"Over the last few months most of us who work in higher education, as well as those who watch and comment on what we do have been fascinated by a singular topic: the MOOC. [...] They are very new, and no-one yet knows what they will mean or what role they will play. But many already believe that Pandora’s box has been opened. [...] For the first time in our existence, some are questioning the university’s purpose and future. [...] Clearly MOOCs are not the panacea, or a replacement, but they do contribute to a worldwide learning community, hungry to learn and engage with others who wish to do likewise."
Would MOOCs enrich higher education in India, could it replace existing courses?, is the question discussed here by Dheeraj Sanghi. In other words, do MOOCs pose a threat to existing Higher Ed. institutions in India (and similar countries)? Although the ulitemate answer is 'no', the argument is interesting. Dheeraj Sanghi first acknowledges that "A course by an excellent professor in a good university in some part of the world even in an online mode is likely better than the corresponding course offered in an average engineering college in the country, even though latter is a face-to-face communication." To me, this sounds quite disconcerting. So, in principle, a Stanford MOOC on AI beats your average course elsewhere.
But _in practice_ , the argument continues, such a replacement won't work because of language issues, lack of writing skills to particpate in fora, difference in course content, differing regulations. Dheeraj Sanghi concludes that MOOCs have their use, but for lifelong learning scenarios only.
What strikes me is his admitting that _in principle_ the MOOC is a better course, but that for _practical reasons_ it won't work. As indicated, I find this quite disconcerting. Has the added benefit of teacher interaction become this low? Or should we as academics put more effort in creating OERs? And how about the students? Will they rest content with this status quo or develop their own ideas about how useful MOOCs are, perhaps urging their teachers (or educational systems) to improve? If MOOCs are the in-principle favorite because of their ancestry, that sounds ominous for the state of higher eduation.
TechCentral.ieResearchers tell traditional universities to ignore e-learning 'at their peril'TechCentral.ieTechLife | 03 Dec 2012 : The University of Reading is helping to develop a new e-learning tool that delivers lessons via a mobile phone, yet...
Creative Commons licenses provide a flexible range of protections and freedoms for authors, artists, and educators. MOOCs — or Massive Open Online Courses — have been getting a lot of attention lately.
Students anywhere are being offered free instruction online. What will that do to the trillion-dollar education business? "If you were asked to name the most important innovation in transportation over the last 200 years, you might say the combustion engine, air travel, Henry Ford’s Model-T production line, or even the bicycle. The list goes on.
Now answer this one: what’s been the single biggest innovation in education?
Don’t worry if you come up blank. You’re supposed to. The question is a gambit used by Anant Agarwal, the computer scientist named this year to head edX, a $60 million MIT-Harvard effort to stream a college education over the Web, free, to anyone who wants one. His point: it’s rare to see major technological advances in how people learn."
When you say learning environment, the first word that comes to mind is school, one with teachers, classrooms and classmates. As technologies become more sophisticated, the classroom migrates into a new dimension -- the ...
Online learning requires a new pedagogy that is built on establishing a relationship between the instructor or facilitator and the learners. One of the most salient features of online learning is that it allows learning to be place and time independent. Learners can arrange their learning around their everyday lives.
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