MOOCs

MOOCs Higher education Usage: Current and Past

Half of the students surveyed (49%) said they had taken an online course in the past year, a slight increase from the past two years (46% in 2013 and 47% in 2014). More undergraduate students took a MOOC in the past year than in previous years these data were tracked—9% took a MOOC in 2015, compared with 6% in 2014 and 3% in 2013 (figure 14). There has been no notable increase in the percentage of students who are familiar with MOOCs in 2015, likely due to waning media coverage. Three out of four students (74%) said that they don’t know what a MOOC is (76% in 2014 and 74% in 2013). More students who took a MOOC in the past year completed it, with 52% of MOOC takers saying they finished the course, compared with 47% in 2014. Of those who completed the MOOC, about 4 in 10 (38%) said they earned a digital badge or certificate (about the same as in 2014, 37%, and down from 44% in 2013). About a quarter of MOOC takers (in 2015 and 2014) didn’t know whether they had earned a digital badge or certificate. This is a reasonably good indicator that using badges/ certificates to document competencies developed by MOOC takers is not a high priority for people already enrolled as undergraduates in traditional colleges and universities.

Sample Size:
50,274 students from 161 institutional sites responded to the survey
Sample Description:

50,274 students from 161 institutional sites responded to the survey

Students’ experiences with MOOCs

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Publication Year: 
2015
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Sample size: 
50,274 students from 161 institutional sites responded to the survey
Sample description: 
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Half of the students surveyed (49%) said they had taken an online course in the past year, a slight increase from the past two years (46% in 2013 and 47% in 2014). More undergraduate students took a MOOC in the past year than in previous years these data were tracked—9% took a MOOC in 2015, compared with 6% in 2014 and 3% in 2013 (figure 14). There has been no notable increase in the percentage of students who are familiar with MOOCs in 2015, likely due to waning media coverage. Three out of four students (74%) said that they don’t know what a MOOC is (76% in 2014 and 74% in 2013). More students who took a MOOC in the past year completed it, with 52% of MOOC takers saying they finished the course, compared with 47% in 2014. Of those who completed the MOOC, about 4 in 10 (38%) said they earned a digital badge or certificate (about the same as in 2014, 37%, and down from 44% in 2013). About a quarter of MOOC takers (in 2015 and 2014) didn’t know whether they had earned a digital badge or certificate. This is a reasonably good indicator that using badges/ certificates to document competencies developed by MOOC takers is not a high priority for people already enrolled as undergraduates in traditional colleges and universities.

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MOOCs Higher education Other
Sample Size:
51,954 learners who completed online courses on Coursera prior to September 1, 2014
Sample Description:

Researchers at the University of Pennsylvania, University of Washington, and Coursera conducted the first longitudinal study of open online learning outcomes. [It is] a longitudinal study investigating the self-reported impact of open online courses on the lives of learners. In December 2014, researchers received survey responses from 51,954 learners who completed online courses on Coursera prior to September 1, 2014.

MOOCs learners report significant career and educational benefits

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2015
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51,954 learners who completed online courses on Coursera prior to September 1, 2014
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MOOCs Higher education Other

The Career Builders. All data in this section is based on the 52% of learners who were self-reported career builders. Online learners are experiencing a variety of career benefits. [*Tangible benefits]

 

Sample Size:
51,954 learners who completed online courses on Coursera prior to September 1, 2014
Sample Description:

Researchers at the University of Pennsylvania, University of Washington, and Coursera conducted the first longitudinal study of open online learning outcomes. [It is] a longitudinal study investigating the self-reported impact of open online courses on the lives of learners. In December 2014, researchers received survey responses from 51,954 learners who completed online courses on Coursera prior to September 1, 2014.

MOOCs learners are experiencing a variety of career benefits

Resource: 
 
Publication Year: 
2015
Trends: 
 
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Category of Information: 
 
Sample size: 
51,954 learners who completed online courses on Coursera prior to September 1, 2014
Sample description: 
Graphs: 

Content: 

The Career Builders. All data in this section is based on the 52% of learners who were self-reported career builders. Online learners are experiencing a variety of career benefits. [*Tangible benefits]

 

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MOOCs Higher education Usage: Current and Past

Career builders who chose to purchase a Course Certificate were more likely to report tangible career benefits.

Sample Size:
52% of 51,954 learners who were self-reported career builders
Sample Description:

Researchers at the University of Pennsylvania, University of Washington, and Coursera conducted the first longitudinal study of open online learning outcomes. [It is] a longitudinal study investigating the self-reported impact of open online courses on the lives of learners. In December 2014, researchers received survey responses from 51,954 learners who completed online courses on Coursera prior to September 1, 2014.

MOOCs Course Certificate

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Publication Year: 
2015
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Sample size: 
52% of 51,954 learners who were self-reported career builders
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Career builders who chose to purchase a Course Certificate were more likely to report tangible career benefits.

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MOOCs Higher education Other

The Education Seekers. All data in this section is based on the 27% of learners who were self-reported education seekers. Learners use online courses as a stepping stone in traditional education.

Sample Size:
27% of 51,954 learners who were self-reported education seekers
Sample Description:

Researchers at the University of Pennsylvania, University of Washington, and Coursera conducted the first longitudinal study of open online learning outcomes. [It is] a longitudinal study investigating the self-reported impact of open online courses on the lives of learners. In December 2014, researchers received survey responses from 51,954 learners who completed online courses on Coursera prior to September 1, 2014.

MOOC learners use online courses as a stepping stone in traditional education

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Publication Year: 
2015
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Sample size: 
27% of 51,954 learners who were self-reported education seekers
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Content: 

The Education Seekers. All data in this section is based on the 27% of learners who were self-reported education seekers. Learners use online courses as a stepping stone in traditional education.

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MOOCs Other Usage: Current and Past

In 2014, Coursera claimed more student signups than Udacity, edX and all other MOOC providers combined. This year, Coursera accounted for slightly less than half of all MOOC students. One company to watch is FutureLearn, a UK-based company owned by The Open University, which grew its user base from 800,000 students in 2014 to nearly three million students this year—more than Udacity. [...]

Not much has changed in course distribution among providers. Coursera, edX and the Canvas remain the top three providers of courses. Kadenze, a MOOC platform optimized for arts education, was the only the MOOC provider to launch in 2015.

MOOCs - Course Distribution by Providers

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2015
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In 2014, Coursera claimed more student signups than Udacity, edX and all other MOOC providers combined. This year, Coursera accounted for slightly less than half of all MOOC students. One company to watch is FutureLearn, a UK-based company owned by The Open University, which grew its user base from 800,000 students in 2014 to nearly three million students this year—more than Udacity. [...]

Not much has changed in course distribution among providers. Coursera, edX and the Canvas remain the top three providers of courses. Kadenze, a MOOC platform optimized for arts education, was the only the MOOC provider to launch in 2015.

Notes: 

EdSurge News (2015). MOOCs in 2015: Breaking Down the Numbers

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MOOCs Other Other

Top 2015 Trends

MOOCs find business models: One of the big trends last year was MOOC providers creating their own credentials: Udacity’s Nanodegrees, Coursera’s Specializationsand edX’s Xseries. For Coursera and Udacity, these credentials have become a main source of revenue, and both companies have raised big venture rounds to create more. Currently there are more than 100 credentials available from MOOC providers.

EdX, on the other hand is focusing on creating ways for students to earn credit with MOOCs. Earlier this year in April, the nonprofit partnered with Arizona State University to create the Global Freshman Academy. It is also pursuing partnerships with credit-granting institutions that students can earn credits through schools including the American Council on Education, Charter Oak State College and MIT.

Death of free certificates: The pursuit of revenues has meant that many MOOC providers have stopped offering free certificates. The average course of a Coursera certificate is $56; for edX, $53. Coursera is going one step further and is introducing a paywall for graded assignments for some courses.

Rise of self-paced courses: MOOCs started out with a structure parallel to college classroom courses, with a start and end date, and specific deadlines for assignments. One issue with these courses is that students would not know when—or if—the class would be offered again. Currently, 55% of all courses listed on Class Central do not have an upcoming start date.

Recently, MOOC providers have moved towards a self-paced model, meaning that courses are always open to signup and users can complete a course at their own pace. There are now more than 800 self-paced courses (20% of all MOOCs on Class Central), and the number is growing quickly. Coursera also introduced regularly scheduled sessions with soft deadlines. These sessions usually run once a month. If a student is not able to finish the course, they can always move to the next session without losing their place in the course.

Targeting high school: MOOC providers have started targeting high schoolers with the intentions of closing the college readiness gap, helping students to get a taste of different majors through introductory courses, and providing exam preparation (like AP) courses.Two specific MOOC providers are leading the charge: edX with its High School Initiative, and FutureLearn with the Going to University Collection.

2015: Less Experimentation, More Iteration

If the first generation of MOOCs was simply a catalog of free courses, today’s MOOCs are created with more intentionality and, for learners, practical outcomes. The concept behind online courses still remains the same, but the packaging has evolved. That the “Big Three” MOOC providers are now focused on making credentials matter—whether through Nanodegrees, Specializations or course credits—signals a maturation in offering a clearer value proposition. (From the company’s perspective, it also helps that credentials have now become the business model that so many have asked about.)

In 2016, we can expect to see a lot more credentials and credits. But as MOOC providers try to aggressively monetize, early adopters may find that critical components of the learning experience will no longer be free.

MOOCs - Top 2015 Trends

Resource: 
 
Publication Year: 
2015
Trends: 
 
Settings: 
 
Category of Information: 
 
Sample size: 
Sample description: 
Content: 

Top 2015 Trends

MOOCs find business models: One of the big trends last year was MOOC providers creating their own credentials: Udacity’s Nanodegrees, Coursera’s Specializationsand edX’s Xseries. For Coursera and Udacity, these credentials have become a main source of revenue, and both companies have raised big venture rounds to create more. Currently there are more than 100 credentials available from MOOC providers.

EdX, on the other hand is focusing on creating ways for students to earn credit with MOOCs. Earlier this year in April, the nonprofit partnered with Arizona State University to create the Global Freshman Academy. It is also pursuing partnerships with credit-granting institutions that students can earn credits through schools including the American Council on Education, Charter Oak State College and MIT.

Death of free certificates: The pursuit of revenues has meant that many MOOC providers have stopped offering free certificates. The average course of a Coursera certificate is $56; for edX, $53. Coursera is going one step further and is introducing a paywall for graded assignments for some courses.

Rise of self-paced courses: MOOCs started out with a structure parallel to college classroom courses, with a start and end date, and specific deadlines for assignments. One issue with these courses is that students would not know when—or if—the class would be offered again. Currently, 55% of all courses listed on Class Central do not have an upcoming start date.

Recently, MOOC providers have moved towards a self-paced model, meaning that courses are always open to signup and users can complete a course at their own pace. There are now more than 800 self-paced courses (20% of all MOOCs on Class Central), and the number is growing quickly. Coursera also introduced regularly scheduled sessions with soft deadlines. These sessions usually run once a month. If a student is not able to finish the course, they can always move to the next session without losing their place in the course.

Targeting high school: MOOC providers have started targeting high schoolers with the intentions of closing the college readiness gap, helping students to get a taste of different majors through introductory courses, and providing exam preparation (like AP) courses.Two specific MOOC providers are leading the charge: edX with its High School Initiative, and FutureLearn with the Going to University Collection.

2015: Less Experimentation, More Iteration

If the first generation of MOOCs was simply a catalog of free courses, today’s MOOCs are created with more intentionality and, for learners, practical outcomes. The concept behind online courses still remains the same, but the packaging has evolved. That the “Big Three” MOOC providers are now focused on making credentials matter—whether through Nanodegrees, Specializations or course credits—signals a maturation in offering a clearer value proposition. (From the company’s perspective, it also helps that credentials have now become the business model that so many have asked about.)

In 2016, we can expect to see a lot more credentials and credits. But as MOOC providers try to aggressively monetize, early adopters may find that critical components of the learning experience will no longer be free.

Notes: 

EdSurge News (2015). MOOCs in 2015: Breaking Down the Numbers

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MOOCs Other Usage: Current and Past

Student enrollments in MOOCs doubled this year. In fact, more people signed up for MOOCs in 2015 than they did in the first three years of the “modern” MOOC movement (which started in late 2011—when the first Stanford MOOCs took off). According to data collected by  Class Central, the total number of students who signed up for at least one course has crossed 35 million—up from an estimated 17 million last year.

In 2015, 1,800 new courses were announced, taking the total number of courses to 4,200 from over 550 universities.

Growth of MOOCs

Resource: 
 
Publication Year: 
2015
Trends: 
 
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Category of Information: 
 
Sample size: 
Sample description: 
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Content: 

Student enrollments in MOOCs doubled this year. In fact, more people signed up for MOOCs in 2015 than they did in the first three years of the “modern” MOOC movement (which started in late 2011—when the first Stanford MOOCs took off). According to data collected by  Class Central, the total number of students who signed up for at least one course has crossed 35 million—up from an estimated 17 million last year.

In 2015, 1,800 new courses were announced, taking the total number of courses to 4,200 from over 550 universities.

Notes: 

EdSurge News (2015). MOOCs in 2015: Breaking Down the Numbers

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