Article by David Pundak, Nissim Sabag and Elena Trotskovsky:
Higher education institutions face conflicting challenges; they must equip students with up‑to‑date knowledge in fields in which knowledge is constantly being renewed, while they also need to guide students to examine reality through broad-based observation and consider different scientific disciplines. They operate within different constrictions such as: learning program boundaries, budgetary constrictions, and lack of accessibility to experts in different areas, and the range of courses offered to students is limited. To cope with these constrictions, Ort Braude Academic College of Engineering opened an experimental program. As part of this program, students were allowed to study MOOC courses under the college’s supervision, and were eligible for accreditation if they completed the courses successfully. Only 15 out of the 600 students offered the program, registered for these courses. Only seven were accepted for the program. This paper describes the background for the college’s decision, the registration process and supervision of students, detailing students’ challenges and achievements in the MOOC courses. Students who completed the MOOC courses reported that they enjoyed meaningful learning, requiring serious efforts in comparison to the courses that the MOOC courses replaced. Given this positive feedback by the students, it was decided to continue with the experiment.