MOOCs Are Dead! - Long Live MOOCs

Brussels (BE), August 2016 - "MOOCs Are Dead! – Long Live MOOCs" is the title of the presentation of Dr. Christian M. Stracke, researcher in open education and innovation at the Welten Institute of the Open University of the Netherlands, at the 2016 edition of the annual European Distance and eLearning Network (EDEN) conference. Stracke advocates a shift of focus when discussing MOOCs. He also stresses the importance of a common Quality Reference Framework (QRF) to guide the design and development of MOOCs as well as other open online courses.

In addressing the discourse on MOOCs’ drop-out rates, the questionable quality of MOOCs, the different types of MOOCs, etc., Stracke reiterates his belief that MOOCs are a current major trend for many eLearning providers and demands a change of perspective. Instead of focusing on the masses, the technology, and the promised innovations, we should focus on concrete design efforts that facilitate and promote continuous tutoring and support for MOOC learners and their personal goals.

Stracke forecasts that MOOCs will continue to set the trend in opening up education, and he believes that the European initiative MOOQ for the quality of MOOCs will be a critical move toward developing a common QRF to improve, assess, and compare the quality of MOOCs. He invites all interested MOOC designers and learners to join forces in realizing the slogan "We will make MOOCs better!"

To capture best practices and design patterns for the development of the QRF, Stracke launched his MOOC pre-survey at the EDEN conference and invites all MOOC partisans to take part in the short questionnaire until 01 September 2016. The pre-survey aims to gather preliminary information on MOOC users’ learning experience for the upcoming major MOOC survey.

This year marks the EDEN association’s 25th anniversary, and the four-day anniversary event was held in Budapest, 14-17 June. The conference theme, Re-imagining Learning Environments, sought to challenge core players and key stakeholders to go beyond learning content and to explore the context of learning. It was a call to harness the richness of technology and digital pedagogy to develop new approaches for teaching and learning to meet the changing education demands in the emerging powerful learning environments.