When MOOCs arrived on the higher education scene in 2012, educational technology enthusiasts, entrepreneurs, and trend-setters were hopeful that the massive online open courses would revolutionize higher education as we know it.
Although the hype surrounding MOOCs has largely waned in the United States, they continue attract attention among European and Asian institutions seeking to democratize education by giving access to courses that would otherwise be financially, academically, or geographically unavailable to those who take them. Regardless, the impact of MOOCs on teaching and learning remains largely unknown as the pace at which these courses are offered often outpaces our ability to research them.
In this lecture, the speaker will
1. offer an overview of the methodological issues related to researching MOOCs,
2. offer some results of early research conducted at the University of Minnesota, and
3. introduce some exciting research that promises to help us better understand MOOCs.
D. Christopher Brooks serves as a Senior Research Fellow for the EDUCAUSE Center for Analysis and Research, or ECAR,(http://www.educause.edu/ecar) where he conducts research on a range of topics related to IT in higher education including analytics, service delivery, integrated planning and advising services (IPAS), and how undergraduate students and faculty use, think about, and relate to IT. Prior to joining ECAR in December 2013, Dr. Brooks served as a Research Associate in the Office of Information Technology at the University of Minnesota where he researched the impact of educational technologies and Active Learning Classrooms (ALCs) on teaching practices and learning outcomes, completion rates and the impact of MOOCs on student learning, and evaluating blended learning environments. His research appears in a range of scholarly journals including the British Journal of Educational Technology, EDUCAUSE Quarterly, the International Journal for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning, The Journal of College Science Teaching, Evolution, the Journal of Political Science Education, and Social Science Quarterly, and in the edited volume Blended Learning: Research Perspectives, Vol. 2. His co-edited volume of New Directions for Teaching and Learning on Active Learning Spaces was published in 2014. His co-authored book, A Guide to Teaching in the Active Learning Classroom: History, Research, and Practice, is published in May 2016. Christopher earned his Ph.D. in Political Science from Indiana University in 2002. He has taught courses in comparative politics and political theory at Indiana Purdue Fort Wayne (IPFW), St. Olaf College, and the University of Minnesota.
Baepler,Paul, Brooks,D.Christopher, Saichaie,Kem and Petersen,Christina. A Guide to Teaching in the Active Learning Classroom: History, Research, and Practice. Virginia: Stylus Publishing, 2016.
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