The iPhone and the MOOC

12 Feb

By Joshua Kim

I’ve discovered the secret (sort of) for getting through a MOOC (mostly).

Don’t use a computer.

In my vast experimenting in the open online education field (an N of 1 – namely me), I’ve found that I significantly more likely to make it through a MOOC if I consume the course materials via my iPhone.

Why forgo the power of the keyboard and the pleasure of a large screen when accessing the latest and greatest in open online learning?

3 reasons:

1. Multitasking:

Whoever said that multitasking is a myth has never witnessed me MOOC (can I use it as a verb?) while running (slowly) on my treadmill. My iPhone sits on that little treadmill shelf. My laptop not so much.

The big problem with MOOCs is that they do not come with an extra hour in our day. Maybe MOOCs should be bundled with caffeine pills. The reality is that the only way that I’m going to MOOC is if I can do so while doing something else. Joining the open online learning movement while driving seems like a bad idea (I’d get distracted from the curriculum), exercising seems like the only part of my day that is a candidate for new MOOC time.

2. Not Multitasking:

The other great advantage of logging into my MOOCs on my iPhone is that the iPhone is lousy at switching between tasks. What a great feature.

[ Full article available at Inside Higher Ed: ]

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Posted by on February 12, 2014 in MOOCs in the News, Op-Ed


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