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A Comparative Study of Indian Learners in Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCS)

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Janesh Sanzgiri's presentation of his #PhD research at the 6th GO-GN Seminar in Cape Town, March 5th-6th, 2017.

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A Comparative Study of Indian Learners in Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCS)

  1. 1. JANESH SANZGIRI (THE OPEN UNIVERSITY, UK) @JANESHSANZGIRI SUPERVISORS: PROF. MARTIN WELLER, DR. LEIGH-ANNE PERRYMAN, DR. ROBERT FARROW A Comparative Study Of Indian Learners In Massive Open Online Courses(MOOCS)
  2. 2. PRESENTATION OUTLINE • MOOCs as Open Education • The Indian Context – MOOCs in India • Research Questions • Research Design • Survey Findings • Emerging themes from Interviews • The PhD process so far
  3. 3. MOOCS AS OPEN EDUCATION • The original conception of MOOCs vs Commercial MOOC providers • The original promises of Commercial MOOC providers • The constant moves away from Openness • Research into MOOCs - Openness forgotten?
  4. 4. THE INDIAN CONTEXT – MOOCS IN INDIA • Significant enrolments from Indians on the three major US MOOC platforms (Coursera, edX, Udacity) • Between 10-15% of all total enrolments (Bhattacharyya 2013) • Largest cohort of learners outside of the US
  5. 5. THE NEED FOR RESEARCH • Research into non-Western MOOC users currently lacking • According to Veletsianos and Sheperdson (2016), only 8% of empirical MOOC research came out of Asia – 5.4% from China, and less than 1% from India. • There is an increasing use of learning analytics and log-data to try and make sense of learning in MOOCs • There is a need for more studies into the learner experience, and the learner voice, to try and make sense of some of the findings from the quantitative study. • Most importantly, there is a need to explore the ways in which MOOCs are currently being used my learners in the developing world.
  6. 6. RESEARCH QUESTION • What are the demographics, motivations and experiences of Indian learners in Massive Open Online Courses? • What, if any, are the differences in the demographics, motivations and experiences of Indian learners between global and local MOOC platforms?
  7. 7. NPTEL  National Programme on Technology Enhanced Learning – Started as an OER repository along the lines of MIT-OCW  922 Courses, mostly in Engineering and Technology – All under Open License  NPTEL MOOCs - 225 Courses  20% of degree credits can be taken through MOOCs
  8. 8. FUTURELEARN  UK-based MOOC platform with 99 international university and institutional partners  Focus on social learning  Fewer enrolments compared to Coursera, edX – Greater engagement  Indian Learners average 3% of total cohort
  9. 9. RESEARCH DESIGN • THREE STAGE STUDY • Stage 1: Pilot interviews with eight participants • Stage 2: Survey on learner demographics, motivations, and experiences (n=2649) • Stage 3: Semi-structured interviews with Indian learners on global MOOC platform (FutureLearn) and Indian MOOC platform (NPTEL) (n=30)
  10. 10. SURVEY FINDINGS - RESPONSES Site Number of Responses NPTEL 2009 FutureLearn 364 Other 276 Total 2649
  11. 11. DEMOGRAPHICS - GENDER 0 20 40 60 80 100 Male Female NPTEL (in %) NPTEL (in %) 0 20 40 60 80 100 Male Female FutureLearn (in %) FutureLearn (in %)
  12. 12. DEMOGRAPHICS - AGE 0 20 40 60 80 100 >65 56-65 46-55 36-45 26-35 18-25 <18 NPTEL (% Responses) % Responses 0 5 10 15 20 25 30 >65 56-65 46-55 36-45 26-35 18-25 <18 FutureLearn (% Responses) FutureLearn (% Responses)
  13. 13. DEMOGRAPHICS – EDUCATION LEVEL 0 10 20 30 40 50 PhD Post-Graduate Degree Under-Graduate Degree College/Vocational Diploma High School Certificate Secondary School Certificate None NPTEL(% Responses) NPTEL(% Responses) 0 10 20 30 40 50 PhD Post-Graduate Degree Under-Graduate Degree College/Vocational Diploma High School Certificate Secondary School Certificate None FutureLearn(% Responses) FutureLearn(% Responses)
  14. 14. DEMOGRAPHICS – EMPLOYMENT LEVELS 0 20 40 60 80 Retired Self-Employed Full-Time Employed Part-Time Employed Student Unemployed Chart Title NPTEL(% Responses) 0 10 20 30 40 Retired Self-Employed Full-Time Employed Part-Time Employed Student Unemployed FutureLearn(% Responses) FutureLearn(% Responses)
  15. 15. MOTIVATION • PCA Generated Two Scales of Extrinsic Motivation and Leisure • The non-parametric Mann-Whitney U-Test was used to compare the means of the two scales. • NPTEL users statistically significantly more likely to take MOOCs for Extrinsic Motivators (Professional Development, Improving Job/Education Prospects etc.) (U=246496.5, p=0.05) while FutureLearn users were statistically significantly more likely to take MOOCs for leisure purposes (U=207139.5, p=0.05).
  16. 16. CHALLENGES • PCA Generated two Scales of Challenges, broadly defined as “Technical Challenges” and “Course Difficulty related Challenges”. • Mann-Whitney U-Test was used to compare the non-parametric means of the scales generated. • NPTEL participants were statistically significantly more likely to face Technical challenges (U=193748.500, p=0.05) and find the courses tougher (U=197454, p=0.05) than FutureLearn participants.
  17. 17. EXPERIENCES • PCA Generated 3 Scales from 16 Likert-items on learners’ experiences with MOOCs • Scales are broadly defined by items related to “Openness”, “Lack of Interest in Interaction” and “Usability” • Interestingly, the Mann-Whitney U Tests on the three Experience scales found NO statistically significant difference in the responses of NPTEL and FutureLearn participants. Why could this be?
  18. 18. EMERGING THEMES FROM INTERVIEWS • Low quality of local instruction – MOOCs as a ‘quality’ supplement to poor educational standards. • Re-evaluate how learners engage with MOOCs – Technical challenges in India – Downloading course content – Implications for Research? • FutureLearn participants more likely to be life-long learners – similar to existing accounts from MOOC learner literature • Learners using FutureLearn courses to overcome societal norms. • When given a choice, learners prefer local to global MOOC content.
  19. 19. THE PHD PROCESS SO FAR • The Challenge of Access to Data – Especially in MOOC Research • The importance of presenting at every opportunity, and making connections • The Conundrum of Methodology – Research Questions – and Data
  20. 20. THANK YOU! A Comparative of Indian Learners in Massive Open Online Courses Janesh Sanzgiri Supervisors: Professor Martin Weller, Dr. Robert Farrow, Dr. Leigh-Anne Perryman Contact: janesh.sanzgiri@open.ac.uk Twitter: @janeshsanzgiri

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