Thursday, April 2, 2015

Who’s Taking MOOCs? Teachers

The Chronicle of Higher Education
April 2nd, 2015

In free online courses offered by Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, teachers are increasingly the students. A study by the two universities has found that teachers are enrolling in their MOOCs in high numbers.
The study examines data from some one million MOOC students who enrolled in courses at edX, the nonprofit learning platform started by Harvard and MIT. Some one-fifth of participants answered a survey about their background in teaching, and 39 percent of them said they were current or former teachers.
Justin Reich, a research fellow at HarvardX, the university’s online arm, says he was surprised by the number of teachers who take MOOCs. “It’s the kind of thing that makes sense in retrospect, but it was novel information in the sense that not a lot of people were saying, ‘Hey, as we’re planning and designing these things, we really need to think about all the teachers that are going to show up,’” he says.

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