Friday, May 24, 2013

Should you be concerned about Massive On-Line Courses (MOOC)?

MOOCs are all the rage in some circles, particularly amongst politicians and university administrators. On Doug Natelson's blog he has a helpful post which links to two thoughtful, critical and challenging articles. I think the social justice issues raised by the Philosophy Department at San Jose State University are particularly pertinent.

I agree with Doug's point:
I do think it's worth thinking hard about the purpose of MOOCs.  Are they about idealistically providing access to fantastic educational opportunities at very low cost to the student for millions of potential pupils who have an internet connection?  Are they about cynically slashing the operating costs of universities by restructuring the educational experience and potentially eliminating large numbers of faculty jobs?  These are not mutually exclusive.

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