After Setbacks, Online Courses Are Rethought
The latest swing of the MOOC headline pendulum is way over on the “complete bust” end of the evaluation spectrum but they represent a very big solution in search of a problem and as such are not likely to disappear as fast as they emerged.
I stand by most of the points I made in my 2012 talk on MOOCs and small liberal arts colleges. The main one was that we should we should avoid the urge to imitate and compete but embrace the opportunity to borrow and adapt the tools being developed in connection with MOOCs.
In today’s NYT we read about several high-profile flops in MOOC-land and evaluation research that suggests that MOOCs so far have been reaching “already educated” folks rather than those without access to higher education, undermining one of their primary public selling points. I would caution against over-embracing: as I said in the 2012 talk, the bandwagon is a hand-basket.