MOOCs: A systematic study of the published literature 2008-2012

Tharindu Rekha Liyanagunawardena, ,, Andrew Alexandar Adams, Shirley Ann Williams, eCOTOOL, Web Courseworks, Jul 05, 2013
Commentary by Stephen Downes

The title of this IRRODL article is very misleading, as by 'published' it means very specifically "a number of academic journals in the disciplines of educational technology and distance education." This is significant not simply because such methodology reduces my own contribution to 'the literature' to zero, it also systematically introduces misattributions and errors of fact. For example, consider the one paragraph discussion of the origin of the distinction between two types of MOOCs, cMOOCs and xMOOCs, which the author attributes to Rodriguez (2012) and Daniel (2012). This post (for example) easily predates Daniel's paper. But it (and pretty much everything written by actual MOOC pioneers) is not part of 'the literature'. And this post from Jenny Mackness easily precedes both, and cites four other posts already talking about different types of MOOCs. I say: so much the worse for the literature. And those wanting to do a real study might do well to start here instead.

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