Tag Archives: MOOCs

Can Venture Capital deliver on the promise of the Public University?

An Open Letter to Daphne Koller Co-Founder and Co-President of Coursera and Professor of Computer Science at Stanford University Dear Professor Koller, Because I share your vision of creating a world in which all have access to an excellent and empowering education, I would like to propose a new online course for you to make […] … learn more→

MOOC Professors claim no responsibility for how courses are used

Robert Ghrist, a professor of mathematics and electrical and systems engineering at the University of Pennsylvania, knows that wielding vast networks on behalf of nonuniversity benefactors can be tricky business. Mr. Ghrist specializes in applied topology, an abstract math field. In practice, topological math can help someone harness huge collections of sensory inputs—like those collected […] … learn more→

Both sides

In this corner: MOOC enthusiasts, envisioning how these large, online courses will increase access to higher education, reduce costs, and reinvigorate teaching and learning. In the other corner: MOOC critics, anticipating how MOOCs will eliminate meaningful interaction between faculty and students, reduce the quality of learning, and decimate the professorship. You’ve probably heard by now […] … learn more→

The hijacking of MOOCs

The recent announcement from the California State University System regarding its embrace of edX massive open online courses (MOOCs) is interesting and depressing at the same time. As with many aspects of the MOOC phenomenon, it comes packaged with good and bad aspects bundled up together. Instructors will offer a \”special \’flipped\’ version of an […] … learn more→

Expanding global landscape of MOOC platforms

In Brussels, yesterday, Androulla Vassiliou (European Commissioner for Education, Culture, Multilingualism and Youth) announced that the \”first pan-European\” MOOC platform will be launched on 25 April 2013. As Commissioner Vassiliou put it: \”This is an exciting development and I hope it will open up education to tens of thousands of students and trigger our schools […] … learn more→

I\’m failing my MOOC

I’m failing my MOOC. But that doesn’t mean I’m not learning anything. I enrolled in Coursera’s “English Composition I” with the best of intentions. I’ve been writing about MOOCs, often critically, and thought I should experience massive, open, online learning for myself. I chose English Composition I because it’s a course I teach and I […] … learn more→

The particle accelerator of learning

“The fruit ripens slowly,” the Guru Nisargadatta Maharaj once observed, “but it drops suddenly.” In a similar fashion, MOOCs (or massive open online courses) seem to have arrived almost out of nowhere, in quick succession – first Udacity in February of last year, followed by Coursera in April, then edX in May. Remarkable as it […] … learn more→

The making of a MOOC at the University of Amsterdam

The sun is coming out from behind the clouds and makes the lake blindingly white. Skaters have come out in massive numbers on the first tour of the year on natural ice, starting uneasily but learning quickly with growing confidence. Skating is one of those things you only learn by doing. While I am enjoying […] … learn more→

Memo to Trustees re: Thomas Friedman’s ‘Revolution Hits the Universities’

Dear [hypothetical] colleagues, I am sure you, or some of your fellow trustees, noticed Thomas Friedman’s op-ed (‘Revolution Hits the Universities’) in this weekend’s Sunday New York Times. Friedman, author of The World is Flat, did a characteristically effective job in raising attention about a phenomenon (massive open online courses, or MOOCs) worth thinking about. […] … learn more→

Biting off more than we can chew

As Aaron has noted, he and a group of other professors will be taking and writing about Coursera’s “E-learning and Digital Cultures MOOC.” I will not be one of them – not because I wouldn’t find it interesting, but because I’ve already been down the road, having taken a World History Course last semester (and […] … learn more→