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What's Next? After the MOOC Hype


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As the hype cycle around MOOCs drops, the question of what narratives will survive and thrive around MOOCs opens up. This keynote panel presentation for #MRI13 suggests there are two solitudes in the post-MOOC-hype discussion - one an empty picture of undeliverable promises for higher ed, and the other a loose affiliation of complicated and sometimes conflicting interests. The lot of us on the latter side need to learn to talk to each other, to the public, and to decision-makers.

Published in: Education, Business
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What's Next? After the MOOC Hype

  1. 1. The Hype that Ate Itself h"p://  
  2. 2. …but what has it left us?
  3. 3. The system of higher ed is in shift
  4. 4. Two Solitudes Media Discourse •  •  •  •  •  Disruption Replacement Transformation Tsunami Free Practitioners’ Discourse •  •  •  •  •  Connection Pedagogy Hybrid options Institution-specific Fit to purpose
  5. 5. “we have a lousy product”
  6. 6. Pandora’s Box h"p://  
  7. 7. 1. The ‘education is broken’ refrain
  8. 8. 2. A consensus that massive student debt is not tenable
  9. 9. 3. A recognition that education as a system CAN be unbundled …and may need to rebundle in new, unfamiliar ways
  10. 10. 4. A discourse of solutions and delivery
  11. 11. 5. A decline in public funding
  12. 12. 6. Openness to online
  13. 13. Media discourse around MOOCs is not equipped to actually grapple with ANY of these issues
  14. 14. h"p://  
  15. 15. But unicorns do not die.
  16. 16. MOOCs embody digital practices Harness & contribute to knowledge abundance Are participatory Are networked Are distributed Generate knowledge & connections that extend beyond course Share the processes of knowledge work, not just the products
  17. 17. Established power interests & marketization   h"p://  
  18. 18. “When colleges and universities become a market, there is no incentive to teach what customer would rather not know. When colleges are in the business of making customers comfortable, we are all poorer for it.” - T. MacMillan Cottom, Slate, Dec 2013
  19. 19. Behind door #1… h"p://  
  20. 20. Behind door #2…& #3 & #4 h"p://  
  21. 21. What counts as education? Who is it for? Who is it meant to benefit? What are its goals?  
  22. 22. We need to have these conversations in public
  23. 23. What’s your vision? Thank you. @bonstewart