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Intriguing, and rather gratifying….

… (if, like UD, you’re currently teaching a Udemy course with 548 students) column about MOOCs in the Chronicle of Higher Education.

Margaret Soltan, May 22, 2012 6:46AM
Posted in: faculty project

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2 Responses to “Intriguing, and rather gratifying….”

  1. Alan Allport Says:

    When it comes to MOOCs it seems to me that a lot of people are talking about different things conflated into one. UD appears to see the MOOC as a kind of community outreach with limited ambitions, a leisure-time activity bringing together enthusiastic professors with enthusiastic amateurs without any monetizing complications (no credits, no fees). This sort of approach strikes me as being in the same category as the Earth in the Hitchhikers’ Guide to the Galaxy: mostly harmless. But the CHE writer seems to be talking about something else. He’s talking about “the balance of power in higher education [shifting] back to people who actually conduct higher education”; i.e., the MOOC actually replacing the traditional college model. But that seems to me to run into exactly the same kind of cost and quality problems that people have rightly raised about other online panaceas for education. “Tricky issues of quality assurance and credentialing will need to be confronted.” Gee, you reckon?

  2. Margaret Soltan Says:

    All quite right, Alan. The basic problem, it seems to me, is that the phenomenon is simply too new and fluid to say anything very sturdy about.

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