IAFOR ACSET Getting to the Point: The Least Educators Need to Know About Massively Open Online Courses Now
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IAFOR ACSET Getting to the Point: The Least Educators Need to Know About Massively Open Online Courses Now

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Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) started in 2008 as a connectivist experiment in education. Extremely large MOOCs were convened in 2011, and the term took off in the popular media in 2012. This year, the backlash is well underway. However, these experiments should still be of interest to teachers and have the potential to benefit many learners.

MOOCs have been hailed as revolutionary and disruptive to the status quo in higher education. They have also been put forward as a fix for rising university costs, perceived declines in quality, and problems of access all-in-one. However, few of the ideas behind MOOCs are new. Moreover, as for-profit corporations have co-opted and fragmented the initial practice, there is no longer even a clear consensus on a coherent description of MOOCs.

This presentation will bring educators up-to-date on the current state of MOOCs–including a critical view of their potential. This will help in evaluating MOOCs and making informed choices about selecting courses, using them to augment their own teaching, participating in them directly, or even starting one. Participants will gain a critical understanding of MOOCs and see how this trend may change education in their contexts.

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IAFOR ACSET Getting to the Point: The Least Educators Need to Know About Massively Open Online Courses Now IAFOR ACSET Getting to the Point: The Least Educators Need to Know About Massively Open Online Courses Now Document Transcript

  • Getting to the Point: The Least Educators Need to Know About Massively Open Online Courses Now Ted O’Neill http://eltted.com @gotanda Tokyo Medical and Dental University IAFOR Asian Conference on Society, Education& Technology 24 October 2013 This work by Ted O’Neill @gotanda is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution--ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License Thank you very much for attending this talk, or for downloading this presentation. And, thank you to the International Academic Forum for inviting me to speak at the Inaugural Asian Conference on Society, Education and Technology. <http://iafor.org/>. Please do email me <gotanda@gmail.com>. Image: cc licensed ( BY ) flickr photo by Jessica Spengler: http://flickr.com/photos/wordridden/3117638263/
  • There is a huge educational technology bubble expanding in Silicon Valley and Wall Street. With 65 million venture capital funding for Coursera, and well over 100 million total for MOOC providers, there is a lot of pressure on educators. We need to know what we are facing.
  • cc licensed ( BY SA ) flickr photo by A Watters: http://flickr.com/photos/surreal_badger/8573233746/ This is how many of my friends and colleagues feel when I talk, tweet, or post about MOOCs, but throwing up our hands and saying “What?” isnʼT an effective strategy. We need to understand MOOCs to choose how and when to engage with them. The problems are many. And, the more I look, the more I find. It is very easy to make a case that all MOOCs are destructive. The Shallows: What the Internet Is Doing to Our Brains Nicholas Carr Evgeny Morozov <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evgeny_Morozov> Andrew Keen The Cult of the Amateur <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Cult_of_the_Amateur> All make arguments that the Internet is dumbing us down and that amateur peer assessment may be devaluing the role of knowledgable and experienced teachers. Have you ever read the comments on a YouTube video or a popular news article? But even if you take these arguments we are stuck with MOOCs and as educators. Image: cc licensed ( BY SA ) flickr photo by A Watters: http://flickr.com/photos/surreal_badger/8573233746/
  • This image is a pretty good first look at what MOOCs are and how learning takes place in them. content in the form of texts and videos, tweets, blog posts, webinars and webinar recordings, tags, and Facebook updates are all part of the mix. This image shows the network aspect of MOOCs, and each icon is a node in the “course” representing a connection, interaction, or new creative response. MOOCs and nodal learning in a network. Each node represents potential new learning and creation of new knowledge.
  • When most people hear the term MOOC, if it means anything to hem at all, they probably think of one of these corporate or institutional MOOC providers. They get all the attention, but are not the whole story. These are the newcomers. The real story is much more interesting. How many people have... enrolled in a MOOC? then gone on to actually participate? completed? not sure if they have completed? That last is a key question. MOOCs have been criticized for low completion rates, but thatis misleading Also, completion is not well defined in some MOOCs. Coursera: Andrew Ng and Daphne Koller from Stanford University 2012 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coursera edX: Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Harvard University in May 2012 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/edX Udemy: Eren Bali, Oktay Caglar, and Gagan Biyani in 2010. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Udemy Udacity: Sebastian Thrun, David Stavens, and Mike Sokolsky 2012 (first course 2011) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Udacity
  • cc licensed ( BY ) flickr photo by Steve Jurvetson: http://flickr.com/photos/jurvetson/5577603704/ If you have not completed you are in good company. Sebastian Thrun, CEO of Udacity, recently admitted that he has yet to complete a MOOC. Udacity's Sebastian Thrun On the Future of Education Betsy Corcoran 3 April 2013 https://www.edsurge.com/n/2013-04-02-udacity-s-sebastian-thrun-on-the-future-of-education Image: cc licensed ( BY ) flickr photo by Steve Jurvetson: http://flickr.com/photos/jurvetson/5577603704/
  • cc licensed ( BY ) flickr photo by Mathieu Plourde: http://flickr.com/photos/mathplourde/8620174342/ Dave Cormier and Bryan Alexander coined the term MOOC for George Siemensʼ and Stephen Downesʼ course on learning theory in 2008 when they wanted to exemplify this learning theory in their teaching and opened their course to over 2,000 students. Image: cc licensed ( BY ) flickr photo by Mathieu Plourde: http://flickr.com/photos/mathplourde/8620174342/
  • M is for Massive Stephen Downes has posited Dunbar's number as a kind of minimum threshold for massiveness. But, that 150 means 150 fully active participants. What Makes a MOOC Massive? January 17, 2013 Stephen Downes http://halfanhour.blogspot.ca/2013/01/what-makes-mooc-massive.html
  • O is for Open Openness is key Content Enrollment Cost Direction
  • Image CC Flickr user jacki-dee O is for online. Take advantage of the affordances of digital technology to create complex networks of learning nodes. Image: Image CC Flickr user jacki-dee
  • Image CC OLDS MOOC JISC http://www.olds.ac.uk/ Course We all know what a course is, right? And if that is what is replicated, then what is the point?
  • cc licensed ( BY ) flickr photo by aussiegall: http://flickr.com/photos/aussiegall/5206084063/ Not just the directions and interactions, but the choice of tools is determined by the participants. Use Twitter, FB, Google+, blogs, even email. Users situate the course where it is comfortable for them. It is not situated in an institutional LMS. Image: cc licensed ( BY ) flickr photo by aussiegall: http://flickr.com/photos/aussiegall/5206084063/
  • Image CC Steve Jurvetson Image Twitter Conversations Visualized Martin Hawksey http://octel.alt.ac.uk/course-discussions/twitter-conversation-visualised/ Participants in a MOOCs create two networks and most importantly take those two networks with them. One network is the connected learning nodes. The other is the network of participants themselves. In some senses, I feel I that I have never completed this MOOC because I continue to exchange ideas with many of these participants long after the MOOC is “done”. Image Twitter Conversations Visualized Martin Hawksey http://octel.alt.ac.uk/course-discussions/twitter-conversationvisualised/
  • cc licensed ( BY ) flickr photo by bixentro: http://flickr.com/photos/bixentro/2348232234/ There are two main classifications of MOOC xMOOCs Corporate, content-based, potentially very large, well funded, bringing learners inside the institution. Emerged from software, and venture capital culture of Silicon Valley. cMOOCs Community driven, interaction-based, inquiry, taking learners out of the institution. Emerged from psychologists, learning theorists, and digital humanities. Image: cc licensed ( BY ) flickr photo by bixentro: http://flickr.com/photos/bixentro/2348232234/
  • cc licensed ( BY NC SA ) flickr photo by Dave: http://flickr.com/photos/agentdavidov/2921954993/ Think of the term xMOOCs as analogous to TEDx, where a TED conference is set in a place and draws on the experts there. xMOOCs are set in institutions and may promote the leading or prestigious faculty there. xMOOCs begin as collections of content and conventional activities such as quizzes, small group discussions, and essays or assignments for peer review. Image: cc licensed ( BY NC SA ) flickr photo by Dave: http://flickr.com/photos/agentdavidov/2921954993/
  • These are the big xMOOC providers. Also, now Google. Too soon to tell if the open platform, or the tech industry target is most important.
  • It's a bait and switch. The first taste is always free as they say in some industries. xMOOCs have appropriated the model by taking something closed and just calling it open and free. edX is inching the right way towards creative commons and GPL. In tech they say "Open always wins." or "Open beats closed." I hope so.
  • cc licensed ( BY NC ) flickr photo by James F Clay: http://flickr.com/photos/jamesclay/2890229556/ Who are xMOOCs good for? The incumbents: prestige universities Star faculty Prepared learners who need access (the proverbial precocious high school student who needs tensors, or the motivated student in a developing country) Those who want to fill in the gaps (the biology student who wants to take a flyer on poetry, or the adult who wants to really learn the Western CIv they forgot from college.) Positioned as a substitute for higher education courses, these are better as adjuncts to it. “Thrun in a Wired Magazine interview: Thrun "imagines that in 10 years, job applicants will tout their Udacity degrees. In 50 years, he says, there will be only 10 institutions in the world delivering higher education and Udacity has a shot at being one of them." A Future With Only 10 Universities (Minding the Future, #OpenVA) Audrey Watters 15 October 2013 http://www.hackeducation.com/2013/10/15/minding-the-future-openva/ Image: cc licensed ( BY NC ) flickr photo by James F Clay: http://flickr.com/photos/jamesclay/2890229556/
  • cc licensed ( BY NC ) flickr photo by Chris Campbell: http://flickr.com/photos/cgc/473027823/ Who are xMOOCs bad for? Students who are unprepared. MOOCs for remedial work? Ironically, people who can't afford to go to college, because they may not have the other supports. For profit online universities. Why pay when you can get the same for free or cheap? Workaday educators. English 101 and Calculus 2 puts bread on the table. Graduate students. When xMOOCs stumble, conveners seem to call in the grad students. I believe they are already overworked Image: cc licensed ( BY NC ) flickr photo by Chris Campbell: http://flickr.com/photos/cgc/473027823/
  • /3 an e ind 1 41 0 04 9/ 1 6 v /ke os ot h to ho rp Y l cc ed ns e (B NC SA vi ke by :h an e nd /fl p: / p m/ co kr. ic tt k flic ) ic Will MOOCs lower the cost of higher education? No. “Free” will disappear or be costs shifted with assessment, accreditation, etc, The actual cost of teaching is not the driver of cost increases. These are: Amenities to compete for students Administration and management overhead Sports teams Signature building projects Peripheral services Inelastic demand coupled with easy access to credit
  • cc licensed ( BY NC ) flickr photo by Iowa Digital Library: http://flickr.com/photos/uiowa/8047289330/ And this is already a pretty efficient model. Image: cc licensed ( BY NC ) flickr photo by Iowa Digital Library: http://flickr.com/photos/uiowa/8047289330/
  • From What are the BIG QUESTIONS in TEL? Diana Laurillard London Knowledge Lab Institute of Education http:// octel.alt.ac.uk/course-materials/ Basic MOOCs without professor intervention are cheap per student. MOOCs with significant faculty input do not scale and are not cheap.
  • If scaling up will not save money, and only new pedagogies can help? Where will these come from? Not from xMOOCs, but from cMOOCs, perhaps, if at all.
  • cc licensed ( BY NC SA ) flickr photo by Paul Robinson: http://flickr.com/photos/happyfunpaul/3526869185/ Not really MOOCs and not really successful. 44 vs 74 for college algebra 29 vs 80 for remedial math SJSU MOOC Study Reveals Achievement Gains but Low Retention Rates John K. Waters 3 September 2013 “three courses, which were structured as MOOCs, though they were limited to 100 students per class” San Jose State U. Puts MOOC Project With Udacity on Hold Steve Kolowisch 19 July 2013 The Chronicle of Higher Education http://chronicle.com/article/San-Jose-State-U-Puts-MOOC/140459/ “The pass rates for the San Jose State students in those courses ranged from 29 percent to 51 percent.” “Those rates might seem quite low, but Ms. Desousa said they were "not bad" for her developmental math course, especially given the online format.” -Especially given the online format? San Jose State’s MOOC Missteps Easy to See Diverse: Issues in Higher Education 29 July 2013 Anya Kamenetz http://diverseeducation.com/article/54903/ “However, that was not the case here. These were the pass rates for the three courses:
  • xMOOCs overpromise and underdeliver. Is it the end of the university lecture. Is it really the end of the "sage on the stage"? If that is even a real problem. 97% of MOOCs include video. * Many have significant video lectures from the organizers The webinar featuring an invited expert is commonplace In place of the sage on the stage, I'm calling this the Celeb on the Web. And their stage has just gotten so much larger Looking at responses to xMOOCs Amherst College faculty recently rejected joining EdX for these reasons: They poach tuition from middle and lower-ranked schools Lead to the centralization of higher education Make the star faculty system even worse ** * The Professors Behind the MOOC Hype Steve Kolowich March 18, 2013 The Chronicle of Higher Education http://chronicle.com/article/The-Professors-Behind-the-MOOC/137905/? cid=wb&utm_source=wb&utm_medium=en#id=overview **Why Some Colleges Are Saying No to MOOC Deals, at Least for Now Steve Kolowich April 29, 2013 The Chronicle of Higher Education http://chronicle.com/article/Why-Some-Colleges-Are-Saying/138863/
  • cc licensed ( BY NC SA ) flickr photo by Kristina Alexanderson: http://flickr.com/photos/kalexanderson/6701174223/ cMOOCs are the “real” MOOCs Cormier and Alexander coined the term MOOCs to describe George Siemensʼ and Stephen Downesʼ course on learning theory in 2008 when they wanted to exemplify this learning theory in their teaching and included over 2,000 students. In a cMOOC the network of learners is both the course and the learning outcome of the course. The network remains and is the learning itself. The connectivist MOOC is the "real thing" and I think has the greatest potential. Built on the affordances of the network. They are way to evade control of admissions offices. Work for the university but teach the world and bring the world into your course.
  • Image CC Steve Jurvetson Image Twitter Conversations Visualized Martin Hawksey http://octel.alt.ac.uk/course-discussions/twitter-conversation-visualised/ The cMOOC as emergent phenomenon. Patterns of Engagement in Connectivist MOOCs Colin Milligan Allison Littlejohn Anoush Margaryan MERLOT Journal of Online Learning and Teaching Vol. 9, No. 2, June 2013 http://jolt.merlot.org/vol9no2/milligan_0613.htm
  • Connectivism also addresses the challenges that many corporations face in knowledge management activities. Knowledge that resides in a database needs to be connected with the right people in the right context in order to be classified as learning. Behaviorism, cognitivism, and constructivism do not attempt to address the challenges of organizational knowledge and transference. Connectivism: A Learning Theory for the Digital Age December 12, 2004 George Siemens http://eltted.com/2013/02/11/siemens-connectivism-and-faith-in-management/ Is connectivism driven by a corporate culture that has problems? If 20th education was patterned by military and industrial needs, will 21st century education simply replicate post-industrial models of work to satisfy a need for an atomized cloud of on demand knowledge workers? OTOH, young people do want to be prepared to get good jobs. And we all need to learn to handle information overload. So with those qualifications, if we take the connectivist view, it does imply significant changes in pedagogy. For myself, I feel I have have experienced this, but the data is not conclusively there yet. The way to establish that is to engage on the connectivist terms, and to carry on. Practice will lead to understanding. This is where some of us may come in over the next few years.
  • Hybrid Pedagogy Inc. under CC BY-NC 3.0 License The connectivist MOOCS have a homegrown enthusiasm, driven by a learning community, not by VC cash. Rather than a contained provision of education, they are closer to the action of learning. They come from practicing academics from the digital humanities, psychology, and literature, not software development and AI. They are truly bottom up naturalists, not top down industrialists. They experiment and that is where new pedagogy or “moocagogy” will come from. “We havenʼt learned anything new about online learning from MOOCs (especially Courserian and Udacian MOOCs) because we keep the lion in the cage. The kind of learning we need to have happen in MOOCs canʼt be contained -- not in neat and tidy discussion fora, video lectures, and standardized assessments. We must start by observing learning in its natural habitat with a hunterʼs blind, good binoculars, and plenty of rations. MOOCs are anthropological opportunities, not instructional ones.” MOOCagogy: Assessment, Networked Learning, and the Meta-MOOC July 22, 2013 Sean Michael Morris and Jesse Stommel http://www.hybridpedagogy.com/Journal/files/MOOCagogy.html#sthash.uFfeW4ej.dpuf
  • OLDS MOOC JISC Success stories #change11 http://change.mooc.ca/ Open Learning Design Studio OLDS MOOC JISC http://www.jisc.ac.uk/whatwedo/programmes/elearning/embeddingbenefits2012/oldsmooc.aspx DS 106 http://ds106.us/ A Domain of Oneʼs Own http://umwdomains.com/ ETMOOC Educational Technology and Media http://etmooc.org/
  • Linux Open Source Mimi Ito Digital Youth Project documents interest-based play online (fan fic remix etc.) http://hastac.org/node/1806 Wikipedia Each of these exhibit many of the same qualities as cMOOCs.
  • cc licensed ( BY SA ) flickr photo by Alan Levine: http://flickr.com/photos/cogdog/7155294657/ “Open means never having to say youʼre sorry” Title and image: cc licensed ( BY SA ) flickr photo by Alan Levine: http://flickr.com/photos/cogdog/7155294657/
  • Tecc licensed ( BY NC SA ) flickr photo by WayneKLin: http://flickr.com/photos/waynel78/4421046395/xt David Wiley @opencontent “What exactly is most unique / special about MOOCs? Letʼs unpack the acronym back to front: - Courses. Well, weʼve had these for a few hundred years. At least. Many of these are not MOOCs. - Online courses. Well, weʼve had these for decades. At least. Many of these are not MOOCs. - Open online courses. Well, weʼve had these for several years now, too. Many of these are not MOOCs. - Massive. Hmm. This seems new. Ish.” The Most Unique Thing About MOOCs – And Where Creative Effort is Most Needed http://opencontent.org/blog/archives/2903 David Wiley on JULY 31, 2013 Image: Tecc licensed ( BY NC SA ) flickr photo by WayneKLin: http://flickr.com/photos/waynel78/4421046395/xt
  • cc licensed ( BY ) flickr photo by USFS Region 5: http://flickr.com/photos/usfsregion5/3598029211/ What should you do if (when) your institution asks you to run a MOOC? Run! But seriously, make sure your institution understands the demands and supports you. Most do it on top of paid duties. Giving away our work to our institutions, devalues our profession. Who has enough time for this? 100 hours to prep before the mooc begins Hours and hours per week Job suffers The Professors Behind the MOOC Hype Steve Kolowich March 18, 2013 The Chronicle of Higher Education http://chronicle.com/article/The-Professors-Behind-the-MOOC/137905/? cid=wb&utm_source=wb&utm_medium=en#id=overview What if you want to organize a MOOC? This is much more interesting. Thankfully, Martin Hawksey has provided an excellent set of tools. @mhawksey http://mashe.hawksey.info/ (M)OOC in a Box: Turning WordPress into an Open Course Reader http://mashe.hawksey.info/2013/03/mooc-in-a-box-turning-wordpress-into-an-open-course-reader-octel/ #ocTEL- an open online course recipe using WordPress http://mashe.hawksey.info/2013/04/octel-an-open-online-course-recipe-using-wordpress/ Twitter Archiving Google Spreadsheet TAGS v5 http://mashe.hawksey.info/2013/02/twitter-archive-tagsv5/ Image: cc licensed ( BY ) flickr photo by USFS Region 5: http://flickr.com/photos/usfsregion5/3598029211/
  • mooc.ca ... provided by Stephen Downes and George Siemens as a place to host MOOC news and information www.hybridpedagogy.com ... A Digital Journal of Learning, Teaching, and Technology ebook “Learner Experiences with MOOCs and Open Online Learning” openculture.com/free_certificate_courses ... 625 MOOCs offered by leading universities with certificates or completion statements (mostly xMOOCs) connectivistmoocs.org ... Fewer options, but truly open. There are so many MOOC listings out there and more everyday. These highlight cMOOCs. The xMOOCs have a bigger press budget. Veletsianos, G. (2013). Learner Experiences with MOOCs and Open Online Learning. Hybrid Pedagogy. Retrieved from http:// learnerexperiences.hybridpedagogy.com.
  • https://courses.edx.org/register Do try it. Find a MOOC that suits your interests and sign up. Whether you fully engage and “complete” or just lurk, the experience will do an educator good. You may find some excellent teaching materials. I use online tools frequently, but I hadnʼt been on the other side of the desk in more than 8 years. Experiencing online learning is important for keeping perspective. Finding your way in a cMOOC will put you close to where pedagogy may be developing. Put your mark on it, or at least think about where this is going. I guarantee you will learn something new and something about teaching and learning.
  • Thank you IAFOR Asian Conference on Society, Education & Technology 24 October 2013 Ted O’Neill http://eltted.com @gotanda Tokyo Medical and Dental University This work by Ted O’Neill @gotanda is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution--ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License Thank you very much. Please do contact me... by email at <gotanda@gmail.com> at my blogs <http://eltted.com> or <http://www.coetail.com/gotanda/> or on Twitter @gotanda Visit my Diigo Group “IAFOR MOOC Links” and login for annotated articles. <https://groups.diigo.com/group/iafor-actc-mooc>.