Tuesday, 30 July 2013

What is MOOC all about

  For all those who still don’t know what MOOC is, it’s basically a new way to deliver education to students and working professionals. MOOC stands for Massive Open Online Course, where main educational contents are delivered primarily through videos.  Learners (Students and Working Professionals) also learn through discussing their doubts or understandings with the peers in discussion forums. Their learning is analyzed through assignments and Quizzes. And all this is for free. 

Though MOOC started way back in 2003, the first successful MOOC was conducted by Sebastian Thrun(a Stanford university professor) and Peter Norvig in Artificial intelligence attended by 160,000 students across the world. He is now CEO and co-founder of Udacity (https://www.udacity.com/) which offers number of courses online in MOOC model.

Source:- wikipedia.org

Now personally I have also attended number of such courses at Udacity, Edx and Coursera.  The content which is provided is really good. But the fact is I am also out of those 90% people who don’t complete the course. If you don’t know, many of the MOOC offering websites are struggling with a very low course completion rate of 10%(as per them). Why such a low rate of completion, because many times those who are attending the course doesn’t have an immediate need of the course. From India, I guess people who attend these training are mainly working professionals and students studying in premier institutes like IIT or IIM’s.

Still I feel technology has finally started impacting eduction in a positive way. And if we can motivate/push students to attend these courses, it will be far better than the time spent on FaceBook.

Here is the list of main providers of MOOC 
a) http://www.coursesites.com – provided by BlackBoard who provides popular LMS software

b)  http://www.Edx.com – started by Havard and MIT

c) https://www.coursera.org/ – started by Stanford university

d) http://www.udacity.com - Started by Sebastian Thrun

And at last http://www.praclabs.com started by me and Vikas