Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) and Open Educational Resources (OER) for Widening Participation in Rwandan Higher Education
Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) and Open
Educational Resources (OER) for Widening Participation
in Rwandan Higher Education
Supervisors: Professor Grainne Conole
Dr Palitha Edirisingha
Institute of Learning Innovation
University of Leicester
About this presentation
The context of the study
The pilot study results
OER Repository World Map
Map by Atenas and Havemann (n.d.) CC BY-NC-SA.
MOOC World map
Map by OpenUCT Initiative (2013), CC-BY-SA
The conceptual framework
The OER emerged in the 2002 UNESCO meeting (Paris)
Teaching, learning and research materials in any
medium, digital or otherwise, that reside in the public
domain or have been released under an open license
that permits no-cost access, use, adaptation and
redistribution by others with no or limited restrictions.
2011 Paris OER declaration
OER and Open Ed Declarations
Article 26.1 of the universal declaration of human
rights: “everyone has the right to education” (United
The Budapest Open Access Initiative (2001): the
learning of the rich shared with the poor and that of the
poor with the rich (Open Society Foundations, 2002).
The Cape Town Open Education Declaration
(2007): A call for stakeholders to remove barriers to
education (Shuttleworth Foundation and OSF, 2007)
Trends of access to education
Commonwealth of Learning and UNESCO (2011) predicts
the global higher education demand to grow from 165
million in 2011 to 263 million in 2025 (59% increase in 15
Sir John Daniel: 4X30000/week between 2011 and 2025
(Mandell and Travers, 2012).
From OER to MOOCs
OER movement →2008: Connectivist MOOCs
MOOC popularity: 2011 with Extension MOOCs
Online, non-selective and tuition- free courses that are
usually addressed to a global audience of students
Interaction and learning
Moore‟s (1989) 3 types of interaction:
Hillman et al. (1994) add learner-interface interaction
Anderson‟s (2003) deduces interactivity theorem from
Moore‟s three types of interaction
Research question for Phase 1
Overarching question: How can OER and MOOCs be integrated
into Rwandan higher education to facilitate widening participation?
What OER units can be used in Rwandan higher education?
How can these units be use in Rwandan higher education?
What MOOCs can be used in Rwandan higher education?
How can these courses be used in Rwandan higher education?
Research Question Phase 2
Overarching Question: What is the OER and MOOC
readiness for stakeholders in Rwandan Higher Education?
What is the readiness for students?
What is the readiness for academics ?
What is the readiness for the UR „s leaders?
What is the readiness for the HEC?
What is the readiness for the Government (through the
Ministry of Education)?
Paradigm: towards subjectivist ontology and interpretivist
Design: An Interpretive research design: Flexible
→OER/MOOCs is dynamic field
→ Rwanda: The country of reforms in education
Phase 1 of data collection
Study: 10 MOOCs and 10 OER units.
Immersed participant-observer (MOOCs)
Archive analyst (OER)
Source: Coursera and MIT Open Courseware.
construct validity and reliability : Yin (2009)
principles: multiple sources of evidence, databases and
chain of evidence.
Phase 2 of data collection
With stakeholders in Rwandan higher education
Students: Focus group
Academics: focus group
Policy makers (Government): focus groups
Accrediting body (HEC)
MOOC and OER evaluation rubrics for data gathering,
Nvivo for data analysis,
A cross-sectional and pattern/theme linking,
Piloted: 5 MOOCs and 5 OER units
University of Leicester ethical approval
Discussion of the pilot study results
1. What OER units can be used in Rwandan higher education?
Building and Leading Effective Teams (BLET),
Computer Game Simulation for Investigation and
Developmental Entrepreneurship (DE) &
Internet Technology in Local and Global Communities
2. How can these units be use in Rwandan higher education?
BLET and CGSIE standalone units but to be enhanced,
DE and ITLGC: granular level
3. What MOOCs can be used in Rwandan higher
All the five MOOCs.
4. How can these courses be used in Rwandan higher
Standalone units in a module
The appropriateness of OERs Rwandan
Evaluation of MOOCs from the learner‟s
Human-human Interaction: limited and hard to handle.
Human-content interaction: can be maximized
Students control the language in xMOOC: speech rate
Students can pause videos anytime
This control empower students in their learning
MOOC and OER potential in Rwandan
Availability free of charge:
Addressing the lack of access to learning resources
and education in Rwanda.
Mitigation of the shortage of tertiary education
teachers in Rwanda.
Diversity in terms of participants:
Multicultural literacy development in Rwanda.
Access to MOOCs ad OER units
Networked to stakeholders in Rwandan higher education
3 chapters, Phase 1 of collection &
Phase 2 of data collection & write up
Feedback, editing, submission & viva
In phase 1 of data collection: Completed 7 (-1)
MOOCs for the main study and will complete the 8th
Still have to take 3 more MOOCs
Authored 2 papers on MOOCs
My research is follows an interpretive design.
Ten MOOCs and ten OER units in Phase 1 of data
I am a participant observer (MOOC) and archive analyst
Stakeholders in Rwandan higher education will participate
in Phase 2 of data collection
The pilot study promise the potential contribution of OER
and MOOCs to widening participation in Rwanda.