Wednesday, November 4, 2015

An Open Letter to Sherry Turkle On MOOCs and Online Learning - Joshua Kim, Inside Higher Ed

(ed note: In this thought-filled posting, Josh Kim addresses issues related to the new book. These issues are relevant much more broadly.) In Reclaiming Conversation, you make the mistake of characterizing MOOCs as interchangeable with online education. This mistake is distressingly common amongst journalists, but in a book as influential as Reclaiming Conversation I find the conflation of these two educational methods to be particularly troublesome. The only thing that MOOCs and traditional online education share is a common enabling set of technologies - the internet and the phone. MOOCs contain two attributes that put them in a separate category to traditional online learning. First, they are built for scale. Second, they are built to be open. Traditional online courses are designed neither for scale or for openness. Traditional online courses are built around a model of a private community, one consisting of an educator and a limited number of students. https://www.insidehighered.com/blogs/technology-and-learning/open-letter-sherry-turkle-moocs-and-online-learning

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