OLDaily, by Stephen Downes

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September 24, 2013

FutureLearn & the role of MOOCs
Martin Weller, The Ed Techie, September 23, 2013


It makes me grumble but I couldn't have expected anything else from a university: "Martin Bean... pitched MOOCs as a shop-window. That's a sustainable business model for universities. We've found that OpenLearn is more or less sustainable now as a recruitment channel." It's not with cynicism that I grumble - it would have been a bit much to see universities touting something that would ultimately replace universities. EdX, too, is touted as a recruiting tool.  I just grumble because I think we can do more and better. But I also chuckle, because as Weller says here, it's bad news for the venture capitalists - because , on the one hand, they need universities in order to make their MOOC platforms work, but they need to be able to replace universities to make the big money they dream of (otherwise, they're just competing in the small space already occupied by Blackboard and Moodle and Desire2Learn and Pearson - good luck with that). I think MOOCs (or something like them) ultimately will be disruptive, but slow and steady rules the day. See also: FutureLearn: building a platform.

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Edukata – Learning Activity Design Toolkit for Teachers
Teemu Leinonen, September 23, 2013


The LeGroup research group has announced Edukata, the innovative learning activity design toolkit. In the announcement, Teemu Leinonen writes "surprisingly there are a lot of similarities between the educational systems in Finland and in Shanghai (yes both are doing very will in PISA). I wrote: 'If I’ll compare the basic education in Shanghai and Finland it is amazing how similar the systems are. Both emphasis equality, open tracks, teacher training, as well as teachers and schools autonomy. All this is done by combining these priorities with fact-based centralized planning.'" And he notes "the main people behind Edukata have been Tarmo Toikkanen and Anna Keune."

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Copyright 2010 Stephen Downes Contact: stephen@downes.ca

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