MOOCs: ‘dropout’ a category mistake, look at ‘uptake’?

Donald Clark, Workplace Performance, Jan 17, 2013
Commentary by Stephen Downes

Donald Clark is on point in this reframing of the 'dropout argument' against MOOCs: "We need to look at uptake, not dropout. It’s astonishing that MOOCs exist at all, never mind the millions, and shortly many millions, who have given them a go. Dropout is a highly pejorative term that comes from ‘schooling’. The ‘high school dropout’. He’s ‘dropped out of ‘University’. It's this pathological view of education that has got us into this mess in the first place. MOOCs are NOT school, they eschew the lecture hall and are more about learning than teaching. MOOCs, like BOOKs, need to be seen as widely available opportunities, not compulsory attendance schooling. They need to be encouraged, not disparaged." And not just that - the cost of dropping an open online course is effectively zero, as compared to a cost of thousands when dropping a university course. Via Seb Schmoller.

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