In an unplanned series of sorts, we’re showcasing a couple of posts about the 2013 NMC/EDUCAUSE Learning Initiative Horizon Report for Higher Education. We’ve already talked about the key trends in the report and some challenges we face in implementing education technology, so we’re ready to take a look at the six technologies highlighted in the report as being game-changers for education. Since MOOCs were at the top of the list (identified as part of the ‘first horizon’, or entering mainstream use in a year or less), we’ll start with that.
We’ve talked about MOOCs before (really, we’ve talked about it too many times to even link to all of them in a reasonable way), but the Horizon Report showcases a number of different examples of MOOCs in action. We’ve linked to each of them below (along with the description provided in the report) so you can check out some of what the investigators saw as great examples.
Caltech’s Learning from Data
The California Institute of Technology piloted the “Learning from Data” MOOC in April 2012. The first offering included live streaming and real-time Q&A sessions with the participants, along with automated grading and discussion forums. Since then, it has been offered four times, with over 100,000 enrolled students.
The Games MOOC is a community site woven around a series of three courses about the use of games in education, including traditional games, massively multiplayer online role-playing games, game-based learning, and immersive environments. The first courses were piloted in the fall of 2012.
Google’s Open Course Builder
Google created an open course builder and its first massive open online course, “Power Searching with Google.” It drew 150,000 students, and helped sharpen their Internet search skills.
Open Course for Educators (Career and Technical Education 230: Instructional Technology)
This Maricopa Community Colleges’ course stems from a National Science Foundation-funded project to increase the ability of STEM teachers to collaboratively learn and apply STEM skills using information and communication technology. Participating educators acquire knowledge and skills using Canvas and 3D Game Lab learning management systems, and Google+ Community.
UMW’s Digital Storytelling 106
Anyone can take this online digital storytelling course at University of Mary Washington (UMW), one of the few that adhere to the original collectivist notion of a massive online course, but only students registered at the university can receive credit. For the past couple years, it has also been taught at several other institutions. UMW is currently exploring how to give credit to other state college students as well as incoming high school students.
The Centro Superior para la Enseñanza Virtual is encouraging MOOC enrollment to Latin American communities through a Spanish platform called unX. The model includes many interactive features along with a digital badging system.