What are Massive Open Online Courses?


Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) are an evolutionary step further than Open Content. A few faculty have begun using online platforms to teach courses to large numbers of students, occasionally reaching above 100,000 enrollments in a single course offering. These courses are offered for free to anyone who chooses to access them. In the majority of cases, course credits are not offered for completing a MOOC. While one-off MOOCs have been taught since at least 2008, they are rapidly gaining momentum, largely due to companies and collaborative projects such as Coursera, edX, and Udacity.

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(1) How might this technology be relevant to the educational sector you know best?

  • Technologically MOOCs are irrelevant (much as Virtual Universities were in the early 2000s). As a meme that allows us to have conversations about the impact a range of technologies can have on higher education they're very important. MOOCs provide a context for engaging with senior leaders and an opportunity to invest in capability for online learning. They also provide an opportunity to engage with open licencing topics. - stephen.marshall stephen.marshall Feb 10, 2015
  • MOOCs at least continue to make us sit up and realise there are different ways to do things. Participant numbers in MOOCs are irrelevant unless the purpose is to have a counter at the entrance and see how many people come through the door. However, thinking how to engage people in learning is useful. If MOOCs and game theory could be integrated in a more sustainable way then perhaps we would have something useful?- geoffrey.crisp geoffrey.crisp Feb 27, 2015

(2) What themes are missing from the above description that you think are important?

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(3) What do you see as the potential impact of this technology on teaching, learning, or creative inquiry?

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(4) Do you have or know of a project working in this area?

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