January 2012 Archives

Open education and credentials

MIT announced it will offer certificates to students who take their online courses but are not enrolled or admitted to MIT. The credential will be from MITx, not MIT, and it looks like students will pay to receive the credential.

Higher education is an ecosystem of educational content, interaction with instructors/experts, interactions with students, credentials, and accreditation (and likely more that I am not thinking of at the moment). Until all of those aspects are addressed, open education will not overtake traditional higher education (both online and on-campus). With this move, MIT is addressing credentials. In a few years, I would not surprised to see other institutions accept MITx credentials as for-credit courses. Which would bring some form of accreditation, albeit secondarily.

Fascinating.

Questions and Prompts to Facilitate Online Discussions

Online discussions can be difficult to facilitate, especially high-quality, engaging online discussions. Too often, students post the minimum required posts, not engaging with their peers in thoughtful discussion.

The resource, Questions and Prompts to Facilitate Online Discussions, may be a useful tool for instructors in search of discussion prompts that can help lead to deeper discussions.

This resource aims to assist instructors in fostering student engagement in online discussions, one of the elements of the Quality Matters rubric.

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