Inside Higher Ed: Try, Try Again

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Cal Straumsheim has an interesting article over at Inside higher Ed about Keith Devlin and his Introduction to Mathematical Thinking MOOC (offered through Coursera).  The MOOC is entering its 4th offering and Devlin talks about tweaks that have been made to boost student engagement.  These changes have increased student persistence through the first couple of weeks.

This is interesting in that it shows–as with all educational endeavors–that course offerings need to be reflected back on and adjustments made.  It does not require watering down the content to make a course more successful.  Critics also have to realize the completion rates for courses that are open for all to try are going to be lower that restricted access courses.  People are interested in trying things out.  But life does happen and some find that what they thought was interesting is not that engaging beyond a certain point.  We do not all need to be experts in all fields.  What is wrong with someone enrolling and taking away what they want to take away, even if it is short of completing the course.  Worry about complete of those who are taking it for credit and have to complete to finish a program.

The full post is here.

Rick W. Burkett runs the John A. Logan College Teaching and Learning Center, teaches history, and heads an educational nonprofit. He publishes blogs on a wide variety of topics, including history, teaching and learning, student success, and teaching online.
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Sloan-C: Managing the MOOC Momentum

Sloan-C published a post by Robert Lytle of The Parthenon Group which provides 4 “Strategic Considerations” regarding MOOCs.  Those considerations are:

  1. MOOCs As Alternative Credit
  2. MOOCs In and Out of the Classroom
  3. MOOCs as a Threat to Institutional Financial Stability
  4. MOOCs as  a Marketing Force Multiplier.

The following infographic illustrates those considerations:

The full post is available here.

 

Rick W. Burkett runs the John A. Logan College Teaching and Learning Center, teaches history, and heads an educational nonprofit. He publishes blogs on a wide variety of topics, including history, teaching and learning, student success, and teaching online.
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Chronicle: Harvard U. Will Offer Exclusive MOOCs to Alumni

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Harvard is to start offering exclusive access to its grads to seven of its MOOCs.

Full post here.

Rick W. Burkett runs the John A. Logan College Teaching and Learning Center, teaches history, and heads an educational nonprofit. He publishes blogs on a wide variety of topics, including history, teaching and learning, student success, and teaching online.
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Chronicle: What if You Blended Adaptive Learning With MOOCs?

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The Chronicle of Higher Education takes a look of two of the most cited “game-changing” technologies: MOOCs and Adaptive Learning software.  In a recent letter to Obama from the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology it was suggested MOOCs could reduce higher ed costs and improve access.  If so, adaptive learning software could play a role.  One of those quoted in the article is Michael Feldstein of MindWires, and formerly a member of Cengage Learning’s team to build tools to personalizing the company’s digital content that supported their textbooks.  Feldstein sees a “natural marriage” between MOOCs and adaptive software.  He believes it could fill a role in compensating for the absence of hand-holding in MOOCs.

Full story here.

Rick W. Burkett runs the John A. Logan College Teaching and Learning Center, teaches history, and heads an educational nonprofit. He publishes blogs on a wide variety of topics, including history, teaching and learning, student success, and teaching online.
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