Sustainability of Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs): Beyond Business Models
Wednesday, June 27 2:15-2:45 PM Location: Oost
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.