EMMA poster at EDEN.
As Facebook publishes figures showing that social networks have reduced the degree of separation of people on the planet from 6 to 3.7, it is a platitude to say that they are
powerful communication tools. However, the literature on their impact within MOOCs is still emerging, where the learning community already resides within its own space
on the MOOC platform and where teaching units are accompanied by a forum for requesting clarification or information.
In a recent MOOC on the EMMA platform (www.europeanmoocs.eu), “Coding in your classroom, now”, Facebook was used as an additional learning environment, to post
and share information on content related to the course, to comment lessons and assignments, or simply to share a common experience and outcomes.
The user-community network that has developed around the course has grown from the 6,000 learners enrolled on the course to reach a population of 100,000.
The community started to exchange information about their area, schools and classes, and to use the learning experience on the MOOC to share and build knowledge and
even plan meetups in their local area. Sentiment analysis, with keywords, online expressions, concepts, contexts, shows that socials acted as a powerful tool not only for
dissemination of the course but also for informing thousands of people about the innovative features the Emma platform was experimenting.
Last but most importantly, they became a powerful tool for sharing best teaching practice in the field. This work presents an exploration of the learning community on this
course and evidence for some of the observations we make, trying to understand what impact this hybrid model of MOOC delivery has on the creation of the learning
community and student engagement.