What sort of MOOCs would emerge in the coming future?

Thanks jenny for sharing her views and experience in her post here on OLDSMOOC.  I am interested in knowing the OLDSMOOC though won’t be working on a project.  I think we have now come up with a gap in between c and x MOOCs as it seems that they are coming from two different universes. The prescribed and emergent learning in any course could be charted out, as this footprints of emergence have delineated. The reality is that there isn’t enough connection (or conduit) in between the two sort of MOOCs, leading to “island” of technology automation (where one is teacher-centred, and the other more inclined to be learner-centred).  The reason that I bring this out is that this could be confusing for the participants of the MOOC, in particular the educators if they don’t have a thorough understanding of the pedagogy and curriculum design of the MOOCs.

Currently, it seems obvious that most, if not all xMOOCs (i.e. Coursera, edX, Udacity) are based on an instructivist approach, whilst cMOOCs are based on a connectivist approach.  There are certain MOOCs which seem to be based on an instructivist/constructivist approach.

The cMOOCs:

amusement park

The xMOOCs

MOOC images (1) 4 Nov 12

free-open

EdTech 2x2 MOOC-thumb-960x720-3458

The challenge is: we don’t seem to be guided by a thorough research paradigm which is empirically based, when developing these MOOCs along those lines, as I have suggested in my research proposal here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

I am re-posting here for reference.

My suggested assumptions in MOOC include:

  • people would learn in a self-directed manner
  • Knowledge is distributed
  • Knowledge is negotiated
  • Knowledge is emergent
  • Knowledge is rhizomatic (thanks to Dave’s video posted – refer to How to be successful in MOOC?)
  • Learning is capacity to construct, navigate and traverse across networks
  • personal learning networks would be a far better way for people to learn
  • people like to learn via social networks
  • people know how to connec(people have the communication, literacy and critical literacy skills)
  • people know how to use the technology to connect
  • people are self motivated (intrinsic motivation)
  • people like to accept challenges, chaos and complexity is just part of the learning process
  • people don’t need to follow a course or qualification for learning to be effective
  • Learning is emergent, and is based on connections, engagement and interactions
  • Learning is open
  • Identity in networked learning is based on individual’s “participation, interaction” in the networks, and is reflective of ones involvement in the media, it’s dynamic, adaptive
  • Individual and social learning is emphasised – cooperation
  • Sensemaking and wayfinding are important
whereas on the other hand, the more formal or traditional education/learning approach or even the online approach of:
  • people need to learn in a structured manner, in a course (face to face or online), with teacher’s instruction (zpd) zone of proximal development,
  • people construct knowledge via a constructivist pedagogy - with an expert.
  • Knowledge is acquired
  • Learning is about acquisition of knowledge, skills and experience
  • people like to learn with Learning Management Systems (LMS)
  • people prefer to learn independently (in a closed environment) (behind the walls in schools) or learn collaboratively in a group or team
  • people don’t have enough skills, knowledge and experience to use technology to connect,formal training/education is the solution
  • people don’t want chaos, complexity – don’t want to be overwhelmed with information or knowledge
  • people need to be motivated with rewards (extrinsic motivation)
  • people need to follow a course or qualification for learning to be effective
  • Learning is based on instruction by the teachers
  • Learning is closed (in a closed classroom or closed online network)
  • Identity is based on the association of oneself as a student or that of the group – it’s static
  • Group learning is emphasised – collaboration
  • Teaching and close mentoring are important
I need to think more about the above, whether my assumptions about both intrinsic and extrinsic motivation will affect how people face challenges, technology and connecting / relating to others.
The above statements are just set to be a “polarised” one, and these are just my first thoughts.  I need to draw a mind map to show the relationship at a later stage, once I have re-visited our research papers on Blogs and Forums as Communication and Learning Tools in a MOOC and The Ideals and Reality of Participating in a MOOC.
If you felt comfortable with idea, it may be fun to collaborate together using a shared workspace for mind / concept map or drawing tool.
Besides, there are many other factors and concepts on learning that need to be included in this research.
I think it could be interesting to conduct research on PLENK2010 based on our experience and involvement in CCK08/CCK09/edfutures/CritLit2010.
I am not sure if we could thresh out some research questions, as a follow up study of CCK08.
Suggested title:
Essential critical success factors in the design and delivery of Massive Open Online Course (MOOC)
Note: based on PLENK2010/CCK09 experience
Research questions:
1. What are the design factors in an open online course?  (Consider the connectivist principles)
2. What are the delivery factors in an open online course?
3. How would educators and participants evaluate an open online course (PLENK2010)?
Based on the various reports and blog postings on xMOOCs, I could come up with the following features for typical xMOOCs:
more formal or traditional education/learning approach or even the online approach of:
  • people need to learn in a structured manner, in a course (face to face or online), with teacher’s instruction (zpd) zone of proximal development,
  • people construct knowledge via a constructivist pedagogy - with an expert.
  • Knowledge is acquired
  • Learning is about acquisition of knowledge, skills and experience
  • people like to learn with Learning Management Systems (LMS)
  • people prefer to learn independently (in a closed environment) (behind the walls in schools) or learn collaboratively in a group or team
  • people don’t have enough skills, knowledge and experience to use technology to connect, formal training/education is the solution
  • people don’t want chaos, complexity – don’t want to be overwhelmed with information or knowledge
  • people need to be motivated with rewards (extrinsic motivation) – this is achieved through the award of a “certificate”
  • people need to follow a course or qualification for learning to be effective
  • Learning is based on instruction by the teachers (short videos, quizzes, discussion boards facilitated by professors/teaching assistants)
  • Learning is closed (in a closed classroom or closed online network) (though it could be open when groups are established in certain social media platforms – FB groups, twitter etc.)
  • Identity is based on the association of oneself as a student or that of the group – it’s static ( this is evidenced only in some cases, as it seems that participants are associated with the course, or the xMOOC providers, and particular groups formed based on certain languages, or countries)
  • Group learning is emphasised – collaboration

I think the future MOOCs would likely be based on connected MOOCs, with some common features of both x and c MOOCs in order to thrive, though we have an urgent need to conduct further research to validate those hypothesis and assumptions.

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41 thoughts on “What sort of MOOCs would emerge in the coming future?

  1. Pingback: What sort of MOOCs would emerge in the coming future? | Educational interesting link's | Scoop.it

  2. You are right, as none of the xMOOC providers are offering any courses on the theory of connectivism, not even mentioned in any of those courses. That’s why I found huge gaps in between. Is it a pity in a world of education where education seems to be divided between the “various schools”? I don’t see any bridge in between and so I have mentioned about the two different universes that they are coming from. May be that is my perspective only, as most, if not all educators are viewing connectivism as an extension of social constructivism and connectionism, and you have also mentioned about the irk that relates to all these “ism” too. I don’t think instructivism and connectivism would ever merge in the near future, but then institutions would likely continue to go for more teacher-centered approach towards online education as they see the benefits of the xMOOCs, rather than the ones of cMOOCs. This also explains why only US and UK HE institutions are in this arena of xMOOCs as HE are still likely to be run and owned with those ideologies for decades, and even centuries. This is where revolution is claimed, from HE institutions, isn’t it? I have predicted that this year would still be in triumph with the xMOOCs as more enrolled mainstream students are also registered with the xMOOCs, and that is the good news. The other stories about cMOOCs as we once said, is history. Back to you, for your wise words and crystal ball.

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  7. haha. No crystal ball here, and I’m certainly not laying claim to uttering wise words. I didn’t see xMOOCs taking on the life that they have. Nor did I think that the term MOOC had any staying power. Wrong on those counts. I did kinda think that connectivism might not really stand up to time, and I guess the jury may be out on that yet.

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  9. I see. Relating to “Nor did I think that the term MOOC had any staying power” I wonder if the word power is what makes this “education revolution” sounds interesting. May I share this metaphor (as a story)? We are all like viewing and participating in a play/opera on the stage.

    Traditionally such play/opera were organised by professionals, and done in theaters. If you want to watch the play/opera, you got to pay, and attend at specific times.

    Just a few years ago, someone thought that we could run a play/opera by offering it free to anyone, without any conditions of entry, and that any one could play a part in the “director, performer, designer, and even actor or audience.” What a wonderful idea!

    Who didn’t want to be a performing star, or better still a rock-star performing on the stage, like Gangnam Style performers?

    Some would like to be the director of the play/opera, whilst others would just like to watch and comment. Many of “us”, together with the “directors” were interested in organising and playing different roles in the play/opera, though we might not know what the play turned out to be, whether it would be welcomed and accepted by the audience.

    Then, the formal play organizers found this out, and decided to put on a spectacular, inaugural show, with appointed directors, performers, actors etc. Now, this turned the game back to the “traditional play opera” where the only performers are the professional rock stars, though anyone coming in to the theater could watch for free.

    You could imagine what happens next. Could you please help in filling in the next part of the story?

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  18. I think you have hit a really important nail on the head around what constitutes MOOC pedagogy. For me the Massive and Open bits are not necessarily pedagogical (although they can be), the rest leaves an on-line course – what makes a MOOC different in terms of pedagogy from a course in a box? They way you have developed the assumptions of MOOCs is very valuable.

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  21. @PeterBryant Thanks for your comments and visit.

    I agreed with your views.

    I proposed these assumptions in 2009, prior to the introduction and launching of xMOOCs. It seems a coincidence that most of the assumptions (on the more formal or traditional education/learning approach or even the online approach) relate to the xMOOCs.

    I reckon once the hammer (xMOOC) is decided, then the research findings would likely be based on the assumptions as I have suggested for xMOOCs. Would any improvement and innovation be based on those directions too?

    This means all researches on xMOOCs reported would further confirm on the effectiveness on the massive enrollment and openness (for free) – as that is where MOOCs would educate the world and democratise education. A great value proposition that would surely transform HE, from an educational perspective.

    Majority of the research articles or post from formal institutions and news on xMOOCs so far have been extremely positive – and such successes all relate to the adoption of the pedagogy and excellence in teaching – in particular the rock-star professors in xMOOCs. See this video by Professor Sebastian Thrun http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kp7DKzTxFSw

    I hope to prepare a paper charting out the differences in pedagogy of xMOOCs and cMOOCs with research evidences this year.

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