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June 16, 2013

Much Ado About MOOCs

Rob Reich:

The backlash against MOOCs and online learning in higher education has begun. Philosophers at San Jose State University recently wrote an open letter to Harvard's Michael Sandel, explaining why they were declining to support the use of his acclaimed class, Justice, in an online format provided by edX, an online course platform created jointly by Harvard and MIT. "There is no pedagogical problem in our department that JusticeX solves," they wrote.

Moving beyond Sandel's class to MOOCs of all kinds, they broadly rejected "products that will replace professors, dismantle departments, and provide a diminished education for students in public universities."
The letter is an exceptional document, articulating with welcome clarity several distinct objections and concerns. In considering the future of higher education in an era of MOOCs and the expansion of online learning, these objections and concerns are worthy of widespread attention and debate.

Posted by Jim Zellmer at June 16, 2013 12:37 AM
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