News
News Home
Quick Bites
Exploradio
News Archive
News Channel
Special Features
NPR
nowplaying
On AirNewsClassical
Loading...
  
School Closings
WKSU Support
Funding for WKSU is made possible in part through support from the following businesses and organizations.

Wayside Furniture

The Holden Arboretum

Lehmans


For more information on how your company or organization can support WKSU, download the WKSU Media Kit.

(WKSU Media Kit PDF icon )


Donate Your Vehicle to WKSU

Programs Schedule Make A Pledge Member BenefitsFAQ/HelpContact Us
Education


MOOCS and the future of technology in higher hducation
Ohio State University recently signed on to give some MOOCS of their own
by WKSU's IDA LIESZKOVSZKY


Reporter
Ida Lieszkovszky
 

On-line education is nothing new for colleges and universities. It’s been a way for colleges to open their campuses and generate revenue. But over the past 12 months more and more colleges have started to open up their on-line offerings to anyone, and for nothing – no charge. StateImpact Ohio’s Ida Lieszkovszky has this story about what many are calling the year of the MOOC (Mook).

Lieszkovszky on MOOC

Other options:
Windows Media / MP3 Download (4:27)


MOOC stands for Massive Open Online Course.

“I hate the acronym actually so you can quote me on that one.”

Wayne Carlson is the Dean of Students at Ohio State University. And although he’s not a fan of the acronym, he is pretty excited about the technology. MOOC basically refers to classes that are put online, available to anyone in the world. They don’t count for credit, but they are free.

Ohio State just teamed up with Coursera, a tech company that is one of the biggest MOOC providers, an effort headed by Carlson.

“MOOC and the emerging technology are really transformational. They have the ability to really disrupt the way we do our business. And as a business, if we don’t pay attention to those disruptive processes we’re going to lose in the long run.”

Disruptive because many in the higher ed community worry that unless they’re careful, universities will go the way of newspapers and the music industry: give their product away for free online and lose customers in the process.

“There really is no business model present in these MOOC’s yet because nobody is charging anything. There is no revenue to split.”

While the content and lectures are traditional, the learning process is not. 

Sometimes MOOC courses give tests, but often there is no assessment of what a student learns. Often tens of thousands of students start a course, but many don’t finish.

At COSI, the science museum in Columbus, OSU Pharmacy professor Nicole Kwiek is worried about all that big picture stuff, but she’s more nervous about gearing up to teach her own massive open online course next summer.

“I’m excited to see and adapt my content knowledge to this huge audience and people who have never been able to take a pharmacology class in their lives or may not see the potential of science in their own lives or why it’s important now may see an application on why it’s important and say ‘huh, now I understand.’”

Kweik works in the Generation Rx lab at COSI, which teaches visitors about the potential dangers of prescription drugs. Her class will be about the same thing.

 “…we have an experiment where they have to figure out what gave Bobby heart burn…”

Kweik’s class won’t start for another 7 months, but she’s already getting emails from potential students as far away as New Zealand and Arizona.

But using technology in college classrooms is nothing new.

Back on the Ohio State campus, chemistry professor Matthew Stoltzfus, aka Dr. Fus (FOOS) is quizzing his students on last night’s lecture.

Stolzfus has been using what’s called the inverted classroom model for a couple years now. Inverted classes are ones in which students watch lectures at home, and do homework in class. Stolzfus posts his lectures online, and spends classroom time answering questions and helping students workout problems.

Freshman Adam Bross admits he doesn’t watch every lecture.

“Not all of them. But a good amount. It’s hard to find time and willpower and watch every single one. Like earlier in the year I watched less, now I try to watch more now that I don’t know it.”

Stoltzfus knows that, but it doesn’t bother him.

“Everybody thinks videos are going to ruin education. Well I would point across the street here to the chemistry library across the street, we have book on books on books on all of these chemistry topics. The content was out there before; we’re just putting it in a different format.”

Dartmouth professor and higher ed blogger Joshua Kim has been monitoring the MOOC movement for a while.

He says MOOC’s have a lot of promise, but he’s full of reservations.

“I do not think that MOOC’s will be the solution to the very real issues and problems of rising costs, unequal quality and limited access to higher education. MOOC’s might be part of the solution but they are not the solution. So I worry that they are being overhyped and oversold.”

MOOC’s sound great. But even its biggest cheerleaders have concerns.

Here’s Wayne Carlson of Ohio State again.

“It’s a very utopian world where you want knowledge for knowledge sake.”

But the problem with utopian ideas?

“They don’t scale to the real world.”

Employers want to see how you did in that course, universities want to make money, students want to get credit for the classes they take, and professors don’t want to see their jobs outsourced to computers.

Add Your Comment
Name:

Location:

E-mail: (not published, only used to contact you about your comment)


Comments:




 
Page Options

Print this page

E-Mail this page / Send mp3

Share on Facebook




Stories with Recent Comments

Bringing back ballet in Cleveland
I do think Ballet in Cleveland is doing good things, but the fact that director says "When we have flourishing companies like the New York City Ballet and the A...

Report confirms some Vietnam veterans may have been exposed to Agent Orange
was in nam 1969 exposed va stated lost medical records was in lawsuit from 197? till settled 0 $ 2010 ? said all nam vets will get back disability till 198? jus...

Mentorship grant program redefines "faith-based" provision
Can't anyone have values, beliefs, and morals anymore? How is it anymore unconstitutional for a school partner with a "faith-based" organization than any other ...

Exploradio: The challenge of finding a healthy balance with technology
Thank you, Jeff, for another well done Exploradio. I always learn something interesting about what is happening in NE Ohio.

Northeast Ohio's transgender community rallies around restroom issue
A good first step would be for Cleveland to require restaurants to have a public restroom. Cleveland is the only city I've ever been in where restaurants somet...

Vapor shops say tobacco tax hikes could hit them hard
Maybe you should be DOING a study, since every time you've tried to villianize them all that's happened was the opposite. I'm not a fan of alcohol that's flavor...

New law gives access to birth records to Ohio adoptees
Can siblings also look for their missing brother or sister? And how do we go about it?

Ida McKinley's tiara comes home, with the help of "Pawn Stars"
I donated to the fund to keep the tiara at the museum where I believe it belongs. I took my 16 year old granddaughter to the showing I dont think it will be som...

ResponsibleOhio names 10 counties as possible pot-growing locations
Ohio has always made its money off our prison system ,and ohio is so hard nose on us the public that there voicing concerns saying there on our behalf bullcrap ...

Akron's plan to create its own construction company is on hold -- for now
They talk about displacing workers... This is all about the teamster union. The city is allowing RW Sidley out of Canton to haul concrete for one of the CSO pr...

Copyright © 2015 WKSU Public Radio, All Rights Reserved.

 
In Partnership With:

NPR PRI Kent State University

listen in windows media format listen in realplayer format Car Talk Hosts: Tom & Ray Magliozzi Fresh Air Host: Terry Gross A Service of Kent State University 89.7 WKSU | NPR.Classical.Other smart stuff. NPR Senior Correspondent: Noah Adams Living on Earth Host: Steve Curwood 89.7 WKSU | NPR.Classical.Other smart stuff. A Service of Kent State University