"The best part was the contact!": Understanding postgraduate students’ experiences of wrapped MOOCs

Tasneem Jaffer, Shanali Govender, Cheryl Brown

Abstract


Mandated to provide support to postgraduate students, the Office of Postgraduate Studies at the University of Cape Town operates in a context characterised by limited funding and resourcing, varied student preparedness for postgraduate study, and increasing student mobility. Extra-curricular academic and professional skills support is offered through a range of modes, including the wrapping of MOOCs. This research explored the contribution of face-to-face, facilitated sessions to the learning experiences of wrapped MOOC participants. Interviews, surveys and course evaluations were analysed using the Community of Inquiry (CoI) framework. Although the CoI framework surfaced complex relationships between the three presences and students’ learning experiences, with students expressing strong appreciation for the face-to-face contact in addition to online learning, the framework does not surface the substantial impact of learner and structural factors as contributors to learning.


Keywords


MOOCs; Community of Inquiry framework; blended learning

Full Text:

HTML PDF XML

References


Agarwal, A. (2014). Why massive open online courses (still) matter. Retrieved from http://www.ted.com/talks/anant_agarwal_why_massively_open_online_courses_still_matter

Arbaugh, J. B., Bangert, A., & Cleveland-Innes, M. (2010). Subject matter effects and the community of inquiry (CoI) framework: An exploratory study. The Internet and Higher Education, 13(1), 37–44. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.iheduc.2009.10.006

Akyol, Z., & Garrison, D. R. (2008). The development of a community of inquiry over time in an online course: Understanding the progression and integration of social, cognitive and teaching presence. Journal of Asynchronous Learning Networks, 12, 3–22. Retrieved from https://eric.ed.gov/?id=EJ837483

Akyol, Z., Garrison, D. R., & Ozden, M. Y. (2009). Online and blended communities of inquiry: Exploring the developmental and perceptional differences. The International Review of Research in Open and Distributed Learning, 10(6), 65–83. http://dx.doi.org/10.19173/irrodl.v10i6.765

Akyol, Z., Vaughan, N., & Garrison, D. R. (2011). The impact of course duration on the development of a community of inquiry. Interactive Learning Environments, 19(3), 231–246. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/10494820902809147

Altbach, P. G. (2014). MOOCs as neocolonialism: who controls knowledge? International Higher Education. (75), 5–7. Retrieved from http://ejournals.bc.edu/ojs/index.php/ihe/article/view/5426/4854

Bulger, M., Bright, J., & Cobo, C. (2015). The real component of virtual learning: motivations for face-to-face MOOC meetings in developing and industrialised countries. Information, Communication & Society, 18(10), 1200–1216. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/1369118X.2015.1061571

Bruff, D. O., Fisher, D. H., McEwen, K. E., & Smith, B. E. (2013). Wrapping a MOOC: Student perceptions of an experiment in blended learning. Journal of Online Learning and Teaching, 9(2). Retrieved from http://jolt.merlot.org/vol9no2/bruff_0613.htm

Caulfield, M. (2013). Downes on the Wrapped MOOC. Retrieved from https://hapgood.us/2013/05/16/downes-on-the-wrapped-mooc/

Chauhan, A. (2014). Massive open online courses (MOOCS): Emerging trends in assessment and accreditation. Digital Education Review, 25, 7–17. Retrieved from http://revistes.ub.edu/index.php/der/article/view/11325

Chen, Y. H. & Chen, P. J. (2015). MOOC study group: facilitation strategies, influential factors, and student perceived gains. Computers & Education, 86, 55–70. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.compedu.2015.03.008

Christensen, G., Steinmetz, A., Alcorn, B., Bennett, A., Woods, D., & Emanuel, E. J. (2013). The MOOC phenomenon: Who takes massive open online courses and why? University of Pennsylvania. http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2350964

Collier, A., & Caulfield, M. (2013). Distributed Flip Confidential: MOOC Use in the Blended Classroom At the University of Puerto Rico Rao Piedras. 19th Annual Sloan Consortium International Conference of Online Learning. Florida: Sloan-C. 382.

Conole, G. (2013). MOOCs as disruptive technologies: strategies for enhancing the learner experience and quality of MOOCs. RED - Revista de Educación a Distancia, 39, 1–17.

Czerniewicz, L., Deacon, A., Fife, M., Small, J., & Walji, S. (2015). CILT Position Paper: MOOCs. CILT, University of Cape Town. Retrieved from http://hdl.handle.net/11427/14041

Dellarocas, C. & Van Alstyne, M. (2013). Money models for MOOCs. Communications of the ACM, 56(8), 25–28. http://dx.doi.org/10.1145/2492007.2492017

Downes, S. (2013). MOOC - the resurgence of community in online learning. Retrieved from http://halfanhour.blogspot.com/2013/05/mooc-resurgence-of-community-in-online.html

Emanuel, E. J. (2013). Online education: MOOCs taken by educated few. Nature, 503(7476), 342–342. http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/503342a

Essa, I. (2011). Reflecting on some of the challenges facing postgraduate nursing education in South Africa. Nurse Education Today, 31(3), 253–258. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.nedt.2010.11.007

Ferrera, M., Ostrander, N., & Crabtree-Nelson, S. (2013). Establishing a community of inquiry through hybrid courses in clinical social work education. Journal of Teaching in Social Work, 33(4–5), 438–448. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/08841233.2013.835765

Garrison, D. R., Anderson, T., & Archer, W. (2000). Critical inquiry in a text-based environment: computer conferencing in higher education. The Internet and Higher Education, 2(2–3), 87–105. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S1096-7516(00)00016-6

Garrison, D. R., Anderson, T., & Archer, W. (2001). Critical thinking, cognitive presence, and computer conferencing in distance education. American Journal of Distance Education, 15(1), 7–23. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/08923640109527071

Garrison, D. R., Anderson, T., & Archer, W. (2009). The first decade of the community of inquiry framework: A retrospective. The Internet and Higher Education, 13(1), 5–9. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.iheduc.2009.10.003

Garrison, D. R., Anderson, T., & Archer, W. (2010). The first decade of the community of inquiry framework: A retrospective. The Internet and Higher Education, 13(1–2), 5–9. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.iheduc.2009.10.003

Garrison, D. R., & Vaughan, N. D. (2008). Blended learning in higher education: Framework, principles, and guidelines. John Wiley & Sons.

Giddens, A. (1984). The constitution of society: Outline of the theory of structuration. Berkeley and Los Angeles: University of California Press.

Green, W., Hammer, S., & Star, C. (2009). Facing up to the challenge: why is it so hard to develop graduate attributes? Higher Education Research & Development, 28(1), 17–29. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/07294360802444339

Griffiths, R. (2013). MOOCs in the classroom. Ithaka S+R. Retrieved from http://www.sr.ithaka.org/blog-individual/moocs-classroom

Hanyane, B. R. (2015). Assessing the level of preparedness in research-based qualifications of postgraduate students in Public Administration and Management. Administratio Publica, 23(1), 7–33. Retrieved from http://journal.assadpam.net/index.php?journal=assadpam&page=issue&op=download&path%5B%5D=29&path%5B%5D=22#page=11

Henderikx, P. (2016). From books to MOOCS: final reflections. Portland Press Limited (pp. 163–173).

Hood, N., Littlejohn, A., & Milligan, C. (2015). Context counts: How learners’ contexts influence learning in a MOOC. Computers & Education, 91, 83–91. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.compedu.2015.10.019

Ice, P., Curtis, R., Phillips, P., & Wells, J. (2007). Using Asynchronous Audio Feedback to Enhance Teaching Presence and Students’ Sense of Community. Journal of Asynchronous Learning Networks, 11(2), 3–25.

Janta, H., Lugosi, P., & Brown, L. (2014). Coping with loneliness: A netnographic study of doctoral students. Journal of Further and Higher Education, 38(4), 553–571. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/0309877X.2012.726972

Jezegou, A. (2010). Community of Inquiry in E-learning: A critical analysis of the Garrison and Anderson Model. International Journal of E-Learning & Distance Education, 24(3). Retrieved from http://www.ijede.ca/index.php/jde/article/viewArticle/707/1141

Jordan, K. (2014). Initial trends in enrolment and completion of massive open online courses. The International Review of Research in Open and Distributed Learning, 15(1). http://dx.doi.org/10.19173/irrodl.v15i1.1651

Khalil, H., & Ebner, M., (2014, June). MOOCs completion rates and possible methods to improve retention-A literature review. In World Conference on Educational Multimedia, Hypermedia and Telecommunications (1305–1313) Chesapeake, VA: AACE. Retrieved from https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Martin_Ebner2/publication/306127713_MOOCs_completion_rates_and_possible_methods_to_improve_retention-A_literature_review/links/57bb349c08aefea8f0f44ce9.pdf

Krause, S. D. (2014). MOOC assigned. In D. S. Krause & C. Lowe (Eds.) Invasion of the MOOCs: the promises and perils of massive open online courses. Anderson, South Carolina: Parlor Press. (122–129.) Retrieved from http://www.parlorpress.com/pdf/invasion_of_the_moocs.pdf

Le Grange, L., & Newmark, R. (2002). Postgraduate research supervision in a socially distributed knowledge system: some thoughts: perspectives on higher education. South African Journal of Higher Education, 16(3), 50–57. Retrieved from https://www.researchgate.net/publication/272326344_Postgraduate_research_supervision_in_a_socially_distributed_knowledge_system_some_thoughts

Li, N., Verma, H., Skevi, A., Zufferey, G., Blom, J. & Dillenbourg, P. (2014). Watching MOOCs together: investigating co-located MOOC study groups. Distance Education, 35(2), 217–233. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/01587919.2014.917708

Macdonald, J. (2008). Blended learning and online tutoring (2nd ed.). Hampshire, England: Gower.

McAuley, A., Stewart, B., Siemens, G., & Cormier, D. (2010). The MOOC model for digital practice. Retrieved from https://pdfs.semanticscholar.org/ad53/b9655587771edcf4ae028d4490a218d87ff2.pdf

Moser-Mercer, B. (2014). MOOCs in fragile contexts. European MOOCs Stakeholders Summit. Retrieved from http://virtualinstitute.fti.unige.ch/inzone12/Media-Upload_Xvc78HxeZ34xv/Kcfinder/files/MOOCs%20in%20Fragile%20Contexts.pdf

Mouton, J. (2007). Post-graduate studies in South Africa: Myths, misconceptions and challenges. South African Journal of Higher Education, 21(1), 1078–1090. Retrieved from http://hdl.handle.net/10520/EJC37415

Mustafaraj, E. (2014, March). What does enrollment in a MOOC mean? In Proceedings of the first ACM conference on Learning@ scale conference (pp. 203–204). ACM. http://doi.acm.org/10.1145/2556325.2567882

Nair, C. S., Patil, A., & Mertova, P. (2009). Re-engineering graduate skills–a case study. European Journal of Engineering Education, 34(2), 131–139. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/03043790902829281

Nchinda, T. C. (2002). Research capacity strengthening in the South. Social science & medicine, 54(11), 1699–1711. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0277-9536(01)00338-0

Norberg, A., Händel, Å., & Ödling, P. (2015). Using MOOCs at learning centers in Northern Sweden. The International Review of Research in Open and Distributed Learning, 16(6). http://dx.doi.org/10.19173/irrodl.v16i6.2035

Panda, S. (2016). Personality Traits and the Feeling of Loneliness of Post-Graduate University Students. The International Journal of Indian Psychology, 3(3), 27–37. Retrieved from http://oaji.net/articles/2016/1170-1460578509.pdf

Pappano, L. (2012). The Year of the MOOC. The New York Times. Retrieved from http://www.nytimes.com/2012/11/04/education/edlife/massive-open-online-courses-are-multiplying-at-a-rapid-pace.html

Rovai, A. P. (2002). Building sense of community at a distance. The International Review of Research in Open and Distributed Learning, 3(1). Retrieved from http://www.irrodl.org/index.php/irrodl/article/view/79/152

Sandeen, C. (2013). Integrating MOOCs into traditional higher education: The emerging “MOOC 3.0” era. Change: The Magazine of Higher Learning, 45(6), 34–39. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/00091383.2013.842103

Siemens, G., Irvine, V., & Code, J. (2013). Guest editors’ preface to the special issue on MOOCs: An academic perspective on an emerging technological and social trend. Journal of Online Learning and Teaching, 9(2), iii. Retrieved from https://search.proquest.com/docview/1500421435?accountid=14500

Shea, P., & Bidjerano, T. (2010). Learning presence: Towards a theory of self-efficacy, self-regulation, and the development of a communities of inquiry in online and blended learning environments. Computers & Education, 55(4), 1721–1731. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.compedu.2010.07.017

Shea, P., Hayes, S., Smith, S. U., Vickers, J., Bidjerano, T., Pickett, A., Gozza-Cohen, M., Wilde, J., & Jian, S. (2012). Learning presence: Additional research on a new conceptual element within the Community of Inquiry (CoI) framework. The Internet and Higher Education, 15(2), 89–95. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.iheduc.2011.08.002

Stemler, S. (2001). An overview of content analysis. Practical Assessment, Research and Evaluation, 7(17). Retrieved from http://PAREonline.net/getvn.asp?v=7&n=17

Swan, K., Garrison, D. R., & Richardson, J. (2009). A constructivist approach to online learning: the Community of Inquiry framework. Information technology and constructivism in higher education: Progressive learning frameworks. Hershey, PA: IGI Global. Retrieved from https://pdfs.semanticscholar.org/0953/6f809fae9debdebb337f840b02d12ea0b2cc.pdf

Swan, K., & Ice, P. (2010). The Community of Inquiry framework ten years later: introduction to the special issue. The Internet and Higher Education, 13(1–2), 1–4. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.iheduc.2009.11.003

Szeto, E. (2015). Community of Inquiry as an instructional approach: What effects of teaching, social and cognitive presences are there in blended synchronous learning and teaching?. Computers & Education, 81, 191–201. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.compedu.2014.10.015

Tik, C. C. (2016). Community of Inquiry for Graduate Certificate in Higher Education. Psychology Research, 6(1), 24–31. Retrieved from http://www.davidpublisher.com/Public/uploads/Contribute/56cd63d2c73c6.pdf

Waldrop, M. M. (2013). Massive open online courses are transforming higher education-and providing fodder for scientific research. Nature, 495(440), 160–163. Retrieved from http://www.nature.com/news/online-learning-campus-2-0-1.12590

Vaughan, N. & Garrison, D. R. (2005). Creating cognitive presence in a blended faculty development community. The Internet and Higher Education, 8(1), 1–12. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.iheduc.2004.11.001

Wisker, G., Robinson, G., & Shacham, M. (2007). Postgraduate research success: Communities of practice involving cohorts, guardian supervisors and online communities. Innovations in Education and Teaching International, 44(3), 301–320. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/14703290701486720

Yuan, L. & Powell, S. (2013). White paper on MOOCs and open education: Implications for higher education. Centre for Educational Technology and Interoperability Standards (CETIS), 1–21. Retrieved from http://publications.cetis.org.uk/2013/667




DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5944/openpraxis.9.2.565

Refbacks

  • There are currently no refbacks.