An Experience of Running a MOOC on Information Technology

An Experience of Running a MOOC on Information Technology

Valentina Dagiene (Vilnius University, Vilnius, Lithuania), Danguole Rutkauskiene (Kaunas University of Technology, Kaunas, Lithuania) and Daina Gudoniene (Kaunas University of Technology, Kaunas, Lithuania)
DOI: 10.4018/IJHCITP.2016070106
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Abstract

The paper deals with designing and running a massive open online course (MOOC) used in Lithuanian course “Information technologies” for learners of all levels. The main problem of this course relates to lack of qualified and experienced teachers who could have time for providing a high-quality massive open online course for learners. The results of the experience provided on a national level can be used for planning, designing and running various MOOCs on different subjects and aimed at different societies. The presented quantitative research on the basis of respondents' answers to a survey questions can help designers and teachers to improve their courses.
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Introduction

Open educational resources (OER) and massive open online courses (MOOC) are considered as innovation drivers helping to improve education and forming the base for transformation of our secondary and higher education system.

Many authors (Yuan & Powell, 2013; Bates, 2013; Jansen & Sepe, 2015; Siemens, 2012) describe MOOC as a massive open online course (MOOC) and an online course aimed at unlimited participation and open access via the web. In addition to traditional course materials such as videos, readings, and problem sets, MOOCs provide interactive user forums that help in building a community of students, professors, and teaching assistants (Thompson, 2013).

MOOCs are online courses designed for a large number of participants, that can be accessed by anyone anywhere as long as there is an internet connection, are open to everyone without entry qualifications, and offer a full or complete course experience online for free (EADTU) (Read & Rodrigo, 2014; “Educause”, 2012; “Futurelearn”, 2012).

The open sharing of content, tools, technologies, models, experiences, etc. creates new opportunities for innovation and incubation. More than previously, universities can take into account the needs of business and public sectors and changes in students learning habits in the process of course or program development (“Open University”, 2012; Coughlan, 2012). Open and online education are seen as innovation drivers to improve education and/or seen as the base for transformation of our (secondary and higher) educational system.

Access to higher education for all is the main driver of open education on a national or global level (Belanger & Thornton, 2013; Bower & Christensen, 1995; Carey, 2013). It is perceived as extremely relevant and beneficial for Developing Countries and Emerging Economies with (1) shortage of qualified teachers; (2) lack of high-quality learning materials and (3) evident need to really expand access to (formal) education. Also it reduces the costs of HE at a state or country level (e.g., 50% reduction by use of open textbooks) (Christensen, Johnson & Horn, 2008). OER and MOOCs have become a part of political issues (EU, Governments, UNESCO). However, the European reply to this is slowly and fragmented, and only some institutions and some countries are responding in announcing their own MOOC platforms.

The main driver on open education for institutions is mainly marketing, offering something for free to attract more students (Christensen, 2003; Daniel, 2012; “Educause”, 2012; Jarrett, 2012). MOOCs, for example, is used in competition for international students.

The world of open and online education does change the way we innovate our education system, our programs and courses (Daniel, 2012; “Educause”, 2012). Leveraging open as an economic driver involves developing and delivering open products and services in partnership with others around Europe and the world (Karolčik, Čipkova, Hrušecky & Veselsky, 2015, Siemens, 2012; Thompson, 2013; Read & Rodrigo, 2014). Open education does change the relation universities (Jarret, 2012; “JISC”, 2013) hold with service providers (e.g., test and exam centres, publishers, provider’s platform), companies for training offers (Gee, 2012; “Global Industry Analysts”, 2010), investors (to open education), governments and foundations.

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