I remember the Isaac Asimov story referenced in this article (16 page PDF). I credit my extensive reading of science fiction with a lot of the foresight I've been able to bring to our field, including with respect to MOOCs. Not surprisingly, this paper concludes, "the relevant literature about MOOC's evaluation is still uncertain between the need to adopt one of the few quality enhancement frameworks specifically created for MOOC or reuse the e-learning quality models available online." As I mentioned the other day, ultimately we'll have to evaluate online learning in terms of impact with respect to provider and participant objectives.
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