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Massive Open Online Courses

Massive open online courses, or MOOCs, are wholly online courses, offered by universities, that are open to all, requiring no prior qualifications, with no fee, and therefore liable to have ‘massive’ participation. They are different from free courses that universities may offer as part of their own virtual learning environment because, being massive, the platform for MOOCs must be much more robust for large-scale use.

MOOCs have frequently been characterised as a ‘disruptive’ technology because they challenge the conventional model of university education by offering free courses to very large numbers of people who otherwise would have no access to higher education. However, this claim can be overstated, primarily because MOOC platforms require multimillion dollar investment, and yet they have no clear or reliable source of ...

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