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A Cluster Analysis of MOOC Stakeholder Perspectives

Análisis de cluster de perspectivas de participantes en MOOC

Abstract

Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) are providing opportunities for thousands of learners to participate in free higher education courses online. MOOCs have unique features that make them an effective Technology-Enhanced Learning (TEL) approach. Institutions are offering a growing variety of MOOCs. Nevertheless, there are several crucial challenges that should be considered in the development of MOOCs, e.g., the drop-out rate of over 95% of course participants. One of the potential reasons for that is the complexity and diversity of MOOC participants. This diversity is not only related to the cultural and demographic profile, but also considers the diverse motives and perspectives when enrolled in MOOCs. This paper aims to cluster and analyze the different objectives of MOOC stakeholders to build a deeper and better understanding of their behaviors. Our main finding was a set of eight clusters, i.e., blended learning, flexibility, high quality content, instructional design and learning methodologies, lifelong learning, network learning, openness, and student-centered learning. This cluster schema creates a meaningful picture for the MOOC community.

Resumen

Los cursos en línea masivos y abiertos (Massive Open Online Courses, MOOC) proporcionan oportunidades ilimitadas para la participación de miles de estudiantes en cursos de enseñanza superior en línea. Los MOOC tienen características únicas que los convierten en un método efectivo del aprendizaje electrónico, en concreto el aprendizaje mejorado por tecnología (Technology-Enhanced Learning, TEL). Numerosas instituciones ofrecen una creciente variedad de MOOC. Sin embargo, existen múltiples retos que deben ser considerados al desarrollar MOOC, por ejemplo, la tasa de abandono de participantes en los cursos es del 95%. Una de las posibles razones para ello es la complejidad y la diversidad de los participantes en los MOOC. Está diversidad no está solamente relacionada con el perfil demográfico y cultural, sino también con los diversos motivos y perspectivas que los usuarios tienen al inscribirse en MOOC. La intención de este artículo es agrupar en dústeres los objetivos de los participantes en MOOC y analizarlos para lograr una mayor comprensión de sus comportamientos. El principal resultado es el descubrimiento de ocho clústeres: aprendizaje mezclado (blended learning), flexibilidad (flexibility), contenido de alta calidad (high quality content), diseño instruccional y metodologías de aprendizaje (instructional design and learning methodologies), aprendizaje a lo largo de la vida (lifelong learning), aprendizaje en red (network learning), apertura (openness) y aprendizaje centrado en el estudiante (student-centered learning). Este esquema de agrupamiento en clústeres crea una visión significativa para la comunidad de participantes en MOOC.

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Correspondence to Ahmed Mohamed Fahmy Yousef.

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Yousef, A.M.F., Chatti, M.A., Wosnitza, M. et al. A Cluster Analysis of MOOC Stakeholder Perspectives. Int J Educ Technol High Educ 12, 74–90 (2015). https://doi.org/10.7238/rusc.v12i1.2253

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Keywords

  • Massive Open Online Courses
  • MOOCs
  • stakeholder analysis
  • clustering
  • lifelong learning

Palabras clave

  • cursos en línea masivos y abiertos
  • MOOC
  • análisis de participantes
  • agrupación
  • aprendizaje a lo largo de la vida