Thursday, September 24, 2015

In Online Courses, Students Learn More by Doing Than by Watching - Ellen Wexler, Wired Campus

When students enroll in MOOCs, they almost always watch a series of video lectures. But just watching videos — without also engaging interactively — is an ineffective way to learn, according to a study by researchers at Carnegie Mellon University. The study looked at a generally available course, offered through the Georgia Institute of Technology, called “Introduction to Psychology as a Science.” Some students chose to take it as a traditional MOOC, spending most of their time watching video lectures. Others opted for a version that combined the MOOC and interactive materials produced by Carnegie Mellon’s Open Learning Initiative. All of the students were assigned 11 weekly quizzes and a final examination. Those in the MOOC-only course scored an average of 57 percent on the final. Those in the combined course scored an average of 66 percent. And when students in the combined course completed an interactive activity, they learned six times as much as those who only read the material or watched a video. http://chronicle.com/blogs/wiredcampus/in-online-courses-students-learn-more-by-doing-than-by-watching/57365

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