by Ching-Fu Lan
"Findings: Unlike conventional college course registrants who meet certain preconditions and express informed commitment at course registration, registrants of MOOCs come from various backgrounds with different reasons for course enrollment, and have various levels of commitment for coursework. Thus, the common criticism of low course completion rates in MOOCs, which is based on a conventional understanding of registration and enrollment, does not consider the differences between learners in these two contexts. Considering only those users who attempted at least one homework problem, posted at least once on the discussion forum, and clicked on at least one video in this 2012 MIT MOOC, for instance, the completion rate rises to 48%, which provides a more nuanced description of learners and their achievements in this MOOC.
"Similarly, reconceptualization of curriculum, participation and achievement is necessary to understand learning in MOOCs more accurately. Analysis of student course click data suggests that the openness of resources allowed students to customize their curriculum experiences: they interacted with course resources at different times, in different sequences, and at different rates. A large number of users only clicked videos but did not do homework or show intention to complete a course certificate. Thus, conventional definitions of curriculum, course participation and achievement do not effectively and appropriately apply to the MOOC context."