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Old wine in new bottles? Exploring MOOCs
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Old wine in new bottles? Exploring MOOCs


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On 9 December 2013 we were very pleased to be able to welcome Professor Asha Kanwar (President & CEO of the Commonwealth of Learning) to Senate House to conduct a free lunchtime seminar “Old wine in …

On 9 December 2013 we were very pleased to be able to welcome Professor Asha Kanwar (President & CEO of the Commonwealth of Learning) to Senate House to conduct a free lunchtime seminar “Old wine in new bottles? Exploring MOOCs”.

The special session was chaired by Professor Alan Tait (Open University, CDE Visiting Fellow), and was an opportunity to engage with one of the world’s leading advocates of learning for development.

MOOCs seem to be a natural progression in the different stages of the development of distance education. Starting with external degrees, correspondence courses, open and distance learning, and more recently OER, MOOCs are yet another phase of opening up access to education. But will MOOCs really make a difference to democratizing education? Will they transform pedagogy and positively impact learning outcomes? How will they negotiate the digital divide? Or are MOOCs simply old wine in new bottles? This presentation will address these questions and explore the ways in which MOOCs can play a positive role in transforming education.

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  • These are the areas that COL works in – you will see that skills development is just one of 8 main programme areas.Support for TVET FOL is through the TVSD initiative managed by Alison Mead Richardson.We have 4 main strategies and the application of these in terms of skills development: We help to develop appropriate models of skills development using appropriate technologies. We help countries take innovation to scale. Scaling up in-country and between countries. We are looking for replicable models.We assist in institutional and national policy development relating to flexible delivery mechanisms. It helps to have a guiding framework on how the technology will be usedWe offer capacity building opportunities including workshops and online courses. Help to build capacity to use the technologyWe help institutions to develop materials – preferably open educational resourcesWe do all this through forming partnerships with ministries and institutions
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    • 1. Old Wine in New Bottles? Exploring MOOCs Professor Asha Kanwar President & Chief Executive Officer Commonwealth of Learning December 9, 2013
    • 2. COL Vision Access to Learning is the Key to Development Created by the Heads of Commonwealth at CHOGM 1987 Intergovernmental Organization 1987 Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM), Vancouver, Canada
    • 3. WHAT IS IT FOR? To help Commonwealth governments and institutions use various technologies to improve and expand learning for development
    • 4. Education for All (The Dakar Goals) Peace Democracy Equality Good governance
    • 5. COL Programme Education Livelihoods & Health        Open schooling Teacher Education Higher Education VUSSC Gender models policy TVSD Learning for Farmers Healthy Communities eLearning capacity partnerships materials
    • 6. VUSSC Member States
    • 7. ODL for Development: towards empowerment & transformation
    • 8. Opening up access
    • 9. Higher Education for the masses University of London: The People‟s University “reaching the his shoemaker in garret… ”
    • 10. Emergence of the External Degree
    • 11. Correspondence Colleges: South Africa  INTEC, Cape Town (ICS) (1906)  Lyceum College (Union College) (1917)  Rapid Results College (1928)  Success College (1940)  Damelin Correspondence  College (1948) Turret Correspondence College (1970)
    • 12. Plan  The context  The response  Old wine or new brew?
    • 13. The context  Demand  Costs  Technology
    • 14. Exploding demand for HE  2007: 150.6   million tertiary students globally 2012: 165 million 2025: 263 million 300 250 2007 200 2012 150 2025 100 50 0 2007 2012 2025
    • 15. Access to Higher Education 70% 60% 50% 40% OECD Average 40-50% 30% 20% 10% Caribbean 25% South Asia 15% HIGHER EDUCATION SubSaharan Africa 10%
    • 16. The Demand 4 new universities to cater to 30,000 needed each week to accommodate children who will reach enrolment age by 2025 Everitt, qtd Liyanagunawardena et al, 2013
    • 17. Rising Costs of Higher Education Source: The Economist Dec 1st – 7th, 2012, Higher education, Not what it used to be.
    • 18. The Digital Divide (Commonwealth countries) 100.0 90.0 80.0 70.0 60.0 50.0 40.0 30.0 20.0 10.0 0.0 Africa Asia Caribbean Proportion of households with Internet access Europe North America Proportion of households with Computer access Source: International Telecommunications Union Pacific
    • 19. From digital divide to digital dividend  The emergence of mobiles  Use of appropriate technologies that are affordable, accessible and available
    • 20. THE RESPONSE
    • 21. Massive Open Online Courses: MOOCs … a MOOC is a type of online course aimed at large scale participation and open access via the web. MOOCs are a recent development in the area of distance education, and a progression of the kind of open education ideals suggested by OER Wikipedia, 20/09/12
    • 22. Massive Open Online Courses: MOOCs
    • 23. MOOCs are typically  Free of charge  Designed for large numbers  Designed to encourage peer to  peer learning Meant to award completion certificates rather than course credits OBHE Report, 2012
    • 24. Stanford 2011  Artificial    Intelligence course 160,000 registered 23,000 completed All countries except North Korea
    • 25. The MOOC Effect 270 000 Students enrolled in Udacity‟s Computer Science MOOC 200 000 US University first-year students intending to study Computer Science in 2968 4-year degree granting institutions Source: Waldrop, M. M. (2013). Campus 2.0. Nature, 495, 160-163
    • 26. The MOOC Experience  March 2013: 132 MOOCs (US)  Participants mostly from US and Europe  Courses in Computer Science (61);  Business & Management; (21); Humanities (14); Success rates: less than 10% T Liyanagunawardena, S Williams, A Adams, „The impact & reach of MOOCs: a developing countries‟ perspective‟, May 2013
    • 27. Student Origins United States, 27.7 % India, 8.8 % Brazil, 5.1 % United Kingdom, 4.4 % Spain, 4 % Canada, 3.6 % Australia, 2.3 % Russia, 2.2 % Rest of the world, 41.9 % Source: Waldrop, M. M. (2013). Campus 2.0. Nature, 495, 160-163.
    • 28. Courses Offered Mathematics, 6 % Science, 30 % Arts and humanities, 28 % Information technology, 23 % Business, 13 % Source: Waldrop, M. M. (2013). Campus 2.0. Nature, 495, 160-163.
    • 29. MOOC for Development      Designed and offered by COL and IITKanpur Use of mobile devices and technologies in education, rural banking and agricultural extension Delivery compatible with mobiles using Android Experts from different countries for online mentoring Over 2200 learners from 112 countries Photo source:
    • 30. Would you have taken this course if there was no certificate offered?
    • 31. What is the business model?  „freemium‟ model—free content; paid    services Revenue through certification Licensing fees from universities Revenue generation from potential employers
    • 32. xMOOCs  Cognitive-behaviourist pedagogy  Teacher as expert  Transmission of content  Videos, automated quizzes, activities X
    • 33. cMOOCs  Connectivist pedagogy  Student-student interaction  Autonomous learner  Construct share and distribute learning experiences C
    • 34. Pedagogy  Flipped classroom  Short chunks of learning resources  Interactivity  Peer-to-peer learning  Continuous improvement because of analytics
    • 35. Credentialling  Certificates of completion  Badges  Invigilated exams at testing centres  Credits
    • 36. Do you believe students who succeed in your MOOC deserve formal credit from your institution? YES 28% NO 72%
    • 37. Issues for Quality  Can one size fit all?  Student verification and academic   integrity Is a peer reviewed assessment acceptable? Is there a delinking of the institutions which teach and the institutions which credential?
    • 39. Peer to peer interactions: new paradigm  MOOC platforms today provide for excellent online networking opportunities – Learner-Learner „instead of the classroom being the centre, it becomes just one node of the network of social interactions‟ George Siemens, Oct 2013
    • 40. Dynamic pedagogy: Learning Analytics  Predictive Systems can be developed – An Early Warning System: an upcoming drop out can be noticed  Recommender Systems can be built – Tutor/Coach can observe frequent attempts and failures in a particular activity and recommend remedial activities
    • 41. The advantage of Learning Analytics  Creates wholly new personalization pathways for learning from masses of data  Continuous feedback for ongoing improvement  Improved outcomes  Quality of learner experience enhanced
    • 42. Cost-effective opportunities: scaling up  There is NO need to use only the three or four Global brands – These are no more than particular online platforms  Any University can set up own or shared platform – Based on Cloud services or – Reliable local hosting services  Can use OER wherever possible – Lower costs, higher quality
    • 43. New degrees of ‘open-ness’  Open platforms  Open content  Open interactions
    • 44. Implications for HE  „Unbundle‟ services offering more flexibility  Build on established and successful Open  Content & Practices Improve teaching-learning experience
    • 45. Pedagogy: Coursera; Udacity “ Interestingly, while Coursera courses followed a format that resembles the traditional lecture/text – testing routine of traditional university courses spread over multiple weeks with hard deadlines, Udacity courses all followed a format that resembles nothing so much as the programmed learning approach developed by B. F. Skinner (1954).” Karen Swan from the University of Illinois (
    • 46. SPOCs: Small private online courses, Harvard Free Delivered online Restricted through a selection process More rigorous assessment BBC Business, Sept, 2013
    • 47. Mind to MOOCs: recommendations  Equity: inclusion, social justice  Diversity: attention to context  Innovation & Quality: improve pedagogic practice ICDE, Beijing, Oct.,2013
    • 48. Design principles for MOOCs  Autonomy  Diversity  Openness  Interactivity Stephen Downes
    • 49. Finally,  MOOCs are an evolution of past open    education practice rather than a revolution Being used for continuing professional development in developing countries Will refresh pedagogic practice Will supplement rather than replace traditional institutions
    • 50. THANK YOU