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Moocs and how to use them   july 2014
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  • 1. HOW USEFUL ARE MOOCS IN OUR CONTEXT? CILT July 2014 MOOC Implementation team
  • 2. Massive • Classes may consist of tens of thousands of students Open • Registration open to anyone around the world Online • The course is taken completely or mostly online Course • Similar to formal courses with start and finish dates with a cohort of students M O O C
  • 3. PERSPECTIVES ON MOOCS Participants Institutional researchers Educators What MOOCs exist and why might I want to do a MOOC? What is there is learn from MOOCs? How can I use and develop MOOCs? Why are MOOCs useful?
  • 4. WHY TAKE A MOOC? • Learn a new skill for use in your work/life(eg stats for research) • Learn for fun/self enrichment (eg. about climate change) • Gives yourself a ‘taste’/trial of a new field or subject • Experience online learning
  • 5. WHAT KIND OF LEARNING? Participant can choose: ‘Drop-in’ and have a look (like a magazine) Start out and decide how much (like taking a book out of the library) Pick and choose what you want to explore(like a reference book) Go along for the ride (like auditing a class) Engage fully with the intention of learning (like taking a class)
  • 6. COMPLETION RATES http://www.katyjordan.com/MOOCproject.html
  • 7. WHAT WE GET FROM MOOCS? • Valerie: I have participated in many MOOCs since before the name MOOC existed. Even in this discussion, people are talking about “dropping out” – negative, failure to comply with rules and requirements, .. and yet they found the learning experience personally interesting and informative on many levels. Perhaps this is just part of a natural process of growth for using MOOCs for teaching and learning.
  • 8. • Reasons for doing MOOCs are of interest • but reasons for not completing tell us about other forms of learning http://www.edcentral.org/
  • 9. BATES’ OBSERVATIONS • Social aspect of learning is extremely important • MOOCs are primarily instruments for non-formal learning • Increasing facilitation makes MOOCs like conventional lectures Bates. Tony. (2014) MOOCs: getting to know you better, Distance Education.
  • 10. https://www.class-central.com
  • 11. PERSPECTIVES ON MOOCS Participants Institutional researchers Educators What MOOCs exist and why might I want to do a MOOC? What is there is learn from MOOCs? How can I use and develop MOOCs? Why are MOOCs useful?
  • 12. WHY USE MOOCS • extending the classroom • building networks • exposure to different contexts • accessing experts • bringing in diversity and depth of experience
  • 13. WHY USE MOOCS • putting Africa participants into a global network • benefit from other (high quality) educational resource inputs • supplement gaps in current provision
  • 14. HOW YOU CAN USE MOOCS? • Create your own MOOCs • Use existing MOOCs
  • 15. CREATING YOUR OWN Creating MOOCs can be very resource intensive but need not be – depends on purpose and choices you make Be clear on why
  • 16. CREATING VARIANTS • An example: ‘open boundary course’ can be a lower cost approach to offering a MOOC and is where an existing course is simultaneously opened out to others who are not formally enrolled • Key benefit: Bringing a more diverse student body into existing course – open boundary courses • Distance education in developing world & Africa has been offering massive enrollments but only now tentatively venturing into online and blended forms e.g. Unisa offering MOCs
  • 17. Course offered simultaneously as a formal and as a open course. Small private open course nested inside a MOOC Massive Online Course: formal course inspired by MOOC pedagogy Students in a course taking a MOOC with added local support and additional material Massive Open Online Course Formal course with lectures and support.
  • 18. USING EXISTING MOOCS • Flipping courses with MOOCs • Blending MOOCs with face-to-face classroom sessions • Use MOOCs as Learning Resources • Use for Professional Development • Wrapping a MOOC to supplementary skills for students
  • 19. WRAPPED MOOCS AT UCT Time Topic Group meets every -Monday for 5 weeks Critical Thinking in Global Challenges https://www.coursera.org/course/criticalthinking Group meets every -Thursday for 5 weeks Principles of Written English https://www.edx.org/course/uc-berkeleyx/uc-berkeleyx-colwri2- 2x-principles-1348 Group meets every -Monday for 6 weeks Understanding Research: An Overview for Health Professionals https://www.coursera.org/course/researchforhealth Group meets every second Wednesday for 5 weeks Model Thinking https://www.coursera.org/course/modelthinking Group meets every Monday for 6 weeks Design and Interpretation of Clinical Trials https://www.coursera.org/course/clintrials Group meets every Wednesday for 10 weeks Data Analysis and Statistical Inference https://www.coursera.org/course/statistics Group meets every Thursday for 6 University Teaching 101 *NEW* https://www.coursera.org/course/univteaching101
  • 20. http://ctl.utexas.edu/teaching
  • 21. PERSPECTIVES ON MOOCS Participants Institutional researchers Educators What MOOCs exist and why might I want to do a MOOC? What is there is learn from MOOCs? How can I use and develop MOOCs? Why are MOOCs useful?
  • 22. RESEARCH OPPORTUNITY The massiveness of MOOCs, their accessibility, and the wide range of questions they raise make the topic a very fertile area for research, and this is likely to generate new methods of research and analysis in the educational field (Bates, 2014) Bates. Tony. (2014) MOOCs: getting to know you better, Distance Education.
  • 23. WHAT WE’D LIKE MOOCS TO DO Sipho: “I believe that MOOCs can lower the burden of overflowing ‘face-to-face classes’ for staff and can liberate the learner to construct his/her own knowledge. Also, this can raise professional education as access to tertiary education can be increased and extended to the working class”.
  • 24. WHAT THE RESEARCH INDICATES… “But the people most likely to stay the course and gain a free qualification are well-educated men in their 30s working in professional jobs. Research by MOOC provider Coursera shows that 85% of MOOC participants already have university degrees. So the problem MOOCs succeed in solving is: to provide free university teaching for highly qualified professionals. (Diana Laurrilard)”
  • 25. WHAT RESEARCH SAYS ABOUT SUCCEEDING IN A MOOC • Require digital literacies and know-how to navigate the online space, make sense of resources and (esp. Connectivist MOOCs) • Connectivity & bandwidth constraints for signed up participants in developing countries (heavy video- based courses) • Cultural and language factors • Highly motivated learners (hence plenty of e.g. of plucky individuals from developing countries succeeding in MOOCs)
  • 26. “Alin used MOOCs to get a better job. He took Introduction to Computer Science at Udacity and at Codecademy, Introduction to R, a programming language used mainly for statistical analysis. Neither of these courses were part of his curriculum at Dhaka University. Noting it on his CV, he was not only hired by his employer but was made supervisor of a team of three holding similar finance degrees to himself. He admits not having noteworthy grades at DU, but given his MOOC knowledge, he was able to convince his employer he was qualified for the job”
  • 27. “Mony, an artist and an animator, has been working at a prominent animation studio in Dhaka. There are no animation schools in Dhaka. She got online and took many tutorials to learn her craft. Within a few years she had a portfolio of work that was so impressive she was hired on the spot. She is currently taking the Interactive 3D Graphics course at Udacity”
  • 28. IMPROVING MOOC DESIGN • Research is indicating how to improve the design of some MOOCs taking into account the pedagogic benefits of scale and learning analytics. • Researching MOOCs shed light on about participant behaviour, video styles, lengths and formats, design of activities & assessments • How to design for MOOCs in resource-constrained environments (mobiles, limited bandwidth) Learning Design for MOOCs - guidelines for course design: http://goo.gl/19cbTD
  • 29. MOOC DESIGN EVOLVING Many models of MOOC designs emerging • E.g. George Siemens piloting a dual pathway MOOC where learners either work though a linear pathway or through project-based groups (Siemens 2014). • SPOCs and other variants result of understanding • Platform design to scale – FutureLearn based on ‘conversational framework at scale’. • MOOCs are NOT suitable in many contexts e.g. San Jose experiment and Sebastian Thrun’s ‘pivot’ (Chafkin). Supported learning better here.
  • 30. IMPROVING ONLINE LEARNING DESIGN • MOOCs have made online learning “respectable”. • This happened when the elite universities started to offer MOOCs. • But we have much to learn about how to design effective MOOCs and how to design effective online learning • Often a conflation of the two, but not the same.
  • 31. MOOCS CAN INFORM ONLINE LEARNING DESIGN • Huge amount of data and research that can be mined (Harvard & MIT released anonymised data) • Pedagogy enacted in public (pre MOOCs most courses hidden from all but registered students – even from other lecturers) • MOOCs in semi-formal and non-formal spaces so experiments tolerated
  • 32. ONLINE LEARNING DESIGN CAN INFORM MOOC DESIGN • Discussion forums • Group work • Peer learning Much of FutureLearn’s design is based on a socio- constructivist approach where the massive is mediated social and peer learning, with experiments with group work.
  • 33. MOOCS INFORM CLASSROOM/ON-CAMPUS LEARNING DESIGN • MOOC materials used in blended and hybrid models • MOOC materials used in flipped classroom models • MOOCs used in wrapped modes Stanford University recent report about distributed flip.
  • 34. FOR RESEARCHERS… It would be a missed opportunity for African and build knowledge around African contexts for MOOCs, online learning and classroom-based learning. Opportunity is now to define forms of MOOCs, designs for MOOCs or how MOOCs inform the provision of more diverse and flexible forms of learning Many models of MOOCs, not just one. If not us, then who ?

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