London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine Mooc

London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine Mooc

Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) and LSHTM

  1. The School has become a partner in FutureLearn as part of its strategic development of online/e-learning. FutureLearn (FL) is a private company owned by the Open University and runs the UK’s main MOOC platform. It has around 30 partners – leading universities in the UK and internationally together with organisations such as the British Library, British Council and the British Museum.
  2. MOOCs are online courses made freely available, typically of 6-10 weeks duration with 2-6 hours of learning per week. Growing experience suggests the lower end of both these ranges is more popular amongst learners, or mini-MOOCs of under 6 weeks. A typical pattern is that large numbers of learners sign up for MOOCs, a percentage of these actually start the course and a percentage of those go on to complete it. Those percentages vary according to a range of factors, some still under discovery. Increasingly institutions are seeking to provide paid additions to MOOCs such as certificates of attendance and assessments, again a percentage of course completers opt for these.
  3. To date, FL partners have developed MOOCs for various reasons and from different starting points – some have little previous online learning experience and have simply experimented, others have taken a more strategic approach. The School has become a partner in order to help develop further its online provision, especially the DL programme, and as a means to promote the School’s teaching and research. We would like to develop MOOCs with a clear strategic basis such as providing a taster for full courses/modules or disseminating and/or conducting research. A key question to have an answer for is “what do you want your MOOC learners to do after completion?”
  4. A project team, led by Craig Higgins, will co-ordinate development and delivery of MOOCs with FL and funding has been allocated for three MOOCs in 2014-15.
  5. Discussions at SLT and its Academic Affairs sub-committee have suggested that offering a MOOC might be particularly attractive to academic Centres who want to promote their work and attract students to short courses. At this point, however, all ideas are very welcome.
  6. We are approaching various individuals to gauge interest in developing a MOOC in 2014-15 and will also hold an open meeting on Monday 16th June at 12.45-1.45 in the Manson Lecture Theatre. Anyone who is interested in potentially being involved in developing a MOOC or just wants to know more about what the School is doing in this area is very welcome.
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London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine
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London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine
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