The secret work of Wikipedia editors

Today marks a worldwide campaign to expand the number of women represented in Wikipedia and to increase the number of women who are Wikipedia editors. Last year we* worked with Melissa Highton to research how people learn to become Wikipedia editors. With the emergence of social media sites like Wikipedia there has been a range of new roles and responsibilities associated with knowledge creation.…

Motivations Matter, Context Counts: Learning in MOOCs

  Massive open online courses (MOOCs) require individual learners to be able to self-regulate their learning, determining when and how they engage. However, MOOCs attract a diverse range of learners, each with different motivations and prior experience. We carried out a number of  studies investigating self-regulated learning in MOOCs. One study (Littlejohn et al, 2015) was an empirical investigation of…

Managing time in a MOOC

Recently I have been thinking about how learners manage their time in MOOCs. This thinking was sparked by discussions with Carolyn Rose, Carnegie Mellon University, who has carried out some fascinating computational discourse analysis in  Massive Open Online Courses.  At face value its clear that better time management will lead to improved outcomes for learning. There has been a…

Qualified, self-regulated learners follow parts of a MOOC that helps them solve a problem

Understanding learning in Massive Open Online Courses is difficult, partly because methods and instruments for data collection are under-developed. Published work tends to be from data samples that are too small or skewed. Dropout rates in MOOCs mean that the learners who participate in studies show persistence, therefore samples are not representative. Even if this…

Conflicting perspectives on MOOCs

  Katie Vale and I  recently wrote a chapter on Massive Open Online Courses: a traditional or transformative approach to learning which will be published in 2014 in Reusing Open Resources (Routledge) http://www.taylorandfrancis.com/catalogs/educational_technology_e-learning/2/2/. In the chapter we explore the conflicting opinions and perspectives around MOOCs. These perspectives are rooted in the diverse origins of the concept of…

Four observations on how OER initiatives are modelled

Isobel Falconer, Lou McGill, Eleni Boursinou and I  have been commissioned by the EC to carry out a SWOT analysis of Open Educational Resource initiatives for adult learning. In 2012 we carried out a scoping of adult learning initiatives using OER. We identified over 150 different initiatives distributed across Europe. In March we invited the leaders of the initiatives…

OER4Adults: methodology to scope practices around OERs

In OER4Adults we are providing an overview of Open Educational Practices in Europe by identifying, describing and classifying a comprehensive number of European OER initiatives in the area of Lifelong Learning and adult education. We are identifying bottlenecks and barriers to the innovative implementation and use of OERs in adult learning, surfacing factors critical to…

OER4Adults: researching practices around Open Educational Resources

On Sept 4th 2012 Lou McGill, Isobel Falconer and I met with Yves Punie and Stefania Bocconi at the European Commission’s Institute for Prospective Technological Studies in Seville. We launched an exciting new study that has the potential to shift the dialogue around the creation and use of Open Educational Resources (OERs): OER4Adults (http://oer4adults.org) A unique aspect of the project is that, while encompassing…

Grand Challenge in Open Learning

During Open Education Week, the JISC UKOER evaluation and synthesis team, Lou McGill, Isobel Falconer, Helen Beetham and I, are   collecting together ideas for a Grand Challenge in the areas of Open Education or Open Learning. This is following on from my work  with the EU-funded STELLAR  Network for Excellence in TEL in developing ‘Grand Challenges’.  A Grand…