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ERIC Number: ED547237
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2014-May
Pages: 211
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 98
MOOCs: Expectations and Reality. Full Report
Hollands, Fiona M.; Tirthali, Devayani
Online Submission
The purpose of this study was to investigate the goals of institutions that are currently developing and delivering Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) and to assess the current evidence as to whether these goals are being met. A qualitative study was conducted comprising interviews of 83 individuals across 62 institutions including public and private institutions of higher education, research organizations, online learning platform providers, other for-profit education companies, and several additional stakeholders in the online learning space. Most interviewees were based in the U.S., two were in China, two in the United Kingdom, and several were in Canada. We identify six major goals for MOOC initiatives: extending reach and access; building and maintaining brand; improving economics by reducing costs or increasing revenues; improving educational outcomes; innovation in teaching and learning; and conducting research on teaching and learning. Comparing these goals with the data being collected about MOOCs, their participants, and educational outcomes, as well as the resource requirements and cost drivers of the development and delivery process, we conclude that institutions are experiencing at least partial success in achieving each of these goals except for improving economics. We identify obstacles to fuller achievement of the goals and some potential solutions. Given the considerable investment that MOOCs represent, we recommend that prior to embarking on MOOC-related initiatives, institutions carefully consider their goals and whether MOOCs present a realistic and financially justifiable means to achieve them. Costs of MOOC production and delivery should be tracked and compared with the evidence of goal achievement to judge whether MOOCs are a worthwhile investment of limited educational resources. The following are appended: (1) Institutional Affiliations and Roles of Interviewees; (2) "MOOCs": Expectations and Reality Interview Protocol; (3) What Institutions are Doing in the MOOCspace; (4) Costs of Online Video Production; (5) Sample Pre- and Post-MOOC Participant Surveys; and (6) List of Interviewees.
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Tests/Questionnaires
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Canada; China; New York; United Kingdom; United States