Benefits and Values of MOOCs

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Earlier this year, Class Central conducted the first survey of our users. We wanted to find out more about who you are, why you’re interested in MOOCs, and what value you have found in free courses. We didn’t require our respondents to have registered for, paid for, or completed a MOOC. […] We received nearly 2,500 responses to the survey.




Although most survey respondents expressed both an interest in and a familiarity with MOOCs, many (57%) were unable to identify tangible benefits of free and low-cost university courses. Among those who did find MOOCs beneficial, the most common benefit users reported was improved performance at a current job (257 respondents). Others said that their MOOC coursework had helped them get a new job (194 respondents) or earn a promotion (58 respondents).

More than half of users (51%) reported that they are not very willing to pay for a MOOC certificate, though close to half of users were at least somewhat willing to pay.

Most respondents (85%) thought that employers find at least some value in MOOC certificates, with 28% believing that employers find MOOC certificates highly or very highly valuable.