InsideODU: News for Faculty and Staff
Thursday, April 4, 2013

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Faculty, Administrators Invited to Participate in Discussion About MOOCs

The Office of Distance Learning will facilitate a discussion about the opportunities and challenges presented to ODU by the burgeoning popularity of Massively Open Online Courses (MOOCs) on Friday, April 12.

Faculty and administrators are encouraged to attend and participate in the discussion, which is scheduled for 3-5 p.m. in Room 1002 of Constant Hall.

"Massively Open Online Courses have garnered a lot of media attention over the past few months as a 'disruptive innovation' capable of changing current teaching and learning practices," Provost Carol Simpson wrote in a recent letter to members of the campus community.

"Championed by prestigious institutions such as Stanford, MIT and Harvard, MOOCs are providing unprecedented learning opportunities to traditional and nontraditional students around the globe. However, beyond the media hype, it is critical to understand the opportunities and challenges presented by this mass teaching and learning model. It is particularly important to consider how ODU, a distance learning leader, should position itself."

Simpson added: "After a discussion of the emergence of this 'disruptive innovation,' including information about the key players and their strategies, we will examine the logistical, pedagogical and other academic issues such as assessment, faculty/student interaction, course completion and credentialing."

The April 12 forum will end with a discussion to consider (1) how ODU should respond if MOOCs become merely a passing phase and (2) if MOOCs flourish as the new model for education, the ways in which ODU might position itself in relation to this fast-moving phenomenon.

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