…for not all MOOCs are created equal…

Quote by Derek Bruff from the articleWhere Credit Is Due: Whose MOOC Is It?

“I don’t call our on-campus courses “Blackboard courses” just because they use Blackboard as a course management system. I’ve grown used to saying “Coursera course,” but I’ve been working to modify my language since having this discussion.”

I could not agree more…

I am not an expert in MOOCs, but of the 6 that I have participated in so far, 2 are offered through the same LMS – Coursera, yet there is hardly any parallel that can be drawn between them. Plus, I have found that ironically, a MOOC does not even necessarily always reflect the individuals who are listed as the course “instructor”.

For example, EDC (E-learning and Digital Cultures) a MOOC offered by the University of Edinburgh on a Coursera platform, is currently run by 5 instructors collaboratively. The entire course is student-led, with some basic scaffolding provided by the 5 instructors, in the form of pre-uploaded suggested reading and video content, and weekly live hangout sessions. Much of the learning culture and intellectual input experienced while taking the course can be attributed to the interactions between students and by students with the various resources available. Even the instructors of this MOOC admit that their personal teaching style and/or philosophies do not, and should not, influence the course. Watch this video for details.

The FOE (Fundamentals of Online Education)  is another MOOC run through Coursera, yet the learning “experience” from FOE was totally different from EDC. Refer this article for details.

NOTE: My favorite MOOC so far was DNLE – Designing New Learning Environments, taught by Professor Paul Kim of Stanford University through an experimental LMS called VLab. And if I were to use Derek Bruff’s formula of attributing a MOOC, I would say that DNLE is a Stanford MOOC, not a VLab MOOC, and not a Paul Kim MOOC.

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