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MOOCs Stir Up Controversy

14 May

Experts are divided on whether massive open online courses
will improve or destroy higher education

By Devon Haynie

Academia is hardly known for its rapid embrace of change.

But when it comes to accepting massive open online courses, or MOOCs, some worry university leaders may need to slam on the brakes.

It’s been less than three years since MOOCs entered the public discourse, but the online classes are already causing quite a stir in the higher education universe as elite universities such as Princeton University, the University of Pennsylvania and the University of Michigan—Ann Arbor embrace the courses.

Champions of MOOCs believe they are the best higher education development in decades, a way of providing free, high-quality classes to students anywhere in the world. But skeptics worry the courses will have a devastating effect on the American university system.

MOOCs are different from traditional online courses in that they are usually free, open to anyone with an Internet connection and draw hundreds or thousands of students. MOOCs can be created by institutions and individuals and are most commonly offered by third parties such as Coursera, edX and Udacity.

[ Full article available at U.S. News & World Report: http://www.usnews.com/education/online-education/articles/2013/05/14/explore-the-mooc-controversy ]

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Posted by on May 14, 2013 in MOOCs in the News

 

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