Open and online learning
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Open and online learning
Following the developments on MOOCs and online learning and their impact on higher education
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Massive Open Online Research: The MOOC Evolves into the MOOR

Massive Open Online Research: The MOOC Evolves into the MOOR | Open and online learning | Scoop.it
By Adding a Strong Research Element, MOOCs can Deliver Greater Learning Value to the Students who Participate in Them. Anyone who follows education technology

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Waypoints in the MOOC Debates, Part III: The Udacity-Georgia Tech Contract | Christopher Newfield - Remaking the University

Waypoints in the MOOC Debates, Part III: The Udacity-Georgia Tech Contract | Christopher Newfield - Remaking the University | Open and online learning | Scoop.it

I have spent some time trying to understand the MOOC business model, and yesterday Inside Higher Ed published one result, my 2000 word study of the Udacity-Georgia Tech contract, "Where are the Cost Savings?"   … Yesterday afternoon, Udacity founder Sebastian Thrun blogged on the Georgia Tech deal and commented on some of the points of my article. … I haven't found Dr. Thrun's post so helpful about the numbers.  But it does offer an important retrenchment in MOOC rhetoric.


Via Peter B. Sloep
verstelle's insight:

Important debat, about the $7000 online master in Computer Sciences, a cooperation between Georgia Tech and MOOC-producer Udacity. 

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Peter B. Sloep's curator insight, June 26, 2013 10:39 AM

What then follows is a list of five claims that Sebastian Thrun has made earlier and now significantly weakens or even gainsays. The most poignant one is Thrun's now six-months old claim reported in the Economist that in 50 years the world has room for 10 universities only. Others are about the zero-dollar marginal costs of MOOCs, their lack of need for human contact, Udacity's cheap infrastructure and the democratising effect MOOCs supposedly have because of their openness. Most importantly, the promised cost savings do not seem to be realised, although Thrun is silent about this. The authors don't blame him, after all he is a company CEO, but do blame public officials for entering into deals without fully knowing the financial implications. 

 

If the authors are right, public universities thus seem to be on the brink of selling out themselves to venture capital in the hope of making massive cost savings. They are backed or even forced by politicians to do so, who, no doubt  expect to gain political mileage from promising parents an elite university education for their children at low prices. However, as the authors show, there is little hope that  the promised savings will in fact materialise. What remains is that, in the process, public education has died at the hands of Silicon-Valley-inspired venture capitalists.  Guess who is going to pay for the damages. (@pbsloep)

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The pedagogical foundations of massive open online courses | David G. Glance, Martin Forsey & Miles Riley - First Monday

In 2011, the respective roles of higher education institutions and students worldwide were brought into question by the rise of the massive open online course (MOOC). MOOCs are defined by signature characteristics that include: lectures formatted as short videos combined with formative quizzes; automated assessment and/or peer and self–assessment and an online forum for peer support and discussion. Although not specifically designed to optimise learning, claims have been made that MOOCs are based on sound pedagogical foundations that are at the very least comparable with courses offered by universities in face–to–face mode. To validate this, we examined the literature for empirical evidence substantiating such claims. Although empirical evidence directly related to MOOCs was difficult to find, the evidence suggests that there is no reason to believe that MOOCs are any less effective a learning experience than their face–to–face counterparts. Indeed, in some aspects, they may actually improve learning outcomes.


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Maria Persson's comment, May 26, 2013 9:00 PM
Appreciate your comments Paulo - insightful and provokes further thought. Thanks for the comment.
Peter B. Sloep's comment, May 31, 2013 6:46 AM
Great comment Paulo!
Hein Holthuizen's curator insight, September 29, 2013 3:27 AM

A great outcome for those who don't like travelling (not me) and want to train/teach those who are in need of knowledge they are able to give.

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The rhetoric which surrounds MOOCs can distract us from the broader project of ‘unbundling’ the University in pursuit of profit |John Holmwood - Policy at LSE

The rhetoric which surrounds MOOCs can distract us from the broader project of ‘unbundling’ the University in pursuit of profit |John Holmwood - Policy at LSE | Open and online learning | Scoop.it

Internet delivered higher education is described by some in revolutionary terms, providing access to education for poor people or remote populations. In practice, though, the ‘unbundling’ of activities is advocated in order better to subject them to marketisation. John Holmwood argues that consultants advocating for the ‘unbundling’ of universities care not about widening inequality or providing students with employment opportunities, but rather with exploiting the potentially profitable ventures that may arise in the future.

 


Via Peter B. Sloep
verstelle's insight:

Author puts to the sword the recent report (‘report’ as he calls it) An Avalanche is Coming, written by Sir Michael Barber, Katelyn Donnelly and Saad Rizvi all part of Pearson Education.

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Peter B. Sloep's curator insight, March 24, 2013 4:30 AM

The article is in particular directed at an advice for 'unbundling the university' written by three Pearson consultants. A while ago, I addressed the similar issue of the monetisation of education in a blog of mine (http://pbsloep.blogspot.nl/2013/01/moocs-what-about-them-continued.html), referring to ideas by political philosopher Michael Sandel. John Holmwood's analysis reveals the nexus of interests that are served by privatising education. One could accuse Homes of an ad hominem, not addressing the issue but discrediting the messenger. Although he does discuss the authors' credentials and affiliations, such an accusation would not be fair as he also puts forth material arguments. But even more importantly, and for this you need to read the Pearson article itself, the argument pro unbundling advanced by the Pearson people are more like an advertorial than a serious scientific position paper. In such a case, it becomes interesting to find out where these arguments come from, that is, in virtue of whose interests, they are provided. The message that then comes to the fore is disconcerting at least. Or, as John Holmes puts it: "Thus is public higher education reduced to dining off the crumbs from high table! We might curtsy and doff our caps, but best, perhaps, just to bundle these charlatans off the scene and claim back higher education for democracy and public life." (@pbsloep)

Carlos Marcelo's curator insight, March 24, 2013 5:21 AM

Pros y contras de los MOOCs

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MOOCs: Coursera, edX, Futurelearn and Udacity - University profiles | Justin Menard - LISTedTECH

MOOCs: Coursera, edX, Futurelearn and Udacity - University profiles | Justin Menard - LISTedTECH | Open and online learning | Scoop.it

With Coursera and edX both announced this week they are doubling the number of universities partners, I decided to update the data. I also added another MOOC: Futurelearn

One more thing that was added to the visualisation is the average University World Ranking by MOOCs.


Via Peter B. Sloep
verstelle's insight:

"[Coursera, EdX and Udacity] have hand-picked their partnering institutions. Seventy percent of the universities are on the Times Higher Education top 200 World University Rankings 2012-2013. Eighty-two percent (82%) of Coursera's partners are in the Top200 University rankings compared with edX at 38.5% and Udacity at 60%. In the ranking's top 5, only the University of Oxford is not part of any of the 3 MOOC that we are looking at. I cant wait to see who will recruit it."

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Top Free Classes's comment, March 7, 2013 10:55 PM
Thanks!
GIBS Information Centre / GIBSIC's curator insight, March 8, 2013 7:45 AM

Ackn. Justin Menard - interest in Rankings by MOOCs and Uni's

Justin Menard's comment, May 7, 2013 8:59 PM
I have updated the visualisation with the most recent information, added 2 new Moocs and 5 more world university rankings

We now have 6 MOOCs in the Viz: Coursera, edX, Futurelearn, Iversity, OpenEd and Udacity
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In 2020 most colleges and universities no longer exist | EPIC

"EPIC 2020, stands for the proposition that the education of the world will change dramatically for the better during this decade. The two movies that follow and this site hope to provide tools that shatter the paradigm that the future will be anything like the past as well as facilitate discussion and accelerate actions to bring about the transformation of the education of the world."

 

Comment: published in May this year but missed by me then, the 10 minute video narrative starts by saying that in the year 2020 most colleges and universities no longer exist. A story unfolds that begins with the success of the Khan Academy and Udacity, that predicts that Apple buys Amazon ('AppleZone') to boost the iTunesU, to which Google reacts with providing access to services that 'know what you know' and on the basis thereof 'predict what you need to know". In 2020 this revolution - the domination of global education by Apple and Google is complete, all universities and colleges have gone, except for those who cater for the rich and compete on the quality of food and leisure they provide. Watch it, your 10 minutes are well spent! (peter sloep, @pbsloep)


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Peter B. Sloep's comment, November 11, 2012 1:21 AM
No, not really, but I am not sure either. Note that the commoditization of education is something that appeals to venture capitalists, see their funding of MOOC providers Udacity, Coursera. Also LMS providers (Blackboard) don't want to miss this boat. And then the parallel with the music, film and book industries is forceful, even though they rely much less on interaction than education does. Finally, note that Apple (iTunesU) Google (their MOOC platform, forgot the name) are already involved. Let's put it this way, if universities are in financial trouble because of dwindling funding through governments and private capital with deep pockets gets involved. Is their a way they can be stopped?
plerudulier's comment, November 11, 2012 4:31 AM
I'm been thinking about that myself especially after realizing that many of those MOOC evangelists were actually teachers themselves. Although I perfectly understand the interest for students wannabes to get access to education no matter their financial contraints as well the willingness of some teachers to share with as many as possible i couldn't help thinking that by doing so the latter were, in a way, sawing off the branch they sit on.
Peter B. Sloep's comment, November 11, 2012 6:04 AM
Sawing of the branch: yes, that is a recurring theme in the posts that scoop.it collects for me. Also, just today I read a story about a student who echoed what you say: what are you nagging about, this is a wonderful opportunity for students (although she acknowledges that it is not without dangers; see http://tiny.cc/povlnw
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20,000 students in the first 24 hours: UK enters MOOC space with social, mobile FutureLearn

20,000 students in the first 24 hours: UK enters MOOC space with social, mobile FutureLearn | Open and online learning | Scoop.it

Until last Wednesday, US-based learning platforms have led the development of MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses). Together, those platforms, including Coursera, edX, and Udacity, serve an estimated 3 million learners worldwide with courses from a number of elite partner institutions, such as Harvard and MIT.

But now, in the same week in which edX announced a partnership with Google for the development of a new, open-source online learning system, the UK has launched its own – and its first-ever – MOOC platform: FutureLearn.


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Stefan Krastev's comment, September 26, 2013 11:59 AM
Another point to be mentioned is that FutureLearn starts from the beginning with a content which is optimised for mobile devices. Mobile solutions are very important especially for the students in emerging markets. Interesting will be both the implementation of the mobile learning and how effective it will be.
Jacqueline Kassteen's comment, September 26, 2013 8:03 PM
Yes, a great point to highlight Stefan! The responsive design helps FutureLearn towards its goal of making education accessible to all.
Peter B. Sloep's comment, September 27, 2013 3:33 AM
@stefan good point, hadn't realised that. You're right, in emerging markets and developing countries, 3G mobile networks are more widely available than fiberglass. In fact, it is a stage they skip it seems
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MOOCs and Beyond - eLearning Papers 33 released | elearningeurope.info

MOOCs and Beyond - eLearning Papers 33 released | elearningeurope.info | Open and online learning | Scoop.it

Issue number 33 of eLearning Papers focuses on the challenges and future of Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs), a trend in education that has skyrocketed since 2008. 

[…]

Among other topics, eLearning Papers 33 explores whether MOOCs may be a viable solution for education in developing countries and analyses the role of these emerging courses in the education system, especially in higher education. Furthermore, valuable examples from the field are presented, such as the quad-blogging concept and a game-based MOOC developed to promote entrepreneurship education.


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Peter B. Sloep's curator insight, June 6, 2013 2:34 AM

I have little to add to this other than that the collection of papers provides a distinctive European perspective on MOOCs. As a consequence (?), the focus is more on the pedagogy than on the economics of higher education (@pbsloep)

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MOOCs and Open Education: Implications for Higher Education | Li Yuan & Stephen Powell - JISC CETIS publications

MOOCs and Open Education: Implications for Higher Education | Li Yuan & Stephen Powell - JISC CETIS publications | Open and online learning | Scoop.it

This report sets out to help decision makers in higher education institutions gain a better understanding of the phenomenon of Massive Online Open Courses (MOOCs) and trends towards greater openness in higher education and to think about the implications for their institutions. 


Via Peter B. Sloep
verstelle's insight:

Thorough report from the Brittish JISC/CETIS. 

Many of the reported is not new for those who follow MOOC developments but it is worth reading e.g. for these conclusions:

 

"...there is a significant question for higher education institutions to address: are online teaching innovations, such as MOOCs, heralding a change in the business landscape that poses a threat to their existing models of provision of degree courses? [...] If this is the case, then the theory of disruptive 

innovation suggests that there is a strong argument for establishing an autonomous business unit in order to make an appropriate response to these potentially disruptive innovations"

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suifaijohnmak's comment, March 25, 2013 9:43 AM
Hi Peter, As you said, we knew most of these already. Even then, this paper is still wonderful. I would however like to see more coverage on cMOOCs, as most of the current researches are still based on blog postings, and a few xMOOCs researches initiated and reported by the professors. I would also like to see more objective and evidence based learning that are consolidated from the xMOOCs. Here is my response post: http://suifaijohnmak.wordpress.com/2013/03/25/mooc-and-open-education/ I think the current trajectory is moving towards privatization and monetization where the "winners" take all. Would that be Coursera and or Udacity? I reckon Coursera is leading in xMOOCs.
Peter B. Sloep's comment, March 25, 2013 9:57 AM
You are right, pity that cMOOCs have not been included as their inclusion would have significantly widened the range of possible outcome scenarios. Still, in defence of the authors, I don't think they set out to cover cMOOCs as well as these are not seen as threatening to HE as it is now.
suifaijohnmak's comment, March 25, 2013 10:08 AM
Yes, I agreed fully with your view :)
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The dirty little secret of online learning: Students are bored and dropping out | Todd Tauber - Quartz

The dirty little secret of online learning: Students are bored and dropping out | Todd Tauber - Quartz | Open and online learning | Scoop.it

If they do that, they’ll see that digital learning needs to become much more mobile, personal and social. .. Mobile content, then, needs to be “bite-sized,” visually stimulating and interactive. … Taking a cue from Twitter and LinkedIn, education online also needs to do a better job leveraging peer interaction and collaboration. … mixes short videos and frequent assessments with facilitated group projects, asynchronous collaboration and innovative tools designed specifically to drive participation. 

 


Via Peter B. Sloep
verstelle's insight:

Indeed a misleading title and intro. After that it reads as a convincing look into the near future, where the best online learning experiences will be extremely expensive to produce and offered by commercial universities and publishers.

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Peter B. Sloep's curator insight, March 24, 2013 2:50 AM

Although the title might suggest otherwise, this is not the familiar rant about the large drop-out rates of MOOCs. Sure, it serves as the starting point, but Todd Tauber quickly moves on into a more positive mode. Describing current online offerings through MOOCs as an 'assembly line model' with loss of student attention as the corollary, he points out that it takes mobile, personal and social learning to keep students involved.


I am glad to see such a nuanced view by someone who describes himself as a business developer and strategst. The massive numbers of people enrolling in MOOCs indicate that lots of people are motivated to learn. How come so many drop out? Sure, a large fraction may perhaps be bound to drop out, but MOOCs thus far seem to have forgotten the lesson that open universities have learnt over the last few decades (see among others Tony Bates on this: http://sco.lt/6IAgWP ) about making online learning more engaging. Interestingly, as Todd points out, apparently the university of Phoenix has learnt this lesson too, as the final quote in the above, about group projects and collaboration suggests.


Grea, this could be the start of an evolution towards better onlin learning, as Todd hopes. But please, heed the lessons learnt in the past. I already referred to Tony Bates. At the risk of sounding boastful I also want to point out one of my own achievements. In 1998 already, I co-lead a project at the Open University of the Netherlands that already had small groups of students collaborate asynchronously on authentic assignments (Westera, W., & Sloep, P. B. (1998). The Virtual Company: Toward a Self-Directed, Competence-Based Learning Environment in Distance Education. Educational Technology, 38(1), 32–37.). What I have always remembered about this attempt at innovating online education is the unprecedented motivating effect it had on the participants. (@pbsloep)

Ainsley Stollar's curator insight, March 6, 2014 10:52 AM

This talks about different types of learning and how our generation uses digital learning to obtain knowledge instead of using books. It also talks about how education needs to link peers together in order to further them in their learning. This relates because it is trying to make people feel the need to learn again instead of just memorizing information and letting it go when it's no longer needed.

Sirkka Sariola's curator insight, June 7, 2014 6:05 PM

Artikkelin kirjoittaja pohtii, miksi niin monet ilmoittautuvat online-kursseille, mutta joko jättävät kurssin kesken tai eivät edes aloita sitä. Yksi syy hänen mukaansa on se, että kurssit ovat samoja vanhoja - vain siirrettynä digitaaliseen muotoon. “education lags 30 years behind most of the world, and 50 years behind Silicon Valley.” Kursseissa ei oteta huomioon sen kummemmin teknologian kuin sen käyttäjien muuttumista viimeisinä vuosina.  Lainaus puhuu puolestaan.


Hän tekee myös ehdotuksia asioista, joihin pitäisi kiinnittää huomiota ja joita pitäisi muuttaa, jotta tämän sukupolven digitaalisen median käyttäjät saataisiin innostumaan online-kursseista ja opiskelusta. Mielenkiintoista luettavaa.

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The MOOCs fad and bubble: please tell us another story! by Dominique Boullier

The MOOCs fad and bubble: please tell us another story! by Dominique Boullier | Open and online learning | Scoop.it

"How can we escape this new buzz about MOOCs, since the launch of Coursera? Is there anything else than the bubble effect created by the media that is part of the strategy itself? ... This massive commercial war on education is now launched and everyone is supposed to adopt a strategy to counter it, especially in Europe, and this is what theTimes Higher Education reports for England’s Futurelearn consortium ..."


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Peter B. Sloep's curator insight, December 20, 2012 12:18 PM

An interesting albeit sometimes not entirely transparant analysis by a French sociologist and former collaborator of Bruno Latour. Education is under attack from MOOCs, why and how is this so? The entry point of his analysis is the opinion economy, where success is predicated upon the degree to which you are able to attract attention. He claims that MOOCs are not really new (in the sense of innovative) but somehow are able to sell themselves as new. He supports this claim by making two points: "To sum up this [first] point, let’s say that all MOOCs model is more about predation than cooperation, more about reproduction than innovation, more about standardization than diversification." His second point is that the MOOCs' strong emphasis on cognition does not prepare students for a real job, as there it is not about knowledge but about contextualised expertise and its application.  (@pbsloep)

suifaijohnmak's comment, December 20, 2012 4:41 PM
Interesting ideas. I will write a post in 2013 in response to this.