, at least in rankings. Even more, it’s all about the economics for the consumers: whether the student finds the experience of higher education to be valuable not in terms of the person we help him or her to become, but rather, whether the graduate gets a well-paying job…

Higher education needs a deep and pervasive transformation of its value proposition for the American public and the global society we serve. And this value proposition should be, unabashedly, about real civic, social and moral values…»

eCampus Ontario Strategic Plan 2016-18 –

Six postgraduate degrees to be available in 2017 – Cyber Security, Information Technology, Financial Planning, Humanitarian and Development Action, Property, and Diabetes Education –

Top Ed-Tech Trends of 2016

Posted: December 13, 2016 in Moodle MOOC posts

A disruptive article by Audrey Watters –

«The promise of education technology, like it or not, is mostly wishful thinking. Proponents of ed-tech insist that ed-tech is necessary; that without ed-tech, schools are outmoded and irrelevant; that “the future” demands it. But as I argued in a talk I gave at VCU in November, “the best way to predict the future is to issue a press release.” That is, the steady drumbeat of marketing surrounding the necessity of education technology largely serves to further ideologies of neoliberalism, individualism, late-stage capitalism, outsourcing, surveillance, speed, and commodity fetishism.»

An article by Tony Bates  –