- The explosion of MOOCs comes at a time that traditional campuses are faced with a great deal of financial pressure and an increasing demand for higher education that would require the construction of four new 30,000-student universities a week to serve the number of kids who will be at enrollment age by 2025.
- Roy Pea, head of a Stanford center that studies how people use technology, says MOOCs could be the positive development that higher education needs, as they incorporate decades of research on how students learn best, are capable of freeing faculty from repetitive introductory lectures, and can provide detailed microanalytics for every paper, test and action a student takes in a course.
- Despite their rapid spread, MOOCs are still faced with low completion rates and questions of how to achieve profitability, maintain quality and connect with students.
From the article:
... Similar conversations have been taking place at major universities around the world, as dozens — 74, at the last count — rush to sign up. Science, engineering and technology courses have been in the vanguard of the movement, but offerings in management, humanities and the arts are growing in popularity (see 'MOOCs rising'). “In 25 years of observing higher education, I've never seen anything move this fast,” says Mitchell Stevens, a sociologist at Stanford and one of the leaders of an ongoing, campus-wide discussion series known as Education's Digital Future. ...