TechCrunch observes that the MOOC revolution has ‘fizzled’. We think it was never truly bubbling up in the first place, but it surely hasn’t gone very far. Some obviously believe that throwing more technology at the situation will change it. Seems unlikely.
… or so is the result reported by a Canadian study. Wonder what more research might inform us about the effects of taking courses on MOOCs as compared with traditional formulations of classes? Too bad we will never know based on any evaluation being done in this department.
Plans to mainstream the use of MOOCs in California ground to an unceremonious halt as legislation intended to bring it forward were shelved. Big dreams finally ran into practical realities of implementation and use.
Colorado State University made a splash before with its offer to give degree credit for students who take their CS course as a MOOC, paying only the $89 fee to proctor an exam. They have yet to get the first student take them up on this offer. Further, even folks at the Gates Foundation (which invests heavily in MOOC studies) have wondered aloud whether MOOCs are just a “passing fad”.
A Chronicle notes of the same title sheds more light on what it is like for both the students and faculty of a MOOC. Students see less privacy (largely being obliged to open themselves up to data mining operations as a condition of their participation), faculty will see far more preparation up front (no surprise there), with an expectation of 24-7 monitoring of the course in order to meet student needs.
“Colleges broadly threaten faculty members’ copyrights and academic freedom in claiming ownership of the massive open online courses their instructors have developed, Cary Nelson, a former president of the American Association of University Professors, argued here on Wednesday at the group’s annual conference.“
MOOC Students Who Got Offline Help Scored Higher, Study Finds That’s the headline to a report that could expose on-line instruction to increased pressure to objectively demonstrate the value of this approach.
It is not the first hint that technology alone is a poor substitute for an engaged teacher.