#edcmooc so far so good


I’m sitting at my computer ready to move on to week three of the #edcmooc, but am I really ready?  Before I move forward with #edcmooc, I should write something about my mooc experience so far.

I started a mooc once before and didn’t even survive the first week, so I had an idea about what to expect, and a plan about how to make this #edcmooc experience work for me.  So far so good!

With the previous course (which was a basic level course, and not about elearning) it was clear that some people were just there as sightseers. Oh, they took part and everything, but were very open about their ‘otherness’.  One seemingly very large group could be identified by their constant comments along the lines of “when I took my masters/PhD etc…”.  It was clear that these people could have been teaching the course, rather than taking it.  Another group could be identified by their constant (overwhelming) meta-discussion about the whole mooc concept, these people were clearly not there for the course content, but were there to learn how to run a mooc.   I just didn’t want to be there.

I knew that there would be meta-discussion on the #edcmooc course, it isn’t off-topic here, and obviously there are people here who want to know more about elearning etc… and I think that, in the time that has passed between the two courses, some of the hype about ‘the mooc’ has settled down.  I want to be part of #edcmooc.  So far so good!

Yes!: My biggest aim for the course was to get involved, not just to sit and read, and I think I have achieved this.  I have enjoyed the course content, and have been learning something.

Ho hum:  However, I’m not finding conversations easy.  The activity on twitter is great, but maybe too transient (by it’s very nature).  I think Google+ is great, but somehow it falls short – maybe it just seems too quiet?  In fact everywhere does – where are those 42,000 people?

Not so good: The Coursera forums are interesting to read, but don’t work for conversations, and are not a place where I want to participate.

Observations: I’ve found that I want to write about the ‘easy stuff’, and don’t want to spend the time involved in serious writing, partly because I want to keep my blog voice, and not shift into a more academic mode.  (Maybe I should have started a new blog for this course?).  I am reading the more advanced material – and learning a great deal – I’m just not blogging about it.

So what do I think about  moocs?  I think that both the moocs I have been on so far have been a skewed example of the mooc concept.  I don’t think it will be possible to truly assess the mooc concept until the sightseers have left, and the novelty has worn off.   I think moocs work – at least they work for someone like myself who is used to  independent learning – and the potential is there for them to grow into a successful format for the delivery of a high quality of online education.  I have questions about funding, and whether these courses will be provided for free in the future – I have questions about the business plan.

I am signed up for another mooc, after this one has finished, which I still intend to take (or maybe just follow along).  After that, I don’t expect I will take another mooc, partly because I am looking into taking a masters degree, but mainly  because this has been a lot of work (at this level) for something that doesn’t count towards a qualification.