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Are MOOCs Working for Us?

…or are we working for MOOCs?

Jason B. Jones pointed out the humorous accidental slug for my post on Inside Higher Ed: www.insidehighered.com/blogs/higher-ed-beta/are-moocs-working-us. Funny, but are they working us? We’ll have some thoughts on this once we sift through the data in early spring, 2015. Stay tuned…

As an introduction, formal research is not something most instructional technologists have the time or the expertise to execute. As technology increasingly forces residential education to question our traditional value proposition, we owe it to our students and faculty to make sure it is an intentional part of any major technology investment that touches teaching and learning. And I admit, it’s fun and informative work! We will submit four posts on our rationale, process, results and recommendations around the DavidsonX MOOC experiment, and would love to collaborate with others. I am interested in a network of liberal arts researchers dedicated to lifting our powerful, thoughtful student voices in conversation with faculty about the future of residential higher education.

Read my Post on Inside Higher Ed.

LWMOOC: A Reflection

Everything old is new again.

Educational research has been happening for many years, with useful information about what works and what doesn’t. Richard Clark reminded us at LWMOOC that a lot of very smart people have spent countless hours studying the cognitive science of learning. That research tells us that the best learning happens using methods that may seem counterintuitive. Guided, evidenced-based pedagogy is the strategy that results in increased learning and greater motivation.

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The Lean MOOC

DavidsonX Still

I recently wrote a post for the DavidsonX blog, describing the benefits of our experience as a relatively lean MOOC team. Where many campuses create a separate structure for experimenting with MOOCs, we did not. As I write this, we are halfway through our first MOOC course run. The work is hard, but highly rewarding, and the experience offers great potential for on campus innovations in teaching and learning.

Read more about The Lean MOOC…

Academics as Public Intellectuals

I consider myself very lucky to be working alongside academics on a college campus, and not for the reasons one might think. True, I am grateful for a fulfilling job in a difficult economy, but I’m lucky because I frequently find myself in rich conversations with critical thinkers about important topics of the day. I am not a scholar, but I can attest that scholars have a lot to offer the general public.

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