Online education has been around for a long time. But massive open online courses are finally making it respectable. Maybe even cool. Let’s not forget, though, that they are still experiments.
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Not much of a secret actually, but ok. The Atlantic Quartz's Todd Tauber, of Nomadic Learning (a corporate training consultancy) lists distracted people, crammed schedules and all the usual suspects. Still, Tauber pulls out some good recommendations via Khan Academy's president about personalization.
"Everyone has different interests and needs. Which brings us to personalization. As Khan Academy president Shantanu Sinah recently noted: “Students right now are kind of forced into a system where they’re pushed forward in almost an assembly line model.” But, he adds, “you can use technology to personalize the instruction and target what their individual needs are.
You can fill those gaps, and when you do that and when you empower students to do that … the learning is so much more productive.” Amazon, Netflix and Pandora do that very effectively for books, TV shows and movies (“if you like this…”). Twitter and LinkedIn have been doing it for professional news and information, too."
Also of interest was the reference to the much maligned Unniversity of Phoenix's partnership with IDEO for employee continuing education:
"The U of P’s new executive education course, Innovator’s Accelerator, developed with Silicon Valley design firm, IDEO, mixes short videos and frequent assessments with facilitated group projects, asynchronous collaboration and innovative tools designed specifically to drive participation. According to Inside Higher Ed, the results—a narrative, six-week learning experience—“are impressive, and honestly a bit worrying” for makers of traditional online courses. Just a few catches: It reportedly cost the university’s parent company, Apollo Group, millions of dollars to develop; it costs participants $1,999; and six weeks is still an awfully long time for many of today’s adult learners."