MOOC- massive Open Online Courses were supposed to even up the third world country students with other students around the globe and to democratize education, teleporting the world’s best universities to students anywhere in the world.
But despite all these expectations, the dropout rate from the MOOC courses was highest for the students from developing countries. So, what’s the main reason behind these high dropout rates. Few analysts blamed the poor internet connectivity, english language skills and educational background of third world countries.
In recent research by two of the world’s Top MOOC producer’s – Stanford University and Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the researchers believe that the problem may be more psychological. The team effectively doubled the achievement rates of third world students in two MOOCs – a 2014 Stanford course on computer science and a 2015 Harvard University offering on public policy — by embedding them with two short written tasks.
The experiments includes these two activities – value relevance affirmation & social-belonging intervention. The who undertook the social-belonging task ultimately completed at a rate just 2 percentage points behind their Western counterparts, compared to a 15 percentage point gap in a control group. Whereas the students who undertook the affirmation task saw an even more dramatic improvement, with their completion rates increasing by 24 percentage points while the rate among Western students dropped 9 percentage points.
Read the complete details about the experiment here.
Have you ever run any MOOC through Moodle? How you have boosted the student involvement in your MOOC? Share your ideas with us in the comments section below.