Gates Foundation Sees Value of MOOCs in Introductory InstructionEvoLLLution NewsWire
“We are cautiously optimistic that MOOC’s might be able to improve outcomes for low-income students who are working toward credentials, but there are a lot of questions that we can’t yet answer,” Josh Jarrett, the foundation’s deputy director for postsecondary success, told The Chronicle of Higher Education’s Katherine Mangan.
The foundation is hoping to learn what program areas translate best to the MOOC format, as well as which students benefit most from their availability. Another aim of the project is to find out how educators can support students who are enrolled in online courses, but are not naturally self-directed learners.
Lawrence Bacow, a former president of Tufts University and current president in residence at the Harvard Graduate School of Education told Mangan by email that the outcomes should be welcomed across the higher education space given their ever-reducing available resources and the increasing demand on the industry.
“A well developed MOOC that could be easily customized and adapted locally may be very attractive to many colleges and universities that are under great pressure to control rising instructional costs.”