Some of the most compelling visionaries in the world -- from Sir Ken Robinson to Jane Goodall to Martin Scorsese -- are focusing their attention on how to improve education. Get inspired by their big ideas.
"All of my classes, regardless of student age or demographics – elementary gifted students or graduate students, begin with ice-breakers and team-building activities. I recently developed a passion for using students’ mobile devices to do so as this devices have become natural and personalized extensions of students’ “selves.”"
Interestingly, major American foundations have contributed millions of dollars to innovative delivery platforms such as Coursera and Udacity. As a result, millions have enrolled in Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs), with an average class size of about 50,000. Yet, according to a recent study by Katy Jordon, less than 10 percent of learners complete current MOOC courses, and the majority of completion rates are in the two to eight percent range. Does this sound like effective adult education? No higher education institution would be able to attract applicants if it posted attrition rates of 92 to 98 percent.
Who should be taking online courses? Are online courses equally appropriate for all students? Can any content be taught in an online format or do some kinds of material lend themselves to mastery in an electronic environment?
Her review is based on 20 studies published since 1999. She found that researchers used a wide range of definitions for persistence. She opted for this straightforward description: persistence is “the ability to complete an online course despite obstacles or adverse circumstances.” (p. 30) The opposite of persistence is attrition, which she defined as “withdrawal from an online course.” (p. 30) Based on her review, she identified the following factors as being related to student persistence in online courses.