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MOOCs and Their Afterlives

Experiments in Scale and Access in Higher Education

MOOCs and Their Afterlives

Experiments in Scale and Access in Higher Education

A trio of headlines in the Chronicle of Higher Education seem to say it all: in 2013, “A Bold Move Toward MOOCs Sends Shock Waves;” in 2014, “Doubts About MOOCs Continue to Rise,” and in 2015, “The MOOC Hype Fades.” At the beginning of the 2010s, MOOCs, or Massive Open Online Courses, seemed poised to completely revolutionize higher education. But now, just a few years into the revolution, educators’ enthusiasm seems to have cooled. As advocates and critics try to make sense of the rise and fall of these courses, both groups are united by one question: Where do we go from here?

Elizabeth Losh has gathered experts from across disciplines—education, rhetoric, philosophy, literary studies, history, computer science, and journalism—to tease out lessons and chart a course into the future of open, online education. Instructors talk about what worked and what didn’t. Students share their experiences as participants. And scholars consider the ethics of this education. The collection goes beyond MOOCs to cover variants such as hybrid or blended courses, SPOCs (Small Personalized Online Courses), and DOCCs (Distributed Open Collaborative Course). Together, these essays provide a unique, even-handed look at the MOOC movement and will serve as a thoughtful guide to those shaping the next steps for open education.

384 pages | 9 halftones, 6 line drawings, 3 tables | 6 x 9 | © 2017

Education: Higher Education


“Whither MOOCs — the massive open online courses that promised to vastly scale up access to higher education? This multi-author volume reveals a bumpy evolution, from wrangles over ‘educational monoculture’ to the emergence of spin-offs such as POOCs (participatory open online courses). Media theorist Elizabeth Losh is typically insightful.”


Table of Contents


Elizabeth Losh

Part 1 Data-Driven Education

1          Beyond Hype, Hyperbole, Myths, and Paradoxes: Scaling Up Participatory Learning and Assessment in a Big Open Online Course
Daniel T. Hickey and Suraj L. Uttamchandani

2          Can MOOCs and SPOCs Help Scale Residential Education while Maintaining High Quality?
Armando Fox

3          Measuring the Impact of a MOOC Experience
Owen R. Youngman

Part 2 Connected Learning

4          Connecting Learning: What I Learned from Teaching a Meta-MOOC
Cathy N. Davidson

5          Toward Peerogy
Howard Rheingold

6          The Learning Cliff: Peer Learning in a Time of Rapid Change
Jonathan Worth

7          Reimagining Learning in CLMOOC
Mia Zamora

Part 3 Openness and Critical Pedagogy

8          Feminist Pedagogy in the Digital Age: Experimenting Between DOCCs and MOOCs
Adeline Koh

9          Epistemologies of Doing: Engaging Online Learning through Feminist Pedagogy
Radhika Gajjala, Erika M. Behrmann, Anca Birzescu, Andrew Corbett, and Kayleigh Frances Bondor

10        Haven’t you ever heard of Tumblr? FemTechNet’s Distributed Open Collaborative Course (DOCC), Pedagogical Publics, and Classroom Incivility
Jasmine Rault and T. L. Cowan

11        Open Education as Resistance: MOOCs and Critical Digital Pedagogy
Sean Michael Morris and Jesse Stommel

12        Opening Education, Linking to Communities: The #InQ13 Collective’s Participatory Open Online Course (POOC) in East Harlem
Jessie Daniels, Polly Thistlethwaite, and Shawn(ta) Smith-Cruz

Part 4 The Pathos of the MOOC Moment

13        Digital Universalism and MOOC Affects
Elizabeth Losh

14        The Prospects and Regrets of an EdTech Gold Rush
Alex Reid

15        Always Alone and Together: Three of My MOOC Student Discussion and Participation Experiences
Steven D. Krause

Part 5 MOOC Critiques

16        The Open Letter to Michael Sandel and Some Thoughts about Outsourced Online Teaching
The San José State Philosophy Department

17        The Secret Lives of MOOCs
Ian Bogost

18        MOOCs, Second Life, and the White Man’s Burden
Siva Vaidhyanathan

19        Putting the “C” in MOOC: Of Crises, Critique, and Criticality in Higher Education
Nishant Shah


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