Sustainability of Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs): Beyond Business Models

ID: 53072 Type: Full Paper: Research
  1. Brenda Cecilia Padilla Rodriguez, Universidad Autónoma de Nuevo León, Mexico
  2. Alejandro Armellini, University of Northampton, United Kingdom
  3. Susana Leticia de la Garza Escamilla, Universidad Autónoma de Nuevo León, Mexico

Wednesday, June 27 2:15-2:45 PM Location: Oost View on map

Presider: Kurt Ackermann, Hokusei Gakuen University Junior College, Japan

Abstract: In spite of the popularity of Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs), their sustainability is still a matter of concern. This paper reports on the views of 21 European individuals involved in designing, developing, or delivering MOOCs. Semi-structured interviews provided information on the following key areas: 1) characteristics of a sustainable MOOC, 2) strategies to ensure sustainability, and 3) challenges. Findings show that a sustainable MOOC requires more than an underlying business model. It should successfully achieve its goals and maximise its benefits. While most participants agreed that a sustainable design is content-based and self-paced, some emphasised the need of a teacher and a community to support learning in MOOCs. Strategies to ensure MOOC sustainability include generating revenue sources, reducing delivery costs and relying on philanthropy. Participants commented on three main challenges: lack of time, institutional MOOC policies and funding.


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