Wonderful to see that (massive) open online courses (MOOCs) continue to be adopted by traditional universities and educators. Dave, Stephen, and I announced our Change MOOC starting in Fall 2011. Today, The Center for Online Learning, Research, and Service at the University of Illinois Springfield announced that they are offering a MOOC starting June 27: eduMOOC: Online Learning Today…and Tomorrow (sign up is free, right-hand side of the page).
With more people and universities experimenting with MOOCs, we’re starting to see new models for design and delivery. Jim Groom and Alan Levine’s (there are many others) DS106, for example, produced DS106 Radio – an innovative approach to involving others in broadcasting and sharing stories, music, whatever.
I don’t think I’m overstating it when I say that we are at a similar point to open online learning that we experienced with the growth of the LMS in the late 90′s. While some have argued that MOOCs are limited in their appeal – mainly for professional development and highly prepared individuals – I believe MOOCs will continue to be easier to develop and deliver as the growing number of institutions develop pedagogies (network learning, connectivism, participatory pedagogy) and new technologies to run the events. In late 1990′s, when I first logged into WebCT, it’s appeal was limited to people with reasonable technical skills. Today, after a decade of technology improvements, investment, and systemic change, LMS’ are fairly easy to use. I don’t see why the MOOC trajectory will be any different – with the exception, obviously, of questioning the current system of education and how the internet influences teaching and learning.