MOOCs, it seems, are driving us to distraction. The objects of so much current investment, fiscal and psychological, if MOOCs (massive open online courses) haven’t reached you yet, they are just a click away, coming to a screen near you soon.
Citing Udacity's recent contract to provide remdial courses for San Jose State freshmen at 1/3 normal tuition costs, DAVID THEO GOLDBERG January 21, 2013, thinks MOOCs are worth the investment if they can "draw on the most compelling social media practices and on peer-to-peer collaborative learning ... by the premise of anywhere, anytime learning and the motivations of personal interests that are embedded in the premise of MOOCs, by the dramatic reach across place and class, and by the demand for more self-assertive, active/activist sorts of learning practice." This article balances the pros and cons, and concludes that the strength of MOOCs may be in "connected learning: the connection between ideas and the materialization of things, between people collaborating to learn and do and make things together, between mind and machine, curiosity and capacity, anywhere and anytime learning and effecting, between the world as it is and our ideals of edification and equity that we deem crucially important to institutionalize ... Ultimately their success or failure will turn on whether they can help substantially to move us collectively and collaboratively along the road to delivering on these potentialities of connected learning."