MOOCs: Why Low-Cost Will Not
Create Equal Access
Nathan Garrett
Yesica Allaya

eLearn 2013, Las Vegas, NV
Wednesday, Octob...
Moocs are…
• “the biggest revolution in education since the
printing press…”
Quality

Access: What type
of students are
recruited?

Pedagogy:
What teaching
techniques are
used?

Retention: How
many s...
Iron Triangle
Cost

Access

Quality
Pedagogy
Retention
Traditional Higher Ed
•
•
•
•
•

5,599 colleges & universities
21m students
70% public
>50% over 23
40% part-time
How many students graduate?
We have unequal success between ethnic groups

White, Non- Hispanic

Black

Hispanic

Asian/Pacific Islander

75%

67%
65%...
What students pay in tuition hasn’t significantly changed
92-93 97-98 02-03 03-04 04-05 05-06 06-07 07-08 08-09 09-10 10-1...
What does it cost?
But, we educate more of the population

U.S. Census Bureau, Current Population Survey and decennial census: Percentage of ...
Iron Triangle for
Traditional Higher Education
Cost

Access

Quality
Pedagogy
Retention
Online Learning
• 32% of college
students have
taken at least
one course
• 9% yearly
growth rate
Access
• Requires
– Prepared & motivated students
• Minorities have lower levels of computer preparation &
skills
• Non-tr...
Cost
Outcomes
• Perceptions v. reality
– Perceptions? Employers rank lower
– Reality? Outcomes similar
Iron Triangle for
Online Learning
Cost

Access

Quality
Pedagogy
Retention
Mooc
• xMooc v. cMooc
– Dave Cormier, Bryan Alexander, George
Siemens, and Stephen Downes
Retention
• Range: 25%, 12%, 5%...
• Are these really serious completers?

• Coursera:
–
–
–
–

Overall: 7-9%
Intend to co...
http://mfeldstein.com/validation-mooc-student-patterns-graphic/
Cost per Completion
• Free v. “Free”
• Cost
– Edinburgh, $46k
– U Penn: $50k
Access
• Who finishes a Mooc?
– 70% has BA/BS, half graduate degree
– Majority outside US
– 60% of Coursera income <50k

•...
Iron Triangle for
Moocs
Cost

Access

Quality
Pedagogy
Retention
Cost

Face-toface

Access

Online

Mooc

Quality
Why the lower cost of Moocs will not lead to improved access
Why the lower cost of Moocs will not lead to improved access
Why the lower cost of Moocs will not lead to improved access
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Why the lower cost of Moocs will not lead to improved access

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This is a presentation I did at eLearn 2013. It presents evidence about the relative role of Moocs, Online Learning, and Traditional Face-to-Face education modes. Essentially, I'm trying to show that just decreasing the cost of education is not enough to get everyone equal access.

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  • But the blackboard, educational videos &amp; TV, and computer-based tutorials have all been called the “most important development since Gutenberg’s printing press” (J. Daniel, 2012).
  • Why the lower cost of Moocs will not lead to improved access

    1. 1. MOOCs: Why Low-Cost Will Not Create Equal Access Nathan Garrett Yesica Allaya eLearn 2013, Las Vegas, NV Wednesday, October 23rd, 1:30-2:00pm http://profgarrett.com
    2. 2. Moocs are… • “the biggest revolution in education since the printing press…”
    3. 3. Quality Access: What type of students are recruited? Pedagogy: What teaching techniques are used? Retention: How many students complete successfully? Cost: What does the overall educational experience cost?
    4. 4. Iron Triangle Cost Access Quality Pedagogy Retention
    5. 5. Traditional Higher Ed • • • • • 5,599 colleges & universities 21m students 70% public >50% over 23 40% part-time
    6. 6. How many students graduate?
    7. 7. We have unequal success between ethnic groups White, Non- Hispanic Black Hispanic Asian/Pacific Islander 75% 67% 65% 60% 57% 46% 45% 39% 36% 28% 26% 16% Private Not-For-Profit Four-Year Public Four-Year Private For-Profit Four-Year
    8. 8. What students pay in tuition hasn’t significantly changed 92-93 97-98 02-03 03-04 04-05 05-06 06-07 07-08 08-09 09-10 10-11 11-12 $16,000 $14,000 $12,000 $10,000 $8,000 $6,000 $4,000 $2,000 $0 -$2,000 -$4,000 Public 2-year Public 4-year Private 4-year
    9. 9. What does it cost?
    10. 10. But, we educate more of the population U.S. Census Bureau, Current Population Survey and decennial census: Percentage of the Population 25 Years and Over Who Have Completed High School or College: Selected Year 19402009
    11. 11. Iron Triangle for Traditional Higher Education Cost Access Quality Pedagogy Retention
    12. 12. Online Learning • 32% of college students have taken at least one course • 9% yearly growth rate
    13. 13. Access • Requires – Prepared & motivated students • Minorities have lower levels of computer preparation & skills • Non-traditional also do worse – Heavy feedback • Perceived as harder – by all students
    14. 14. Cost
    15. 15. Outcomes • Perceptions v. reality – Perceptions? Employers rank lower – Reality? Outcomes similar
    16. 16. Iron Triangle for Online Learning Cost Access Quality Pedagogy Retention
    17. 17. Mooc • xMooc v. cMooc – Dave Cormier, Bryan Alexander, George Siemens, and Stephen Downes
    18. 18. Retention • Range: 25%, 12%, 5%... • Are these really serious completers? • Coursera: – – – – Overall: 7-9% Intend to complete: 23% Complete first assignment: 40% Signature Track: 70%
    19. 19. http://mfeldstein.com/validation-mooc-student-patterns-graphic/
    20. 20. Cost per Completion • Free v. “Free” • Cost – Edinburgh, $46k – U Penn: $50k
    21. 21. Access • Who finishes a Mooc? – 70% has BA/BS, half graduate degree – Majority outside US – 60% of Coursera income <50k • San Jose – Developmental classes in Pilot • 29-51%, 20% lower than traditional
    22. 22. Iron Triangle for Moocs Cost Access Quality Pedagogy Retention
    23. 23. Cost Face-toface Access Online Mooc Quality

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