While I wasn’t a non-completer (apparently only 2% of MOOC registrants actually complete them; woo hoo I’m a 2%er), I confess my attention waned during the latter stages of the course. The format became too repetitive, the lack of interaction was demotivating, and the assignments didn’t engage me. I didn’t dropout but I did drop back.
Karen Symms Gallagher (“Where’s the Real Learning?“) summed up my feelings in her description of her MOOC experience:
“I felt more like an audience member than a student.”
I did learn many things about aboriginal worldviews; it was an enriching and worthwhile. I also learned many things about MOOCs.
Too many MOOCs simply replicate the sage on the stage pedagogy we are so desperately trying to overthrow. Is is possible to do otherwise? I think so and as a result I’m helping a colleague (in a small way) design her forthcoming MOOC (sorry, no details yet, bound to secrecy but it should be wonderful). More on this later.
BTW the disclaimer on the Statement of Accomplishment from Coursera/UofT is almost as long as the citation:
PLEASE NOTE: THE ONLINE OFFERING OF THIS CLASS DOES NOT REFLECT THE ENTIRE CURRICULUM OFFERED TO STUDENTS ENROLLED AT THE UNIVERSITY OF TORONTO. THIS STATEMENT DOES NOT AFFIRM THAT THIS STUDENT WAS ENROLLED AS A STUDENT AT THE UNIVERSITY OF TORONTO IN ANY WAY. IT DOES NOT CONFER A UNIVERSITY OF TORONTO GRADE; IT DOES NOT CONFER UNIVERSITY OF TORONTO CREDIT; IT DOES NOT CONFER A UNIVERSITY OF TORONTO DEGREE; AND IT DOES NOT VERIFY THE IDENTITY OF THE STUDENT.